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Terry L.
Terry L., Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
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Experience:  Better Business Bur 15yrs bankruptcy experience. Chicago Bar
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There is a little bit of confusing regarding the means test

Resolved Question:

There is a little bit of confusing regarding the means test and whether to include a non-filing spouse's expenses. 707(b)(2)(A)(ii)(I) allows for household expenses based on household size in the National Standards and Local Standards section (so if the non-filing spouse lives with the debtor, that non-filing spouse affects the Means Test here). There is also an allowance for the non-filing spouse's expenses (health insurance, for example) in specific circumstances under the Other Necessary Expenses section. But in determining expenses for payments on secured debts, 707(b)(2)(A)(iii)(I) does not mention the non-filing spouse.

My question is for a debtor who makes half the mortgage payment on a house in which he resides and is listed on the title as co-owner (with his non-filing spouse), but is not listed on the mortgage as a debtor. For that situation in which the debtor is listed as co-owner on the title, on question 42(a) of the means test, can he include his half of the mortgage payment even though he is not listed on the mortgage?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  Terry L. replied 2 years ago.

Terry L. :

Hi, thanks for your question. You should hire a lawyer for specific legal advice. No attorney client relationship is created here.

Terry L. :

On the means test, you should list all contributions to the household, including income from non-filing spouses.

Terry L. :

You can deduct spouse's taxes, insurance, and any other line items that the non-filing spouse pays out.

Terry L. :

On the means test, the line 17 can adjust for any personal expenses that the non-filing spouse has that are not household related, that can be used to adjust the income - such as student loan payment etc.

Terry L. :

The housing expense is given based on family size.

Terry L. :

As for line 42, this is future payments required in the next 60 months, divided by 60.

Terry L. :

Unfortunately, if the debtor is not on the mortgage, there wouldn't be an amount here.

Terry L. :

The spouse can likely take this deduction on the marital adjustment column.

Terry L. :

Talk to a local bankruptcy attorney though to make sure all income and deductions are made properly.

Terry L. :

thanks for your question, good luck

Customer:

Hi Terry,

Customer:

Thank you for the quick response....

Customer:

So for the marital adjustment column, you mean question 17?

Terry L., Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 2513
Experience: Better Business Bur 15yrs bankruptcy experience. Chicago Bar
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