Debts That Bankruptcy Discharge Does Not Cover

Though bankruptcy discharge does cover most of the debts, it does not cover all of them. Even if the court declares you as bankrupt, you may still be liable to pay off some of your debts. The debts that are not covered are technically referred to as non-dischargeable debts. Even if it is a chapter 7 filing, you may still be held responsible to make the repayment of the following non-dischargeable debts.


Chapter 7 bankruptcy does not discharge income tax debt unless the tax return was correct, it was filed timely, and the dues are more than three years old. However, the court may also take into consideration some more factors in order to decide whether tax debt should be covered under bankruptcy discharge or not. Those factors may vary depending upon the complexities involved in your case. You may like to consult an attorney to get a clear picture on whether your tax debts will be discharged or not.

Student Loans

Any educational loan that is still outstanding in your name (whether it is from a non-profit organization or from a government body) comes under non-dischargeable debts. But, here again, there can be some exceptions that have been broadened with the introduction of 2005 Bankruptcy Reform Act. For example, if the repayment responsibility is likely to impose an undue hardship on the bankrupt individual, the court may consider discharging student loans also as part of the bankruptcy order.


If it is proved in the court that you have acquired some debts through false representations, under false pretences or through other fraudulent activities, whether the debts will be discharged or not will depend on the nature of alleged fraud. There will be a special hearing for this that starts after a creditor files a motion in this regard.


Bankruptcy discharge does not cover fines that have been charged on you, such as criminal restitution ordered by a court, traffic tickets or any other such charges.

Recent Cash Advances Or Credit Purchases

Non-dischargeable debts also include any cash advances that you have borrowed within seventy days after bankruptcy filing, but only if the borrowed amount is more than $750. Besides that, if you have bought any luxury goods or services on credit, the resulting debt is also not likely to be discharged, especially if you have made the purchases within ninety days after bankruptcy filing and that the total amount of money you owe to a single creditor is more than $500.

Compensation Liability Resulting From An Accident Caused By Drunk Driving

If you have been charged with a drunk driving offense and have been ordered by a court to pay a certain amount of personal injury compensation to the victim (the injured person/persons in the accident thus caused), the bankruptcy discharge will not cover this compensation liability.

Marital Debts

Bankruptcy laws also prohibit discharge of any debts that incurred during the course of separation or divorce agreement. While in case of the debts acquired through fraud, the creditor is required to follow a specific procedure, such as filing a motion and then the resulting court hearing, but in case of marital debts, there is no such requirement (with effect from the 2005 bankruptcy code). Bankruptcy and divorce when intersect each other, loads of complexities come up.

Alimony And Child Support

Last, but not the least, non-dischargeable debts also include any liability to pay alimony and child support payments. With the introduction of the 2005 bankruptcy code, individuals who are supposed to get “domestic support”, such as child support and alimony, have been provided heightened protection.

However, the above details are still just a summary and by no means all-inclusive. For an accurate detail on which types of debts are covered and which types are not covered under bankruptcy discharge, you are recommended to consult an experienced attorney who has specialization in handling these types of cases.

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One Response to “Debts That Bankruptcy Discharge Does Not Cover”

  1. michael says:

    Bankruptcy can prove to be a solution of your multiple debt problems but all the debts can not be discharged under Bankruptcy. Some non-dischargeable debts have to be paid by you. Income Tax debts also come under the category of non-dischargeable debts, the court will decide about the tax debts. If the court will come to know that you are involved in any fraudulent activities then it will depend upon the court to decide that your debts may be discharged or not. Educational loan comes under the category of non-dischargeable debts but there may be some exceptions in this loan like if the court convinced about the inability of the person to repay the loan, the loan can be considered as dischargeable loan. If you have borrowed any cash advance with in seventy days after bankruptcy filing it will also be considered as non-dischargeable debt. Your liability about a person who has got injured due to your drunken driving, the compensation amount will not be discharged under bankruptcy.

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