I get this question all the time when clients come to file bankruptcy in the Atlanta area. It is perfectly reasonable for a potential Georgia debtor to want to know whether one can be fired or demoted for filing bankruptcy. Fortunately, the answer is a resounding “NO” in both circumstances. Even if your employer did discover your bankruptcy filing, the bankruptcy code protects debtors from discrimination under section 525(a) and (b). These section apply to government and private employers, respectively. Thus, no matter if you work Uncle Sam or Dad’s Garage, your employer cannot fire or demote you for filing bankruptcy. To do so would put your employer in violation of federal law, a place nobody wants to be.
Many clients are afraid that their employers will find out if they file bankruptcy. The good news is that while your bankruptcy is public record, your filing is not published in the local newspaper, or any local legal organ for that matter. The only way your employer would find out if you filed bankruptcy would be if you told them, you were being garnished and your bankruptcy attorney has to contact your employer to coordinate the cessation of the garnishment, or if you file a Chapter 13 in Atlanta, in which case your plan will be funded by an automatic deduction from your paycheck. Don’t worry. Your employer is too busy to concern itself with the credit history or financial troubles of its employees. In the end, don’t let the thought of possibly being fired or demoted by your employer keep you from seeking the benefits a fresh start can offer.