Are All of My Debts Dischargeable in Bankruptcy?
Most debts are dischargeable in bankruptcy. Credit cards, medical bills, and personal loans are generally all dischargeable. There are, however, some debts that are not dischargeable in Chapter 7 bankruptcy. There are generally six main categories of non-dischargeable debt.
The first category of non-dischargeable debt is back taxes. Most of the time, any back taxes that you owe are not going to be discharged, but there are some exceptions depending on how old the tax debt is and what the basis of taxes are.
The second category of non-dischargeable debt is student loans. Student loans are generally not dischargeable in bankruptcy. You can discharge student loans under some circumstances, if you can show that they would create a significant financial hardship; however, doing so is very, very difficult.
The third category of non-dischargeable debt is child support or alimony. Any domestic support obligation you owe such as child support or alimony, which they call maintenance in the state of Colorado is not dischargeable.
The fourth category of non-dischargeable debt is criminal fines or restitution. If you owe any criminal fines or restitution related to a criminal case, you generally cannot discharge that debt in bankruptcy.
The fifth category of non-dischargeable is debt that you were ordered to pay in a divorce. If you were ordered in a divorce proceeding to be responsible for a credit card and that credit card was in both names—it was in the name of not only you but your former spouse—and you decide you can’t pay that credit card anymore and you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, and you list that credit card as a debt in the bankruptcy, that debt as to the creditor will be discharged. For example, if it was a Chase credit card, Chase can no longer come after you for that debt because you have discharged it in bankruptcy. However, Chase can still come after the other party because their name is on the debt. Chase does not care what your divorce documents say, so they are going to come after the other party and try to collect that debt from them. That party can then come after you for the debt that you were ordered to have paid in the divorce. Your responsibility to the other party in the divorce is not dischargeable in bankruptcy, so they still would be able to come after you for whatever Chase came after them for.
The final category of non-dischargeable debt is judgements related to driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If you were involved in an auto accident and you were under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time, any debt that you might owe to an insurance company or to the people that you had an accident with is not dischargeable in bankruptcy.
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