In most instances, yes. Unfortunately, financial difficulty is the cause of many a divorce, and I have even recommended that a consultation with a bankruptcy attorney be part of a divorce strategy.
What is also unfortunate is that the divorce attorneys themselves can sometimes get caught in the process and end up not getting paid.
Discharging Them Can Be a Bad Idea
Attorney fees are just like any other debt, such as credit cards or medical bills, that can be wiped out in bankruptcy. However, there are a couple of exceptions to this that you should be aware of:
- Using bankruptcy as a part of your divorce strategy when part of that strategy includes stiffing your lawyer. This can backfire, and has resulted in the fees being nondischargeable based on fraud.
- Using bankruptcy to negate a court order to pay your spouse's attorney's fees as a part of your support obligation. If an attorney fee is proven to be a Domestic Support Obligation (DSO), then bankruptcy cannot discharge it.
If you are in a situation where the fees for your attorney in a divorce are weighing you down along with other debt, like credit cards, and you just can't pay them, then bankruptcy may be the answer.
However, if you are trying to avoid paying your spouse's attorney's fees, or plotting to stiff your attorney, you might run into some trouble.
So What Do I Do?
If you live in southern New Jersey and are considering filing bankruptcy, please feel free to call me at 856-432-4113 or contact me through this site for a free consultation in my Woodbury office to discuss your case.
If you are looking for more information about bankruptcy, then download my free book,Top Questions People Ask About Filing Bankruptcy in New Jersey.