What is the automatic stay?

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what is automatic stay consumer bankruptcy

What is the automatic stay?

The “automatic stay” is a rule that prevents any creditor from doing anything at all to enforce a claim against a debtor during the bankruptcy case. The granting of the stay depends on how many bankruptcies you have filed within 1 year.

Some examples of actions by a creditor that would violate the stay are these:

(1) Filing a new lawsuit, or continuing to press a lawsuit that had already been filed.

(2) Sending dunning letters or making phone calls in an attempt to collect a debt.

(3) Filing a “financing statement” to perfect a security interest.

(4) Refusing to issue a transcript of your schooling.

(5) Canceling your driver’s license.

Exceptions: Criminal prosecution, paternity proceedings, litigation to collect child support or alimony, repaying a loan from certain types of pensions, and IRS audits are not stopped. With residential real estate leases, landlords seeking to evict tenants are free to complete evictions if the landlord already has a judgment of possession or where the eviction is based on endangerment or use of illegal substances on the leased premises. Moreover, the automatic stay doesn’t stop or postpone actions to suspend driver’s licenses and revoke professional licenses.

(Reviewed 11-08)

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