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Requirements for filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy

Deciding that filing for bankruptcy is the right decision is only half of the process. Washington debtors must also figure out which form of bankruptcy they should file for. Although most people like the potential for a full discharge of most debts through Chapter 7, many do not qualify for this process. However, Chapter 13 bankruptcy is still an effective and smart choice for those who are unable to handle their current debts. 

Chapter 13 bankruptcy requires that a person commit to a repayment plan that has been approved by the court. These plans last anywhere from three to five years and involve repaying a portion of debt to some or all of a person's creditors. Unlike in Chapter 7, those seeking Chapter 13 will not have to give up their property to repay creditors. Being able to hang on to second vehicles or certain items of value is a big plus to many people who choose this form of debt relief. 

However, Chapter 13 does have a few requirements for filers. Anyone who has discharged debt through Chapter 7 within the past four years or Chapter 13 in the past two must wait before seeking additional relief through bankruptcy. Those who have had bankruptcy petitions dismissed for certain reasons must also wait at least 180 days before filing again. 

People in Washington who are hoping to discharge their debts through Chapter 13 bankruptcy must also meet a few other requirements, including credit counseling. However, since the time preceding a bankruptcy filing is often fraught with stress, it can be difficult to be certain that all requirements are met. Working alongside a knowledgeable counsel can give some people the peace of mind that they are approaching the debt relief process in the correct manner. 

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