The Bankruptcy Administrator sought dismissal of Mrs. Gonyo’s Chapter 7 arguing that she improperly excluded several of her non-filing husband’s expenses as “marital adjustments” from her Current Monthly and also failed to include both the couple’s tax refund and her husband’s incentive pay in that calculation.
In reaching the later conclusion, the bankruptcy court defined “income” as “a gain or recurrent benefit . . . that derives from capital or labor.” In re Sanchez, No. 06-40865, 2006 WL 2038616, at *2 (Bankr. W.D. Mo. 2006) and that her husband’s incentive pay received during the preceding six calendar months was included in CMI.… Read More
The Debtor excluded $3,913.02 as a marital adjustment to the means test, providing only the phrase “Husband’s Expenses” as the basis for the deduction and failing to include any amounts on Schedule I. At the request of the Bankruptcy Administrator, the Debtor itemized this amount as follows:
Trash Pick-up $71.00
Home Maintenance $300.00
Household Cleaning Supplies $75.00
The Bankruptcy Administrator contended that these were not separate expenses of the non-filing spouse, but instead were for the benefit of the debtor and could be included within the marital adjustment. The bankruptcy court agreed, further finding that the original marital adjustment was inflated by several thousand dollars.… Read More
The Debtor excluded from her CMI her non-filing husband’s monthly payments of $166.00 for his student loans and $1,628.00 related to their former residence, including renovation costs.. This resulted in a negative disposable monthly income. The Bankruptcy Administrator argued that since the non-filing spouse was spending money on expenses and renovations of joint property, such payments were benefitting the Debtor and should be included in CMI.
First the Bankruptcy Court and then, on appeal, the District Court agreed with the Debtor, finding that 11 U.S.C. § 101(10A)(B) included within the Debtor’s CMI “any amount paid by any entity other than the debtor … on a regular basis for the household expenses of the debtor or the debtor’s dependents….” The District Court examined the term “household expenses” by looking to the definition used by the 4th Circuit for the similar term “household goods” in In re McGreevy, 955 F.2d 957, 961-962 (1992), as “those items of person property that are typically found in or around the home and used by the debtor or his dependents to support and facilitate day-to-day living within the home, including maintenance and upkeep of the home itself.” Even if the non-filing husband were to stop paying these debts, “it would not affect the day-to-day functioning of the debtor’s household.”
The Bankruptcy Administrator also objected under the “totality of the circumstances” test of 11 U.S.C.… Read More