Does filing bankruptcy erase judgments that creditors have against me?

Question

Does filing bankruptcy erase judgments that creditors have against me?

Answer

Filing for bankruptcy nullifies judgments that creditors have against you except in certain situations (such as collection of child support). If your bankruptcy is successful, these judgments and the debts underlying them are discharged and the creditors that have the judgments against you can no longer take collection actions against you. Again, there are some exceptions to this (judgments for child support, for personal injury in alcohol related cases, willfull and malicious property damage).

Even though the judgments are useless after you file bankruptcy, the bankruptcy does not erase them from the court dockets in the counties in which the judgment(s) were obtained. To expunge the judgments, you should call the court administrator in the county courthose in which the judgment was entered against you.  You will have to pay a filing fee, fill out forms and provide a copy of your order for discharge from the bankruptcy.

While expunging the judgment is not necessary, some people find it helpful to assist in re-building their credit after bankruptcy.