This is a simple question to pose, but the answer is a bit more complicated to give.  Part of the complication lies in the fact that in bankruptcy social security has two identities:  it is income, and it is an asset.  The rest of the complication arises because there is more than one chapter of the Bankruptcy Code under which individuals and married couples file.

I.          Social Security Income As An Asset

In any personal bankruptcy, one of the reporting requirements is found in 11 U.S.C. § 521(a)(1)(B)(i):  “The debtor shall—file—  . . . a schedule of assets . . .”  Social security payments are an asset, and become part of the bankruptcy estate that is created when the debtor files for bankruptcy protection.  (See 11 U.S.C. § 541(a)).
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In Part 1 of my two-part series discussing the issue of filing for bankruptcy after a previous bankruptcy had been filed, I mentioned “disposable monthly income” in the context of Chapter 13 bankruptcy and told you that this post would discuss it in detail.  This isn’t the first time I have promised to discuss this topic.  I have put it off because of the somewhat esoteric, indeed recondite, dare I even say arcane, nature of the subject.  However, there have been some very recent developments in the case law on “disposable monthly income” that make it ripe for discussion.  Therefore, this post makes good on my promises.
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