Section 1301 of the Bankruptcy Code is entitled "Stay of Action Against Codebtor". If an individual files a bankruptcy while living in, say, Pennsauken, NJ and his ex-wife, living in Philadelphia, PA had cosigned for a credit card while they were married, can the creditor pursue the ex-wife since she is not in bankruptcy? Not when a Chapter 13 is filed. Section §1301 of the bankruptcy code provides a "Codebtor" Stay in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. A "Codebtor" Stay protects a vehicle from being repossessed and protects a debtor's residence from a foreclosure sale when only one of the individuals responsible for the debt files Chapter 13. A "Codebtor" Stay does not apply to Chapter 7 bankruptcies or business debts. There are other exceptions. For example, although a liability on a personal tax return would seem to be a consumer debt a number of cases have held that the co-debtor stay does not prevent the IRS from pursuing the spouse that did not file a bankruptcy on a joint return.
Whether you can keep your home depends on various factors including the amount of equity in the property. The amount of equity you can protect in your residence depends on the exemptions available. If you live in, for example, Pennsauken New Jersey, you can protect approximately $24,000 each in your home. If you live in Philadelphia Pennsylvania you have the same Federal exemption of about $24,000. In Pennsylvania in the situation where property is owned by a husband and wife and there are no joint debts and only one spouse files the equity can be protected. Some states provide significantly more protection. Most times when a chapter 7 is filed the debtors can keep their home as long as they are able to make their mortgage payments
The bankruptcy means test is a significant factor in determining who can file for debt forgiveness through Chapter 7 bankruptcy. See http://www.csmonitor.com/Business/Saving-Money/2016/0718/Why-the-bankruptcy-means-test-matters. It takes into account your income, expenses and family size as well as the state you live in to determine whether you can eliminate the debt or whether you have enough disposable income to repay some or all of your debts. Regarding the relevance of the state you live in, as an example, a family of four residing in Northeast Philadelphia Pennsylvania will need to have less income than a family of four residing in Pennsauken New Jersey because the statewide income is less in Pennsylvania then in New Jersey.