After Filing Bankruptcy, Can I Be Discriminated Against?

Over a person’s life, there are few decisions as stressful and emotional as filing bankruptcy. Many people have carefully and sensibly sought the advice of a qualified bankruptcy attorney to inform their decision and come to the best solution to resolve their financial issues. Still, once a person files for bankruptcy, it stops being a personal matter and becomes part of the public record. Therefore, virtually anyone can look up your bankruptcy. As a result, a common client question is, “Can I be discriminated against after filing bankruptcy?”

The good news is that there are laws that will protect you in many instances. Firstly, government agencies at the federal, state, and local level are forbidden from dismissing, suspending, rejecting, or refusing to renew a permit, license, charter, franchise, or any other similar privilege singularly because of a bankruptcy. However, you are not completely insulated. Lending institutions can consider your bankruptcy if you apply for a government-backed loan or credit extension. Essentially, if a program evaluates your future creditworthiness, like with a Small Business Loan, the bankruptcy can have an
impact.

When it comes to a private employer, they cannot terminate you, demote you, cut your pay, or otherwise discriminate against you exclusively because of a bankruptcy. Where the law becomes a little cloudy is whether or not a bankruptcy can be the sole determining factor for not hiring a person. So, while a bankrupt can not impact your current employment, it could possibly influence your future prospects.

Additionally, a bankruptcy can affect your ability to rent an apartment. Today, most landlords will run your credit before approving your lease application. There is no way to hide your bankruptcy from them. Even so, there are ways to improve your chances. Having good landlord references and working to improve your credit will place you in a better position, and both will show your willingness and ability to pay your rent on time.

What haven’t we covered yet that is important to you? If you would like to talk about discrimination after file bankruptcy, or other related topics, please contact us.

Harris Ammerman
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Harris Ammerman

Since 1986, we have helped more than 10,000 clients and their families file for bankruptcy – more than any other firm in the region. We have more 50 years of combined experience and are conveniently located in the heart of Washington, D.C.
Harris Ammerman
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