You Can’t Get Rid of Non- Dischargeable Debts
Video Transcribed: Oklahoma City Bankruptcy Attorney Edward Kelley here, answering your bankruptcy questions with oklahomacitybankruptcyattorney.pro. Today, we’re talking about the third type of debt in our types of debt series, Oklahoma non-dischargeable debt.
So far we’ve talked about unsecured debt, credit cards, medical bills, signature loans, et cetera, secured debt, your car note, your home note. And now we’re going to talk about debt you can’t get rid of. It’s pretty important to know if you’re going into contemplating doing a bankruptcy.
So the big one, student loans, and by that, I don’t mean just any loan you used for college or other education, but I’m talking about government backed guaranteed student loans. That’s where you go through the FAFSA process.
Any of you that have done it, know what I’m talking about. Those loans are, as of now, completely non-dischargeable. You’re just straight out of luck, and we’ve talked in other series and I’ll talk again about though how you can use a bankruptcy to help take care of those as well. But for now, we’ll just say they’re dischargeable.
Criminal penalties, fines, restitution, child support, these are all things you can’t get rid of, kind of no-brainers. If you have a debt that’s been created fraudulently, that can be considered non-dischargeable. What I mentioned so far are things that are just per se on their face non-dischargeable.
Some things can be rendered non-dischargeable through the bankruptcy case process, and that’s done by filing an adversary. To get one of those filed, you’ve got some problems. So, be sure your attorney’s on it. Most attorneys do not include an adversary proceeding as part of the regular bankruptcy, so you’re probably going to have to hire your attorney or another one to handle that adversary process.
An example is if you embezzled money and you listed who you embezzled from on your bankruptcy. So you might have done that, just kitchen sink, throw everyone when you might owe to, and then they come back and say, “Whoa, wait a minute.
This is fraudulent.” They can file what’s called an adversarial proceeding aimed at making that debt non-dischargeable. They file a complaint. It’s a whole different case. That’s going to be in front of the judge, not the trustee, although the trustee may weigh in.
You may want to just admit it’s fraudulent or without it … I should say, you may want to just agree to that debt being non-dischargeable to avoid that whole process, or if you don’t agree, you are absolutely entitled to a hearing before the bankruptcy judge. So that’s another way debts can become non-dischargeable.
I do want to say one thing about fines and criminal penalties. If you have civil penalties levied on you, for example, maybe an example could be a city fine because your yard is too dirty. Those are potentially dischargeable.
So just make sure you talk with your bankruptcy attorney if you have any pseudo criminal fines or costs that may be classified otherwise.
If you listed debt other than child support, student loans, things like that, and they don’t catch, you have to give them notice if they don’t argue with you that they want those debts discharged, then that can be the case. Although on their face, those debts aren’t going to be discharged either way.
So hopefully that’s helpful. And there are other categories, wages to some extent, some other things, but I’ll leave that for you to reach out to me directly. When in doubt, ask your Oklahoma bankruptcy attorney.