Is it Better to File For Bankruptcy, Before or After, Filing for Divorce?
Is It Better To File For Bankruptcy, Before or After, Filing For Divorce? People meet, people fall in love, and people get married. Some of these go the distance. Others end in divorce. These are just facts of life. Sometimes people split up. We wish every love story had a happy ending. However, this is not reality. Because of that, this article is intended to provide information to those who have already decided to end their marriage. While simultaneously seeking information on filing for bankruptcy, and wanting to know if they should do that before or after filing for the above-mentioned divorce. Not an enviable position to be in for sure, but not all that unusual either. Let’s take a closer look at the subject.
Whether you decide to file for bankruptcy before or after you file for divorce will be a personal choice based on your circumstances. One thing is for sure though. You do not want to file for both a divorce and bankruptcy at the same time. That is a guaranteed way to prolong both processes and make them each more complicated and frustrating than either one needs to be.
Pros of Filing for Bankruptcy Before Divorce
A few advantages to filing for bankruptcy first, and then your divorce, is the fact that you can both save money in time and filing fees by filing for bankruptcy jointly. Further, having most of your debt and in some cases, personal property either discharged or surrendered to the bankruptcy trustee before filing for divorce, makes the distribution of debt and assets a lot less complicated when filing for divorce. Each spouse gets an equal chance at the fresh start they are seeking.
Also, if you are filing for Chapter 7. That is the simplest form of bankruptcy and only takes 3 to 6 months to complete in most cases. Meaning it takes less time to have the courts discharge your debts than it does to have them dissolve your marriage. This is important information when timing is is to be important.
Pros of Filing for Bankruptcy After Divorce
One pro of waiting until after your divorce is final before filing for bankruptcy is that only your income can be considered in the means test that the court applies. So if you are divorcing a large income earner and want to file for Chapter 7 as opposed to Chapter 13. Then it might be best to divorce first.
Another time it makes sense to file for divorce before bankruptcy is when you plan to file for Chapter 13. Being as that can take as long as 3 to 5 years. No one wants to have a divorce pending that long, So in that case it would be better to finalize your divorce first and then file for Chapter 13 second.
Not all marriages end amicably though, and that brings up a third reason why one might consider filing for divorce first and bankruptcy second. When one spouse is leaving a hostile or domestic violence type of situation. You do not want any hold-ups from the bankruptcy legalities, or stays issued by the court hindering your ability to get away from that type of situation as quickly as possible.
Should you ever find yourself wondering if it is Better To File For Bankruptcy, Before or After, Filing For Divorce? We would advise speaking with an experienced attorney before making any decisions or filing anything with the courts. Should you choose to speak with us, our consultations are always free. You can contact us by filling out the form below. Or we can always be reached via call or text at 720-515-9887
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