I’m Getting Married. We’ve Both Gone Bankrupt. Will We Be Able to Get Student Loans? – Shater

“Dear Steve,

My fiance and I filled for chapter 13 bankruptcy, separately, in 2009. Both our plans have been confirmed, and we were looking to get married this year. If we get married so we have to file an adjusted plan with our attorney? Do they get merged? Also, my fiance is looking to attend college for the first time and was wondering if the current bankruptcy would affect his ability to receive a federal student loan.


Dear Shater,

Your Chapter 13 cases will not get merged. You should talk to your bankruptcy attorney about if a modification is due. I’ll ask some bankruptcy attorney friends to comment on this question.

As far as the student loans go, as a result of the Bankruptcy Reform Act of 1994, a student may not be denied government backed student loans, solely on the basis of a bankruptcy determination.

The best plan would be for him to talk openly to the financial aid office at the school and I seriously doubt the bankruptcy will be a factor at all.


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Steve Rhode
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5 thoughts on “I’m Getting Married. We’ve Both Gone Bankrupt. Will We Be Able to Get Student Loans? – Shater”

  1. Steve,
    Yes, it is counter-intuitive. Many of my Chapter 13 and Chapter 7 clients have high school or college-age kids and they worry about the prospect of getting student loans. If their bankruptcy cases are pending, then I’ll write a letter on my clients’ behalf to the college stating that Client X is not permitted to borrow money during their bankruptcy case. That letter closes the door for getting a Parent-Plus student loan. At the same time however, it opens the door for the college student being eligible for more grants.
    .-= Shawn N. Wright´s last blog ..How Long Will My Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Case Take? =-.

  2. I agree with Steve and Carl. I’m not sure if you and your fiance are using the same attorney or not. It would certainly require some coordination between the two cases. I think that it’s likely that your Chapter 13 Trustee may monitor the cases jointly, but that the Court will not permit the merging of the two cases. You may however be eligible to have your Chapter 13 plans modified with reduced payments.
    As for the student loan concern, the bankruptcy filing will not have an impact on your fiance’s ability to borrow. It might even make your fiance eligible for more grants.

  3. Your situation is certainly unique. You cases will not be consolidated, but they might be administered together. The most important thing to remember is to keep the lines communication open with your attorney and the Chapter 13 trustee(s).

    If you are living apart, your expenses may decrease and that could certainly increase your ability to pay into a Chapter 13 plan. Whether or not that occurs will depend entirely upon the particular facts of your case. At some point time, you will be required to provide your 2009 tax return to the trustee, so the trust will find out about your change in circumstances.

    Obtaining student loans to attend school may need to wait. Confirmed Chapter 13 plans usually contain stipulations required permission from the trustee or the court before incurring new debt.

    What you really need to do is discuss this issues with your attorney(s) before you make any changes to your present circumstances.
    .-= Carl Starrett´s last blog ..Should Christians File for Bankruptcy? =-.


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