Can filing bankruptcy get you out of jail for failing to pay alimony?

A recent case before the United States Appellate Panel of the First Circuit (In re DeSouza, 493 BR 669 – Bankr. Appellate Panel, 1st Circuit 2013) addressed whether a family court judge could legally order a debtor to be in contempt for failing to pay alimony during a pending chapter 13 bankruptcy. The debtor filed a petition under chapter 13 of the Bankruptcy Code in January 2011. In June 2011, the debtor’s spouse filed a complaint for divorce. After a hearing on September 30, 2011, the probate court entered an order granting alimony to the debtor’s spouse in the amount 

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What happens when bankruptcy law and family law collide?

What happens when bankruptcy law and family law collide? It’s all too common for one spouse to file a contempt proceeding in family court against an ex-spouse for not paying their spousal or child support payments; which in turn forces the other spouse to file a bankruptcy petition in bankruptcy court. The Automatic Stay The most important three words in any bankruptcy case – The Automatic Stay. The automatic stay “restrains a broad range of conduct, including the continuation of litigation and works as a general prohibition against ANY act to collect, assess, or recover a claim against a debtor 

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