Miller & Associates, Attorneys LLP
  • Best Of the Best 2014 - By the Readers of The Placer Herald
  • Best Of the Best 2015 - By the Readers of The Placer Herald
  • Placer Herald | Best Of the Best 2016 - Rocklin
  • By the readers of the Placer Herald | 2017 Best Of the Best
  • By the readers of the Placer Herald | 2018 Best Of the Best


ROCKLIN: 916-780-0848 FOLSOM: 916-365-4941 ROSEVILLE: 916-755-5977
Free ½ Hour Consultations

Main Navigation

Focused on reducing the emotional and financial toll to your family.

Offering divorce and family law options to fit
your needs, and focused on reducing the emotional
and financial toll to your family.

Alimony, child support and bankruptcy

If parents in California are struggling to keep up with child support and alimony payments, they are not permitted to discharge those debts in bankruptcy. The wages of a parent who does not pay child support could be garnished. The parent's credit could also be damaged, and failure to pay child support could even result in jail time.

It is possible for debts that fall under certain types of post-divorce property settlements to be discharged in bankruptcy. Courts will first scrutinize those settlements to see if they were meant to act as stand-ins for either child or spousal support. Some types of property settlements can be discharged in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy but not a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. For example, if a spouse has agreed to pay a portion of debts that were used for the family but are in the other spouse's name, that debt may be dischargeable in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. An agreed-upon cash payment to a spouse, such as for equity in a home, could also be discharged in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Chapter 13 is a repayment plan, so there would still be an obligation to pay off some of these debts in contrast to a Chapter 7. With a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, a parent can also pay off child support debts over the term of the court-approved plan without action from the other parent.

A person who is unable to pay the amount of child support agreed upon because of a job loss or a similar change in circumstances can apply for a modification of the order. Once a court approves the modification, the parent is able to pay less. However, it is important to know that in most cases, a modification will have no effect on any amount in arrears, which will continue to be owed.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Contra Costa County | Bar Association The State Bar of California Placer County Bar Association Collaborative practice california IACP Certified Family Law Mediator
Miller & Associates, Attorneys LLP
Miller & Associates, Attorneys LLP
6542 Lonetree Boulevard
Rocklin, CA 95765

Phone: 916-780-0848
Fax: 916-780-0787
Miller & Associates, Attorneys LLP
2280 E. Bidwell Street, Suite 204
Folsom, CA 95630

Phone: 916-365-4941
Fax: 916-780-0787
office3 Miller & Associates, Attorneys LLP
3017 Douglas Blvd, 
Third Floor, Suite 58
Roseville, CA 95661

Phone: 916-755-5977
Fax: 916-780-0787

Privacy Policy | Business Development Solutions by FindLaw, part of Thomson Reuters.