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Breaking Down The Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Timeline

When you are overwhelmed by your debt, just making the decision to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy is momentous. But, after you make this decision, what happens next?

If you have researched your bankruptcy options, you know that it is critical that you follow bankruptcy procedures to the letter. Missing deadlines or important documents can derail or stop this process. Fortunately, you don’t have to face this matter alone because our team at Gillespie & Murphy, P.A. is here to help.

Our lawyers share over 40 years of bankruptcy experience that they will use to get you the second chance you deserve. We invite you to contact any of our four offices in eastern North Carolina to discuss your concerns and determine whether you qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

What You Need To Know About Deadlines

We want you to be informed before you take action. We’ve compiled this timeline for you so that you have a basic understanding of the filing process. If you are confused about any of the information provided below, do not hesitate to connect with us.

Before You File

Applicants need to enroll in and complete a course on credit counseling within 180 days of your bankruptcy filing. You can complete this course within 180 days of filing and can complete the course in person, over the phone or online.

Applicants will submit information, documentation, and pay fees necessary to complete the bankruptcy petition for filing.


Upon completion of your bankruptcy petition, review and signature, your attorneys will submit your bankruptcy petition with the appropriate court. You will immediately be provided a case number.

Within approximately 30 days After Your Filing

Your attorney will submit your tax returns, pay advices, and any other documentation to the trustee assigned to your case, as required. This information needs to be provided before the meeting with creditors (341 Meeting) takes place.

Your attorney submits your statement of intention to your secured creditors, indicating which properties you intend to keep or surrender.

Approximately 30 Days After Your Filing

The 341(a) Meeting also known as “Meeting Of Creditors” takes place. Few creditors show up to this meeting as your creditors can usually access your bankruptcy filing information online. The Trustee is often able to determine if he has any interest in your assets at the meeting.

45 To 60 Days After Your 341 Meeting

You will need to prove that you met the obligations spelled out in your Statement of Intention by entering into and signing a Reaffirmation Agreement on the secured debts you intend to keep (i.e., vehicles, boats, recreational vehicles).

Reaffirmation Agreements are not required for real estate and mortgage debts in our district. You meet your obligations by keeping up your mortgage payments.

90 Days After Your 341 Meeting

You will need to complete a course on financial management and ensure all other deadlines and obligations are met.


After you meet these obligations and deadlines, your debt will be discharged.

Unsure Of Your Options And Obligations? Talk To Us.

We offer free consultations because we want you to be informed before you file. You can arrange an appointment by calling 252-558-1374. You can also contact us online.

Our firm’s offices are conveniently located in Wilmington, New Bern, Jacksonville and Greenville.

Reach Out Today

Call 252-558-1374 or email today | Free consultations | Four convenient office locations.

We are a debt relief agency under the United States Code. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code

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