Basically the only downside to filing bankruptcy for someone who is "judgment -proof" (with little assets and on unemployment), is that one has to wait 8 years before doing it again. This means that person has to be very careful going forward to not incur any debts that cannot be paid, because not being able to file leaves one vulnerable to judgments that cannot be discharged.
The other factor to consider is how much you are likely to earn when you do return to work, because if it is over a certain amount (41724.00 for single person in Ohio), you may not be able to do so.
So, one who is judgment-proof has to balance the fact that bankruptcy is not necessary at this point with the fact that bankruptcy might not be available later.
Bankruptcy causes the credit score to nosedive (unless the score is already low because of delinquent debts) and remains on one's credit report for 10 years after filing. However, one's credit score tends to start to improve within one year after filing if no further negative input.
Since bankruptcy stays on the credit report for 10 years, that is how long it can affect apartment hunting and student loan applications. However, there are many landlords
who do not check credit reports.