What Is the Bankruptcy Bar Date?

By Shelly Morgan

Bankruptcy proceedings allow creditors to try and recover at least part of what they are owed by a debtor. However, before they can receive payment, creditors must file a Proof of Claim. The deadline for filing the Proof of Claim is called the bar date. Creditors who are trying to recover debts from a debtor must file this document, regardless of whether the debt is secured or unsecured.

Exempt Assets

Bar dates depend upon the type of bankruptcy proceeding and whether the debtor has non-exempt assets. Exempt assets are those that the court will not liquidate to pay a creditor. For example, clothing, a car, tools of your trade and some equity in your home are considered exempt in some states. No-asset cases are those in which all of the debtor's property is exempt.

Calendaring the Bar Date

The bankruptcy court informs the creditor of the bar date in all Chapter 7 no-asset cases, Chapter 9 and Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases. Notification of the bar date is different in Chapter 7 cases with assets, and in Chapter 12 and Chapter 13 cases. In these cases, the bar date appears on the first Notice of Meeting of Creditors.

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