American Bankruptcy Institute Recommends Changing The Law Regarding Dischargeability Of Debtor’s Attorney’s Fees

It’s tax refund season again.  This means that the number of consumer bankruptcy filings will surge because consumers can afford to pay to file bankruptcy and discharge their debts.  For many, bankruptcy is a luxury that they can’t normally afford.  A significant portion of the cost of filing a consumer bankruptcy is paying for attorney’s fees.  Typically, these attorney’s fees must be paid in full before the case is filed because most courts have ruled that a debt owed to a consumer bankruptcy attorney is…

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New Legislation Introduced To Make Student Loans Dischargeable Again

Richard Nemeth, our firm’s principal, traveled to Washington DC last month to lobby for changes in the bankruptcy laws which would be favorable to consumers, including two bills recently introduced that would make student loans dischargeable again.  Student loans were once dischargeable like any other debt.  Over the years, Congress has chipped away at the dischargeability of student loans bit by bit.  First, it passed a law that said that government backed student loans were only dischargeable after 5 years.  That period was extended later…

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Change In Exemption Statute Alows Debtors To Keep More Property In Bankruptcy

Among the most important issues to consider when filing a consumer bankruptcy are the exemption laws.  Exemption laws are federal and state laws which set forth what property a person can keep when he or she files bankruptcy.  If the bankrupt party owns property in excess of the property set forth in the exemption laws then, in theory, the excess property must be turned-over to the bankruptcy court to be sold and the proceeds distributed to creditors. Each state chooses whether it wants to allow…

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7 Things Not To Do

Below is a list of common mistakes made by consumers prior to filing bankruptcy. These mistakes can results in significant financial detriment, so take the time now to learn what not to do before filing bankruptcy: 1. DO NOT TRANSFER PROPERTY OUT OF YOUR NAME! Many people transfer property out of their names just prior to filing bankruptcy on the incorrect belief that if they do not own the property at the time of filing, the trustee will be unable to take it from them.…

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RICHARD NEMETH ADDRESSES NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF CONSUMER BANKRUPTCY ATTORNEYS

One of our principals, Richard Nemeth, made a presentation at the annual workshop conducted by the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys last week. NACBA is the only national organization that represents consumer bankruptcy attorneys and their clients. NACBA holds 2 conventions each year where nationally-known experts in the field of consumer bankruptcy make training presentations to other attorneys Mr. Nemeth was asked by NACBA to discuss the initial meeting with a potential bankruptcy client, how to assess the client’s goals and whether an attorney…

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The 2013 Consumer Bankruptcy Surge

Consumer bankruptcy attorneys across the country are anticipating a surge in bankruptcy filings in the year 2013. The stage seems set for a dramatic increase in the number of filings. Here’s why: Eligibility The bankruptcy reform legislation of 2005 became law on October 17, 2005. Many consumers were concerned about the availability of bankruptcy after the reform legislation took effect and so there was a massive surge in bankruptcy filings prior to the law’s effective date. One of the changes in the 2005 reform legislation…

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MORTGAGE INTEREST RATES

MORTGAGE INTEREST RATES Mortgage interest rates are beginning to rise after remaining at historical lows for several years. If you have a high interest rate loan you should consider refinancing it before rates begin to go up. Although there are typically some costs associated with refinancing, the benefits can significantly outweigh them. For example, a 30 year mortgage loan on $150,000.00 at a fixed rate of 3.5 percent (typical today) will require you to pay $92,484.13 in interest over the life of the loan. That…

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The Student Loan Debt Crisis

The Student Loan Debt Crisis There is a new and worsening debt crisis in the United States: Student loans. The collective amount of student loan debt now exceeds the total debt owed by Americans on credit card accounts. The amount owed on student loans has been growing for several reasons. First, the cost of education is increasing much faster than the rate of inflation. Second, more Americans are having to borrow to finance secondary education because the recession has reduced the number of families with…

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SWISS BANK IN TROUBLE FOR AIDING AND ABETTING TAX DODGERS

The Swiss megabank UBS is under investigation by German authorities for aiding and abetting its customers’ efforts to evade taxes. It joins a long list of major global banks accused of criminal activity. It is rare for bank employees ever to be personally convicted and we don’t expect any UBS employees to serve time of these alleged crimes. An exception to this rule are employees of Bernard Madoff’s brokerage firm in New York. After a massive Ponzi scheme was discovered by prosecutors in 2008, nine…

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