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Lawrence Masssachusetts Bankruptcy Lawyer
Have you been sued by your credit card? I was in Lawrence district court the other day and couldn’t believe the number of Lawrence residents being sued by their creditors. Most of the debtors had lost a job or ran into health problems or simply could not make ends meet. The debts varied greatly from as little as a few thousand dollars to well over fifty thousand. Without exception the credit card companies had received a judgment against the debtors and because the debtors had never answered the complaints the amounts owed were now double what was spent for purchases by the debtor. The reason for this was because now there were attorneys fee, costs and interest tacked onto the tab.
The collections attorneys work on contingent basis, which means they get one third of whatever they collect from the debtors. I have dealt with these attorneys, some who have been reasonable but many have become cold hearted and see the debt as an income stream. They don’t care that you cannot put food on your table or that you are robbing Peter to pay Paul they want their one third of the take so they hall you into court on what’s called a supplementary process hearing. In this hearing they have the right to ask you questions about your ability to pay. So that means all of your finances and expenses are on the table. If that sounds like an invasion of your privacy you are right. Think there is no debtor’s prison? You might be wrong. If you don’t show up for the hearing they can issue an arrest warrant for you. Once you arrive at court they will announce all of the cases. Usually they hire some newby attorney to go to court for them and give them like fifty cases. Most of the time you will have to go out into the hall and fill out a financial statement and negotiate a monthly payment. If you thought the credit card interest was bad, don’t forget that the judgment has interest of 12% a year. So even if you pay $150.00 a month you are not really going to make a dent into what you owe.
Did you know chapter 7 bankruptcy can make all of this go away. Chapter 7 bankruptcy can wipe away these types of judgments. If you do get a supplementary process hearing notice you could show up and tell them you are going to file chapter 7 and give them your attorneys number and get out of there. The collections lawyers really have no remedy at that point because the debt you owe is going to be wiped away.
But doesn’t chapter 7 hurt your credit? How do you think your credit looks right now that you haven’t paid your credit card bill and have a judgment against you? That’s right not that good. Look at it this way, let’s say you keep your debt and continue trying to pay it. In seven years you may still owe money on that debt and your credit might have improved or might have gotten worse. If you keep the debt you credit will have a hard time improving because you will still have a high debt to asset level.
In the alternative if you file for chapter 7 bankruptcy all of your debts will be wiped away. So over time your credit can bounce back because your debts to asset level has improved. You can also spend the money you would have used on the paying the credit card company back on things like rent, or food for your family, or clothing for your children or who knows something fun like an occasional night out on the town.
If you are a Massachusetts resident who has be summoned into Lawrence district court by your credit card company please give me a call to discuss your case. Bankruptcy might be the right answer for you. I offer very affordable bankruptcy solutions. Please don’t hesitate to call me even if you don’t want to file bankruptcy but just want some advice on what to expect at court. It’s totally free. I do this because I am a consumer advocate and like helping people. The banks got bailed out and you deserve a second chance and a fresh start as well.
Have you been sued by your credit card company and live in
- Andover, MA
- Lawrence, MA
- Methuen, MA
- North Andover,MA
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyer
By Justin Pope AP
The misfortunes that brought schoolteachers Devin and Sarah Stang and their four young children to bankruptcy — and the loss of their house and a car in the process — were their own unique story.
They bought the house at just the wrong time. There were heavy medical expenses when, at five months pregnant, she delivered stillborn twins. And their money woes go back further: When Sarah’s college softball team pressured her to drop classes she wanted to take, she quit, lost her scholarship and had to make up the difference with loans. Devin, too, borrowed to get a master’s degree. Then they struggled amid school layoffs near their Sandusky, Ohio, home.
Now, the Stangs just want a truly clean slate, financially. But even the ordeal of bankruptcy won’t give it to them, and the reason is a common one: Much of their debt comes from private student loans.
Virtually any other kind of debt — including medical bills, mortgage, credit cards and car loans, even gambling losses— can be discharged in bankruptcy, allowing the “honest but unlucky” a chance to restore their footing through an arduous restructuring overseen by a court.
But under a 2005 law passed by Congress to protect lenders, private student loans fall under the same nearly-impossible-to-clear category as child support payments and criminal fines.
“It’s a huge part of why the younger generations are here now,” said the Stangs’ bankruptcy lawyer, Matthew Barrett, whose busy office in Amherst, west of Cleveland, belies stories about the improving economy. He estimates half his clients have problems with student debt.
