Is my Chapter 7 debt considered community debt? 3 Answers as of October 28, 2010

I had a Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharged. Two large credit cards were in my SS# only. Will my ex be responsible for that debt if his name and SS were never on that credit card?

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The Law Office of Mark J. Markus
The Law Office of Mark J. Markus | Mark Markus
Whether or not a debt is community debt depends on the laws of whatever state you live in. However, regardless of that, if you received a discharge in your bankruptcy case, that discharge (pursuant to 11 USC 524) protects your spouse's community property against any obligations they may have on community debt. If your spouse has separate property they brought into the marriage, then theoretically a creditor could try to come after the separate property, but this is unlikely to occur if their name was never on the card.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 10/28/2010
The Orantes Law Firm
The Orantes Law Firm | Giovanni Orantes
If you live in a community property state, most of your debt, like your assets, belong to the community (you and your spouse). If you file a Chapter 7 case without your spouse, a creditor cannot try to collect your debt (or your spouse's for that matter) from post-petition community assets. Since the post-petition earnings of both spouses or property acquired with community property is community property, creditors cannot try to collect from such community property even if their collection letters or lawsuits are directed to the non-filing spouse. A recent Ninth Circuit case, In re Kimmel, made that rule clear. However, you have to be firm with your creditors and explain the rule and make clear that you are ready, willing and able to file a lawsuit against such creditor in your bankruptcy case for violation of the discharge injunction if they bother your spouse Courts often grant attorney fees and costs if you prevail against your creditor in a discharge violation lawsuit.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 10/28/2010
Sussman & Associates
Sussman & Associates | Mitchell Sussman
You need to consult with a divorce attorney.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 10/28/2010
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