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Bankruptcy, divorce have intertwined (and complex) relationship

Divorce and bankruptcy have a very complicated relationship, which is either ironic or appropriate (we can't tell). In some cases, a bankruptcy filing may trigger a married couple to reconsider their relationship, thus sparking a divorce. In other cases, it may be the other way around: the divorce takes a financial toll on one of the spouses (or both), thus leading them to file for bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy alone is already a daunting task, but with a divorce in the mix you will need experienced legal representation to help you through this difficult time. Depending on your situation, you may qualify for a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy -- and in either case, one of these filings can help you deal with your current situation and move on to a new chapter in your life.

So what do you need to look out for if you are amidst a divorce and a bankruptcy filing? One of the key aspects here is child support or spousal support (also called alimony). These things can count towards your income, thus impacting the way your bankruptcy filing is dealt with. However, this only comes into play if you actually receive these payments. If you are ordered to receive them but your ex-spouse doesn't pay, then it may not count.

Ultimately, no matter what your situation is (single, married, divorced), it is important that you understand your financial situation and that you don't delay if you believe your debt is spiraling out of control. A bankruptcy filing can really help those who are dealing with a difficult financial time.

Source: Huffington Post, "My Child Support Is Making My Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Tough," Steve Rhode, Dec. 11, 2013

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