Asked in Bankruptcy for Pennsylvania

Q: can an old partner still use my business line of credit w/o my knowledge? and file bankruptcy w/o my knowledge?

I checked my business credit recently and see there is a home equity line of credit, and auto loan and a bankruptcy, I didnt do any of this. and I have not been in business with this person for more that 8 years.

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3 Lawyer Answers
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Bankruptcy Lawyer
  • Boyertown, PA
  • Licensed in Pennsylvania

A: Assuming you mean old business partner, when you parted ways, that event triggers a "dissolution of the partnership", which has ramifications, but you needed to tie off the loose ends as well, e.g., notify your lender of the dissolution of the partnership, and terminate/wrap up any live accounts with each lender. If you failed to do that, the bank has no way of knowing about what happens between the partners, and can in good faith advance further funds to any of the authorized signators on the account (you should also have had the bank's signature card modified to reflect the termination of the p-ship).

The same holds true with credit bureaus.

Most probably, these items, post-separation with partner, happened because you left all those loose ends. It's a little surprising that you haven't been contacted by collectors seeking to recover balances upon the home equity and auto loans, as well as any credit cards issued to each of you as partners. You have the right to enter an explanatory note to any items on your credit report, but the credit bureaus will probably be unwilling to erase what's already occurred, even if done without your knowledge or acquiescence.

You can, and should, take steps to stop the bleeding by terminating the partnership formally.

Aaron Michael Lloyd
Aaron Michael Lloyd
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Bankruptcy Lawyer
  • Redlands, CA

A: I would also recommend to consult with a bankruptcy attorney so you know your options in case you need to file a bankruptcy. Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows one to protect high value assets while chapter 7 bankruptcy can be done for those who do not have many assets and who have low income. Whether you plan to file bankruptcy or plan for an alternative route, be proactive and have a plan in place.

I hope this is helpful.

Timothy Denison
Timothy Denison
Answered
  • Bankruptcy Lawyer
  • Louisville, KY

A: No. That is fraud.

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