The short answer is no, you do not have to pay taxes on debts that are wiped out in bankruptcy. Quite often those trying to decide between bankruptcy and some type of debt consolidation will look to see which option will be most advantageous for them when it comes to tax implications. Usually, filing bankruptcy will be most beneficial when it comes to taxes.
Unlike debts that are consolidated or forgiven by a creditor, debts that are discharged in a bankruptcy are not subject to being taxed. Section 108 of the Internal Revenue Code explains that Title 11 (bankruptcy) cases are not subject to the traditional taxes on forgiven debt. This is important because other debts that are forgiven or wiped out outside of bankruptcy will be viewed as your gross income, which is taxable. Therefore, you could pay quite a bit of taxes on debts that were otherwise forgiven.
After wiping out your debt in a bankruptcy you may receive a Form 1099(c) from the IRS. If this were to happen, it is important that you fill out a Form 982 to tell the IRS that the debt was discharged in a bankruptcy and is, therefore, non-taxable.
This section of the Internal Revenue Code can be a big money saver for those trying to decide between bankruptcy and some other form of debt negotiation. When money is already tight it is almost impossible to pay the thousands of dollars that you may be required to pay on your forgiven debt outside of bankruptcy. Instead, liquidating your debts in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy or paying them back through a Chapter 13 bankruptcy will allow you to get rid of debt and avoid any tax implications.