Contributions of roommates or domestic partners to household income
At least one site on the web has addressed this issue. King's Bankruptcy Media (a lawyer's website) states what appears to be the correct rule: that, if a roommate or domestic partner is contributing income to the household, then that portion of the roommate's income must be included in the overall amount of 'household income' on line 4 of Form 22A-1, where it asks for "contributions to household income."
The U.S. Trustee's Office's official statement (released April 2010) on how to fill out form 22A takes the the following position on how to fill out the means test:
Old Form Line 14 (New Form 22A-1 Line 13, Applicable median family income.
- "Applicable state" is state of residence at filing.
- If married and two different households, residence is where most family members reside.
- If no plurality of family members are in any one state, use state of spouse with highest income.
- "Household size" is the debtor, debtor's spouse, and any dependents that the debtor could claim under IRS dependency tests. The USTP uses the same IRS test for the definition of both"household" and "family." IRS Publication 501 explains the IRS tests for "dependent."
- The USTP departs from the IRS dependent test (as does the IRS when it determines family size for collection purposes) in cases justifying "reasonable exceptions" (e.g. a long standing economic unit of unmarried individuals and their children). However, if an individual is counted as a family member for median income purposes, that individual's income should be included as income on Part II of Form 22A .
Old Form Line 8 (New Form 22A-1, Line 4), Any amounts paid by another person or entity, on a regular basis, for the household expenses of the debtor or the debtor's dependents, including child or spousal support.
- Includes payments made monthly, quarterly, or annually.
- Includes payments regardless of written agreement with contributor.
- Includes payments from roommate, partner, parent, or relative, regardless of whether living with debtor.
- Includes payments made directly to creditors on behalf of debtor, e.g., rent, car, or insurance.
- Does not include payments from non-filing spouse (which are already included as income in Column B).
You may also be interested in:
How many people are in your "household?" The issue can be tricky if you have roomates, or children who only live with you part time. Courts have ruled on lots of issues arising under this question.
The means test initially looks to see if your household income is above or below median for a household your size in your state.