Preferential Payments: The Basics

January 24, 2013

A preferential payment is a payment that a debtor makes to a creditor shortly before filing for bankruptcy. The Bankruptcy Code allows the trustee (or debtor-in-possession) to recover such payments from the creditor. The logic is that, unless the preferential payments are recovered, the creditor will receive more than other unsecured creditors. This would violate […]

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Should Married Debtors File Jointly?

January 21, 2013
Hispanic couple working in home office

Married debtors commonly ask whether they should file jointly or separately for bankruptcy protection. The answer depends primarily on whether a majority of the debt is in one spouse’s name only. If it is, then it may be beneficial for that spouse to file individually. This will eliminate the debts in that spouse’s name, plus […]

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The Meeting of Creditors Demystified

January 17, 2013

Whether you file a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you are required by section 341 of the Bankruptcy Code to attend a meeting of creditors.  At this meeting, the trustee and creditors will question you to verify the information provided in the forms you filed with the court. Although the trustee will usually protect […]

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Taxes and Short Sale

January 11, 2013

SO THE FISCAL CLIFF HAS BEEN AVERTED We had the “fiscal cliff” drama with the posturing between the political rivals in Washington holding the nation in rapt attention as to whether the USA would become another Greece or Spain.   When they realized we didn’t give a damn what they do, Congress decided they would temporarily […]

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The Bankruptcy of Hostess Brands

January 7, 2013

Are you so indebted that you have little choice but to file for bankruptcy? If so, then like many others in your situation, you’re probably beating yourself up. Bankruptcy can be extremely stressful. It can make you feel like a complete failure who will never amount to anything. But you shouldn’t let it! Recently I […]

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How To Stop A Foreclosure

January 3, 2013

Your foreclosure sale is next week – or maybe tomorrow – and you’re panicking. Should you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy? What will this do for you? It can stall a foreclosure. It may give you some additional time to stay in your home but it’s difficult to say for how long. Once you file for […]

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10 Celebrities Who Survived Financial Ruin

December 31, 2012

Are you thinking about filing for bankruptcy? Obviously, this is not a decision to take lightly. But nor is it the end of the world. Bouncing back from bankruptcy is not at all uncommon. In fact, many a debtor has risen from the financial ashes to fly high as a phoenix of human history. Following […]

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Mortgage Lien Stripping in Bankruptcy

December 24, 2012

Is there a second mortgage or equity line of credit on your house? Chapter 13 bankruptcy permits “lien stripping” – the removal of a second mortgage or home equity line of credit from your principal residence (under certain circumstances). For example, suppose that your principal residence has a current fair market value of $450,000. The […]

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Credit Card Debt and Personal Bankruptcy

December 20, 2012

From Napa and Fairfield to Oakland and Antioch, we hear about credit card debt every day. Image courtesy of James Barker / How it all began – the story of credit card solicitations, promotions, and gimmicks One day you received in the mail an invitation from a bank to accept a pre-approved credit card. […]

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Choosing Your Bankruptcy Lawyer: Experience Matters

December 18, 2012

How do you go about choosing your bankruptcy lawyer? Most people never expect to be faced with bankruptcy. Then there’s the embarrassment factor. Facing bankruptcy is not something that most people are anxious to share with friends and neighbors. It’s not like asking for advice about a hairdresser or lawn service. So how do you […]

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Home Owners Association Fees not Discharged by Bankruptcy

December 10, 2012

Thanks to recent changes in bankruptcy law, home owners association (HOA) fees are not wiped out by bankruptcy. This confuses bankruptcy clients, especially those who give up the home associated with the fees. I explain why you are responsible for these fees after bankruptcy and offer a way out. Running with the Land HOA fees […]

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