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Which Debts Can Continue to Follow You Around, Even After You File for Bankruptcy?

No matter who you are or how you end up with debts you cannot repay, you have the right to file for bankruptcy protection. If you are truthful in your bankruptcy filing and follow the legal formalities, the bankruptcy court will discharge your eligible debts, whether they arise from medical bills and loss of income due to ill health, marriage and divorce from a gold digger who chewed you up and spit you out, or an unsuccessful attempt at a career as an Internet celebrity, funded by credit cards.

If you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your eligible debts will disappear quickly, but your credit score will tank, and you will have to rebuild your creditworthiness slowly. If you choose a Chapter 13 bankruptcy filing, the court will only discharge the remaining balance of your debts after you follow a court-ordered payment plan, but the damage to your credit score will be less.

In either case, some debts are beyond the jurisdiction of the bankruptcy court, and you will still be responsible for repaying them, even if your bankruptcy case is successful. In other words, to get the most debt relief out of your bankruptcy filing, you must think strategically about your entire financial situation, not only about the debts you can discharge in bankruptcy. An Oakland bankruptcy lawyer can help you prepare for your bankruptcy case and represent you during the proceedings.

Which Debts Do You Still Owe After a Bankruptcy Filing?

The bankruptcy court cannot discharge debts that you owe to the federal government or pursuant to an order of a civil or criminal court. Therefore, you are still responsible for the following debts even if your bankruptcy case gets approved:

  • Tax debts to the IRS
  • Federal student loans
  • Overdue alimony or child support
  • Civil or criminal fines

If you do not pay these debts, the same penalties can apply as if you had not filed for bankruptcy. For example, if you don’t pay your overdue child support, the court can garnish your paychecks or hold you in contempt of court.

Filing for Bankruptcy Can Help You Free Up Funds for Your Non-Dischargeable Debts

The good news is that filing for bankruptcy can help you free up funds to repay the debts that you still owe. If you are no longer responsible for making payments on the credit card you maxed out long ago or the car loan secured by a vehicle that has long since gone to the junkyard, you will have more money available to pay down your remaining debts to the IRS or the family court. A bankruptcy filing is not a magic wand to make your debts disappear; it enables you to keep assets that are truly necessities and to repay debts that it is truly necessary to repay.

Contact the Law Office of Melanie Tavare About Filing for Bankruptcy

A bankruptcy lawyer can help you understand the laws surrounding federal bankruptcy protection so that you can get the debt relief you need. Contact the Law Office of Melanie Tavare in Oakland, California, or call (510)255-4646 for a free case evaluation.

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"Melanie is the best she very responsive and helpful throughout the process everything was taken care of smoothly. If you are thinking of going through bankruptcy she is the best attorney for you. I will forever be grateful having the chance to work with her. She is very honest too."


"I can't thank Melanie enough for helping me through a challenging process and doing so with incredible knowledge, professionalism and tenacity! She went to great lengths to keep me informed, she responded quickly to my questions, and communicated in terms that I could understand. I highly recommend getting in touch with Melanie should you have the need."


"Choosing to work with Atty. Melanie has been one of the best decisions I've ever made. She was a very patient professional to work with and attentive while providing valuable solutions to all of my concerns. If you are searching for of an Attorney who is knowledgeable, transparent, and diligent - well that's Atty. Melanie."


"What I liked about working with Melanie was how prompt and easy to work with she was. She made the process clear and understandable with as little stress as possible. I would work with her again and recommend her to others."