How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Ellen Your Own Question
Ellen, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 36714
Experience:  Bankruptcy Lawyer. Experienced.
Type Your Bankruptcy Law Question Here...
Ellen is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My life is about to dissolve into nothing. My spouse and

This answer was rated:

My life is about to dissolve into nothing. My spouse and I need to file bankruptcy as we can't meet our obligations credit cards got us into trouble. But to top it off, we are getting a divorce. What do we do first? Get the bankruptcy taken care of and then divorce? Do it at the same time? I am so confused on what to do

So sorry to hear of your dilemna. I will strive to provide you with legal information to assist you.

I am a lawyer with 25 years experience. Although I am not your attorney, I hope that I can give you helpful legal information on this open and nonconfidential forum.

Are you considering a chapter 7 or a chapter 13 bankruptcy?

Edited by WebLaw on 10/1/2010 at 2:06 AM EST
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Chapter 7, if I remember the difference. Need to clear out debt that we can't afford to pay. Want to reaffirm our home.

Thank you.

Typically its best to file a chapter 7 bankruptcy jointly prior to filing for divorce for several reasons:
1. Only one filing fee is required;
2. Only one attorney's fee is required;
3. A divorce is usually less complicated after the debt has been discharged;
4. A chapter 7 bankruptcy only takes about 4 months

If you would like additional details concerning my answer, please click REPLY and I will be happy to respond. Do not click relist as it will delay my response. Otherwise please click ACCEPT so that I receive credit for my work
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Should I see a local attorney or just go where there is an actual bankruptcy attorney that is experienced. I didn't know if it requires referrals?

I live in a small town and the nearest actual bankruptcy attorney is 200 miles. Which is fine if that is what needs to be done.

I would strongly suggest that you retain bankruptcy counsel. To keep your costs down, consider choosing a bankruptcy attorney that is located in the vicinity of the bankruptcy court where you will be filing.

Here is a link that may assist you in locating counsel:
Ellen and 3 other Bankruptcy Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Do we both have to file bankruptcy. Most of the credit card debt is probably mine but our other assets are held jointly. So does that make it that we both have to file

Thank you for your question.

You are not both required to file bankruptcy.

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.

Note: Subscription customers. An ACCEPT is credited to me but you are not charged.