Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Doesn’t Affect Every Debt

When you file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you may feel that there's a lot you need to address in terms of financial matters. You may have a lot of credit card debt, or you may have loans that seem impossible to pay.

It's important to remember, though, that filing for Chapter 13 doesn't always mean that all of your debts are discharged. In fact, many debts will not be affected at all by your bankruptcy. The good news is that clearing other debts can help you focus on the ones that matter.

Here's what you need to know about debts Chapter 13 will not cover.

Mortgages and Car Payments

It's a common misconception that filing for bankruptcy will allow you to get rid of mortgages or car loans. Unfortunately, this is not true. Even if you are behind on your payments, the creditor can still come after you for the debt after your bankruptcy is discharged.

If you miss mortgage payments, you may foreclose on your house and be forced to move. Additionally, failing to make the car payments could mean that your car is repossessed. Your credit can take a separate hit from these actions.

Student Loans

Student loan debt is also generally not affected by filing for bankruptcy. Student loan debt is typically not discharged, and you will still be liable for the full amount. You'll have to consider this when you make a plan for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Child Support and Alimony

You cannot discharge any debts related to court-ordered support payments, such as child support or alimony. These are considered to be legally enforceable and are not eligible for discharge in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy.


If you are the defendant in a lawsuit, filing for bankruptcy could be one step you take to protect your assets and income. However, it won't discharge any of the money you owe as a result of a lawsuit judgment. You may still be on the hook for these types of payments.


Any taxes that you owe, including owed income taxes or penalties, will still need to be paid, even if you file for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. Additionally, it does not impact future tax payments you need to make.

Speak With a Bankruptcy Professional

Understanding what debts your bankruptcy can't erase is important so that you can plan accordingly. Speak with a bankruptcy lawyer to learn more about what your specific situation may involve. They can help guide you on the best course of action and whether filing for bankruptcy is the right choice for you.

For more information, reach out to a Chapter 13 lawyer near you.