Everything You Need to Know About Divorce and Bankruptcy in PA

man and woman holding ripped paper with dollar signDivorce and bankruptcy are two of the most stressful life events that a person can go through. They can be both emotionally and financially devastating. If you are facing both divorce and bankruptcy in PA, it is important to understand how the two interact and how to protect your rights.

If you have any questions about divorce and bankruptcy in PA, please contact Engle Kauffman and VanHorn, a leading PA divorce law firm. Our experienced divorce lawyers can help you navigate the complex legal process and protect your interests.

The Intersection of Divorce and Bankruptcy in Pennsylvania

Divorce in Pennsylvania is primarily no-fault, meaning that couples can seek divorce without proving any wrongdoing. However, it’s crucial to understand the equitable distribution of property, alimony, and child custody issues, as these aspects can have a substantial impact on your financial situation.

Filing for bankruptcy in Pennsylvania can significantly affect your divorce proceedings. There are several types of bankruptcy, but Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 are the most common in the context of divorce. Chapter 7 involves the liquidation of assets to pay off debts, while Chapter 13 entails a repayment plan over a specified period. Depending on the type of bankruptcy, assets, debts, and financial obligations can become intertwined with your divorce process.

Pennsylvania has specific bankruptcy exemptions that allow you to protect certain assets from liquidation during bankruptcy proceedings. Understanding these exemptions is critical to preserving your financial stability and ensuring a fair divorce settlement.

Should You File for Divorce or Bankruptcy First in PA?

The best course of action will depend on your specific circumstances. However, in general, filing for bankruptcy before divorce can have some benefits.

First, bankruptcy can help you to eliminate your debt, which can make the divorce process less complicated. Second, if you file for bankruptcy after divorce, your ex-spouse may be held liable for some of your debts. Finally, filing for bankruptcy before divorce can help you to protect your assets from being divided in the divorce settlement.

How Bankruptcy Impacts Your Divorce Settlement in PA

If you file for bankruptcy before divorce, the bankruptcy court will divide your assets and debts between you and your spouse. This division of assets and debts will then be used to determine your divorce settlement.

However, it is important to note that not all of your assets and debts will be discharged in bankruptcy. Some types of debt, such as child support and alimony, cannot be discharged. Additionally, some types of property, such as retirement accounts, may be protected from bankruptcy.

If you are unsure how bankruptcy will affect your divorce settlement, it is important to speak with an experienced divorce lawyer.

Responding to a Spouse’s Silent Bankruptcy in PA

If your spouse files for bankruptcy without your knowledge, you may be worried about how this will affect you. However, there are a few things you can do:

  • Contact a bankruptcy lawyer. A bankruptcy lawyer can help you to understand your rights and options.
  • File a motion to stay the bankruptcy proceedings. This motion will ask the bankruptcy court to temporarily stop the bankruptcy proceedings so that you can have time to review the case and protect your interests.
  • File a joint bankruptcy petition. This will allow you to file for bankruptcy together as a couple.

Securing Your Financial Future

When facing divorce and bankruptcy in Pennsylvania, it’s crucial to have a firm grasp of the legal landscape to protect your interests and financial stability. Engle Kauffman and VanHorn, PA divorce attorneys, are dedicated to guiding you through these complex situations, ensuring that your rights are upheld and your future is secured.

If you find yourself at the intersection of divorce and bankruptcy in Pennsylvania, do not hesitate to reach out to Engle Kauffman and VanHorn. Our experienced divorce lawyers in PA will provide you with the support you need to navigate these turbulent waters effectively.

Navigating divorce and bankruptcy simultaneously can be a challenging and emotionally taxing experience, but with the right legal representation, you can achieve a fair resolution and move forward with confidence. The team at Engle Kauffman and VanHorn is committed to helping you during this difficult time and ensuring that your rights and interests are protected.

Contact us today to discuss your situation and learn how we can provide you with the legal support you need to secure your future. Don’t face these challenges alone—let us help you navigate the path to a brighter future.