If you are married and your spouse declares bankruptcy, your attorney may advise you to join with your husband in filing for bankruptcy, particularly in a community property state such as California.
A joint bankruptcy will wipe the slate clean for both of you. If you don’t join in the action, when his bankruptcy gets him off the hook for joint debt the creditors will pursue you to collect the full amount.
If you are in the process of divorce when your spouse files for bankruptcy, the property division aspects of your divorce proceedings will come to a halt until the bankruptcy proceedings are complete. This is because the bankruptcy law triggers something called an “automatic stay.”
Each situation is different. Consult a competent bankruptcy attorney who represents debtors to find out what works best in your situation.
Bankruptcy should not be taken lightly, but too many people delay facing the inevitable, and do themselves irreparable financial harm in the meantime. If bankruptcy is inescapable, its better to confront it now head on.