Left With Debt Following Your Divorce? 3 Tips For Filing For Bankruptcy Protection

If you and your spouse are going through a divorce and you're going to be left with a considerable amount of marital debt, it might be time to consider bankruptcy. One of the benefits of filing for bankruptcy is that the process will allow you to get out from under the debt that you'll be stuck with. This is particularly beneficial if your spouse racked up a lot of debt during the marriage. Unfortunately, you'll be liable for half of that debt, even if your own personal spending habits didn't contribute to it. Here are three things you need to know about bankruptcy and divorce.

Hire Your Own Attorney

If you need to file for bankruptcy, you need to hire your own attorney. Your spouse may have suggested that you combine resources to hire the same attorney; however, that won't be in your best interest. You want an attorney who will only be interested in what's best for you. Not only that, but hiring one attorney to represent the both of you could be seen as a conflict of interest, which could result in delays to your bankruptcy case. Avoid problems by hiring your own attorney.

Wait Until After the Divorce

If you're going through a divorce and you need to file for bankruptcy, wait until the divorce is finalized before filing. Filing for bankruptcy while your divorce is still proceeding could cause serious delays, which means you'll be responsible for those debts for a longer period of time. Instead, allow the debt to be divided through your divorce settlement, and then file for bankruptcy once the divorce is final. That way, you'll only need to discharge the debt that you're personally responsible for.

Choose the Bankruptcy That's Right for You

If you need to file for bankruptcy protection following divorce, be sure to choose the right bankruptcy. There are two bankruptcy chapters that you'll qualify for as an individual; chapters 13 and 7. Chapter 13 will allow you to retain more of your personal belongings. However, chapter 13 requires a much longer process prior to discharge. Not only that, but you'll be required to make small payments over the life of the discharge period. Chapter 7 requires you to liquidate most of your personal property, but the process is much quicker. One benefit of the chapter 7 bankruptcy is that you won't have any monthly payments to worry about, which will provide you with additional income for living expenses after your divorce.

For more information, contact bankruptcy attorney services near you.