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Are HOA debts dischargable that became due after I filed a Chapter 13 petition but BEFORE my conversion to a Chapter 7 case ?

Fort Worth, TX |

After about one year in a chapter 13 , we were unable to keep up with post - petition mortgage payments and opted to convert our case to a chapter 7 . The case has now concluded and I have received a discharge . Within two weeks of receiving the discharge , the HOA has sent a collection statement certified mail seeking to recover assessments that became due prior to the conversion of our case but after our original chapter 13 petition . There are post conversion date assessments that I know I will be responsible for . We are not living in the house and the home is set for foreclosure . One additional detail , the HOA did file a lien prior to filing the Chapter 13 case . I appreciate your response !

Attorney Answers 4


Under Section 348 of the Bankruptcy Code, the conversion means that all HOA dues prior to the conversion date are included and discharged. The HOA can only hold you personally liable for the post conversion dues. You remain liable until after the foreclosure sale.

If the HOA presses the issue, see a local bankruptcy attorney about reopening the case to file a contempt action against the HOA.

First, the firm is a debt relief agency according to the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. We help people file for bankruptcy. We also do other stuff and we do it well, but Congress wants me to post this notice. Second, nothing on this site is legal advice. You are not my client unless you enter into a written agreement signed by you and me.

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Yes, HOA fees enjoy special treatment under the "new" bankruptcy code enacted in 2005. BUT, speak with your Bk attorney before doing anything. Good luck.

Be sure to designate "best answer." If you live in Oregon, you may call me for more detailed advice, 503-650-9662. Please be aware that each answer on this website is based upon the facts, or lack thereof, provided in the question. To be sure you get complete and comprehensive answers, based upon the totality of your situation, contact a local attorney who specializes in the area of law that involves your legal problem. Diane L. Gruber has been practicing law in Oregon for 26 years, specializing in family law, bankruptcy, estate planning and probate. Note: Diane L. Gruber does not represent you until a written fee agreement has been signed by you and Diane L. Gruber, and the fee listed in the agreement has been paid.

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In a follow up to Mr. Starrett's answer, you could use the contempt action for the discharge injunction violation to negotiate a favorable outcome to the post conversion HOA dues that you would remain responsible for.

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See first answer about section 348. I have found that most HOA's do not know their legal rights and neither do their attorneys when you file for bankruptcy. You need to act and act quickly before the HOA causes you more headaches. You need to educate the HOA about the effect of the bankruptcy filing and then conversion so that they do not do this to another homeowner there that unfortunately seeks bankruptcy protection. On the other hand it could simply be an accounting error and a simple phone call will fix it.

is a Bay Area bankruptcy lawyer and has been practicing exclusively bankruptcy law in California since 2007. Mr. Wood formerly worked for David Burchard, Chapter 13 Trustee for the Santa Rosa and San Francisco Divisions of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California. West Coast Bankruptcy Attorneys has filed hundreds of bankruptcy cases and has an “A” rating by the Better Business Bureau.

Legal Disclaimer: Ryan C. Wood practices law in California only. Any answers to questions re not intended to be legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. Always consult an attorney in your jurisdiction about your particular circumstances.

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