Are you married and living in California? If so, are you considering filing for bankruptcy? You should know that you are able to do so on your own or together. But if you want to file on your own, you may be worried about how this will affect your spouse.

Individual Filing

In California, most of the property that you acquire during your marriage is owned equally by both spouses. This applies no matter which spouse is on title. You also should know that all community property will become part of your bankruptcy, even if you file as an individual. But, your situation will depend on the property and assets held by each spouse.

As for income, all income earned by both spouses may be considered by the court as household income in order to determine your eligibility for either a Chapter 7 or 13. You will need to speak with your attorney to find out if you have enough exemptions to protect all your community property or any other individually held items which may be considered a community asset.

Are you worried about what will happen to your spouse if you file individually? Good news! If you file as an individual, your spouse’s credit score and report will usually not be affected.

How Will I Know What Option is Best?

There are many things that can influence your decision on how to file for your bankruptcy. We recommend speaking with a bankruptcy attorney. Together with your attorney and spouse, you will want to consider the following:

  • Your property – what is designated community property?
    • Is any property separate from you and your spouse?
  • Credit scores for you and your spouse
  • Total debt amount – what type of debt – secured and unsecured?
  • Income – for you and your spouse
  • Planning on major purchases soon?
  • Any additional things that you are concerned about

With your attorney, you will be able to go over all options that will work best for you and your spouse. It is good to weigh these options carefully before moving forward. Your attorney can help you plan for the best bankruptcy option for you.

Need More Information?

At the Law Office of Daniela Romero, we believe in relationships that are based on trust. Before we work together, we would like to get to know you and we would like you to get to know us. We want you to be sure you are the right fit for us and that we are the perfect fit for you. This will allow you to be completely comfortable sharing intimate and difficult details of your case, so we can offer you representation to the fullest extent of the law. Call us today to set up a free consultation.