To advocates for student borrowers, the law is infuriating, counter-productive and — if intended to ensure lenders would be willing to make loans to students— demonstrably unnecessary. They see changing it as among the most effective, and least costly, ways to help those most seriously burdened by student debt, without giving a break to those for whom it’s manageable.
Yet despite a voluble national conversation on student debt, the issue has gotten comparatively little attention.
At stops in three swing states this week, President Barack Obama is calling on Congress to head off a scheduled doubling in federal Stafford loan rates, from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent. Changing that law could save more than 7 million new borrowers on average $1,000 a year, according to the White House. But this across-the-board benefit for current college students would do nothing for older borrowers already in trouble.
Acting without Congress, the Obama administration has implemented a series of protections for those pressed to pay back federal loans, such as income-based repayment and a public-service loan forgiveness program — steps lauded by advocates for borrowers.
However, the president appears never to have directly addressed a proposal by Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Illinois, to overturn the 2005 law on private loans. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner recently told Durbin the dischargeability proposal had “some merit” and that the administration wanted to work with him to expand the protections it has implemented for federal student loans into the private market. Regardless, the bill has little chance of passing the divided Congress in an election year.
“There’s a special circle of bankruptcy hell for these kinds of debts,” said Rich Williams, higher education advocate with the group US PIRG, which lobbies on student loan issues. “It’s not that students are asking for extra protections. We’re asking for the same protections entitled to every other form of consumer debt.”
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York estimates 37 million Americans have student loan debt, totaling $870 billion. The average balance is around $23,000 (though that partly reflects a relatively small number of very large balances; the median is $12,800). Only 39 percent are paying down balances. An estimated 5.4 million borrowers have at least one student loan account past due.
Roughly 85 percent of outstanding student loan debt is owed to the federal government. The remaining 15 percent that’s counted as private student debt is owed to various non-federal lenders, ranging from banks to loan companies like Sallie Mae Corp. to non-profits and state-affiliated agencies (under the Durbin bill, loans from any government-funded entity still wouldn’t be dischargeable, only those from truly private lenders).
Generally, it’s these private loans that bring borrowers to the door of bankruptcy lawyers like Barrett. Private student loans often lack the protections of federal ones, and have rates that typically start higher and can shoot up. A recent survey of bankruptcy attorneys found 81 percent reporting more clients with student debt in recent years, and roughly half reporting a significant increase.
Barrett says he’s seeing more recent college graduates who couldn’t get a job after graduation or who, if they did, faced garnishment of entry-level wages.
Before the 2005 law passed, lenders would “try to work with (borrowers) on a payment plan,” Barrett says. “They had the threat, if we don’t make it so this person can afford to live and eat and get to work and dress for work, then they’re going to file for a bankruptcy plan and we’re going to get hit.
“Now, they’ll hit you with a garnishment — and if you can’t make ends meet, tough.”
Private lenders haven’t always enjoyed a spot at the front of the line of bankruptcy creditors.
Until 1976, all education loans were dischargeable in bankruptcy. That year Congress began requiring borrowers to wait at least five years before they could discharge federal student loans. Since 1998, borrowers have been unable ever to discharge federal student loans, and in 2005 the then-Republican-controlled Congress made private loans almost impossible to discharge. Essentially, borrowers must prove they can’t repay and will never be able to, but the standard is vague. And litigating in bankruptcy court may be impossible financially for someone in those circumstances.
With federal loans, the concern was that making it too easy to walk away from debts would put taxpayer dollars at risk.
With private loans, the lender protections were justified by fears that otherwise lenders wouldn’t extend students the capital they needed to cover tuition bills. Student loans offer no security or collateral. Lenders are betting on a borrower’s education to produce future earnings. Put differently, a bank can repossess your car but not your brain.
Changing the law “would force our members to raise borrower rates or elevate their already strict underwriting standards and essentially make it harder to make the loans,” said a spokeswoman for the Education Finance Council, which represents nonprofit and state-based providers of non-federal loans, in a statement issued on behalf of president Vince Sampson. A Moody’s report also suggested younger student borrowers might be especially tempted by an easier bankruptcy filing, not appreciating the long-term credit damage.
But such arguments swim upstream against a lot of historical data.
Before 1976, when student loans were dischargeable in bankruptcy, there’s little evidence borrowers abused the practice. A federal study from that time estimated less than 1 percent of all matured student loans were discharged in bankruptcy.
Experts like Deanne Loonin of the National Consumer Law Center say bankruptcy is demoralizing, humiliating and difficult, and nobody undertakes it lightly.
