Means Test Constants And Variables*
The means test requires the application of a series of numbers.
The debtor’s “current monthly income is one-sixth of the last six months income the debtor received from all sources. Deductible actual expenses include reasonably necessary health and disability insurance as well as health savings accounts for the debtor and dependents of the debtor. Also deductible are expenses incurred to maintain safety from family violence under §309 of the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act. Deductions also are allowed for the cost of administering a chapter 13 case (up to 10 percent of projected plan payments), the actual expenses for the care and support of elderly, chronically ill, or disabled household members, and the actual elementary and secondary school expenses up to $1,500 per dependent child under 18 years of age. Each of these figures comes directly from the debtor and the debtor’s financial history.
Other numbers will come from external sources including the census bureau and the Internal Revenue Service. Among those numbers are:
Family Income by State and Number of Persons in Household (1999) (from
· The above median income must be adjusted for the time of filing using the Consumer Price Index. For example, for a filing in 2005, you would have to adjust through 2004.
· IRS Standards for Allowable Living Expenses by Number of Persons in Household (may be increased for food and clothing by up to 5%)
· IRS Housing and Utilities Allowable Living Expenses by State/County (may be allowed at higher, actual rate upon demonstration that actual costs exceed IRS allowances)
* These links and the categories of income and expenses set out above are illustrative and do not constitute the entirety of the means test. You should consult the Code for other aspects of the means test.