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How Long Will a Bankruptcy Stay on My Credit History?

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Whether you are filing for bankruptcy or not, you probably have questions about the impact on your credit. One of the first things that you might wonder is how long will a bankruptcy stay on your credit history? While your credit score may change dramatically after a bankruptcy, it should not change forever. Depending on your specific situation, you can begin to rebuild your credit within 12 to 18 months. You may also want to contact a nonprofit credit counseling agency to learn more about debt management and how you can best manage your finances.

A study by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia found that the credit scores of people who have filed for bankruptcy are typically recovered after about a year and a half. It is not uncommon for your FICO to fall to 580 to 540 in this time frame, a mark that is usually considered in the poor to fair range. However, you should not let this happen to you. In fact, it is best to do everything you can to prevent it from happening in the first place.

In addition to learning what you should do to ensure your credit isn’t destroyed, you should be aware of how the information is reported on your credit report. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) sets a number of parameters for how information is reported. You can check your credit report for free at least once a year.

If you’ve noticed that your bankruptcy is still on your report, you may need to file a dispute. The dispute process only works when the information on your report is wrong. The first step is to order your credit report. You can get a free copy from Experian, Equifax or TransUnion. During the dispute process, you’ll need to describe the incorrect item on your report and request that it be removed. The credit bureaus must respond within 30 days of your filing.

In the meantime, you should avoid bad credit habits and make on-time payments on any other accounts you may have. You should also focus on building a strong emergency fund to cover at least three to six months’ expenses. These will help you get back on your feet in the event of an emergency.

There is no magical way to remove a bankruptcy from your credit report. Unless it is inaccurate or fraudulent, it will remain on your credit report for at least seven years. This isn’t an excuse for you to delay fixing your credit.

If you do notice that your bankruptcy is still on your credit report, you can ask for it to be deleted. But be sure to do it the right way. You should only ask for it to be erased if you have legitimate reasons for it. If you’ve been delinquent on any of your other accounts, you should consider removing those accounts before your bankruptcy is gone.

There are a few other tricks to getting your bankruptcy off your credit report. Typically, a chapter 7 bankruptcy will show up on your credit report for up to ten years. But a chapter 13 bankruptcy will show up for up to seven years. The length of the bankruptcy will depend on the type of bankruptcy you filed.

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