Can you file bankruptcy if you are married and your wife filed 2 years ago? Also, can you file if you have money in an IRA account?

Asked on June 29, 2009 under Bankruptcy Law, Ohio

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You can file separately, but your wife probably cannot file again at this time; it depends on what she filed for the first time.  However, if you do file on your own, while you may be discharged from your debt, she will still be liable for repayment on any joint accounts that you may have. 

The rules for how often you can file are as follows:

A debtor cannot obtain a discharge in a Chapter 7 case if the debtor obtained a discharge in (a) a Chapter 7 case filed within the past 8 years, or (b) a Chapter 13 case filed within the past 6 years.A debtor cannot obtain a discharge in a Chapter 13 case if the debtor obtained a discharge in (a) a Chapter 7 case filed within the past 4 years, or (b) a Chapter 13 case filed within the past 2 years.  The time periods in either case are measured from the commencement dates of the respective cases.  The dates of discharge have no bearing on the disqualification

As for your IRA, creditors cannot seize assets in such an account; they are shielded from creditors in bankruptcy proceedings.  IRA's have been afforded the same protection under bankruptcy law as pensions, 401(k)s, Social Security, and other benefits tied to age, illness, or disability.

 



IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.