In My Bankruptcy Case, Why Do I Need To Reaffirm On A Car But Not On My House?

The Code Dictates The bankruptcy code is what governs every issue of a bankruptcy filing. Under chapter 7 bankruptcy law, the bankruptcy code dictates as to what must be done with regard to particular, secured property. For example, if you have a financed vehicle in a chapter 7 bankruptcy case, the bankruptcy code mandates that you make an election. You can either reaffirm the debt on that vehicle, redeem the debt on that vehicle or surrender the vehicle in satisfaction of the debt. You simply only have those three choices with regard to a secured vehicle debt in a chapter 7 bankruptcy case. You no longer have the ability to simply continue to make monthly payments without a valid + Read More

What Are The Advantages Of Filing Bankruptcy With An Attorney?

If you file bankruptcy with an attorney, you're going to get assistance throughout the process. Your attorney is going to know exactly what needs to be done with your case. This all starts with the very first consultation. The attorney is going to be able to interview you, advise you, and notify you of potential issues with your case. If you are trying to file bankruptcy on your own, you are not even going to be aware of specific issues that you need to be aware of. For example, your attorney is going to be looking for assets much in the same way that the chapter 7 trustee is going to be looking for assets. Your attorney wants to make sure that you have a smooth and efficient chapter 7 case. + Read More

My Sheriff Sale Date Has Passed. Will Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Help Me?

If you're looking to save a home from foreclosure, chapter 13 will help you provided you file your bankruptcy case before a Sheriff sale has taken place. Chapter 13 will allow for you to pay back your mortgage arrearages over a three to five-year period. You also have to make your regular mortgage payment each month while your case is progressing through the court system. However, if you wait until after the Sheriff sale has occurred, then you are too late to reorganize to save a home under Chapter 13. This issue has been litigated extensively through the courts as to whether or not it's the Sheriff Sale date or the confirmation of that sale which dictates. The rulings here in Illinois have + Read More

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Would Provide The Fresh Start Needed

This is the case of Melika Murray who comes to me from North Chicago which is Lake County, Illinois for a bankruptcy consultation.  Ms. Murray has never filed for bankruptcy before, even though she states that she has been struggling for debt for over 20 years.  She owns no real estate.  She is renting and she is paying approximately $525 per month on a month to month lease.  She does not have a vehicle in her name and she uses public transportation.  She has very little in the way of personal property.  Basically her clothing and some minor household goods with approximately $1000.  She does not have a 401(k), she has no life insurance.  She cannot sue anybody.  She does not receive any + Read More

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Helps Pay Off Parking Tickets

This is the case of Willie Banister from Chicago, Illinois who was appearing for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy consultation.  Mr. Banister has never filed a bankruptcy before.  He is not a homeowner.  He is renting on a month to month lease from a landlord in Chicago.  He does not own a motor vehicle.  In terms of personal property, he has household goods worth approximately $300 and clothing worth approximately $300.  He does not have a 401(k), IRA or other pension or profit sharing plan.  He does expect a tax refund of $1100.  He cannot sue anybody for personal injury or workers compensation and he does not expect to inherit any money in the next six months.  He is divorced and he works for the + Read More

Bankruptcy – I Share a Bank Account, Is That Money At Risk?

Well, all of your assets must be listed on a bankruptcy petition and this is true under chapter 7 or under chapter 13.  If you are joint on a bank account, that basically means that you and the other party on the account both have equal rights to that money.  If the sum is in excess of the state exemption amounts, then a portion of that fund or account may be touchable or attachable by the trustee in order to administer it for the benefit of creditors. Now, in a chapter 13 bankruptcy case, your property is completely protected so it wouldn’t matter if you had a joint account that had nonexempt equity.  In a 13, you simply must pay back at least as much as creditors would get in a chapter + Read More

Foreclosure -Can I lose my house if I am behind on my second mortgage?

If you are behind on your second mortgage, you technically can be foreclosed upon by that second mortgage and eventually lose the home.  The second mortgage might not be the one who gets paid or made whole but they can push the issue and actually do the bidding for the first mortgage company in a foreclosure action.  My advice to consumers and those that are going through bankruptcy is to maintain current payments on both the first and second mortgage holders.  If you fail to make either the first or the second mortgage payment, then either one of those vendors can institute a foreclosure action if you fall far enough behind. In some cases, you can fail to make the second mortgage payment + Read More

Can I Put Condo Associations Fees In A Bankruptcy

The simple answer is yes, the condo associations can be put in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy and be repaid over a 3 to 5 year period.  Much like a mortgage that you fell behind on, the condo association is a secured debt, secured by your property that you need to pay in order to keep that property or in order to keep the right to possess that property.  By filing a Chapter 13, you can take the amount that you owe to your condo association and propose to repay that amount over a 3 to 5 year period.  Now, the catch is that you must continue to make your regular condo Association payment going forward after your case is filed.  Simply reorganizing the part you fell behind and failing to make the + Read More

Can my tax debt be eliminated in bankruptcy?

Taxes can be eliminated in certain circumstances and in certain circumstances your attorney will be able to advise you.  For example, if you have tax debt that is more than three years old and if you filed a return for those years and if you did not commit any type of fraud, then the debt can be eliminated in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.  The three-year rule is important because if you applied for and received an extension, you have to wait out three years from the date the tax was due plus any extension.  There are also additional rules and regulations that pertain to tax debt which are very complicated so I want to keep it simple here. If you have tax debt that is more than three years old + Read More

What Are The Advantages Of Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is advantageous to a consumer because it offers a “fresh start”. Throughout a consumer’s lifetime, bills are accrued by means of credit cards, medical visits, automobile purchases, etc. Through a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, a debtor can ultimately be discharged from these obligations, which is known as the “fresh start”. Furthermore, there is some instant relief for the debtor the minute he hires an attorney. This is because he then can inform the creditors that he is represented by an attorney, which by law, wards off further direct creditor calls to the consumer. Once a consumer is represented by an attorney, the creditors must cease all telephone collection attempts + Read More