Do I Still Have to Pay Alimony if I File for Bankruptcy in California?

For many spouses, receiving alimony after a divorce is a critical part of remaining financially capable to care for themselves and retain the standard of living established during the marriage. Though alimony is essential for those who receive it, those who pay it often would prefer to stop paying it as soon as possible. Often, when the spouse who pays alimony incurs financial hardship, especially to the point where they have to file for bankruptcy, they may wonder whether they are required to continue paying alimony. Please continue reading and reach out to a seasoned Los Angeles divorce attorney from our firm to learn more about how alimony works in California and whether you can stop paying it if you have to file for bankruptcy. Here are some of the questions you may have:

Will I have to continue paying alimony if I file for bankruptcy?

When someone files for bankruptcy, there are two types of debts: dischargeable and non-dischargeable debts. Dischargeable debt refers to debt that can be discharged, or eliminated, by filing for bankruptcy. For example, credit card debt is typically considered dischargeable debt. Non-dischargeable debt, on the other hand, typically cannot be discharged through bankruptcy and the person who owes the debt, therefore, will still have to find a way to pay it off. Typically, domestic support obligations, such as alimony or child support, are considered non-dischargeable debts, meaning in most cases, you cannot avoid paying them, even if you file for bankruptcy.

Are there ever any exceptions?

There are certain rare and specific exceptions, but you should note that in most cases, you will have to continue paying alimony, regardless of whether you file for bankruptcy. That said, if you do incur significant and unforeseen financial hardship, such as by getting laid off from your job due to no fault of your own, you may request a modification to your alimony agreement that will better enable you to manage your own financial situation while still supporting your ex. In some cases, depending on your individual circumstances, you may even request a termination of your alimony agreement. If you would like to learn more about alimony, bankruptcy, and modifying your alimony agreement, simply reach out to our experienced Los Angeles spousal support attorneys today. We are here to help you in any way we can.

Contact our experienced Los Angeles firm

Divorce and family law issues are notoriously complicated and personal, which is why you must hire an attorney with years of experience, as well as the compassion and skill needed to handle these sensitive matters. For the qualified, dedicated legal representation you and your family deserve and need, contact Zitser Family Law Group, APC today.

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