One of the biggest concerns that appears during the bankruptcy process is whether or not the filing will affect an individual’s spouse. After all, if the debt is one-sided, it shouldn’t hurt the other, right? Since finances in marriage can be so difficult to navigate, it’s important to seek advice and guidance from an experienced expert. A Dayton bankruptcy attorney can walk you through all bankruptcy considerations and how they affect your marriage.
Bankruptcy and Marriage Considerations
One of the best aspects of working with an attorney is that they can answer any questions that you have about bankruptcy and your marriage. Whether you decide to consult as a couple or if you meet individually, it’s always important to maintain clear lines of communication with your spouse. Being transparent about the bankruptcy process will ensure that you’re both on the same page and emotionally connected. Your bankruptcy attorney can help guide you through basic considerations such as:
· An individual or joint filing. You can file for bankruptcy independently of your spouse. Your financial stress doesn’t have to make your spouse a target for creditors as well. However, it’s important to consider various elements such as income, property, type of debt, and ownership.
· Joint or individual debts? Determining how the bankruptcy will be filed also requires you to determine whether the debts are joint or individual debts during marriage. Your attorney will help you through the qualifications and can help you avoid a joint bankruptcy filing.
· Income. For your debt to be discharged under a Chapter 7 filing, you must meet specific requirements such as income. However, the combined income of you and your spouse might be too high to qualify for a Chapter 7 discharge.
· Credit. Since credit scores are damaged during bankruptcy, it’s common to try your best to protect the non-filing spouse’s credit. However, shared debt can have a negative impact. Be sure to ask your attorney about this major consideration.