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Ellen, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 36714
Experience:  Bankruptcy Lawyer. Experienced.
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My wife needs to file personal and business bankruptcy on her

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My wife needs to file personal and business bankruptcy on her veterinary practice. We intend to set up another LLC practice in my name. We have not yet filed, taxes being the biggest hold up. Filed for extension on our 2009 taxes. If we set up the LLC now in my name and she works for me as the sole income earning veterinarian, what financial implications will there be for us and the LLC when she files? Also, is it necessary to file our taxes first?

Thank you for your question. I am happy to assist you.

A husband and wife are not required to file a bankruptcy jointly. One party can file without the other.

The effect on the non-filing spouse will be dependent upon whether there are joint debts and/or joint assets. If there are no joint debts and no joint assets, there may be little or no effect on the non-filing spouse. If there are joint debts and/or joint assets, the non-filing spouse would remain liable on the joint debt and the joint assets would need to be included in the filing.

I hope that the information which I provided was helpful to you.

Best wishes for a successful outcome. If you have additional questions, please do not hesitate to submit them to me directly.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
My real question was on the advisability of starting a new LLC veterinary business in my name before my wife files bankruptcy. Is the income generated protected in my name since I am not filing? Or is it likely that they will expect me to pay her a salary? A salary that right now would easily be more than the net income of the business?
I cannot give you advice but I can give you legal information. If you start the veterinary business in your name and employ your wife, the trustee may take the position that the new veterinary business is an asset of the bankruptcy estate. It would typically be best to start a new business after the bankruptcy is complete
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