Getting Help With Your Bankruptcy

3 Advantages Of Filing For Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Posted by on Aug 11, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Advantages Of Filing For Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

You may be in a huge financial bind for a number of reasons–a job loss, huge medical bills, or even just spending beyond your means. If you have reached a point where the debt you owe is far beyond what you are able to pay back, and you can’t afford to make monthly minimum payments on that debt, filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy may be a solution. There are many benefits to filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy when the debts you owe are overwhelming, such as: Most Debts are Wiped Clean When you go through chapter 7 bankruptcy, there is a good chance that the majority of your unsecured debt will be discharged and you will be relieved of the burden of paying it back. This includes credit card debt, medical bills, any accounts that are in collection, past due utility charges, and any money owed on lease agreements. It may take you a while to build up your credit score after filing for bankruptcy, but if you have been living with huge amounts of debt there is a good chance that your credit is already suffering. When your debts are discharged, you will no longer have to live with the stress of trying to figure out how to make the minimum payments on different accounts. No More Harassment from Creditors When you fall behind on payments, creditors and collection agencies can be ruthless in trying to get you to pay up. During your financial crisis, you probably get multiple calls a day from creditors, and some creditors may go as far as contacting your place of employment, which can be disruptive and embarrassing. As soon as you file for chapter 7 bankruptcy, an automatic stay will be put into place, which makes it against the law for creditors to continue to contact you. You Can Most Likely Keep Your Home and Vehicle When you file for chapter 7 bankruptcy, items that are high in value may be seized in order to be sold and the profits are used to pay off some of your debts. But the courts don’t want a person who files for bankruptcy to be left with nothing, which is why there are property exemptions. If you do not have a large amount of equity in your home (equity exemption amounts vary from state to state), you will be able to keep it a long as you continue to pay your mortgage.If your car is worth less than the exemption amount for vehicles in your state you will be able to keep it too; in the event that your vehicle is worth more than the exemption amount and is seized and sold, you will be paid the exemption amount which you can use to purchase a new vehicle. For professional legal help, contact a lawyer such as Richard S. Ross – Bankruptcy...

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When To Hire An Attorney If You Are Facing Foreclosure

Posted by on Jun 30, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on When To Hire An Attorney If You Are Facing Foreclosure

If you find yourself at risk of losing your home, hiring an attorney can be a practical option when you are trying to avoid or fight foreclosure. An attorney can explain your legal rights and obligations, negotiate new loan terms with your lender, assist you in completing the paperwork necessary to apply for a loan modification, or delay the foreclosure sale by helping you file for bankruptcy. When you are facing foreclosure, it pays to know in what situations hiring an attorney like Jeffrey S Arnold Attorney At Law P.C. can help. 1. You are confused about your legal rights. Although state laws regarding foreclosure vary, in most states, the lender must give you notice that you are in default. The notice must also explain the steps you need to take to get your mortgage loan out of default. If your mortgage loan documents include an acceleration clause, the lender has the legal right to demand full payment of the debt you owe as soon as you miss a single loan payment. You will be given a limited period of time to bring your mortgage loan current, which includes paying all interest, late penalties, and other fees due. 2. The lender made a mistake. An attorney can help you if the lender made a mistake and you did not default on your loan. You may have to take the lender to court to prove you are not in default. However, you must provide documentation to prove the lender made a mistake on your account and that you paid the principal and interest on time. If the bank or mortgage company is foreclosing on your property, an attorney may be able to stop the foreclosure by filing an order showing that the lender failed to give you adequate notice of the default or foreclosure proceedings. This may delay the foreclosure, but the lender can issue a new notice and start the proceedings again. 3. You were a victim of mortgage fraud. An attorney can help if you think you were the victim of predatory lending practices. The attorney will review your loan documents to make certain the lender complied with state and federal laws related to mortgage lending. If a forensic loan audit spots a problem, you can file a lawsuit against the lender. 4. You want to know if you qualify for bankruptcy. You can stop the foreclosure temporarily by filing for bankruptcy before the foreclosure sale. A bankruptcy attorney can help you determine if you are financially eligible for bankruptcy. Since filing for bankruptcy stalls the lender’s foreclosure action, it gives you time catch up on missed payments or negotiate new loan terms with your lender if you want to keep your home. 5. You need to stop the foreclosure proceedings. An attorney may be able to stop the foreclosure process without filing bankruptcy by successfully negotiating with your lender to: refinance your loan at a lower interest rate; lower your payments and extend the length of your loan; or give you time to sell your home and pay off the mortgage loan. Many attorneys have established relationships with area lenders and real estate agents so they know what people to contact. 6. You need help with a loan modification. Although not everyone seeking a loan modification needs an...

