SHOULD YOU FILE AS AN INDIVIDUAL OR AS A COUPLE?

SHOULD YOU FILE AS AN INDIVIDUAL OR AS A COUPLE?

20:10 22 March in Bankruptcy

SHOULD YOU FILE AS AN INDIVIDUAL OR AS A COUPLE?

POSTED BY MARK & BROWN, P.A. || 8-JUNE-2015

“Should I file as an individual or as a couple?”  This question is on the minds of many married couples as they consider the potential benefits and consequences of bankruptcy.  It’s also an important question to answer.  If you are married and considering either a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, then you will need to determine which option is the better choice for you.  An experienced bankruptcy attorney is an invaluable tool in this respect.  No two bankruptcies are exactly the same, and knowledgeable counsel can help you find the right answers.

Things To Consider

Filing as an individual or as a couple will have a drastic effect on how your bankruptcy proceeds, and there are issues which need to be considered.  For example, a non-filing spouse will be involved in a bankruptcy even if you or your spouse decide to file individually.  The income and debts of a non-filing spouse will still considered by the court regardless.  In fact, couples often see more benefit from filing jointly, and there are several reasons why.

Benefits To Filing Jointly

Filing jointly can provide superior protection for you and your spouse, especially if you have shared debts.  Consider the following scenario: You and your spouse take out a loan to pay for repairs to your home.  Both of you are named on the loan, but later your spouse files for bankruptcy as an individual.  In that situation, creditors could potentially come after you for continued payments even though your spouse has officially filed for bankruptcy.

Filing jointly can also lower your costs.  In a case where both you and your spouse need to file, filing jointly will allow you to file a joint petition.  This allows you to avoid paying two sets of filing fees, and it can add up to a significant savings.

Again, you should always speak with an experienced bankruptcy attorney about your unique situation before filing.

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Please feel free to contact our offices for more information on bankruptcy.  We would be happy to schedule you a free consultation to speak with a bankruptcy attorney.