If you need to file for bankruptcy in Tampa, and you are married, there are a few additional factors you need to consider. How you file will depend on your decision after considering these factors.
Know These Facts Before You File for Bankruptcy in Tampa
You may choose to file for bankruptcy separately from your spouse. You are not required to file for bankruptcy together. Individual bankruptcy is usually chosen when the couple is separated or when only one spouse has debt. Sometimes, each spouse will file for bankruptcy in Tampa separately to take advantage of exemptions or protect property. A bankruptcy lawyer can help you determine the most beneficial filing method for you.
Choosing to file for bankruptcy individually protects the spouse who is not in debt from influence on their credit. However, it does not protect joint property. Also, there are cases where you may be sending your creditors in your spouse’s direction when filing individually. You filing for bankruptcy does not protect your spouse from creditors seeking to settle your mutual debt. It only protects them from the bankruptcy showing up on their record.
Filing a Joint Case
Filing for joint bankruptcy is usually the choice you make when you have mutual debt that was accumulated after the marriage or as joint borrowers before the marriage. If you decide to file a joint case, you are saving time and money on court fees and paperwork by filing one joint bankruptcy case. The only drawback is that, depending what state you are in, this may have an impact on your exemptions.
Make sure you carefully consider your living situation before you file for bankruptcy. Do you and your spouse live in the same household? Are you separated or going through a divorce? Whether or not you share a household with your spouse can impact the information you’ll need to provide, and can even affect what type of bankruptcy you qualify for and the eventual court decision. For example, if you live with your spouse and are still filing for bankruptcy individually, you need to include your spouse’s income in the petition. This can obviously make a difference with the court when they are determining your financial needs.
If you are married and filing for bankruptcy, it’s important to understand bankruptcy law in Tampa, Florida. When you take into consideration the above factors, you can be better prepared to start your bankruptcy filing from a place of information.