Missed Chapter 13 Plan Payments
What happens if I can't make a plan
payment in Chapter 13?
If you do not make your plan payments, the trustee will ask the court
to dismiss your case. If your case is dismissed, creditors will again to
take all of their collection actions which may include foreclosure,
repossession, garnishment, etc.
How soon the trustee will ask for dismissal depends on the trustee and
the stage of your case. (Trustee's policies and court rules vary; those
described below are those which we see most often.)
- Before your case is confirmed. If you have made no plan
payments by the time the trustee is to prepare his recommendation
(about 90 days after the case is filed), he will lodge an order
dismissing your case without any notice. If you have made some but not
all payments, the trustee will include a requirement that payments be
made by a certain date (usually within 30 days of the recommendation).
If all payments are not made by that date, he can lodge an order
dismissing the case without any further notice.
- After your case has been confirmed. Usually the trustee will
take no action on a case until two payments have been dismissed. If
you miss only one payment, but make it up, the trustee will take no
action. If you miss more than two payments, the trustee will file a
Motion to Dismiss giving a specific amount of time (usually 30 days)
for you to make up all the missed payments. If you do not make the
payments within that time, the case will be dismissed without further
What should I do if the Chapter 13 trustee
has filed a Motion to Dismiss my case because I have missed plan
If you can make up all the missed payments, get them to the trustee
before the deadline (or hearing date) in the motion. The trustee will
ordinarily withdraw his motion.
If you cannot make up the payments, you should schedule an appointment
with your attorney to see about modifying your plan. Possible
- If your plan is less than 60 months, you may be able to add on the
missed payment and modification charges to the end of your plan.
- A Chapter 13 plan cannot be extended to more than 60 months. You may
still be able to increase the remaining plan payments by the amount
needed to pay the missed payments and modification charges.
- You may be able to give up some secured property (usually a car)
which is being paid by the plan. The amount which would have been paid
to keep that property may be used to catch up plan payments and pay
the modification charge.
- In some cases, the only option may be to allow the case to be
dismissed and re-file Chapter 13 to get an additional 60 months to
make all required payments.
questions and answers are not intended as legal advice or
as a statement of the law. They are intended to suggest areas
which you should discuss with your attorney.
Although Bankruptcy law is Federal code applicable to all states, the
way it is applied may depend upon state law and varying practices of the
courts, trustees, and even attorneys. As a result, some of these answers
are directly applicable only in cases filed by our office in Arizona.
This page was last revised: 09/18/04