Chapter 13 immediately stops the collection of past-due child or spousal support. But to keep that protection you must meet some conditions for stopping support collections.
Chapter 13 DOES stop the collection of unpaid child or spousal support from your after-filing income and other assets. Chapter 7 does NOT.
Chapter 7 does not stop the collection of unpaid child or spousal support, nor provide any procedure to pay the support. It may still help enough.
Chapter 7 is very limited in helping avoid a support lien. Chapter 13 is much more powerful, as long as you precisely meet some conditions.
Child support and spousal support debts cannot get written off in bankruptcy. But is your specific divorce debt legally considered support?
Chapter 13 is very different from Chapter 7 "straight bankruptcy." It buys you time to deal effectively with your special debts.
Chapter 7 strengthens your hand with your secured debts. But Chapter 13 can be much stronger. Starting with a more potent "automatic stay."