Crestline, CA asked in Bankruptcy for Massachusetts

Q: Is a pending spousal support mod action legal justification not to pay after filing bankruptcy?

My ex-husband filed for chapter 13 the second time and shortly thereafter filed a spousal support modification action to reduce or eliminate alimony. He will not pay any spousal support after filing bankruptcy, using the pending modification action as the reason. The support order is current and standing and has not yet been modified. Does a Debtor's filing of support modification supercede a standing support order, and make it legal for him not to pay? He wants any modification to be retroactive, but does what he "wants" or "hopes" overpower a current order? There is no 30 day stay, being his second time filing in 1 year. I thought the rule was he had to stay current on spousal support after filing petition. I'd be grateful for clarification on this messy issue.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Timothy Denison
Timothy Denison
  • Bankruptcy Lawyer
  • Louisville, KY

A: The stay does not pre ENT him from paying maintenance nor is it a legal justification to no pay. In most jurisdictions, however, modification if granted are retroactive to the date of filingvof the motion. You filing s contempt motion for nonpayment May be in order.

Bruce Alexander Minnick agrees with this answer

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