Given the uncertainties in the legal community about how to apply the means best and the think and re-think I engage in preparing Form B 122, I can’t imagine a non lawyer learning anything reliable from trying to do this themselves.
The tricky issues include how to deal with income from non filing spouses; from roommates or extended family member; and how to handle business expenses for the self employed. (One bankruptcy appellate panel recently decided that the judges who drew up the form did it wrong!)
You have to parse out income “received” but not “derived” during the look-back period and figure out how to report children where custody is shared.
Then there is the dispute on the deduction side about ownership allowances for paid for cars; operating allowances for older cars; debts associated with property you’re surrendering, and just what part of your telecommunication expenses go on the form.
I cringe when I ask a client to sign this form, as they cannot possibly validate all of the entries on the form.
While I won’t say “don’t try this at home”, I am certain you should draw no conclusions about the means test and your eligibility for Chapter 7 based on your efforts to take the test.
Get an experienced bankruptcy lawyer involved.
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