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Can You Withdraw or Dismiss A Bankruptcy After It is Filed?

  • By: Christopher Benson
  • Published: December 14, 2014

Once you file for bankruptcy, you may not be able to take it back. Whether or not you can withdraw your bankruptcy depends on the type of bankruptcy you filed and the circumstances of your case.

If you filed Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you have the right to have your case voluntarily dismissed at any time. But in Chapter 7, you can only have your case dismissed for a few good reasons. Your dismissal depends on a few things, including whether you have nonexempt assets, if dismissal will prejudice your creditors, your reasons for wanting a dismissal, and the policies in your jurisdiction.

The Bankruptcy Trustee will file a motion to dismiss your case for failing to comply with the Bankruptcy Court rules if you fail to show up to the 341 meeting, the meeting of creditors and/or of you fail to timely submit the required financial documents required by Rule 4002.. However, the one catch is if your creditors will be prejudiced, or negatively affected, by the dismissal of your case. Your creditors will be affected negatively by a dismissal if you have nonexempt assets that could be sold off to pay them. So, even if you fail to comply with the requirements, the Trustee may choose to administer your case for the benefit of your creditors anyway.

If there is no way to dismiss your Chapter 7 case, you may be able to convert it to a Chapter 13, where instead of discharging your debt, it’s reorganized into a repayment plan and paid back.

If your Chapter 7 case is dismissed without prejudice, it means you can file another case immediately if you wish. However, you also have to file a separate Motion with the Bankruptcy Court to extend the automatic stay if the case is filed within 180 days of the initial filing date.

Over the past 23 years, the Law Offices of Christopher A. Benson has helped over 2,300 of Washington clients take control of their financial situation. We can stop your garnishment and change your monthly payments for all your combined unsecured debt, and if you have had more than $600 garnished within the last 90 days, we can get all of the money back in most cases. But you have to act quickly–call (253) 815-6940 for your free consultation, or email us today. Evening and weekend appointments available.

Christopher Benson

About the Author Chris served on the Board of Directors for Habitat for Humanity
Seattle/S. King County for 10 years and served as Vice President
of the organization during part of that time. Read More