I filed bankruptcy in the past six months.
I had my trustee meeting.
Two months later I got my discharge.
Three months after that my bankruptcy is still open.
I inadvertently left assets off my schedules and I am now having the schedules amended to include them.
However, I believe I never would have filed bankruptcy had I known about these assets at the time of filing.
Can I ask the trustee to revoke my discharge or can I withdraw my bankruptcy petition since it is still open?
Or will the trustee revoke my discharge because of my new assets?
The assets include a lawsuit (already filed, thus the assets) which could possible be worth $150,000 and the debts were half only one quarter of that. If the bankruptcy is not discharged I will lose my right to sue and the bankruptcy trustee may settle with the defendant. Had I known about these assets I would never have filed bankruptcy. I would pay back the debts if I won my already filed lawsuit. Scenarios?
Unlike a Chapter 13, in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy the debtor dos not have an automatic right to dismiss the case.
If assets are discovered, the Trustee can object to the dismissal so that he can administer the assets.
Now that you have been discharged, there is no good reason why the discharge should be vacated and you be allowed to dismiss the case.
If your assets exceed your bills, you will get to keep the extra.
Look at it this way, when you filed you wanted to get rid of your bills. Now that assets have been found, creditors shouldn't have to chase you down to get paid.
Facts are important. That starts with the specific assets at issue, and the reason you left them off or didn't know about them. As pointed out, there is no right to dismiss. It is usually difficult to get it dismissed when there are assets but, again, you left out the important parts of the story.
You inadvertently left off a law suit worth $150,000.00? You will probably still get your discharge but the trustee will hire the lawyer that is suing and settle the case and pay off your creditors. On the positive side, if there is anything left off after the settlement it will go to you. While you amend your schedules make sure to claim as much of the asset as exempt as possible.
Answers are provided for direction only; it is not a substitute for an office consultation.
The criteria a judge uses to determine whether to dismiss a bankruptcy is what is in the best interests of the creditors. If it is likely that the creditors will be paid a substantial portion of what is owed to them, the court is unlikely to dismiss. It is hard to justify giving you what you want when you failed to properly submit information required in the bankruptcy filing. You are required to show that you were diligent in your efforts to properly make full disclosure of your assets. Your actual knowledge isn't the criteria that will be persuasive to the court. That's why I say filing Chapter 7 is like jumping off of a cliff. Hope this perspective helps!
Revoking the discharge would do no good even if you could...the bankruptcy is still filed and on your credit report. Think of the bankru[ptcy as holding creditors at bay while you litigate your rights. Also, you may not have to pay all of the debts as it is not uncommon for creditors to failt to file a "Proof of Claim" in an asset chapter 7, so you may make out better anyway with the filing.
Disclaimer: This answer does not constitute legal advice. I am admitted in the States of New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts only and make no attempt to opine on matters of law that are not relevant to those three States. This advice is based on general principles of law that may or may not relate to your specific situation. Facts and laws change and these possible changes will affect the advice provided here. Consult an attorney in your locale before you act on any of this advice. You should not rely on this advice alone and nothing in these communications creates an attorney client relationship.
Personal Injury Lawyer
To build on the very goodresponses already given, once a bankruptcy case is filed your estate is under the control of the court. The trustee is highly unlikely to permit you to withdraw your petition. Failure alone to disclose such significant assests may be seen as fraud on the court. At best the trustee will settle your case, pay off those creditors who have file a prrof of claim, collect a fee for the work performed and return the balance to you.
You no longer have any control in a Chapter 7 once the case is filed. The trustee would object to the dismissal if an asset was left off if the Debtor tries to dismiss the case. The trustee now has the right to settle the case for the benefit of your creditors.
The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Illinois. Responses are answers to general legal questions and the receiver of such question should consult a local attorney for specific answers to questions.