Can I keep a credit card if I file bankruptcy?

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One of the questions I am asked most often is: Can I keep a credit card if I file bankruptcy?  Many people can’t imagine living without at least one credit card.

The answer to the question is:  No, you can not keep credit card debt off your bankruptcy.  The Bankruptcy Code requires that all creditors be listed on the bankruptcy petition.  It is all or nothing.

After I tell my clients that all their credit cards must be included in their bankruptcy, I ask them why they wanted to keep a credit card.  They usually say that they need a credit card for traveling or to automatically pay their bills as many people do nowadays.

I always give them the following two pieces of advice.

First, during the four or five months that the bankruptcy takes to be over, you should use your debit card when you need to use plastic for a purchase.

Second, believe it or not, right after the bankruptcy, credit card companies send you new credit cards.   Often times they come from the very credit cards that you filed bankruptcy on!