Will my debt transfer to my family if I pass away during bankruptcy? 2 Answers as of September 03, 2010

I am a retiree in California. I have been forced to consider bankruptcy because of medical debt related to my health conditions. I think that chapter 13 bankruptcy is my best option at this point. The bankruptcy would be in my name and most of the debt is in my name. If I pass away during the bankruptcy filing, will by debt be passed on to my wife?

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Diefer Law Group, P.C.
Diefer Law Group, P.C. | Abel Fernandez
If you leave an estate, yes the debts can follow your estate.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/3/2010
The Law Office of Mark J. Markus
The Law Office of Mark J. Markus | Mark Markus
California is a community property/debt state. Your wife already is liable for your medical and other debts (unless they were all incurred before you got married) to the extent she has community assets to recover from. If the reason for the Chapter 13 case is too high of income, if you pass away, your wife should be able to convert your case to Ch. 7, but I do not have anywhere near enough information to advise you on that. You should also address your question to a family law attorney regarding the community debt aspects.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/3/2010
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