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What are non-dischargeable debts in Florida?

On Behalf of | May 9, 2024 | Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

A common bankruptcy option among professionals struggling with debt is Chapter 13. This form of bankruptcy, also known as a wage earner’s plan, allows you to develop a plan to repay all or part of your debts over three to five years.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy can be complex, especially for couples contemplating a joint filing. If you’re married in Florida and considering Chapter 13, it’s essential to understand its specifics.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy basics

Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows people with regular incomes to manage their debts over a certain period. It can be an alternative if you’re ineligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. For married couples, it can serve as a safety net, helping to protect their assets—like family homes and cars—from creditors.

However, it’s crucial to remember that your income and expenses will significantly influence the repayment plan, regardless of your filing status, be it joint or individual.

The role of your spouse’s income

When filing for Chapter 13, the bankruptcy court will make an evaluation of your income and expenses to determine your repayment plan. Your spouse’s income is a vital factor in this assessment, even if they’re not the ones filing for bankruptcy. Keep this in mind when deciding whether to file jointly or separately.

The pros and cons of a joint filing

As a married couple, you can choose to file a joint petition for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. One of the benefits of this is that it can expedite the process and potentially reduce court fees. Also, if you’re concerned about protecting your shared assets, joint filing can offer a higher level of protection and potentially allow you to discharge more debts.

However, it’s also important to be aware of a potential downside. When you file for bankruptcy jointly, your and your spouse’s assets and debts become intertwined in the bankruptcy case. In some situations, this could lead to a higher repayment amount.

In addition to repayment terms, a Chapter 13 filing stays on your credit report for seven years, and there’s a two-year wait before you can file for it again.

Help in filing

Chapter 13 bankruptcy can be a very helpful tool for couples facing debt. But, it’s a complicated process that requires careful thought. If you’re unsure about the bankruptcy process in Florida, consider seeking help from a legal professional. They can provide counsel tailored to your unique circumstances.


Kingcade & Garcia | A Miami Law Firm