Creditors and Bankruptcy/credit score


Hello sir, my question is about credit. In a few months I will be filing bankruptcy. Everyone seems to be wanting more and more of my money while I dont get a raise. My family of 3 lives on SSDI and Veterans Benefits. Anyway, in the meantime I am thinking of paying what few credit cards I can. After all I did run up the bills. I know that when I do file,my credit goes down hill fast. So my question is, if I do pay a few credit cards now, will it help my credit score? Will paying help preserve my credit if I just include 1 thing on the bankruptcy or 5?

Leon Bayer
Leon Bayer  
Dear Joyce,

I'm really sorry about all the hardships you are having. But I can probably help you with the credit questions that you are asking.

The calculation of credit scores is a closely protected "trade secret." The credit bureaus do acknowledge some of the factors they consider in determining a score. But they don't give us the actual math that they use to create a score. The best I can do for you is to give you my "educated guess."

Whether you file bankruptcy owing just one debt or 5 different debts probably won't make any difference on your future credit score.

However, if you have any accounts in good standing that are completely paid off, (zero balance due) those accounts might remain open so that you can use them again after the bankruptcy. In my experience, if you pay off a credit card balance of a couple hundred dollars, the court system won't mind. If you pay off any amounts higher than that, it opens up serious issues, such as whether you are abusing the bankruptcy law, and making "preferential transfers."

Here is an article I recently wrote that may give you additional ideas, BANKRUPTCY AND KEEPING A GOOD CREDIT SCORE IS POSSIBLE, LINK:

Best of luck to you.

- Leon


Leon Bayer is a Los Angeles bankruptcy attorney. If you or other readers want to keep up with his Los Angeles Bankruptcy Attorney blog, at, his professional web site at, and a FREE TO READ book at

Bayer, Wishman & Leotta has successfully represented 15,000 clients in bankruptcy cases. Los Angeles Bankruptcy Attorney Leon Bayer and his partner, Los Angeles Bankruptcy Attorney Jeff Wishman, are Certified Bankruptcy Specialists who bring experience, skill and creativity to the highly complex area of bankruptcy law. And not just a little experience. Between the two Los Angeles Bankruptcy Attorney partners, they have over 60 years of experience representing consumer debtors in Los Angeles, Long Beach, Woodland Hills, North Hollywood and the entire Los Angeles basin.

As a long-standing expert, Leon is frequently called upon by the media, the California Bar and other associations to give opinions, provide insight and help educate new attorneys on bankruptcy and its changing laws. This blog is one more way that Leon Bayer and Jeff Wishman share their experience with the public and provide resources for individuals struggling with debt problems.  

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Creditors and Bankruptcy

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Los Angeles Bankruptcy Attorney Leon Bayer


I can answer all questions relating to debt collection, credit reporting problems, credit scores, bankruptcy, debt settlements, debt settlement scams, and dealing with debt collectors. For many years I have been one of your volunteer experts for the topic "Bankruptcy Law". I would like to receive more questions. I'm thinking that many relevant questions get asked under this catagory as well as my own. See my stats, below: Los Angeles Bankruptcy Lawyer Leon D. Bayer U.S. Available View Profile Ask A Question View Past Answers Knowledgeability9.96 Clarity of Response9.93 Politeness9.97 Response Time(hr)14.6 --Last 90 Days(hr)7.6 Total Questions1119


34 years as a practicing bankruptcy attorney, published book author on topics of bankruptcy and foreclosure. See,


BA degree, J.D., admitted to California Bar in 1979.

Awards and Honors
President, 1995-1996-Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum; Member - Los Angeles County Bar Association Committee on Commercial Law & Bankruptcy, 1988. Law Advisory Commission-Personal & Small Business Bankruptcy Law of the State Bar of California, 1996-2000

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Over 15,000 bankruptcy cases.

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