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Chapter 7 bankruptcy: Debts that aren't dischargeable

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is one of the ways that some people who are drowning in debt have to take control over their debt. This type of bankruptcy is also known as liquidation bankruptcy because many debts are discharged after a person's assets are liquidated and divvied among the creditors. Our Pennsylvania readers might be interested in learning that there are some debts that aren't discharged as part of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

Student loan debts are one of the most notable debts that usually aren't discharged during a bankruptcy. There are some instances in which student loan debts might be discharged, but this can be difficult to get approved.

Many debts owed to the government aren't discharged as part of Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Court fees, child support payments, alimony, taxes and certain damage award payments for personal injury or wrongful death cases that are the result of driving while intoxicated are some. Government-imposed penalties, fines and restitution also aren't able to be discharged.

Debts that weren't dischargeable in a prior bankruptcy and debts not listed on the schedules when the case begins aren't able to be discharged in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Condominium fees and dues usually aren't able to be discharged.

On top of those debts, there are some debts that aren't able to be discharged if a creditor objects to the discharged based on the debt falling into one of certain categories. Debts that were the result of breach of fiduciary duty, embezzlement, larceny, willful act, malicious acts, fraud and divorce settlement. Debts for cash advances taken within 70 days after filing and those for luxury goods and services that were within 90 days prior to filing for Chapter 7 also fall into this category.

Anyone who is considering a bankruptcy filing must know exactly what their debts are, as well as how to file them. Because of the complexities, getting answers to your questions from the beginning is a good idea.

Source: FindLaw, "Debts that Remain After a Chapter 7 Discharge" Oct. 04, 2014

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Joshua Z. Goldblum, Attorney at Law
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