Bankruptcy and divorce can individually do enough damage to your financial state, but oftentimes couples find that financial problems and relationship problems go hand in hand. What happens when you are facing bankruptcy in a divorce? When two people are tied to the same debts, confusion can easily ensue in the event of a separation. If possible, try to work with your spouse prior to the finalization of the divorce to make sure that the debts are in the name of the responsible party. This might involve consolidation or transfers of debt.
Many questions surrounding debt and bankruptcy in a divorce depend on the particular state’s policy regarding who is responsible for the debt. Some states will hold both spouses accountable for a debt that only one incurred, while others will hold the one who created the debt responsible for it – typically whichever spouse’s name is on the account.
If one spouse files bankruptcy in a divorce, it does not necessarily absolve the other of responsibility for debts of joint accounts. Remember that a bankruptcy does not eliminate debts; rather it releases the debtor from obligation to repay the debts. This means that creditors can still pursue the other spouse for repayment if a bankruptcy was filed by one party and not jointly.
Court-ordered support is not a dischargeable debt in a bankruptcy. Any child or spousal support mandated by the court is still in effect even if the person responsible for it declares bankruptcy.
If you are facing bankruptcy within a divorce, your best option is to seek counsel from a personal bankruptcy lawyer to help you sift through the particular details of your case.