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When could a bankruptcy court deny my discharge?

As this blog has mentioned before, no resident of Salem, Massachusetts, should think of a bankruptcy as an automatic benefit that a person gets if they simply fill out the right paperwork and answer a few questions.

A personal bankruptcy is a court proceeding, and a bankruptcy judge can deny a discharge for certain reasons, meaning that the person who filed for bankruptcy gets no debt relief. Furthermore, in some situations, a person whose discharge is denied may still have their property taken and sold by a bankruptcy trustee.

Fortunately, many of the reasons that a court would deny a discharge involve acts of outright dishonesty on the part of the debtor. For example, if a debtor tries to hide or quickly dump property in order to keep it out of a bankruptcy, they could have their discharge denied. Moreover, a debtor could also face denial of discharge should they lie in the course of the court proceeding or try to hide important financial records that would help a trustee follow the money trail.

However, some reasons that a court can deny a person's discharge may seem much more mundane to those who live in the vicinity of Boston. For example, a court can deny a discharge if a debtor does not strictly comply with all the orders of the bankruptcy court. A debtor can also have a discharge denied if they cannot account for a sudden loss of wealth, or even if they fail to take a mandatory education course.

While it goes a long way for a debtor filing for bankruptcy just to be honest and thorough, honesty will not always protect a debtor from being denied their discharge. A skilled bankruptcy attorney in Massachusetts can provide valuable assistance and insight so that a person who really needs bankruptcy relief will be able to get it.

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