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5 Questions Concerning Chapter 7 Bankruptcy And Your Car

Posted by on Jun 12, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 5 Questions Concerning Chapter 7 Bankruptcy And Your Car

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is often used when an individual has enough assets to liquidate to cover at least a portion of what they owe to debtors. This form of bankruptcy can bring about a lot of worries when it comes down to what will happen with your vehicles. Here are five typical questions people who file chapter 7 bankruptcy have about their automobile. 1. Does it matter if you only have one vehicle for your family? This can depend on where you live and if there is a vehicle exemption for bankruptcy allowed in your state. If you have a vehicle that is valued below or at the exemption amount, the one vehicle may be left in your possession as long as you are not still in debt for it. 2. What happens if you are still making payments on your vehicle? If you re still making payments on your vehicle, the equity that you have in your car may be more than what is allowed and your car may still have to be liquidated. However, this can depend on several different factors and should be further discussed with your attorney. 3. How do you determine how much equity you have in your vehicle? If you do not owe on the vehicle, the equity is simply the amount the vehicle is valued at currently. On the other hand, if the vehicle in your possession is not paid for, the amount of equity will be determined by the car’s value, but the amount you owe will be subtracted. 4. How do you go about surrendering a vehicle? When you are notified that you must surrender your vehicle to the lender, talk with your attorney about the specific date that this should occur. In some cases, you will return the car directly to the lender, but in others, you may be required to give the car to your bankruptcy trustee who will then surrender the car on your behalf. 5. Will you be informed before the car is taken from your possession? You will usually know in advance if you will be forced to give up your vehicle simply because the terms of the bankruptcy and what will happen will be specifically laid out by your attorney. However, you may not know the exact date that a vehicle will be repossessed by a lender if you do not go ahead and surrender it. It is much easier if you can arrange to surrender the vehicle instead of waiting for it to be repossessed. Your car is likely one of the possessions you have that you do not want to lose. Be sure to discuss in great detail what your options will be once you file with your chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney (such as one found through...

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How To Protect Yourself From Fake Debt Collectors

Posted by on May 27, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Protect Yourself From Fake Debt Collectors

When you fall behind on your bills, every ring of the phone can cause anxiety. The actions of collection agencies are aggressive by nature, and even those who follow the laws about bill collecting will disrupt your life with constant reminders of your bad financial state: Collection agencies are hired by your creditors, such as a credit cards, banks or loan companies and are allowed by law to contact you an unlimited number of times about a debt, however they can only contact you between the hours of 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.  Recently, scams involving fake debt collectors have surfaced. These fake collectors have somehow accessed your credit report, so they have the same information that a real collection agency has, such as the exact amount of your debt to a certain company, making them seem legitimate. It’s in your best interest to know the facts about these fake debt collectors, so read on for information on dealing with this alarming situation. Warming signs that indicate that you are dealing with a fake debt collector: Real collection agencies never tell you to contact your creditor for information. Once a real collector has the debt, it is their responsibility. If there is a question about the debt, a real collection agency will contact the creditor themselves. Many times fake collectors cannot answer detailed questions about the debt, because they don’t have all the information. The caller demands payment that same day, and will threaten to file suit if payment is not made immediately. Real agencies will work with you and be somewhat flexible on payment arrangements. The caller only accepts a single form of payment, such as a credit card, wire transfer or money order. When you call the agency back, the same person you previously spoke with answers the phone immediately. When this occurs, it’s likely that a single individual with a cell phone is harassing you. You cannot find any information on the collection agency. Either you cannot get any information at all or you are given fake names and addresses. You should always contact the original creditor if you have doubts; they should be happy to tell you the exact name and address of any legitimate collection agency. The caller threatens you with arrest. You cannot go to jail for owing money (with the exception of child support and tax debts). Legitimate collection agencies never resort to threats, rudeness, cursing, insults or other unprofessional behaviors. If you use the guidelines above, you can help ensure that you are dealing with only legitimate debt collection agencies.  If you are having trouble paying your bills and feel a mounting sense of hopelessness about your financial situation, contact a bankruptcy attorney. Your attorney will meet with you and help you to decide if filing for bankruptcy is right for you. You can get immediate relief from debt collection actions, and begin to make plans for a fresh start. To learn more, contact a company like Dennis Lee Burman Attorney at Law with any questions you...

