Unfortunately, yes, the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) can collect delinquent taxes from you in similar fashion to the IRS, and you would not be exempt from that.
Contrary to what many people believe, income tax debt to the IRS and the FTB can be discharged in a bankruptcy filing. Not all tax debt is dischargeable, but if it passes a four part test, it can be. Essentially, the taxes need to be at least 3 years old (currently 2008 taxes and older are potentially dischargeable; after April 2013, 2009 taxes could be discharged), returns must have been filed at least 2 years ago, the taxes can't have been audited or assessed in the past 240 days, and you can't have filed a fraudulent return.
The other debts you mentioned are also typically dischargeable and do not have the same strict rules as tax debts do. You may very well be a candidate for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, but you should meet with an experienced and reputable attorney in your area to find out for sure.
Brian C. Fenn FENN LAW FIRM 29222 Rancho Viejo Rd. Ste. 102 San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675 Tel/Fax: (800) 994-9079 email@example.com
Evan A. Nielsen is licensed to practice law in California. The information provided here is for educational purposes only and is not intended as legal advice for a particular matter. This response does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, please consult an attorney.
If you are penniless, yoy may be able to make an offer to settle the debt, but you will likely have to settle with both the IRS and the State.