Archives for 2015

No Directive From Chicago Area Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Trustees Yet

You may have heard that effective June 12, 2015 there is a proposed order to employer to pay the trustee for chapter 13 cases in the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division, bankruptcy court. The proposed order can be submitted by the attorney for the debtor or the trustee. However, we have not heard any directive from any of the three Chicago area chapter 13 trustees as to how they plan on implementing or dealing with this new order. Specifically, is the trustee going to be submitting orders as they have in the past? Are the chapter 13 trustees going to rely on the debtor's attorney exclusively to submit the payroll control orders? Will the trustees forward the executed order to the + Read More

Final Review Of Your Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Petition

Before your bankruptcy attorney pulls the trigger on an actual filing, you should undergo a thorough final review of your petition. You may discover that your monthly plan payment can change based upon your current circumstances. You may have assets that have shifted or otherwise transferred in the ordinary course of business. You also may have additional creditors which must be added to your bankruptcy case prior to actual filing. For these reasons and more, you should sit down with your attorney to conduct a final review prior to filing your case. Recent Example In a recent example, a woman came to the office who was in the process of filing. She had already completed the credit + Read More

Getting Out Of Your Mortgage Debt With Bankruptcy

With so many Americans underwater with their homes, it should not be surprising that many people have elected to walk away from their homes and file for bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcy allows for the liquidation of property, real and personal. The debtor has the opportunity in a chapter 7 bankruptcy case to surrender items that are secured by a lien. This often falls within the nature of a vehicle. However, it's becoming more and more common to see it be in the nature of a home. This option is available provided the debtor qualifies for chapter 7 bankruptcy relief. If the debtor does not qualify for chapter 7, he may qualify for chapter 13 bankruptcy. A debtor in chapter 13 can also + Read More

Chapter 13 Plan In Bankruptcy Can Be Modified

It is basically true that a chapter 13 plan typically will have a monthly dollar amount which will last for the duration of the case. However, there are certain circumstances were a chapter 13 plan in bankruptcy can be modified. One such case would be where the debtor has fallen behind on his monthly plan payments and the trustee has brought a motion to dismiss. Depending upon how much room is available during the 60 month plan, the arrearage portion can be moved to the end of the plan in certain circumstances. In a recent case, I'm dealing with a debtor who has been struggling with his chapter 13 plan payments for the past two and half years. He has gone through several job changes, + Read More

Responding To A Subpoena To Produce Documents In A Bankruptcy Case

Subpoenas Are Rare In Bankruptcy Subpoenas issued in consumer related bankruptcy cases are rare. They are usually issued by the United States Trustee pursuant to an investigation as to dischargeability. Although ordinary creditors do have the right to conduct 2004 examinations with court approval and subpoena documents, they often will not undergo the process because they normally don't uncover any fruit. The United States Trustee does have the manpower, wherewithal and duty to investigate certain affairs of debtors in certain cases. The subpoena to produce documents is one strong method by which the US Trustee can start to examine the financial affairs of the debtor in an effort to + Read More

Amending The Chapter 13 Plan For Confirmation

Original Plan When a chapter 13 bankruptcy case is filed, an original plan is also filed with the court. The original plan is put forward to notify creditors, the trustee, and the court as to how the debtor proposes to repay creditors over a three to five-year period. The original plan is not likely to be the plan that actually gets confirmed by the court. There may be several amendments to the plan and schedules before a case is actually in a position to be confirmed. In a recent case, the plan and the schedules were amended nearly a dozen times prior to confirmation. We do whatever it takes when amending the Chapter 13 plan for confirmation. The amended documents must be filed with the + Read More

You Will Make It Through Your Bankruptcy; Don’t Panic

You Will Make It Through Your Bankruptcy; Don't Panic For many people the thought of filing for bankruptcy is devastating. If it turns out that you need to file and you simply cannot pay off your debt, listen to the advice of your bankruptcy attorney and don't panic. There are several panic mode incidents which will lead to harm in your bankruptcy. Some of these instances are obvious while others are not so obvious. Before you transfer assets, before you liquidate property and before you do anything out of the normal course of your financial life, talk to an experienced bankruptcy attorney about the options available to you. Don’t Run-Up Credit One panic mode to avoid would be to charge + Read More

There’s A New Way To Have Chapter 13 Payroll Orders Entered

New Local Form 25 Effective June 12, 2015, there is a new method to have chapter 13 payroll control orders entered before the court. The new system completely streamlines the process of getting the order entered quickly and effectively. The clerk's office in the Northern District of Illinois came up with a new form, local form number 25 entitled “order to employer to pay the trustee.”  This new form is a fillable order that can be easily amended and changed based upon which chapter 13 trustee is assigned to the case. For example, if the trustee is Glenn Stearns, then all of the information including the mail to address is indicated with Glenn Stearns. If the trustee is Marilyn Marshall or + Read More

Bankruptcy Attorneys Need To Be Aware Of Section 329

Section 329 of title 11 United States Code is entitled debtor's transaction with attorneys. This section gives the court oversight in financial as well as transactional relationships between debtors and their attorneys. It basically states that any attorney representing the debtor in bankruptcy shall file with the court a statement of the compensation paid for or agreed to be paid if such agreement was made after one year before the date of filing the petition. The statement must also list the source of the compensation and whether it is coming from the debtor or a third party. The court then has the ability under section 329 to determine whether that compensation exceeds the reasonable + Read More

More Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Trustees Taking Liberties With The Bankruptcy Code

Most chapter 7 bankruptcy trustees in Cook County do a great job of balancing their duties while administering chapter 7 cases. There are more than a select few Trustees who seem to be growing towards advancing these cases beyond what they were intended to be. Let me provide a little background. The duties of a trustee are specifically enumerated in Section 704 of 11 United States Code. The general nature of a trustee's duties under chapter 7 is to administer the estate of any nonexempt assets that the debtor may have. Specifically, the trustee shall collect and reduced to money the property of the estate for which the trustee serves and close such estate as expeditiously as is compatible + Read More

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