Commencing a bankruptcy case causes an “automatic stay” to take effect immediately. This automatic stay prevents your landlord from starting or continuing any eviction process that was or could have been commenced before you filed for bankruptcy. It also stops the landlord from trying to collect any money you owed when you filed your bankruptcy case.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy involves creating a court-approved plan to repay debts over 3-5 years based on household income and allowable expenses. You’re not required to give up any property and continue to live your life without living in fear of your creditors. At the end of the case, most of the remaining unpaid debt that is discharged by court order.
When it comes to dealing with past due rent, Chapter 13 serves as a uniquely powerful tool. Using Chapter 13, you can effectively force your landlord to accept a payment plan that’s a lot longer than might otherwise be ordered in an eviction case. So long as you make all new monthly rent payments on time, Chapter 13 bankruptcy will give you the time you need to catch up on the rent without fear of losing your place. Keep in mind though, that at the end of your lease agreement, your landlord does not have to renew it.