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Involuntary Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: 3 Requirements Of Being Forced Into Bankruptcy

Posted by on Apr 22, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy can be a difficult process, but sometimes, those doing so have come to the conclusion that it is the only solution to a very complex situation. Other times, those with debt try as hard as they can to repay the loans and credit lines they’ve utilized. However, in certain instances, you could potentially be forced into a chapter 7 bankruptcy. Although there are certain rules that apply to this type of ‘creditor-initiated’ bankruptcy, it is a legally valid tool that creditors can leverage in an attempt to collect on past debts. This article outlines some of the intricacies of chapter 7 involuntary bankruptcy proceedings. Exempt Parties Not all debtors are subject to an involuntary bankruptcy. Banks, credit unions, savings and loans institutions, non-profit organizations, insurance companies, and farmers are all exempt from the threat of involuntary bankruptcy. Creditor Requirements If you have more than eleven total creditors, then it will be necessary for at least three to collaborate in filing a petition for involuntary bankruptcy. Eleven creditors might seem like a large number, but when you take into consideration simple things like electric and gas utilities, cell phone bills, and credit cards, it is easy to see how one can accumulate multiple creditors. If you do have less than eleven total creditors, than it is possible for one creditor to initiate the chapter 7 bankruptcy process against you. However, in many instances, the courts will regard this kind of two-party dispute as inappropriate for bankruptcy court, and insist the resolution be taken elsewhere. Regardless of the amount of debt you carry, it is unlikely that a single creditor will initiate an involuntary bankruptcy claim against you. More importantly, there are minimum debt requirements pertaining to the amount of money each creditor is due before an involuntary bankruptcy proceeding can commence. Debt Requirements You are at risk of having your creditors initiate an involuntary chapter 7 bankruptcy against you if you owe more than the sum total of $15,325. However, so long as you do not owe an amount in excess of this figure to any one creditor, than the only possibility of an involuntary bankruptcy is when three or more creditors jointly file a petition against you. If you have fewer than eleven total creditors and your cumulative debt is less than $15,325, creditors have no legal basis via which to pursue an involuntary bankruptcy. Overall, a creditor-initiated bankruptcy can bring about much turmoil in one’s personal and financial life, and enlisting a qualified bankruptcy attorney such as Morrison & Murff can ensure that creditors are operating within their legal...

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3 Mistakes To Avoid During The Bankruptcy Process

Posted by on Apr 20, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

If you have already started the process of filing for bankruptcy, you may be eager to get the bankruptcy behind you. However, you may be making mistakes that could jeopardize the discharge of your debts, which would mean that you would still be responsible for paying them back. Here are just a few mistakes to avoid making while going through the bankruptcy process. Trying to Pay Creditors with Retirement Funds Most of the time, your retirement savings do not need to be affected by your financial problems. You may get the idea to liquidate your retirement savings to pay creditors, but that is a mistake for a number of reasons. First, you may be subject to taxes on the amount of money you remove from those savings prematurely. Secondly, you will not have as much money for your retirement and older years. Lastly, your Bankruptcy Trustee can recover that money and use it for other purposes anyway. Therefore, once you have filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, avoid touching your retirement funds to pay for any of your debts. It will not affect your credit score or make a substantial impact on whether your bankruptcy is discharged. Repaying Family Loans You may think that family is important, and while you’re waiting for your bankruptcy to go through, you may choose to repay family debts instead of your other debts. However, this could land you and your family members in legal trouble. In fact, in some states, your Trustee may be able to sue those family members so that the money can be taken away from them and put toward your debts. Selling Your Property for Less Than It’s Worth As you’re waiting for your bankruptcy to discharge, you may choose to sell your home and move into a smaller place. To help out a friend or someone you know, you may opt to cut your asking price without thinking twice. However, this can arouse the interest of your Trustee and become a dangerous situation for you. You may be charged with bankruptcy fraud or making an attempt to hide property from the bankruptcy court. If this happens, you may end up losing your house and so will your friend. Not only that, but you risk having your bankruptcy discharge denied. If you want to sell something while you’re waiting for your bankruptcy to go through, talk to your bankruptcy lawyer first so you know whether you can make a sale in a first place.  Now that you know what you should not be doing, sit down and talk to a lawyer like Schneider Steve, Atty At Law about what moves you need to make next. Follow the advice of your attorney so that you can successfully make it to your bankruptcy discharge date without getting yourself in...