“I wasn’t raised to say, ‘I’ll go file bankruptcy,’” said Devin Stang, who is 41. The family’s student debt totals $25,000 in federal loans and about $37,000 in private ones, much of it from taking required continuing education credits to keep up their teaching licenses and job prospects at a time of widespread layoffs.
Surrendering one of their two cars in bankruptcy will limit the Stangs’ work options, Barrett says. And digging out will be even harder because, even after their other debts are clear, the private student lenders could garnishee up to 25 percent of wages.
If they could discharge their private loans in the same manner as credit card debts, “away we’d go on our lives,” Stang said.
There’s also little evidence that changing the law would affect the availability of private student loans. In fact, private student lending was expanding rapidly before 2005, when the loans were dischargeable. Then Congress awarded lenders stronger collection powers — but private student lending fell by two-thirds in just a few years, coinciding with the broader credit crunch.
A leading financial aid expert, Mark Kantrowitz of the website Finaid.org, doesn’t buy the lenders’ argument. He says changing the law might slightly increase fees, but lenders make their decisions based on credit scores and macro-economic factors.
Al Lord, the CEO of Sallie Mae., the largest private lender, which originated $2.7 billion in education loans last year, has predicted changing the law would affect the availability of credit for young people. But he said in a 2010 earnings call that the financial impact on Sallie Mae would be “small” and “not particular troublesome,” in part because almost all its new loans — 85 percent at the time — have co-borrowers.
In a statement, Sallie Mae said the company would support reforms allowing students who have made a “good-faith effort” for five to seven years to discharge student loans in bankruptcy, but specified it would want the reform to apply to both federal and private loans (there’s no proposal on the table to make federal loans dischargeable).
Even if changing the law did make private loans disappear, some advocates think that wouldn’t be so bad.
In fact, new lending has already fallen sharply recently, and it hasn’t kept people out of college; enrollment is way up. Students who might have gotten private loans five years ago, but can’t now, are apparently choosing less expensive schools or borrowing more of what they need from the federal government, which accounts for more than 90 percent of new loan volume now.
A study by the Project on Student Debt, a foundation-supported research group, found that half of students who took out private loans in 2007-2008 failed to borrow their maximum eligibility in federal Stafford loans. Those students could have — and almost certainly should have — borrowed more from Washington first (undergraduates can cumulatively borrow up to $31,000 in federal Stafford loans, and in some cases, as much as $57,500). Now, they’re doing so.
Finally, if the spigot of private loans cut off, it might temper college cost increases. Colleges would find it harder to get away with charging more than what students can borrow from the government.
“These private loans are toxic,” said Williams, of the student advocacy group. If students still can’t afford a college without one, he said, they should probably consider another college.
The current economic crisis has left many people without financial resources to pay all of their bills and financial obligations contacting a Massachusetts Bankruptcy Lawyer may be the answer. Often times the pressure of debt can be unmanageable when debtors also face unexpected unemployment or illness. Fortunately there are a myriad of options open to debtors, including debt consolidation, refinancing and bankruptcy. When there are limited assets and no way to stay current on financial obligations bankruptcy may be the best answer.
The most common choices for Massachusetts Debtors is to choose either a Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 bankruptcy. In the Chapter 13 plan the debtor pays back a portion of the debt over periods ranging from three to five years. The Chapter 13 process his highly monitored by trustees who work on commission as to the amount of they can recover for the bankruptcy estate.
Premier Massachusetts Bankruptcy Lawyer
A Chapter 7 bankruptcy give debtors a fresh start because it wipes out the most if not all of the unsecured debt (like credit cards). The reason a Chapter 7 bankruptcy is so useful for Massachusetts residents is because many would never have the financial resources to ever pay back their debt and still make ends meat.
One of the main advantages to filing a Massachusetts Chapter 7 bankruptcy is that the process only takes three to six months from the date of the filing. And once completed the debt is completely eliminated and the debtor can begin a new financial start.
Another advantage for Massachusetts debtors is that Creditors must cease collection activities and harassing phone calls must immediately cease. Further it will end wage garnishments and collections lawsuits.
It should be noted that certain debts cannot be discharged in a Chapter 7 case. Things like student loans, child support and taxes cannot be discharged absent rare circumstances.
