How Long Does Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Take?

In a classic Chapter 7 case, where the debtor does not have equity in his assets over the exemption, which is called a no asset case, the typical Chapter 7 case will take about 100 days. You file bankruptcy then within 30 to 40 days, you have a meeting of creditors, although typically creditors never show up and I prefer to call it the meeting with the trustee and that gives the trustee a chance to talk to the debtor about the debtor’s bankruptcy schedules that have been filed under oath as part of the bankruptcy case.

If we assume that the trustee finds that there are no assets for creditors, he’s going to file a no-distribution report right away. Creditors have 60 days after the meeting with the trustee to file objections to the bankruptcy case, which usually only happens in the event of a fraud or an intentional harm or some other specified exception to the discharge laws. If nobody has filed that kind of complaint with the bankruptcy court within that 60 day window, on the 61st day, the bankruptcy court will issue a discharge order and the case will be closed and the court will enter what’s called a final decree.

The Chapter 7 process is a very short process and that’s one of the reasons why it’s such a favored remedy for debtors with unmanageable obligations.