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Debt and other financial issues can be stressful on your family and your marriage. If you or your spouse is interested in filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy individually, then you may be able to stabilize your financial situation, keep important assets, and get out of stress-inducing debt. Let’s take a look at how filing for bankruptcy without your spouse works:

There are a number of situations in which filing for bankruptcy without your spouse can be beneficial. First, consider the source of your financial strain. While both you and your spouse may be struggling financially, having one spouse file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy may alleviate pressure on both of you. This could be because the most burdensome accounts are in one spouse’s name, or only one spouse’s income has changed dramatically for the worse.

Another situation in which filing for Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 bankruptcy without your spouse may be advantageous is when your home is at risk of foreclosure. Filing for bankruptcy can temporarily stop foreclosure from happening, giving you and your family more time to move out or pay your mortgage. If only one spouse files for bankruptcy, then the other spouse’s credit may still be intact. This will make finding new housing and building credit easier.

Because Illinois is not a community property state, your spouse is not financially responsible for your personal accounts during bankruptcy. However, because you and your spouse share a household, your partner’s income also needs to be included in your petition for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Consult your attorney on how to best approach your individual or joint bankruptcy.

For more information on filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, contact the experts at Cutler & Associates, Ltd. Our Chicago-based practice helps clients just like you navigate complex and confusing bankruptcy law.