The process for filing a Chapter 7 case is quite straight forward. A debtor meets a Massachusetts Bankruptcy Lawyer and various financial information is compiled. Then the petition is drafted by your Massachusetts Bankruptcy Lawyer who files it on your behalf. There after a meeting of the creditors is scheduled. At this meeting you will meet the trustee who will go over the petition with you. Rarely do any creditors ever appear. If there are no other issues the debt is then discharged within the next several months and the unsecured debt is then eliminated.
Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy with a qualified Massachusetts Bankruptcy Lawyer can help those who are in financial difficulty get a fresh start and work to repair their credit. The process is streamlined and it may be the only way to get a debtor back on their financial feet. If your are interested or have any questions about filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy please feel free to contact Massachusetts Bankruptcy Lawyer J. Morgan Hargrove. Consultations are always free and he is very easy to talk with. The important thing is you should not feel embarrassed about your situation you did not ask for this to happen. For whatever reasons beyond your control you are faced with difficult financial situation that is beyond your control. It is ok to ask for help.
If you go into Massachusetts District courts on any given day you are likely to see several unfortunate debtors who are being sued by their credit card companies. If you think they will not come after you for a few thousand dollars you would likely be wrong. First they will file a complaint against you and have it served on you. Usually the debtor will have no real idea what to do and not answer the complaint. This usually leads to the lawyer for the credit card company gaining an immediate unfair advantage.
Although most judges will be lenient against a pro se debtor (pro se means without a lawyer) their lenience only goes so far and they must comport to the rules of civil procedure. Being greatly outmatched the debtor usually will get a judgment against them. Usually the amount of judgment far exceeds the few thousand dollars of original debt, because buried in your credit card contracts you agree to all sorts of late fees and collection fees in exchange for the credit card. Plus now you are paying the juice on the the judgment at 12 % apr (and you thought the credit card companies were tough).
So if you try to defend yourself you will usually lose because you really have no defenses unless you feel you paid the debt and the lawsuit is a mistake. Most of the time the lawyer will get a judgment against you and an assessment. Invariable they then can take that judgment and try to garnish your wages. Garnishing your wages means they take out a huge chunk out of your pay check every week. Sounds horrible doesn’t it?
A lawsuit can bring with it great traumatic stress both financially and economically. If you have been sued by a credit card company and you feel you could never repay the debt owed, bankruptcy may be the answer.
How it works:
Once you file bankruptcy you we will list the creditors and the lawsuit in your bankruptcy petition. And once you file you get the benefit of the automatic stay. Once the automatic stay is in place the lawyer for the credit card company cannot do anything further against you in court until the stay is lifted. They may try to lift the stay but most likely this attempt will be futal. After you complete your requirements for your bankruptcy the creditor and judgment will be discharged and you will never have to pay.
You can start your financial life over. This why bankruptcy lawyers always talk about a fresh start.
Bankruptcy trustee Howard Ehrenberg is suing Tobey Maguire, star of “Spiderman,” in a claw back effort to reclaim more than $300,000. Ehrenberg is the trustee in thebankruptcy case of Bradley Ruderman. Ruderman is currently in prison for stealing $25 million from investors in his Ponzi scheme, fronted by a hedge fund that he managed.
Ruderman played high stakes games of Texas Hold ‘Em poker with Maguire and lost big. The games were played in Southern California hotels between 2006 and 2009.
Checks written to Maguire for covering poker losses total $311,200.
Funds invested in Ruderman’s Capital were transferred to Maguire for payment. Maguire was unaware that investors victimized by Ruderman funded his winnings. The trustee said that the money still needs to be repaid.
“It is a technical legal argument – if you are involved in an illegal activity, you don’t get that defense of ignorance,” Ehrenberg said. “The game he played in itself was illegal. That’s the linkage, the money was paid directly from Ruderman Capital.”
Games played in private homes for stakes are not illegal in California. However, the suit alleges that the games that Ruderman and Maguire played were against the law because a paid event planner organized everything.
Filing for personal bankruptcy is a serious decision that should not be taken lightly. But, bankruptcy can be beneficial and allow you to get a fresh financial start. Here are a few reasons why you may want to file either a chapter 7 personal bankruptcy or a chapter 13 personal bankruptcy.
- You Have Outstanding Medical Bills- A single trip to an emergency room can cost you $20,000 or more. So, if you suffer a broken leg you and are required to have emergency surgery you can, in an instant, became literally destitute. Therefore, by filing bankruptcy you will likely be able to discharge outstanding medical bills.
- Your Wages Are Being Garnished- When you are sued and a judgment is placed against you the creditor can garnish your wages. This means that money will automatically be taken out of your paycheck. This can be a devastating situation. For example, in Nevada a creditor can potentially garnish up to 25% of our wages. Thus, when you file for bankruptcy you will automatically stop the creditor from garnishing your wages.