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Handling Three Potential Issues When Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Posted by on Apr 17, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

You may run into one of these three issues when filing chapter 7 bankruptcy. There are ways to handle each one so your bankruptcy can be successfully discharged. 1. Nuisance Filing on Your Record If you filed bankruptcy twice in one year but the first time your case was dismissed because you failed to do all the requirements (such as completing the credit counseling class), when you file the second time a judge could lift the automatic stay within 30 days on your creditors. This is to discourage people from filing merely to avoid something like being evicted or having their wages garnished, when they have no intention of following through with the bankruptcy. To avoid this issue, you should wait a full year before filing again and carry it through to discharge. If you need to go on and file, your lawyer will need to file a motion to get the stay extended and you will need to convince the court of your good faith. 2. Consumer Credit “Fraud” Naturally a credit card company or a store that has issued you a charge account is going to look askance on your buying a new flat screen TV on credit two weeks before declaring bankruptcy. A credit card company/business may challenge the discharge of your debt with them if: You lied about your income to get the credit card or to get a higher credit limit. You purchased big items or services, or took large cash advances, within 90 days of filing. You increased the amount of borrowing or purchasing with your card/account even if the individual amounts were small. The card company/business can file an adversary proceeding action against you because it would appear you didn’t have good intentions towards them and had no intention of paying the debt you were accruing. Knowing this, you may need to delay filing for at least 3 months if you have been using your credit a lot in the recent past, or you could consider switching to a chapter 13 bankruptcy. 3. Need to Amend Your Petition If you forgot to include a debt with your original creditor mailing list and your petition has already been filed, you will need to inform your attorney right away. Your petition will need to be amended and you may have to pay an additional fee for this. To avoid this problem, it would be helpful to get a copy of your credit report to use as a reference when filling out your forms. Correcting any omissions is necessary so that you can avoid appearing dishonest about your intentions, and you will also want this debt to be properly discharged with your bankruptcy. If your bankruptcy has already been discharged, some courts will allow your case to be reopened and your papers to be amended, when a creditor is still trying to collect from you. Other types of amendments that may need to be made before discharge include: Adding or deleting an asset you claimed or want to claim as exempt Adding or deleting property you received or lost as result of divorce, inherited, or received in an insurance settlement. Changing your intention towards a secured asset, such as working out a loan modification to keep your car, or to cancel an arrangement and give the car up. Needing to add...

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How To Keep Your Home Through A Bankruptcy

Posted by on Apr 17, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Are you trying to keep your home even though you’re in debt? A chapter 7 bankruptcy or a chapter 13 bankruptcy could potentially help you avoid losing your home. Most people assume that they will lose their property when undergoing the process of bankruptcy but this isn’t necessarily true. Depending on your state laws, you may be able to keep your home and declare bankruptcy to dissolve or restructure your debts at the same time. A real estate attorney can help you find out more. You Can Delay Foreclosure Proceedings If you’re currently in the process of foreclosure, beginning the process of bankruptcy will stop it. A bank cannot foreclose on a property while you’re declaring bankruptcy — and this is even true if you ultimately do not finish the bankruptcy proceedings. Usually the first step that a bankruptcy attorney will take is to notify your mortgage company so that the foreclosure can be stayed.  You Can Create a Reaffirmation Agreement If you will be able to afford your mortgage following debt restructuring or debt settlement, you may be able to create a reaffirmation agreement. This is basically an agreement that allows the lender to create the debt again after the bankruptcy proceedings. A real estate attorney will be critical to this process. The bank lender will also need to approve the reaffirmation agreement for it to stand. You Can Claim It as Exempt If the property is your home residence, you may be able to simply claim it as exempt. This is usually only true if you own your property outright and if the property is not excessive in value. A real estate attorney can explain the exemption limits to you, which will vary by state and will often depend on the local average costs of real estate in your area. If you have a property with low market value that you have had in your family for a long time, you have a greater chance of being able to keep it. That is not to say that keeping a home during the process of bankruptcy is always a good idea. A real estate attorney and a financial adviser will both be able to help you determine whether you want to keep your home and whether it’s a good financial decision for you. If you decide that you don’t want to keep your home, you can instead include it within the assets that are dissolved through the bankruptcy. To learn more, contact a professional like Michael Adler with any questions or concerns you...

