Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Divorce Obligations are NOT discharged through bankruptcy.

In a recent opinion issued by the New Hampshire Bankruptcy Court, (Honorable James B. Haines, Jr.  sitting in designation), the Court reiterated the parameters of what is, or is not, discharged through a chapter 7 bankruptcy case relevant to a divorce proceeding.  See Maville v. Maville (In re Maville), 2012 BNH 007 (Bankr. D.H. 2012)( Haines, J, sitting in designation).

Debts in the nature of alimony and child support are not discharged through a bankruptcy case.  Section 523(a)(5) of the Bankruptcy Code establishes that individual debtors will not be relieved of domestic support obligations; and, Section 101(14A) defines these to include debts in the nature of alimony, maintenance and support.  Prior to 2005, some obligations were discharged.  That changed with the amendments to the Bankruptcy Code in 2005.  Section 523(a)(15) now unqualifiedly provides that a property settlement obligation encompassed by that section is not discharged.  Maville, supra.

Click here for the full opinion from the Court's web site:

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