The underlying policy of bankruptcy law is that the honest debtor who is in debt beyond his or her ability to repay the debt should be given a fresh start through the discharge of debts in a bankruptcy proceeding. Not all debts are dischargeable. Generally speaking, the following debts will not be discharged:
- Spousal and child support
- Debts arising out of willful or malicious misconduct
- Liability from driving while intoxicated
- Debts from a prior bankruptcy
- Student loans
- Criminal fines and penalties
Those debts which are secured will be discharged, however, expect the creditor to take the necessary legal steps to take back the property. In most cases if the debtor's equity interest in the property is exempt, the debtor may retain the property by redemption or reaffirmation.
This information deals with Chapter 7 consumer bankruptcy. Each state has its own bankruptcy laws, so you need to check with your state for details. Information dealing with Chapter 13 bankruptcy and consumer debt restructuring is not discussed in the above FAQs. The information contained in the following FAQs is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to be a legal opinion nor legal advice nor is it intended to be a complete discussion of all the issues related to the area of Chapter 7 consumer bankruptcy. Every individual's factual situation is different and you should seek independent legal advice regarding specific information.