With more than 72% of the U.S. House of Representatives voting this week in favor of the Bankruptcy Reform Act of 1998, it seems inevitable that Congress will pass some kind of bankruptcy reform before the end of this year. The strong bipartisan support of H.R. 3150 in the House was applauded by the credit industry’s Bankruptcy Issues Council. BIC says reform will restore common sense, personal responsibility and fairness to our bankruptcy system. The group says it was particularly pleased that the House also approved the Boucher/Gekas amendment to elevate child support and alimony payments to number one on the priority list in a bankruptcy proceeding. It is likely the Senate will pass similar legislation by the end of the summer.
STATEMENT OF THE BANKRUPTCY ISSUES COUNCIL ON HOUSE PASSAGE OF H.R. 3150
“Today’s overwhelming bipartisan vote by the House of Representatives in favor of H.R. 3150, the Bankruptcy Reform Act of 1998, is a major step in the effort to fix our flawed bankruptcy laws. This legislation will ensure that our bankruptcy laws, for the first time, are based on need. Most importantly, the bill preserves the right of individuals in serious financial difficulty to get complete relief from their debts so they can make a fresh start. But it will require some higher-income filers who could repay a portion of their debts to do so. That will restore common sense, personal responsibility and fairness to our bankruptcy system.
“We are particularly pleased that the House overwhelmingly approved the Boucher/Gekas amendment to elevate child support and alimony payments to number one on the priority list in a bankruptcy proceeding. No obligation is more important than that of a parent to his or her child, and this will ensure, once and for all, that child support and alimony payments must be paid first.”
“We are very pleased by today’s House action. We are optimistic that the Senate will pass its own bankruptcy reform legislation in the coming weeks and that a conference between the two bodies can begin shortly. We look forward to a final product that will make our bankruptcy laws strong, effective and fair to everyone.”