Chapter 13 is for people with regular income having a temporary problem paying debts. They pay them in installments over time. These installment payments are made through a plan filed with the Chapter 13 Trustee. The period of time to repay the debts is usually five years but may be less under certain circumstances. Chapter 13 allows you to keep all property if you are able to afford the property. All other debts are discharged after completion of the plan period except alimony and support, student loans and certain other types of debt. (11U.S. C. 527a1)
Also known as a "reorganization" or "wage-earner", chapter 13 is filed by individuals who want to pay off their debts over a period of three to five years. This type of bankruptcy appeals to those who have non-exempt property that they want to keep. It is designed for individuals who have a regular income and are able to pay reasonable household expenses with some left over to pay off their debts. Generally, this chapter is filed if you are behind in payments to creditors who have secured debts (homes, automobiles, etc.). In a chapter 13 bankruptcy, your unsecured creditors will receive a percentage of what you owe them.