How do social security benefits effect a Chapter 13 re-payment plan?

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How do social security benefits effect a Chapter 13 re-payment plan?

My husband and I filed Chapter 13 about 2 1/2 years ago. We have been paying since. We are halfway through our plan of 60 months. I am eligible for SS in 9 months. If I take it then will the trustee re-evaluate our plan and consider that income?

Asked on November 12, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Arizona

Answers:

Mark J. Markus / Mark J. Markus, Law Offices of

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

That really depends on the terms of your plan and how the courts in your district treat such things.  Thus, you really need to consult with a bankruptcy attorney in your area.  In most cases, the Chapter 13 trustee will require annual tax returns to be submitted and if it shows an increase in income, they can seek to have the plan payment increased up until you are paying 100% of your general unsecured claims. 

However, an argument can certainly be made that social security income should be excluded from that analysis since Congress excluded it from the means test, but most courts won't buy that line of reasoning.

Mark J. Markus, Attorney at Law

Handling exclusively bankruptcy law cases in California since 1991.

http://www.bklaw.com/

bankruptcy blog: http://bklaw.com/bankruptcy-blog/

Follow Me on Twitter:  @bklawr

Mark J. Markus / Mark J. Markus, Law Offices of

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

That really depends on the terms of your plan and how the courts in your district treat such things.  Thus, you really need to consult with a bankruptcy attorney in your area.  In most cases, the Chapter 13 trustee will require annual tax returns to be submitted and if it shows an increase in income, they can seek to have the plan payment increased up until you are paying 100% of your general unsecured claims. 

However, an argument can certainly be made that social security income should be excluded from that analysis since Congress excluded it from the means test, but most courts won't buy that line of reasoning.

Mark J. Markus, Attorney at Law

Handling exclusively bankruptcy law cases in California since 1991.

http://www.bklaw.com/

bankruptcy blog: http://bklaw.com/bankruptcy-blog/

Follow Me on Twitter:  @bklawr


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