Forum Rules (Everyone Must Read!!!) (updated: 04/28/2015)

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Questions on how to handle Ch13 (second income), being broke until 2022.

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  • #16
    When it comes to married couples, it's a little more nuanced. You will likely be forced to file a new Means Test (Form B122C) to determine the affect of the new income. While I simplified how it works, it works differently. When married, both incomes are placed on the Means Test form. Then you can back out any of the spouse's income based on their own personal bills. This is known as the marital adjustment. To the extent that the non-filing spouse has expenses and eats up the non-filing spouse's income contribution, that amount is deducted from the total income. The more you can deduct as non-filing spouse expense, the less they "contribute" to the household (and the filing debtor).

    If the has student loans, that's an expense. If she has medical bills, those are deductible expenses.

    Not all courts check your household income each year. Most districts require that you submit a copy of your income tax return each year so that the Chapter 13 Trustee can review your income. I don't have the source, but a Kansas Trustee noted that only about 10% of Chapter 13 cases ever have the payment changed. It is also anecdotal that Trustees are looking for significant increases and it appears that it is about 10% or more.
    Chapter 7 (No Asset/Non-Consumer) Filed (Pro Se) 7/08 (converted from Chapter 13 - 2/10)
    Status: (Auto) Discharged and Closed! 5/10
    Visit My BKForum Blog: justbroke's Blog

    I am not an attorney. Any advice provided is not legal advice.


    • #17
      That is pretty awesome as we have a ton of bills that she is responsible for that revolves around her. And I was really worried trying to make it after we both filed. I also hated the idea of her losing all her new wages and not being able to knock down some of her school loans and get the medical care she (and our kids) need. =)

      So if we do have to provide our income taxes each year and they see we are making more money, do / can we get in trouble for not notifying them when it actually happens?

      I have one last question and its in regards to figuring out what our income will be versus the medium (since we are on the topic). I noticed they take the past 6 months of house hold income and double it. Considering that some months have "extra" Fridays that would inflate your annual income how is that handled? I believe I read someone that it ends up screwing people over even though it falsifies what you actually make each year. I believe if I file early in OCT I would only have 2 of them and mine ends up coming out the same luckily. But I was just curious.


      • #18
        If the Trustee sees additional income and that additional income is enough to warrant a modification to the confirmed plan, then the Trustee will typically as the debtor (via their attorney) for a new Means Test (and/or Schedule I/J). You would just redo the calculations.

        The problem with those paid biweekly, and the mysterious 5th week, is not so much an issue in Chapter 13s. The Means Test for Chapter 13s is usually done forward looking. In a Chapter 13, the Means Test is used in many Districts as the starting point as to what your DMI is and how much you should pay into the plan. Schedule I/J actually allow you to add a paragraph to note that the amounts are influenced and may increase or decrease. A Chapter 13 debtor doesn't (or shouldn't) simply copy the DMI number from the Means Test to their Chapter 13 Plan. The debtor, or their attorney, must look forward and determine whether the Means Test reflects the reality. The debtor can then argue with the Trustee over the "truth."

        (I had to "argue" at one point and the Trustee did agree with me. It took some convincing and some math, but my Means Test didn't reflect reality. As one judge put it, it is an arbitrary bright-line test based on "prior" information to predict the future. After the Lanning decision (545 F. 3d 1269), everyone is on the same page.)
        Chapter 7 (No Asset/Non-Consumer) Filed (Pro Se) 7/08 (converted from Chapter 13 - 2/10)
        Status: (Auto) Discharged and Closed! 5/10
        Visit My BKForum Blog: justbroke's Blog

        I am not an attorney. Any advice provided is not legal advice.


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