Bankruptcy “reform” a decade ago expanded protections for those owed family support.
Any debt “in the nature of support” can’t be discharged in bankruptcy, regardless of to whom it’s owed.
Orange County tried to ride that change in the law to make its claim against the mother of a kid in juvie survive her bankruptcy.
Last week, the 9th Circuit shot the county down, ruling that the bill for room and board for an incarcerated minor was not “domestic support”. A bankruptcy discharge wiped out the parent’s debt to the county.
Even more heartening than the result, which kept the county from visiting the “sins” of the children on the parent, was the language of the opinion.