Money is the most common source of conflict during a marriage. So the question is, should you file before getting married? Our answer is usually yes.
Before the bankruptcy reform in 2005, if you were married and only one of you had debt you could of easily filed for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy to get a fresh start. Unfortunately that is not the case anymore, you are now prohibited from filing an individual bankruptcy without considering the income of your non-filing spouse. Long story short, you are able to file, but not without considering your spouse's income as well.
Clearing up your finances is critical, if it is not taken care of, you are possibly putting your future spouse's financial situation at risk as well. If you are thinking about filing for bankruptcy, weigh your options before getting married. There is a greater chance of you qualifying for a bankruptcy as an individual with median income than with your non-filing spouse. If you are struggling financially and are thinking about getting married, you most likely would want to clear up your financial situation before getting married. We do not recommend starting off a marriage carrying debt. It would be even worse when you may not be able to file bankruptcy under chapter 7 after you get married because of your non-filing spouse's income this being considered if they make well above the median income.
Bankruptcy is a complicated situation, that is why we always advise you to speak to a bankruptcy attorney. For more information on bankruptcy in or around the Houston area, schedule a free meeting with a bankruptcy lawyer from the Rashid Law Firm by calling us at 832-209-8833 to schedule a free initial consultation. We are here to help.