Debts Not Discharged
in Arizona Bankruptcy

To discharge a debt means that a federal court declares that a debt is no longer enforceable. It cannot be legally collected by demand once it is deemed discharged by the court.

Bankruptcy laws are written to allow honest debtors to get a fresh start. However, there are some limitations to this policy. Other policy considerations are brought into the equation to determine which debts will receive a discharge.

For example, court ordered child support is not dischargeable in bankruptcy. This is because children are entitled to be taken care of by their parents. If you disagree with the fairness of the amount of child support, this is a matter to take up in state run divorce courts. In bankruptcy court you simply cannot alter the amount or term of child support, or spousal support, and amounts ordered to be paid cannot be discharged.

So we see that for public policy reasons there are debts that we cannot receive a fresh start from. Other than support and maintenance payments, non-dischargeable debts generally include:

  1. Fines, penalties, and restitution orders imposed by government .
  2. Many tax debts are not dischargeable.  Income taxes for last 3 years or longer if returns unfiled still, or filed late in the last 2 years, or where intent to evade or defeat the tax, property taxes, sales taxes, and other business related taxes. This a very complicated area. Please see an experienced bankruptcy attorney for guidance regarding the dischargeable nature of tax debt.
  3. DUI fines & penalties, as well as any claim for personal injuries caused by intoxicated driving.
  4. Debts non-dischargeable in a previous bankruptcy proceeding.
  5. Most student loans are not dischargeable.
  6. Debts incurred through theft, embezzlement, larceny, or the breach of a fiduciary duty.
  7. Debts arising from a willful or malicious injury caused by the debtor.
  8. Any debts or creditors that you fail to list in your bankruptcy, along with their accurate addresses.
  9. Debts incurred by fraud, a false representation, or in some cases recent charges or advances.

It is important to remember that the rules for dischargeability are different between a Chapter 7 and a Chapter 13 case. If you have any questions whether your debt can be forgiven in bankruptcy, be sure to consult with an experienced attorney before making any payments or charges to an open account.