Can one spouse file bankruptcy without it effecting the other spouse, if it's only for the debt in their name? i.e. All the cc debt is in wifes name, the houses are in the husbands name only. Can the wife file for bankruptcy without the husband or the homes being effected?
2 Answers from Attorneys
Yes. One spouse can file bankruptcy. However, if there are multiple properties those documents will have to be carefully examined. The wife has an inchoate "marital interest" in property acquired after marriage.
Technically one spouse can file without the other. However, that often raises a lot of issues such as whether assets are being concealed. My policy is that I usually don't accept a case unless both spouses are willing to file together. I have done it where there was a really compelling reason that one of the spouses could not file, however.
As always, this is not legal advice. It's for general information purposes only and does not create an attorney-client relationship.
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