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cfortunato, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 8023
Experience:  Bankruptcy professor.
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I filed Chapter 7 in Texas in 2009 and was discharged. This

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I filed Chapter 7 in Texas in 2009 and was discharged. This was after I'd consolodated all of my husband's unsecured debt with my own. I filed as separated, though he had not yet moved out of the house. Well, he never did. We reconciled. And now that we are back on the divorce path, he says he will call the DOJ and report me for bankruptcy fraud. (And then wants to stay married - but that's another issue). He is a gambler and since I took all of his debt in 2009 has charged up an additional $65k in credit card debt.

Evidence of our separation (or intention to separate): A separation agreement drafted for family court but never filed. Counseling sessions in which he stated that he wanted a divorce. That's all and it may not be relevant since we never technically separated.

He's also manipulative and emotionally abusive, so though I knew it was wrong, I felt forced into this. The objective of the bankruptcy has held true for me though - I've re-built and made a fresh start with no debt and have maintained my household without credit (or any help from my deadbeat husband) for the last 3 years.

My question - Do I report myself to the DOJ before he does? What will happen? He's offered not to do that for a substantial financial reward.
Hi JACustomer,
At the time you filed your Bankruptcy, were you living separately even though you were still living in the same house? (Living separately basically means eating meals separately, and keeping your finances separate.)
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Yes - same bed, but he doesn't go to sleep until 3am. We have 2 kids, so there was always some interaction. We've always maintained separate bank accounts and credit cards. I paid all bills (morgages, car, insurance, child care, etc.) on an agreed upon child support of $1150 a month.
You do not have to be living in separate houses to be living in separate households. If you were living separately, even though you were living in the same house, you filed your Bankruptcy correctly.
Additionally, even if you were not living separately, but indicated in your Bankruptcy that you were living separately, it is too late for the Bankrutpcy court to do anything about the misinformation, as there is nothing the Bankruptcy court can do after one year. Bankruptcy Stat. 727(e).
Finally, by asking for money to not report you (which would anyway be a waste of time), your husband committed a crime (called "blackmail"), for which he can be arrested.

I think this is what you wanted to know. If not, please let me know.
Thank you.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Yes - I just want to check though. You do not think I should disclose this to the DOJ? Because he definitely will, and he will lie.
No - you would be wasting your time, because it is too late to report anything. It has to be done within one year after your case is discharged or closed.
cfortunato and 3 other Bankruptcy Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Sorry to keep coming back - last one. So the BK court will not overturn my discharge or anything of that nature. What about the IRS or FBI? I don't feel that I committed a crime, but it can certainly appear that I did.

Thank you for accepting my answer!
No - there is nothing the Bankruptcy court can do, and this is not serious enough for the IRS or the FBI to get involved. Also, please believe me that you did nothing wrong, and there is not even the appearance of having done something wrong.
I recently filed a Bankruptcy for a man who was married with 2 children and still living in the house with them, but since he was maintaining separate households, I filed for him as married with separate households. This is more common than you may think.
cfortunato and 3 other Bankruptcy Law Specialists are ready to help you