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How To Fight A Failure To Comply Issue With Social Security Disability

Posted by on Apr 16, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

You can be denied future social security disability payments if you are found to have failed to comply with your medical treatments. Failure to comply can include a variety of issues: you could avoid taking your medication, not show up for appointments or fail to meet with your doctor on a regular basis. A failure to comply is considered problematic because it may indicate that person is trying to stay on disability for a longer period of time. But there are some valid reasons you might not wish to comply with some medical treatments. You Have Religious Objections There are religious groups that have objections to certain types of medical treatment. As an example, some religious groups do not believe in blood transfusions. If you have religious objections to your treatments, you cannot be compelled to go through them by the social security disability board. You should make sure, however, that you note these objections clearly and that you contact the Social Security Department as soon as possible.  You Couldn’t Afford the Treatments Sometimes you just can’t afford the treatments even with your social security disability payments. If you can’t afford your payments, you should document your current financial status and you should notify the social security department of the reason why you aren’t able to complete the treatments. Make sure you also document how much each treatment would cost, less any insurance reimbursements that you qualify for.  Your Treatment Causes Undue Hardship If your treatment actually causes you more hardship than your medical problems themselves, then you may have those treatments waived. As an example, a prescription medication might cause severe nausea that makes it difficult to go about your day. You should always document your hardship carefully and consult with your doctor regarding any other potential treatments that could have fewer side effects. Having hardship with one medical treatment does not necessarily mean that you are allowed to avoid alternative treatments as well. You Have a Second or Third Opinion If another doctor tells you that your treatment is not necessary, you can argue that the treatment should not be done. You simply need to get another opinion. But remember, you also need to document this opinion and file it with social security so that they are aware that you are following this course of action. A social security disability attorney can help you defend yourself in the event that your payments are cut or reduced due to failure to comply or due to any other issue. You should contact an attorney as soon as possible to avoid any complications. For more information, contact a firm such as Banik &...

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Why Your Credit Card Company May Object To Your Discharge

Posted by on Apr 14, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

If you file for bankruptcy, your credit card company (alongside other creditors) is automatically informed of the case and has the chance to object to your discharge. While a bankruptcy discharge means that the company may at least get part of its money, it may object to the discharge under certain conditions. For example, a company may raise objections if you used its card to: Pay Non-Dischargeable Obligations Not all debts are dischargeable via bankruptcy; there are debts that you will still have to shoulder such as child support, alimony and student loans. If you use a credit card to pay any of these non-dischargeable obligations, then the creditor can object to its discharge. The argument for this is that you were planning to incur the debt with an intention of filing for bankruptcy and avoiding its payment. It’s effectively the same as switching a non-dischargeable debt (like alimony) with a dischargeable one (credit card debt), and this may not be strictly fraud, but it is somewhere on the border. Buy Luxury Items Creditors may also object to your credit card debt if you incurred it on luxury items. Luxury items are those that you don’t need to support yourself in your daily life. For example, you don’t need a cruise vacation or the latest high definition television set to support your daily life. Therefore, if you used your credit card to book a weekend at a ski resort, then you can expect your credit card company to object to your discharge. The creditor is likely to succeed if your purchase: Was made within a certain number of days Is above a minimum dollar amount Get a Cash Advance You will also have a problem with your discharge if you used it to get a cash advance. Again, for this objection to be considered, you should have made it in the recent past, and it must be of a certain aggregate value. This is because it isn’t easy to tell what you wanted the money for; whether it was for necessary or unnecessary purposes. The credit card company might even argue that you were planning to take advantage of your upcoming (perhaps you had planned it in your head) discharge to get some “free” cash. Therefore, if you are planning to file for a bankruptcy in the near future, or you have at least entertained the thought, you should be very careful with your credit card spending. You don’t want these seemingly “small” issues to derail your discharge process. To learn more, contact a business like Wiesner & Frackowiak,...

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