Bankruptcy and Divorce
Hello this is Jeff Kelly I'm a bankruptcy attorney in the Northern District of Georgia today I want to talk about bankruptcy and divorce and the number one issue that we need to consider if if somebody's going through a divorce are the ethical implications and what that is your attorney has a duty of loyalty to both the husband and the wife so if they're going through a divorce this can present a conflict this can be very difficult situation and when an attorney gets caught in the middle of a case and the clients are getting divorced the most ethical thing to do is for the husband and wife to both fire the attorney and hire a new attorney so that that way they both have individual attorneys that represent them and have a duty of loyalty to them and to them only in reality most clients don't do that because that cost a lot of extra money so every now and then with a chapter 7 we'll have a couple coming in that's about to go through divorce and they will want to go ahead and file the chapter 7 together because it doesn't cost any extra for a husband and wife to file together whereas if they file individual cases they're going to double their costs double the transaction cost now the only time this really works is number one when they both come in and they're willing to waive all of the potential ethical conflicts now if there is an actual conflict you're the bankruptcy attorney cannot represent you you'll have to get individual attorneys but if there's a situation where husband and wife are coming in they both want to file Chapter seven they're about to go through a divorce they want to get a clean fresh start and move on and they're going to surrender all their assets and there's not going to be you know if you're surrendering every asset we're wiping everything out there's really not much potential for conflict but let me describe a situation where there most definitely would be a conflict and we've seen this happen before our client comes in you got a husband and wife and you have a car and the wife really wants to keep this car after the divorce but the problem is the car is in the husband's and they only this is a conflict because it's in the best interest of the wife to keep the car however it's in the best interest of the husband to surrender this car in the chapter 7 because this is his chance to get his name off the car otherwise if let's say you go through a chapter 7 and the husband reaffirms the debt on the car in other words he reallocates himself in the car so that his soon-to-be ex-wife can keep the car this can be problematic when you know two three years down the road if she gets into trouble and she doesn't make the payments well guess who's gonna be left holding the bag and who's going to end up having to pay the balance so that is an example of a true serious conflict and either it has to be resolved before the case is filed or they're gonna have to get separate lawyers for the chapter 7 and let's talk about chapter 13 if someone is about to go through a divorce there's no reason to file a chapter 13 together because the chapter 13 typically runs for 3 to 5 years and in almost every divorce case people are trying to move on and get a new start with their life there's no need to be bound together in the same case now another question we often have is somebody's in the middle of a chapter 13 and they filed everything was going great now they're getting a divorce what happens well again if there is ever if there's ever any conflict that arises between the husband and wife they're gonna have to fire the attorney the attorney is gonna have to quit the case we have had situations where people have worked it out and they've continued to have the same bankruptcy attorney threw their case even though they do get a divorce but you must understand if there is a conflict if something arises then you know we we have a serious problem let me give you an example for a chapter 13 let's say you're in a chapter 13 and the husband wants to quit the case he's he's sick of it the wife doesn't because let's say there's some asset that's being paid that she wants to keep well the the bankruptcy attorneys not just going to be able to dismiss the case he's gonna have to withdraw from the case and that spouse that may might have the chapter 13 payment coming out of their paycheck they're going to need to meet with another attorney and that new attorney is going to have to do that because that the bank the bank's returning the first case has a duty of loyalty to both and they can't take any action against one that might hurt the other so banking divorce is a very complicated situation but if you have any questions I hope you'll check out my website it's wwl can help calm or you can give me a call at one eight eight eight eight three two or let's try different number seven oh six to nine five zero zero three zero Erica's 706 thank you.
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"Jeff and his team do great work. They are fast and easy to work with. I would suggest working with them if you need to file for bankruptcy. Thanks Kelly Law Group!
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