Less than half the numbers of people file for Chapter 13 as Chapter 7.  A chapter 13, like a Chapter 7, does work to “stay” collection proceedings against you. However, unlike a Chapter 7, a Chapter 13 does not forgive or release you from your debts.  In a Chapter 13 your debt is restructured and you devise a repayment plan in which you will repay your creditors over a course of three to five years.  It is very important to have an attorney who knows the inner-workings of the bankruptcy system as you need a plan that will work for both you and the creditors.  A good bankruptcy attorney may also be able to reduce the the total payments that you will have to make.