BANKRUPTCY AND IMMIGRATION, Frequently Asked Questions

–Do I have to be a US citizen to file for bankruptcy?

   No, you don’t have to be. You can either be a green card holder or a US citizen to file for bankruptcy.

–Is US bankruptcy effective against creditors outside of the United States?


–Would filling bankruptcy affect my Green Card or Citizenship or Visa?

Not specifically.

–How would filing bankruptcy affect my immigration status?

If it falls under the category of “Good Moral Character” and its proven that you filing bankruptcy is not a genuine forgiveness of debts for the second chance.

–What are the examples of bankruptcy that is not allowed under the law?

The followings are some of the common instances:

  • Unpaid Taxes, depending on the date
  • Alimony and child support.
  • Malicious and willful injury to another person or property. In Chapter 13, this applies only to injury persons—debts for property damage may be discharged.
  • Debts though death or personal injury caused by Driving Under Influence or while intoxicated
  • Debts failed to be listed in bankruptcy filing.

 –What are the examples of bankruptcy mistakes, errors or criminal conducts that would affect a citizenship or green card?

  • Bankruptcy filed to support lavish lifestyle
  • Bankruptcy filed while hiding assets—providing false financial statements.
  • Lying under oath—perjury.
  • bankruptcy crimes listed under § 152 : making a false oath or account, making a false declaration under penalty of perjury, presenting a false claim, receiving property with the intent to defeat the provisions of Title 11, bribery, transferring or concealing property, destroying or tampering with evidence…
  • Overall crimes related to bankruptcy fraud

What is Bankruptcy fraud and how it happens?

Bankruptcy fraud is a white-collar crime and can be a conviction along with other crimes and it commonly happens as follow

  • Concealment of assets   
  • Filing false or incomplete forms—perjury
  • Filling under false identity
  • Multiple filings in multiple jurisdictions
  • Bribing a court-appointed trustee
  • It can happen with identity theft, public corruption, money laundering, fraud, etc.

Note: Perpetrator can be charged criminally for suspected bankruptcy fraud or attempt to bankruptcy fraud and win upon proof that the defendant knowingly and fraudulently misrepresented a material fact (18 U.S.C. Chapter 9).This cold carry a sentence of up to 5 years in prison and/or fine up to $250,000.

Note: Filing Bankruptcy alone is not a reason to consider a Citizenship applicant to be “Not in Good Moral Character”.

Note: approximately 1 in 250 bankruptcy cases are subject to audit.

This is a legal blog. It is not intended to be used as legal advice. This blog does not create Attorney-Client Relationship.

For further information please contact the law offices of attorney Ramona Kennedy. Ramona Kennedy (Attorney) received her Jurisprudence Doctorate in America and is a licensed attorney in California, licensed by California Supreme Court (USA).Ramona Kennedy is a lifetime, honorary member of Bar Association of United States Supreme Court, and a member of American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) and Orange County Trial Lawyers Association (OCTLA).Ramona Kennedy is fluent in English and Farsi (Persian).

Website: Email: Phones: +19496770063 & +13106230080Telegram & WhatsApp: 1949677006 Website: Immigration Law Blog in Immigration Law Blog in Business Law Blog in Telegram Channel in Farsi:

Office Locations: Los Angeles (Westwood) Location-Oppenheimer tower10880 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 1101 Los Angeles CA 90024Phone: 13106230080 Orange County Locations: Irvine:-7700 Irvine Center Dr. Suite 800, Irvine, CA 92618Newport Beach:-5000 Birch St, Suite 3000Newport Beach CA 92660

Published by kennedylawblog

Lawyer in California, USA Fluent in American English & Persian (Farsi); Speaks Azeri (Turkish)

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Kennedy Law Ramona Kennedy, Esq. (949)677-0063


Ramona Kennedy (Attorney) received her Jurisprudence Doctorate(Doctorate in law) in America. Ramona Kennedy is a licensed Attorney in California (USA) and a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). Ms. Kennedy's areas of practice are US Immigration law, US federal Laws and California State Laws. This is an immigration law blog. It is not intended to be used as legal advise. For further information please contact the law offices of Attorney Ramona Kennedy.

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