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Joint Bankruptcy

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Joint Bankruptcy Filings in Fresno, CA

How a Joint Bankruptcy Petition Works

If you are married and filing for bankruptcy, it is important to decide in advance whether to file separately or jointly with your spouse. That decision can affect how much debt is discharged and, in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, how much property you are allowed to keep. If you decide to file jointly, all of your property and all of your spouse's property will become part of the bankruptcy estate, and all of both spouses' debts will be included in the filing. One advantage to filing jointly is that you pay one filing fee, complete one set of forms, and retain one attorney. The Fresno bankruptcy lawyers at Arnold Law Group, APC, can help you determine which debt solution is best for you.

We can also help you to determine which type of bankruptcy to file (if bankruptcy is your best option), and whether to file separately or jointly if you are married. Our lawyers have more than 30 years of combined experience. Our exceptional case results and satisfied clients have led to our firm having an excellent reputation. We are committed to good communication with our clients and helping them to pursue their goals in debt relief, and to date, we have thousands of satisfied clients. We offer a private case evaluation to prospective clients, and we will take the time to listen to you and learn your financial situation.

Is a joint bankruptcy right for you and your spouse?

Our firm will help you consider the advantages and disadvantages of filing jointly in your case. Filing jointly has a number of advantages. You pay one filing fee and file one petition, which saves half the work of filing two. An important advantage of filing jointly is that it gives the highest level of debt protection to both spouses. If a spouse is a co-debtor and does not file for bankruptcy, a creditor will generally go after the non-filing spouse for payment.

There are a number of reasons why a married couple may wish to file separately, including:

  • No need to file because community property and debts are included in the spouse's bankruptcy
  • One spouse's debt exceeds Chapter 13 limits
  • One spouse cannot file because of a prior bankruptcy

In order to file Chapter 7, debtors are required to take a means test to determine the level of disposable income available which cannot be over a certain limit. In a joint Chapter 7 filing, the income of both spouses is measured in the means test. Therefore, in some cases, filing separately may allow a debtor more advantages. If you are considering filing bankruptcy for relief from overwhelming debt, it is in your best interests to consult with our Fresno bankruptcy attorney for the sound legal guidance and counsel we provide. 

Contact the firm for high quality representation and guidance in joint filing. 

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