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Non-Dischargeable Debts under Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Non-Dischargeable Debts under Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

It is common to believe that a Chapter 13 discharge will leave the debtor completely debt-free, but that is not the case. Regardless of your income or circumstances, certain types of debts survive Chapter 13 bankruptcy and are not discharged.

As a rule, a discharge releases the debtor from all debts provided for by the plan or disallowed, with certain exceptions. To the extent that they are not fully paid under the Chapter 13 plan, the debtor will still be responsible for these debts after the bankruptcy case has concluded.

Debts not discharged in Chapter 13 include the following:

  • Home Mortgages. Such long-term obligations often extend beyond the term of the plan and are therefore not dischargeable.
  • Taxes. Taxes, including some state taxes, more than three years old are not dischargeable.
  • Fraudulently incurred debt. Obligations obtained by false pretenses, a false representation, actual fraud or the intentional provision of false or incomplete financial information respecting the debtor or an insider on whom the creditor relied are non-dischargeable.
  • Unscheduled debts. Unscheduled debts, or debts not disclosed in the debtor’s petition, are non-dischargeable unless the creditor had knowledge of the debtor’s bankruptcy.
  • Spousal support and child support. Domestic support obligations and obligations owed to a spouse, former spouse or child because of divorce or separation are non-dischargeable. Obligations for alimony, maintenance or support pursuant to a separation agreement, divorce decree or property settlement agreement are included in the exception.
  • Student loans. Educational loans guaranteed by the United States government are usually not discharged. They may be, however, if the court finds that paying off the loan will impose an undue hardship.
  • Other Obligations. Drunken driving liabilities, criminal fines and restitution obligations are non-dischargeable.

The law regarding the scope of the Chapter 13 discharge is complex and has recently undergone major changes. Consult with one of our experienced bankruptcy attorneys prior to filing. We can paint a realistic picture of your pre- and post-bankruptcy financial situation.

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