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Will bankruptcy eliminate my unpaid child support obligation?

When a person cannot pay their bills and experiences the pressure of living with overwhelming debt, bankruptcy can be a good option for finding their way back to solid financial footing. However, not all debts can be discharged under a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 filing. While bankruptcy exemptions may allow a Rockland resident to protect some of their property during the bankruptcy process, that property may later be used to satisfy an unpaid child support obligation or other nondischargeable debts in bankruptcy.

For example, a party to a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing may be able to protect their home with the homestead exemption. However, that property may end up with a lien on it for the repayment of the child support that is owed and in arrears. Since bankruptcy will not discharge debts that are incurred for the support of the debtor party's child, these debts will survive the proceedings and may be paid off with property or assets that were exempt during the bankruptcy proceedings.

Before filing for bankruptcy, it is important that a person understands which of their debts may not be dischargeable, which of their assets may be subject to exemptions, and if their protected assets may later be leveraged for the repayment of their nondischargeable debts. While many people still benefit from the bankruptcy process, every person considering the process should understand the impact that such debts may have on their future financial health.

Readers who wish to learn more about how personal bankruptcy may serve their needs are encouraged to speak with their bankruptcy lawyers. Though an individual may not exit the bankruptcy process debt free, they may have a chance to start over with a significantly unburdened economic outlook.

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