With regards to individuals who have filed or who are considering filing for bankruptcy relief under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, the CARES Act, which among other things provided stimulus income payments to individuals, has amended certain sections of the Bankruptcy Code. In particular, the Act allows for the exclusion from a debtor’s income- payments received from the federal government (“stimulus checks”). This amendment is temporary and allows filers to exclude their stimulus checks as income under both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Petitions.
Another change to the bankruptcy code allows Chapter 13 debtors who have confirmed Plans prior to March 27, 2020, to seek a modification extending the terms of their Plan to up to 7 years if “the debtor is experiencing or has experienced a material financial hardship due, directly or indirectly, to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.” Only a Debtor can apply for the modification and can be granted an extension only after notice and a hearing. This provisions affecting individual debtors expires after one year or on March 26, 2021.