One of our chapter 13 bankruptcy clients recently completed her chapter 13 plan, and she had paid her chapter 13 plan payments and her house payments on time throughout her chapter 13 case.

She checked her credit scores last July, in the 55th month of her plan, just to see what they were, in anticipation of getting a loan to buy a vehicle once her plan was completed.

She was surprised to see that her credit scores were Equifax 714, Tranunion 658, Experian 704. These are very good credit scores, particularly for someone in an active bankruptcy case! You qualify for the very best interest rates when your scores are 720 or higher. And the client had not even received her discharge in bankruptcy yet!

Following one of our clients receiving a discharge, we do a "credit clean up" which can boost a client's credit score even further. We make sure all of the "tradelines" or individual creditor listings, show -0- if they were discharged in the bankruptcy. Many attorneys do not take this important step, which helps clients get the fresh start that they need to get back on their feet credit-wise.

But to recover good credit scores quickly, it is very important to pay any new debts on time, after a bankruptcy is filed. When reviewing my clients' credit reports after a bankruptcy, I see where sometimes people have defaulted on cell phones, or have medical collections (after their bankruptcy was filed) or have failed to pay other new debts that they took out during their bankruptcy.

If you default on new debts after you file bankruptcy, you will have a difficult time recovering good credit. But if you pay timely, like my recent client did, you should have no trouble re-establishing great credit.

Have you had an experience concerning getting credit or improving credit scores during or after a bankruptcy? If so, please add under comments below. Thank you!

J Thomas Black
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Board Certified, Consumer Bankruptcy Law- Texas Board of Legal Specialization
Erynn Reed: Have you looked at your credit reports? Credit experts recommend that you pull them at least once per year from and dispute any inaccurate information. For example, if any debts included in the bankruptcy are still showing with a balance due, you need to dispute them and send in a copy of your bankruptcy discharge to the credit bureaus that are reporting it. Then, I highly recommend an educational course, "7 Steps to a 720 Credit Score" by Phillip Tirone. Go to to read about it and order it, or we can let you have it with a substantial discount if you call our office at 713-772-8037. I don't know about investing in Section 8 housing, but your credit should have recovered by now. You need some new strategies, and you need to be proactive and work on it. The 7 Steps course could really help you. Thanks for your comment, Tom Black
by Tom Black March 26, 2014 at 09:57 AM
I filed for chapter 7 a few years ago and nobody is giving me a chance to rebuild my credit. I get denied for everything. I been trying to get a credit cared and also eventually get a loan to start buying fixer upper houses and renting them to low income section8 families. If you can please help me in some way it will be greatly appreciated.
by Erynn Reed March 25, 2014 at 06:47 PM
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