Recent credit card charges and bankruptcy

Posted in Personal Bankruptcy
Posted by Rebecca Martyn, CPA, CGA, CIRP - LIT

recent-credit-card-charges-bankruptcyI met with someone last year and after reviewing her situation she decided it was best if she filed for bankruptcy. Her credit card bills at that time were $15,000 and her income was not high so bankruptcy for her just made sense because she was having trouble paying basic bills each week. We recommended she file right away so that her cash flow would improve and we advised her to stop using credit in the meantime.

However, after meeting with me she continued to charge items to her credit card. A month later she came back to file for bankruptcy and her credit card bills had increased $1,000 in recent charges.

Using your credit card after you know you are in financial difficulty can cause problems when you try to get your discharge. In this case, here credit card lender objected to her discharge because she increased her debts after deciding to file for personal bankruptcy.

The court required the debtor to repay the money she charged to her credit card after she knew she was in financial trouble. So while she did get her discharge, it cost her extra.

Bankruptcy does provide debt relief but it is not a free ride. For more on your duties during bankruptcy see our article about debts eliminated by bankruptcy discharge.