4 Mistakes To Avoid When Taking The Bankruptcy Means Test

3 November 2015
 Categories: Law, Blog


If you're in the midst of a financial bind, you may want to strongly consider filing for bankruptcy. If you qualify for this legal status, you may be capable of getting most or all of your debt discharged. In order to determine your eligibility, you will be required to take a bankruptcy means test and you will need to provide a great deal of information about your financial situation. Knowing some of the most common mistakes to avoid while taking this test may allow you to have success in achieving this status. 

Mistake #1:  Listing the wrong household size

You will be required to list how many people live in your home to help determine if you're eligible bankruptcy. This can be an area of confusion for some people because of tenants, elderly people and other individuals who reside on your property.

The best method to help you accurately determine the amount of people to list will depend on if these individuals are financially dependent on you. For instance, if you have an older parent living with you that relies on your support, this person could be included. However, a tenant who is renting a room for you could not be.

Mistake #2: Providing false information about your income

One of the main factors that affect your eligibility for this status will be your income. It's important that you provide accurate figures when responding to this question. Be prepared to have the proper verification of this amount with a W-2 or old paystub.

Mistake #3:   Taking deductions that aren't deductible

While taking the means test, you will be allowed some deductions, such as education expenses to help you get a better job. However, paying for your child to attend college is not a deduction that you will be able to take.

Additionally, payments that you contribute to your 401k plan can't be listed either. 

Mistake #4: Including child support that you don't get

It's important to include all of the money you receive each month, but if you're legally required to get child support, and your ex-spouse doesn't pay it, don't list this amount. You should only include the actual money that is deposited into your checking account.

The key to being successful at getting bankruptcy is by knowing how to qualify for it. If you need additional assistance when filing for this status, be sure to rely on the expertise offered by a bankruptcy attorney (such as http://timgeorgelaw.com).