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Joint account questions...

mbjp09
New Member

Joint account questions...

We live in NJ. My girlfriend whome I share an apartment with is about to file Chapter 7. She has no assets of great value. She has her own checking account and we also have a joint checking and savings account. Her paycheck is deposited in her checking account and mine to the joint checking. She transfers money from the joint to her account on occasion to pay rent and other bills. The balance is rarely over 500-600 in any of the accounts at a time and most of the time way below that as we both work sub $10/hr jobs and have no savings. She has no bank loans or car payments, just credit card debt. My questions are: Is the joint account at any risk? Should I open an account for myself and have my pay go to it just to be safe? Are they even going to touch these accounts since we are so low income anyway? I would keep the joint open of course, but just stop my pay from going in to it. I look forward to your replys. Thank you.
7 REPLIES 7
ptkdude
Regular Contributor

Re: Joint account questions...

Personally, I would have my own account and have my pay go to that.  I can transfer money into the joint account when necessary.  Better to be safe than sorry.  It can take 2 pay cycles to get your direct deposit changed, so keep that in mind; make sure you have enough time before she files.

 

When I filed, my attorney asked specifically if I had accounts at Wells Fargo or a credit union, as they are known to freeze the account upon filing (if they hear about it, anyway).  

Message 2 of 8
mbjp09
New Member

Re: Joint account questions...

Thank you for the reply.  I will be opening my own account. Good point keeping in mind that it can take up to 2 pay cylces to get direct deposit changed.  Our bank is Santander.  I am not filing right this second, so I can make the change still.  I have some other questions and am making another post to the forum in a little bit - maybe you could take a look?  Thank you again.

Message 3 of 8
ABCD2199
Senior Contributor

Re: Joint account questions...

I would close all joint accounts now.  You don't want any cross-account issues when the BK hits because who knows how it might be reported internal to a bank.

 

If she needs money, you can use Zelle (supported by tons of banks) to send her money instantly.  I sent $1000 via Zelle this week to a family member for a future vacation deposit they were doing.  They had the funds in 8 seconds.

 

Also, I would highly suggest you work out a budget immediately.  My best friend is in her 30s, has never made more than $12 an hour in her entire life, and she has over $60,000 saved (as of 2016).  Making $10/hour isn't fun, but you can actually build wealth if you learn how to budget well.  Now is a great time to learn those talents and skills, and you CAN do it.

Message 4 of 8
mbjp09
New Member

Re: Joint account questions...

I have read that is not a good idea to close a joint account before filing because it appears as though you may be trying to hide something.  We are just two very low income people that have hit a rough patch due to any unfortunate set of circumstances which were out of our control that have occured over that last few years. I am sure that is said many times on this forum.

Message 5 of 8
ptkdude
Regular Contributor

Re: Joint account questions...

I saw your other post; unfortunately I filed Ch. 13 in Northern District of Ga., so for your questions I can't really help.

Message 6 of 8
Cg0891
New Visitor

Re: Joint account questions...

Hi. I’ve been a lurker on these boards for months but this is my first comment as I was in this same situation. I also live in NJ and have a joint account with my bf in addition to my own personal account. When I filed for bankruptcy my attorney told me not to close the joint account. I provided all the bank statements and he could clearly see that all transactions from the account were for rent, utilities, groceries, etc. Once all the monthly expenses are paid, we keep a relatively low balance in the account so it was not an issue at all. As long as the account doesn’t have thousands of dollars, I think you should be ok.
Message 7 of 8
mbjp09
New Member

Re: Joint account questions...

Thank you for replying..... I have started the process of filling out the forms....

Message 8 of 8
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