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Elizabeth Prentice
Elizabeth Prentice, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 174
Experience:  Managing Attorney for one of the largest consumer bankruptcy firms in America.
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I am a US citizen living in Canada. I hold $21,000 in credit

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I am a US citizen living in Canada. I hold $21,000 in credit card debit in the US and I am facing a divorce (he lives in the US). Is it possible to file bankruptcy in the US from Canada? Could it negatively affect my Canadian credit rating? What could happen if I ever move back to the US?

Thank you!
I am a bankruptcy attorney and I would be happy to assist you. The bankruptcy rules are specific on this issue. In order to file bankruptcy in any state in the USA, you need to live in that state for at least 180 days. (28 USC § 1408) So you can not file bankruptcy in the US from Canada. As you are still a US citizen, if you still have a drivers license, primary address in the US and have maintained residency in any state, you could go ahead and begin the process of filing bankruptcy.

Although you need to qualify by living in the US state where you plan to file for 180 days, you can still meet with an attorney to begin preparing your paperwork. That way it is ready to file as soon as you qualify.

After you file bankruptcy it will remain on your US credit report for approximately 7 years. Most people believe it decreases your credit score, when it in fact typically increases it. This is because you will no longer have large amounts of debt to credit ratio. Although you may not qualify for large amounts of credit immediately preceding a bankruptcy and your interest may be higher, over time as you use credit wisely you will be able to rebuild your credit rating. Some lenders in Canada may review your US credit history or they may require you to build new credit from scratch in Canada, despite whether you file bankruptcy in the US or not. Typically a US bankruptcy will not appear on your Canadian credit report, but that doesn't mean that lenders and large companies will not review your US credit report.

I hope my answer has assisted you and that you will leave me a positive rating! If you have any follow up questions, please ask for me by name and I would be happy to assist you.
Elizabeth Prentice and other Bankruptcy Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.



Thank you for the thorough answer! I am wondering I could file with my ex in OH as we are still married? Just curious,




Since you are still a US resident, and you and your husband still have an address/residency in OH, I don't see any reason why you couldn't. It actually may be beneficial for you to both file bankruptcy together, since it will cost less. The federal government charges a $306 filing fee whether you are single or married, so it will save you both money to file. Also, most law firms do not charge much more for a married couple than a single person to file bankruptcy. When searching for a law firm, consider contacting the local OH State Bar lawyer referral service in the county in which you reside. You can find the phone numbers for the referral services here:

They will have a list of pre-approved attorneys who provide free or discounted consultations. In many cases they may even be able to provide you a free phone consultation.

I hope my answer has assisted you! If you have any other questions, please feel free to ask for me by name.