Bankruptcy And Divorce In Tennessee
Divorce inevitably creates significant financial challenges. Spouses who once lived on shared incomes must suddenly use those same resources to provide for two households. The costs of retaining legal counsel, purchasing separate residences, the division of property and other financial challenges can trigger significant debt problems.
Bankruptcy Is Often Triggered By Divorce
Divorce is one of the leading causes of bankruptcy and it is important to be aware during a divorce how financial stress will affect your future. If you and your spouse have substantial debts before you begin your divorce proceedings, you might consider speaking with a bankruptcy lawyer before your divorce is filed.
I am attorney Steven F. Bilsky, and I have practiced bankruptcy law in Tennessee since 1980. Those decades of experience allow me to provide knowledgeable legal guidance for individuals who may need to file a bankruptcy before, during or after a divorce.
Debt Is Property
In a divorce, the property division is important. This is where the marital assets will be divided. It is also where the debt is divided, because you and your spouse “own” both the assets and debts of the marriage.
If you have joint loans, credit cards and a mortgage, you must determine how this debt will be divided. This is likely to be a complex calculation. If one spouse has significant personal debt that is not shared, you want to proceed very carefully.
Child Support And Alimony
It is also important to keep in mind that child support and alimony cannot be discharged during a bankruptcy. If you are planning a divorce, you need to be certain you can pay these expenses, because you cannot eliminate them with a bankruptcy at any time.
Timing Of Filing Matters
Divorce is often a difficult time and spouses may not be cooperative. You want to understand the ramifications of when you file, the chapter of the Bankruptcy Code you use and whether the divorce has already occurred, is in process or is still in the future. I can examine your finances and explain various scenarios, helping you determine the optimal strategy to use to build your future.