- Your Property is Being Foreclosed- Certain states allow a homeowner to be sued under a deficiency judgment when their house is foreclosed upon. A deficiency occurs when a bank loses money upon selling a house that is foreclosed upon. Basically, if your owe $100,000 on your house and the bank can only sell your house for $30,000 you can be sued for the $70,000 difference. So, by filing for a bankruptcy you can stop the bank from suing you for the $70,000 deficiency. (Please Note, that a deficiency judgment is only allowed in certain states. )
- You Lose a Law Suit- If you lose a lawsuit the other party will then be able to collect on what you owe them via the judgment. By filing for bankruptcy you maybe able to stop the other side from collecting their judgment.
These are just a few reasons why filing for a bankruptcy can be useful. However, before filing for a personal bankruptcy you need to consult an experienced bankruptcy attorney. An experienced attorney will tell you the differences between chapter 13 and a Chapter 7 bankruptcy and will be able to advise you if bankruptcy is even necessary. The majority of all bankruptcy attorneys will give a you a free consultation. So, if possible you should get a second opinion. So, do not be cheap. See a an experienced bankruptcy attorney before you make any decision upon whether or not to file for bankruptcy.
Contact a Massachusetts bankruptcy lawyer serving Norwood MA. 617 454 4906
By Peter Kenny
Chapter 7 is a liquidation (selling) process in which the non-exempt property that is owned by the person filing is liquidated (sold) for distribution to the creditors. The debtor then receives a discharge of all dischargeable debts.
Generally speaking, those who file for Chapter 7 are in very bad financial conditions, usually with large credit card and other secured and unsecured debt. For the most part, these individuals do not own many assets which can be sold off which means that they have less to lose than some other more affluent individuals. Normally, these people are able to completely eliminate, most or all of their debts.
To be eligible to file for chapter 7 you must not have been granted a Chapter 7 discharge within the last six years or have completed a Chapter 13. You must not have had a bankruptcy filing dismissed for cause within the last six months. There are, of course, many other requirements, far too many to be listed in this article, but these are the most commonly asked about requirements for filing under Chapter 7.
After your bankruptcy is filed, the court will mail a written notice to all the creditors listed in your schedules. Once a creditor or collector has been notified of your filing they must stop all efforts to collect the debt. This is one of the benefits of filing for bankruptcy and can help stop harassment.
Consumers should understand that they may still be responsible for certain debts even after filing for Chapter 7. The following debts are usually not forgiven or discharged: taxes that are owed to state and Federal governments, alimony and child support, those debts that came about because of willful misconduct, liability for injury or death from driving while intoxicated; non-dischargeable debts from a prior bankruptcy, most types of student loans, and those debts that came about through fraud or criminal activities that the person engaged in.
Anyone considering filing for bankruptcy should first seek advice from a bankruptcy attorney. He or she can help you make the best decisions concerning which chapter you should file. They can also give you guidance on the new bankruptcy laws that are now in effect.
Consumers who are close to bankruptcy should also ask for advice from their local advice center in order to get their finances in some sort of order.
A Boston bankruptcy lawyer can explain to you your options to see if bankruptcy is the right answer for you. A bankruptcy lawyer will be your partner to help you get yourself back on track.
Now, you may feel embarrassed or ashamed about your situation, but trust me, a good bankruptcy lawyer has seen just about every situation and is not there to judge you. Bankruptcy is something that should be done with the help of an experienced bankruptcy lawyer. However, it is important to understand that there are many things you can do to help your bankruptcy lawyer that will make the process go much more smoothly which will be discussed in your free consultation with your Boston Bankruptcy Lawyer.
If you decide that filing personal bankruptcy is the best option for you, make sure you look up a Massachusetts bankruptcy lawyer that specializes in personal bankruptcy.If you are unemployed or under employed and finding it nearly impossible to pay your bills each month, see if a Boston bankruptcy lawyer can help you get back on your feet. If you have questions about filing for bankruptcy in Massachusetts, the best person you can turn to for advice is an affordable and experienced bankruptcy lawyer.
Not surprisingly for those that are inside a monetary rut or around the verge of monetary wreck, coming up with additional money to spend a bankruptcy lawyer might be downright not possible. Of course, this process has lot to do with funds, which is why you should think about the financial costs involved with it before getting a bankruptcy lawyer.
