In most instances, yes, you do have the choice. A St. Louis bankruptcy is a voluntary act, and therefore filed only if you believe that is would serve your best interests. But there are only a couple of situations in which decision is limited.
To begin with, the bankruptcy rules state very clearly that you are only entitled to file a St. Louis Chapter 7 once every eight (8) years. So if you filed a Missouri Chapter 7 in 2009, you would have to wait until at least 2017 before filing another one. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy is described as a straight discharge of unsecured debt (things like credit cards, medical bills, paydays loans, etc). In addition, such a filing will stop a wage garnishment, bank levy, and end any lawsuits against you.
There are other occasions in which your choice of bankruptcy is limited. This is usually because of the amount of income your household brings in. So for example, let’s assume you are a household of two (you and your child). According to the government, the average (or median) income for a household of two is approximately $52,000. If your household income is below this level (or not too far above it), then you can probably do a Chapter 7 (assuming you have not filed a 7 within the last eight years). But if you are substantially above this median income level, then you will most likely have to file a St. Louis Chapter 13 bankruptcy.