Pleasant Hill, CA asked in Bankruptcy for California

Q: My estranged husband and I are going through a divorce, in September 2020 he filed for bankruptcy listing me as a credit

It was discharged December 2020 however I pulled his petition and he lied regarding his income. He failed to list his live-in girlfriend and her income towards household bills and he also claims our son lives with him when he signed over his rights for visitation a year ago. Has seen our son 8 hours total in 2 years. I emailed proof to the bankruptcy fraud email at the DOJ and emailed the case trustee but his bankruptcy still was discharged. Who else can I bring up his fraud?

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5 Lawyer Answers
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Bankruptcy Lawyer
  • Boyertown, PA

A: A bankruptcy discharge can be revoked for fraud, but it must be initiated within 6 months of the entry of the discharge order.

The Bankruptcy Schedules are signed under penalty of perjury. If a bankruptcy debtor attests to a deliberate lie in the Schedules, the penalty for perjury is 5 years and/or $50,000.

If the DOJ has stated it will not pursue this, your local District Attorney, or your domestic relations division of your state court system, may be interested. The stature of limitations to bring perjury charges is much longer than the bankruptcy time limit to challenge a discharge.

I recommend that you seek the advice of a lawyer familiar with both bankruptcy and domestic relations issues. Your ex is now mostly debt-free, and if the divorce court considered his debt load in determining his ability to pay spousal or child support, that judge may be willing to revisit his awards. I'm in PA, which is not a community property jurisdiction, so I hesitate to suggest more.

Harlene Miller and David Luther Woodward agree with this answer

David Luther Woodward
David Luther Woodward
Answered
  • Bankruptcy Lawyer
  • Pensacola, FL

A: Mr. Winterstein is correct

You should bring this up with your divorce lawyer and seek his advice. He cannot properly represent you if you proceed to obtain relief in a different fashion.

It sounds like your husband has committed bankruptcy fraud. If you have solid evidence, the person I would suggest contacting is the trustee that handled his case.

By the way, the wheels of justice still turn pretty much on paper. Emails still don't deserve the respect that a letter received through the post.

Good Luck

d

Theodore Allan Greene
Theodore Allan Greene
Answered
  • Bankruptcy Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Talk to your divorce attorney. It seems you might have done the right thing but run it by your divorce lawyer to see if they recommend any further action.

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

A: Report it to the FBI. They are charged with investigating bankruptcy fraud.

Harlene Miller
Harlene Miller
Answered
  • Bankruptcy Lawyer
  • Irvine, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: You have received good responses. You need to focus on what your goal is and what choices you have right now and how those choices may impact you. Talking with your divorce attorney should be the first step in determining whether the bankruptcy impacts your divorce in anyway as to community debt and assets. Attorney Winterstein has provided an very good overview of the issues for you.

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