After you file bankruptcy, the bankruptcy notation will remain on your credit report for ten years, just as any court-related item would. Debt settlements remain on your credit report for seven years. That being said, is it easier to get credit after filing bankruptcy versus settling your debts? As a practical matter, they’re really about the same. You’ll often hear people say, “Don’t make the ten-year mistake,” referring to bad credit and bankruptcy. But although bankruptcy remains on your credit report for ten years, in reality you can typically rebuild your credit much more quickly than that. The same is true with debt settlement. Although the debt settlement stays on your credit report for seven years, your FICO score should begin to rise within about 18 months of becoming debt-free.