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Homemaker/Self employed spouse & required documents

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  • Homemaker/Self employed spouse & required documents

    Hi all, I am a homemaker with no income, husband is self employed. I'll be filing chapter 7 alone, credit card debts all mine. My question is how much of a grilling will I get from the trustee? His business accounts are all in his or his business name. I have nothing to do with them. I don't know much about the financial aspects of his business. I know I need to use his income but how indepth will they be about his business account statements and profit & loss statements? I know I'll need to provide some documentation but hubs dosen't keep the best records. If it won't be of too much interest because none of the business is mine then I'll just get the 2 months of P & L and statements that my state bankruptcy website says I'll need and not worry too much. Any insight?

  • #2
    Nobody can answer that question other than the trustee and attorneys who are familiar with the trustee. A trustee can require whatever information he/she feels is necessary to get a full view of your financial situation.

    Have you consulted with a few BK attorneys? Most attorneys give free consultations. Even if you are filing pro se, you should consult with some attorneys. You don't have to tell them that you plan to file pro se. You can ask in consultations how much information you will need to provide about your husband's business.
    LadyInTheRed is in the black!
    Filed Chap 13 April 2010. Discharged May 2015.
    $143,000 in debt discharged for $36,500, including attorneys fees. Money well spent!


    • #3
      Thank you Lady. I don't have a car so it is difficult to get to attorney consults. I might try to find a phone consult.

      Anyone else have any similar experience?


      • #4
        I'm sure you already know this, but just in case, you are also required to submit tax returns. I had to submit 2 years returns.


        • #5
          Also, have you discussed this with your husband yet? I can't imagine that he won't find out eventually, hopefully, it won't be by way of something BK-related showing up on his credit report. It's not supposed to happen, but it does.


          • #6
            I do know about having to submit tax returns, but since I have no income I'm not required by the IRS to file taxes so I'm not sure how that will play out in a BK.
            Also, I have not discussed this with my husband yet. I don't know if I will. We have no assets, loans or anything together. As I'm planning to remain a homemaker I won't have an income so if any property or cars are purchased my husband will be the only one who needs to fill out the applications. Unless I'm missing something I don't think this can hurt him. The debts are for my personal property (clothing,accessories) so they can't come back on him.


            • #7
              I'm probably over-thinking this, and I'm not trying to be judgemental, I'm just wondering how this will all fly with a trustee, or escape an AP by a creditor. Maybe Lady or Keepmine can clarify. NotRichYet has no income, yet acquired credit cards, which either had to be before marriage or acquired after marriage using 'household income.' I would think this would appear like credit cards were used with no intention of paying, since NRY says there is nothing to pay them with. This may just be something I'm not understanding, but trustees ask questions, like 'what is the cause of your bankruptcy,' when was the last time you used your cards,' etc. Isn't there a good possibility, an astute trustee will question the whole financial scenario?


              • #8
                Well, I got the cards after marriage. I put homemaker for occupation and household income on the apps. I have been able to make minimum payments for a year on some cards, some a little more. Hubs is a realtor and income has decreased lately. Normally he gives me some personal spending money and I've been using that to make the payments, but with less income that personal amount has stopped. Thats why I'm in this position. I can't keep up with them. I realize I got myself into this problem, I'm so stressed and depressed about it I can hardly function anymore. I need out.


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Pjmax View Post
                  I'm probably over-thinking this, and I'm not trying to be judgemental, I'm just wondering how this will all fly with a trustee, or escape an AP by a creditor. Maybe Lady or Keepmine can clarify. NotRichYet has no income, yet acquired credit cards, which either had to be before marriage or acquired after marriage using 'household income.' I would think this would appear like credit cards were used with no intention of paying, since NRY says there is nothing to pay them with. This may just be something I'm not understanding, but trustees ask questions, like 'what is the cause of your bankruptcy,' when was the last time you used your cards,' etc. Isn't there a good possibility, an astute trustee will question the whole financial scenario?
                  When my husband and I had our 341 meeting this past December, for our recent bankruptcy, the trustee asked why we filed (job loss on my part).

                  I would think that with the OP not having any income of her own, that she would have to report her husband's income, right? Then she would have to figure out if she can pass the means test, based on his income.


                  • #10
                    And did hubby use the married filing jointly on income taxes?

                    NotRichYet: how much cc debt are you trying to discharge?

                    She has asked elsewhere for the same advice:



                    I can not think of any way you can do this without talking to your hubby... You may be pleasantly surprised and relieved once you do.
                    Last edited by ValleYum; 02-05-2014, 12:12 AM.
                    ~~ Filed Over Median Income Chapter 7: 12/17/2010 ~~ 341 Held: 1/12/2011 ~~ Discharged: 03/16/2011 ~~
                    Not an attorney - just an opinionated woman.


                    • #11
                      Thanks for the reply ValleYum. But I did not ask this same question exactly. I asked here about about much of a grilling I'd get from the trustee. I thought anyone with a similar experience could give some insight. I'd like to know what to expect if possible. But to answer your questions, hubby filed jointly in 2012, hasn't done 2013 yet. And I have about 13K in credit card debt. Do you think that'll make a difference one way or the other?


                      • #12
                        I didn't see this in any of your other posts, but what is the household (husband's) income?


                        • #13
                          Income is 45K.


                          • #14
                            To clarify a little, I was wondering about the questioning from the trustee at the 341. Since I do not have any part in my husbands business I'm afraid I might be asked questions I do not know the answer to.


                            • #15
                              I do not think anyone here can answer how much grilling you will get from the trustee. You need to be prepared to answer questions about your household income and provide whatever documentation the trustee requests. If you have recently been using your cards with no income and no ability to pay your debt that could also raise some eyebrows. It is generally recommended to wait to file if you have been using your credit cards.

                              I recently filed am I'm self employed so I am waiting to find out what if any extra documentation the trustee will want to see. Maybe other self employed filers here could shed some light on how much documentation would be needed.

                              Have you looked into a debt management plan you may be able to come up with a repayment plan and avoid having to file for bankruptcy.

                              Sometimes bank accounts can be frozen during bankruptcy and if you have a joint account you need to be prepared for that possibility. As far as filing for bankruptcy not hurting your husbands credit that will depend on how well you have kept your accounts separated. It really would be best to talk with a lawyer to determine if your husband can be held liable for your debts and to be sure his assets will not be in jeopardy.

                              I understand that you wish to keep this from your husband but you may need his help with the required documentation. Unless there is some reason such as you are in fear for your safety you really should talk with your husband before filing since he will likely find out anyway. People make money mistakes all the time and your debt can be dealt with but keeping your bankruptcy hidden will not alleviate your stress.


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