When you file for bankruptcy, whether it is Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, you will be required to complete a set of schedules that lists information about your debts, expenses, income, assets and transactions. Schedule J: Your Expenses requires you to provide details about your current household budget. The court uses this to determine several things, including: whether you have too much income to qualify for a Chapter 7, and if you can afford to make your proposed payments in a Chapter 13 repayment plan bankruptcy. You also must provide information about your dependents. We have explained below how to determine whether someone counts as a dependent and should be listed on this form.
Any child under the age of 18 for whom you pay at least 50% of the bills should be listed on the form. This includes your own children who live with you, your spouse’s children who live with you, and children who might not live with you all the time but for whom you pay at least half of their support. This can also include children you have agreed to care for (i.e. – a foster child or another family member’s child for an extended period of time.)
Dependents can also be adults. For example, if you provide at least 50% of the support for a parent or grandparent, or an adult relative (such as a child or sibling), that person should be listed as a dependent.
Adults Who Are Not Dependents
There may be adults who live with you but are not your dependents. For example, if your parents allowed you to move back into their house while you get back on your feet financially, they are not your dependents. Similarly, if you have allowed an adult child to move back in with you, but your child pays his or her own way, that child is not a dependent. Roommates who pay their fair share of the bills are not to be listed as dependents. Your spouse does not count as a dependent, regardless of your financial relationship.
If you have any questions on this topic or are in financial crisis and considering filing for bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade Garcia McMaken has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade Garcia McMaken website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.