Bankruptcy Law

How Long Does the Bankruptcy Automatic Stay Remain in Effect?

One of the benefits of filing for bankruptcy is the automatic stay and the protections it offers filers who are facing a multitude of collection calls from their creditors. It can also protect a person from lawsuits, wage garnishment, repossession, and losing valuable property.  As soon as the bankruptcy petition is filed, the automatic stay goes into effect. After this point, creditors and debt collectors are legally barred from attempting to collect on any debt owed by the filer.

The automatic stay will remain in effect throughout the duration of the bankruptcy case from filing to discharge. However, certain factors can affect the automatic stay and how long it remains in effect.

If the bankruptcy case does not end in a successful discharge of the debt, the automatic stay will be lifted at that time, and the filer’s creditors will then be able to continue pursuing collecting on the debt. Otherwise, if the bankruptcy case proceeds as planned, the automatic stay will remain in place until the proceedings are complete.

Debts Not Discharged

The automatic stay will end all collections actions throughout the duration of the bankruptcy case until discharge.   It will also halt foreclosure proceedings.  Whether the foreclosure process stops permanently or temporarily will depend on whether the individual filed for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Debt Connected to Collateral

Many times, a debt will be connected to a piece of property as collateral. Other times, a person filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy may file a Statement of Intention, telling the court and creditors whether he or she intends to surrender the property connected to a debt to the creditor or whether the person will want to keep the collateral or reaffirm the debt. The filer must either redeem or reaffirm the collateral or collateral within 30 days of filing for bankruptcy. If he or she fails to do this, the automatic stay will be lifted 31 days after filing for bankruptcy, leaving the creditor open to either continuing with repossessing the debt or proceeding with a collections action on the debt.

If you have questions on this topic or are in financial crisis and considering filing for bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade Garcia McMaken has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade Garcia McMaken website at

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