If I pay for child support, will I be exempt from my automatic stay? 20 Answers as of August 26, 2011

I just got through a divorce and I have to help pay for child support. I am also going through bankruptcy paperwork and I would like to request an automatic stay to stop creditors from harassing me. Will I be granted an automatic stay if I am paying for child support?

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Heupel Law
Heupel Law | Kevin Heupel
Everyone is granted an automatic stay when they file bankruptcy, which will allow you to pay your child support.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 8/26/2011
Eric J. Benzer, Attorney at Law
Eric J. Benzer, Attorney at Law | Eric Benzer
Yes
Answer Applies to: Maryland
Replied: 8/6/2011
Eranthe Law Firm
Eranthe Law Firm | Cate Eranthe
The automatic stay is automatic. You do not need to ask for it. Credit card companies and others (not including the support obligation) are prohibited from taking actions to collect. You are correct that you still need to pay child support. Child support is exempt from the automatic stay and is not discharged in bankruptcy. You are not exempt from the stay-just the child support obligation.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/5/2011
Bird & VanDyke, Inc.
Bird & VanDyke, Inc. | David VanDyke
Yes, but you will still need to pay your support.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/3/2011
Law Office of Asaph Abrams
Law Office of Asaph Abrams | Asaph Abrams
There appears to be some confusion of terms and principles, so I'll comment generally. The automatic stay (a court order that halts collections, etc.) has a whole fat chapter in the Bankruptcy Code. Within certain limitations, it's granted... automatically (without special request) upon filing (you can't request it prior to filing); it would be extended to most debt (but not child support, for example). The fact that you're current on your child support payments is not really relevant and doesn't provide for different application of the stay. This answer (as well as our Web site) doesn't address all facts & implications of the question; it's general info, not legal advice to be relied upon; it creates no attorney-client relationship; it may be pertinent to CA only; it's independent of other answers. Hire legal counsel before acting or refraining from bankruptcy/legal action
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/3/2011
    Law Office of Harry L Styron
    Law Office of Harry L Styron | Harry L Styron
    When you file your Petition collection of all debts except for support obligations (and some others) is automatically stayed. See 11 U.S.C 362 which you can find online by Google the citation.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/2/2011
    Law Office of Maureen O' Malley
    Law Office of Maureen O' Malley | Maureen O'Malley
    The automatic stay goes into effect the moment you file. Creditors may do nothing without court approval after that. You'll still have to pay child support. And please see a bankruptcy lawyer to help- it'll save you stress and expensive errors.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 8/2/2011
    Ursula G. Barrios Law
    Ursula G. Barrios Law | Guillermo Machado
    You'll get your stay from your creditors minus child support.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/2/2011
    Engberg Law Office
    Engberg Law Office | Harry A. Engberg
    Once you file for bankruptcy the creditors can not attempt to collect any longer, but can continue until you file. The bankruptcy has no effect on paying child support.
    Answer Applies to: South Dakota
    Replied: 8/2/2011
    Florio Law Firm, PLLC
    Florio Law Firm, PLLC | Amber Morgan Florio, Attorney at Law
    Upon filing a Bankruptcy and obtaining a case number, (assuming that you have not filed previously) you will be granted an automatic stay. However, you are and will continue to be responsible for your child support. Child support is non dischargeable and will continue to accrue during your bankruptcy. Unless you have been told otherwise by the attorney filing your case, you will need to continue to pay your current monthly child support. (note: sometimes you can include the current monthly support into a Chapter 13 payment, this would mean that you would pay the trustee, and the trustee would pay the attorney general. However, whether you pay the attorney general or the trustee - bottom line is that you will need to continue to make your payments for child support .)
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 8/2/2011
    Grasso Law Group
    Grasso Law Group | Charles Grasso, Esq.
    Upon filing, given that you have not recently already filed for bankruptcy, you will automatically gain the stay against your creditors - you do not have to request it. Your child support obligation however will remain in effect and you must be current with those payments in order to obtain a bankruptcy discharge.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/2/2011
    Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney
    Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney | Janet Lawson
    Upon filing for bankruptcy everyone gets the automatic stay in their first case. If you file a second case with a year of the first one being dismissed you have to file a motion to keep the automatic stay in effect. There is no automatic stay if you file a 3rd case with a year of the first 2 being dismissed.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/2/2011
    Law Offices of Sheryl S. Graf
    Law Offices of Sheryl S. Graf | Sheryl S. Graf
    Once a Bankruptcy Petition is filed, the automatic stay prohibits creditor harassment and collection activity, including any act to collect a debt that arose prior to filing the Bankruptcy case. However, there are several exceptions to the automatic stay under 11 U.S.C. 362. Collection of child support is one of the exceptions. The automatic stay is "automatic" upon filing for bankruptcy - you do not need to take any action to request it. The information presented here is general in nature and should not be construed to be formal legal advice, nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/2/2011
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