I recently wrote an article on How to Dismiss Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. What about dismissing a Chapter 7?
Dismissal of Chapter 7 Isn’t Always Possible
Unlike Chapter 13, a debtor does not have an automatic right to dismiss their Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Except for rare cases, Chapter 7 cases are essentially unstoppable once their are filed. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a “liquidation” bankruptcy. The Court is empowered to liquidate assets for the benefit of creditors. A vast majority of Debtors in Chapter 7 do not lose any property. Only a small percentage actually lose anything.
A Few Things Can Result in Dismissal of Chapter 7
You must appear at the Meeting of Creditors. The court can dismiss your case if you do not appear. I do not advise people to skip their Meeting of Creditors. After all, the court ordered the Debtor to appear.
The Chapter 7 Trustee and the United States Trustee can keep a Chapter 7 open notwithstanding the failure of the Debtor to appear at the Meeting of Creditors. Merely skipping the hearing isn’t an automatic dismissal.
Failing to file all of the required paperwork with the Court can also result in dismissal of a bankruptcy. However, the same warning applies.
How to Dismiss Your Case
Asking the Bankruptcy Court for permission to dismiss your bankruptcy is the only formal way to request dismissal. You must file a “Motion to Dismiss.” In your motion, you must tell the court exactly why you are asking for the dismissal. The bankrutpcy court is likely going to be very skeptical of your request. If you don’t have an attorney, now would be a good time to get one.
Chapter 13 is a Last Resort
If things aren’t going to your way in your Chapter 7, you may want to try to convert to Chapter 13 instead of asking for a dismissal. The Court will not likely grant a conversion request after an unsuccessful attempt at dismissal.
I help people with Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies. Please call my office at (916) 333-2222 if you would like to schedule a bankruptcy consultation.