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Should I File for Divorce or Bankruptcy First?

Many factors play a role when determining how bankruptcy can affect a divorce. For some families in Queens, taking care of debt issues first can simplify divorce settlement issues. However, for others, the provisions of the divorce decree can greatly complicate the bankruptcy process. To properly address your unique situation, you really need to discuss timing strategies with an experienced bankruptcy lawyer who can work with you and your divorce attorney.

Obviously, the emotional issues behind a highly contentious divorce can prevent couples from remaining married during a lengthy bankruptcy proceeding. However, one potential advantage of filing for bankruptcy first is the benefits associated with filing jointly. In addition to protecting one spouse from the creditors associated with the debt of the other spouse, New York provides higher exemption values for couples filing jointly for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

For example, the homestead exemption doubles in value when both spouses file jointly within their marriage. On the other hand, when one spouse bears full responsibility for the debt, the other spouse may want to avoid association with his or her financial issues. A bankruptcy attorney in Queens must address countless details like these before presenting you with viable options on how to proceed.

If you have concerns that your former spouse may stop paying for your support or the support of your children as the result of a bankruptcy filing after divorce, the bankruptcy code addresses these types of situations. According to the United States Courts, spousal support (alimony) and child support are among the types of debt that spouses cannot discharge in bankruptcy.

The Mark E. Cohen, Esq. provides thorough and compassionate support to find the best solutions for clients facing the dual stresses of marital strife and financial issues.

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