Beware of Refinancing and Bankruptcy

31 Oct Beware of Refinancing and Bankruptcy

Refinancing and bankruptcy don’t always play well together.

You refinanced your home. Your spouse had the better credit rating so you first transferred the home to your spouse and then she refinanced. Two years later you filed for bankruptcy protections alone, perhaps because your wife had too much income or any asset in her name from her own family.

That transfer to your wife was a fraudulent transfer. You gave her your share of the equity, and you will have a very hard time proving otherwise.

Giving anything away before filing bankruptcy is a real problem, even for an innocent reason like refinancing or to avoid probate. Be very, very careful about this. Tell your lawyer if she doesn’t bring it up herself – and she certainly should have.

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L. Jed Berliner practices exclusively in consumer bankruptcy, foreclosure defense, and related consumer protection litigation such as credit card defenses and suing debt collectors. He established his Springfield, MA practice in 1988. Attorney Berliner is a regular and active contributor to the Bankruptcy Law Network, the Bankruptcy Roundtable, and the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys, three specialized consumer bankruptcy forums on the Internet, and is an informal mentor to regional practitioners. He is recognized by his peers as an expert in consumer bankruptcy issues. He thoroughly enjoys being rated "excellent" in his client surveys.

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