For many consumers, Bankruptcy provides absolute relief from debt collectors, garnishments, foreclosure and unpaid medical bills. As a Massachusetts bankruptcy lawyer, I will walk you through the gauntlet of bankruptcy and see that you have the fresh start you deserve.
Bankruptcy can be faced by anyone, and in order to gain financial freedom and eliminate yourself from debt, you will need the services of a proficient bankruptcy lawyer. We will stop all those harassing calls that you receive from the creditors, the fear of getting trapped beneath your debts will soon extinguished by your bankruptcy. It is evident that in order to file a successful bankruptcy and move forward with rebuilding your financial life, the services of a skilled and reputable personal bankruptcy lawyer is a key ingredient. Both Chapter 7 bankruptcy lawyers and Chapter 13 bankruptcy lawyers we promise to assist you in every step of the process.
Chapter Seven, also known as “liquidation” or “straight bankruptcy,” is what many individuals understand as a personal bankruptcy. Chapter Seven or any other type of personal bankruptcy will stop a lawsuit right away and stop creditors from placing a lien on your house or garnishing your hard-earned salary. Both federal and state laws provide exemptions for property or home that you’re permitted to declare as exempt and keep when you file a Chapter 7 individual bankruptcy. For married people declaring bankruptcy , based upon your circumstances it may be more beneficial for you to file a joint Chapter 7 case together with your spouse, or it might be more beneficial to file separately with out your husband or wife.
Usually, not including cases which are terminated or converted, personal debtors get a discharge in more than 99 percent of chapter seven cases. In case your earnings are at or higher the state’s average income level, there are more tests which are utilized to ascertain if you be eligible for a Chapter Seven. Financial obligations from healthcare bills and charge cards are generally regarded as unsecured and therefore are typical factors for a person to file for for Chapter Seven. When you are continuously approaching in need of achieving your monthly bills, it might be time for you to think about talking to a Boston Massachusetts Chapter Seven lawyer about declaring Chapter Seven personal bankruptcy . Student education loans (government and personal), income taxes, penalties, supporting your children, home loans, automobile financing aren’t able to be discharged by filing Chapter Seven personal bankruptcy.
Under the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act (BAPCPA), in order to be qualified to file for personal bankruptcy within Chapter Seven, you have to meet the requirements of the means test. Essentially, this requires you to be earning below your states median income for a family of your size. Examples of unsecured debts are credit card debts, hospital bills, payday loans, study loans etc. Usually, it is the norm to file for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy after exhausting all other repayment options other than bankruptcy. Basically, if your annual income is below the threshold according to the size of your family, then you qualify to file for bankruptcy under Chapter 7. A “fresh start planning session” with attorney Hargrove, bankruptcy attorney , will give you the answers to the questions you have about bankruptcy, chapter 7 or Chapter 13. Many types of unsecured debt are legally discharged by the bankruptcy proceeding, but there are various types of debt that are not discharged in a Chapter 7.
There has been much doom and gloom written about the bankruptcy means test under the new laws and how much more difficult it’s going to be to file Chapter 7.
When you come in for an initial bankruptcy consultation we will determine whether you qualify to have all your debts discharged through bankruptcy under Chapter 7. In most cases, unless a complaint has been filed objecting to the discharge or the debtor has filed a written waiver, the discharge will be granted to a chapter 7 debtor relatively early in the case, that is, 60 to 90 days after the date first set for the meeting of creditors. The bankruptcy law now requires that you attend a credit counseling session prior to filing and a second, budget counseling session, prior to receiving a Chapter 7 discharge. If the debtor’s “current monthly income” (1) is more than the state median, the Bankruptcy Code requires application of a “means test” to determine whether the chapter 7 filing is presumptively abusive. The bankruptcy laws changed in 2005 and one of the main additions to the law was the inclusion of a uniform income standard to determine if someone is eligible for a chapter 7 Bankruptcy. By means of these activities the United States Trustee has attained a regulatory system that most creditor-friendly commentators and Congress have consistently embraced, i.e., a formal Chapter 7 means test. The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 clarifies this area of concern by instituting changes to the U.S. Bankruptcy Code that incorporate, among many other reforms, language establishing a bankruptcy means test for Chapter 7 cases. A typical case generally involves people who have fallen behind in their mortgage payments, delinquent with their priority taxes, or have debts that are generally non-dischargeable in a Chapter 7 (student loans, child support arrears, and others). FREE NO OBLIGATION CONSULTATION from a local Boston bankruptcy lawyer and find out what chapter 7 can do for you.