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Bankruptcy & Legal Marijuana

Question: I visited friends in states where pot is legal and charged up a lot of money on my credit cards buying marijuana and now I need to file bankruptcy. I visited some of my University of Georgia fraternity brothers in Colorado and Washington and now I'm dealing with too much debt.

I tried to get a couple of pot businesses running but they didn't work out. I used money from my Visa, MasterCard and American Express to pay for everything. I bought rolling papers and growing products and other things and I put all of it on the cards and now I just can't afford to make the minimum payments.

In college we always talked about starting a business related to marijuana. We thought there was huge potential in the pot industry. We thought about growing it, providing the products that others could use to grow it, and developing better wrapping papers.

So I felt like I didn't want to work at the shoe store anymore here in Georgia and I visited my friends in Colorado and Washington. But I have to admit that I probably smoked too much weed and didn't work on the business enough and so things didn't really work out.

Now I'm back in Cherokee County looking for a job and I need to get rid of the credit card debt. I need to know if I can get rid of debt related to marijuana here in Georgia. I got the debt in other states and I know that smoking pot or even possessing pot is illegal here in Georgia. Can I file bankruptcy on this pot debt?

B.M. in Woodstock, GA

Answer: You can eliminate the marijuana debt that you charged on your credit cards by filing for bankruptcy. Credit card debt is dischargeable by a bankruptcy filing, either through a chapter 7 or a chapter 13. In your case, it should not make any difference that the charges were for marijuana or marijuana-related products.

As the marijuana industry matures and more states allow pot businesses to flourish, your predicament will become increasingly common. Other aspiring entrepreneurs will certainly chase the profits available in the big marijuana industry. Some of those businessmen will start profitable companies; others will look for protection in the bankruptcy laws. And we will be here to help anyone who has a debt or bankruptcy issue.

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