Chapter 13 Step 6 – Confirmation Hearing:
For Chapter 13 cases only – If you file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, a Confirmation Hearing will be held. This is part of the negotiating game to determine if the terms of the repayment plan. In many cases you never have to attend this hearing. The Trustee will agree to continue the case a couple of time before agreeing to recommend approval without your appearing.
If your plan is confirmed, you will pay according to the plan and any debts left over when the plan is finally paid will be discharged. You get your discharge after you complete the plan payments.
If the plan is denied with leave to amend, you will get a chance to file and amend the plan and a new confirmation date it set. If your plan cannot be confirmed, it will be dismissed and you will back to square one as if you never filed and most of the payments you have made will be refunded to you.
Step 7 – Case Closing
When you have made all your payments the Trustee will file a Notice of Completion of Plan Payments. This will start the closing process. This process will usually take about 45 to 60 days. It may take a few weeks for the payments coming out of your pay to stop so make sure you budget for this. You will get the overpayments back, but it will take a few months.
The Trustee will then send you an Affidavit of Discharge to complete. We will help you complete this form and file it with the Court. The Court will then do an audit. They will make sure you completed the second credit counseling course. The Trustee will also have to make sure all the checks sent to creditors have cleared and that you have turned over any required tax refunds.
Next the Court will issue the Order of Discharge. This order is short and simple. It just says the discharge has been granted. It doesn’t even list the creditors who were included. If you have student loans that were included in the plan you will need to get back on a payment plan for any amount you still owe. A few weeks after this you will get the Court notices closing the case. These include the Trustee’s Final Report and the Final Decree and Close of Bankruptcy Case.
Step 8 – Your Fresh Start
The Final Decree has been issued. Now you can move on with your life. You might be surprised how quickly you can recover from a bankruptcy. You probably don’t have to wait years to get a car loan or to even buy a house. But there are steps you should take to rebuild your credit. To make sure you make the most of your fresh start please see our article on How to Rebuild Your Credit.