Archives for 2016

When Bankruptcy Is Not Enough: Be Careful When Investing In Suspect Real Estate

Invest Wisely I have to share with you a cautionary tale of a prior client who had an investment in a real estate property on the South side of Chicago. The neighborhood in which he invested was not great.  In fact, it's one of the two or three neighborhoods in Chicago that has not seen any form of significant re-gentrification. He purchased the property which had a single family home on it with the intent of renting it out and receiving passive income. When he was unable to do so effectively, he decided to include it in his chapter 7 bankruptcy along with other debts that he wished to eliminate. The underlying debt to the mortgage company was eliminated. However, my former client still + Read More

How Soon Will I Get Credit After Filing Bankruptcy?

It's amazing to me that people are worried about getting credit before they even completed a bankruptcy case. This is due in fact based upon Americans desire and obsession for credit. After all, credit is what more than likely got the person into financial problems to begin with. Now there are other causes of bankruptcy filings such as medical bills, job loss, illness, divorce, but the main reason why people fall into bankruptcy is due to credit. Credit Score It seems that everyone is obsessed with credit and their credit scores. People want to know how is bankruptcy going to affect my credit score? I have to look at these potential clients in bewilderment. Why on earth are they asking me + Read More

Some Judges Making It Difficult For Bankruptcy Attorneys To Get Their Fees Ordered

Problems Getting Paid In The Past Over the past 20 years, I have been searching for the reason or reasons why bankruptcy judges make it so difficult for bankruptcy attorneys to get paid in Chapter 13 consumer bankruptcy cases. This goes all the way back to the early 1990’s when some judges would simply not sign the order. Perhaps the judges had too much work on their docket. Others created additional work by not granting the fees in a timely manner and instead put the applications on the back burner where they often remained lost. In the 2000's, we argued with the presiding bankruptcy judge to order our fees when the motion was first up to be heard with the original confirmation hearing. + Read More

Co-Debtor Stay In Bankruptcy

The co-debtor stay applies in chapter 13 of the United States Bankruptcy Code and goes into effect immediately upon the filing of the case. The co-debtor stay will prohibit any action or continued action to collect on a consumer debt from an individual who secured such debt or who is liable on such debt with the debtor with the exception being if the co-debtor became liable on such debt in the ordinary course of business. The co-debtor stay will apply provided the following legal requirements are met: 1) The primary debtor must have filed the petition for relief under chapter 13. 2) The debt involved must be a consumer debt which is a debt incurred by an individual primarily for + Read More

Lower Gas Prices May Forestall Some Bankruptcy Filings

Gas Prices Drop As gas prices continue to drop, the yearly benefit to the average consumer can approach $750.00 or more per year.  This precipitous drop in prices may help many that are on the fence about filing for bankruptcy.  For a married couple, the savings can approach $1,500.00 or more.  Here are the details: Six months ago, the average gas price was approximately $2.82 per gallon.  If figure the consumer drove 1000 miles per month with an average mile per gallon of 19, the total cost per year for gas would be $1,781.00.  Now that gas prices are averaging $1.82 per gallon, the total cost per year drops to $1,067.00.  This equates to an average savings of $714.00 which could vary + Read More

What Happens When I File Bankruptcy?

Below is a partial transcript of David M. Siegel as he talks bankruptcy law for the Legal Action television show which airs on Comcast Cable throughout Chicago and its suburbs: Interviewer: Let me ask you this.  I work at a bank so is my employer going to find out if I do a bankruptcy? David Siegel: Your employer’s typically not going to know about your bankruptcy unless he or she needed to be notified.  For example, if a client is being currently garnished and they come in for a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13 and they want to stop that garnishment. We’re going to have to send proof of the bankruptcy filing over to the payroll department; so in that limited circumstance your job is going to + Read More

New Bankruptcy Forms Causing Some Administrative Headaches

Bankruptcy Form Changes On December 1, 2015, almost all of the bankruptcy forms and schedules were amended. Many clients who had already signed earlier versions of the forms and were awaiting filing, had their filings delayed because they had to re-sign and reread new forms. In certain circumstances, the forms had to be emailed or faxed to expedite an emergency filing. Now as we come to the conclusion of several cases, the official form 423 regarding certification about a financial management course has to be newly signed as well. The court granted a 30 day grace period after the forms were changed to utilize the earlier version of forms. Since we have now exceeded the 30 day grace period, + Read More