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Due to this unprecedented health crisis, many New Yorkers are struggling to take care of their families and make ends meet with a diminished income. Sometimes, the financial challenges are so great that you may be wondering whether bankruptcy can lighten the burden. While bankruptcy will make sense for many people, it doesn’t have to…

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Some debtors who file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy try to minimize their losses by paying back preferred creditors like friends and family and transferring property that’s not likely to be protected by a bankruptcy exemption. When this happens, the bankruptcy trustee has the legal authority to undo these transactions and claim the money and property…

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You will always be grateful to your brother for stepping in when you started struggling financially a year ago. He loaned you $5,000 to stay afloat after you lost your job. Now, months later, you still haven’t found a position that covers more than your basic living expenses, and you’re thinking about filing Chapter 7…

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When you file for bankruptcy in New York, the majority of your creditors will file a claim in order to receive any proceeds from the bankruptcy estate. Although not all of them may receive anything, filing their claim provides information about your debt and increases the likelihood that they will receive something if your trustee…

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When you file for bankruptcy in New York, your debts will become creditor claims. Under bankruptcy law, they are divided into two categories: secured vs. unsecured and, within the latter, priority vs. non-priority. These distinctions dictate which ones get paid first and which ones get paid at all. What are secured claims? Secured debts are…

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Last September, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau released the latest quarterly consumer credit trends report. This document, whose primary purpose is to track how the frequency and types of bankruptcy filings have varied since 2001, also examines issues like: BAPCA effect on the frequency of Chapter 7 filings Discharge rates for Chapter 7 bankruptcies vs.…

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When you take out a mortgage or car loan, you agree to repay the amount over time. If financial challenges become so steep that you end up having to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the lender will usually do one of two things: take back the asset or charge off the debt. How is repossession…

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One of the biggest misconceptions about filing for bankruptcy is that you’re going to “lose everything.” A lot of people don’t learn the truth until they’re desperate enough to consult a bankruptcy attorney and learn that in New York, they can use state or federal exemptions to protect property up to a certain value. How…

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When you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in New York, your attorney will tell you that in exchange for having all dischargeable debt wiped out, you will have to surrender any nonexempt property to the trustee for sale and distribution to your creditors. How does this requirement affect your household goods and furniture? Will you…

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You file for bankruptcy to put your mountain of unsecured debt behind you, but it doesn’t always proceed smoothly. Although it’s not a routine happening, a dispute can arise regarding a debt that you included on the petition. Should this happen, you, your trustee, the creditor, or another party involved in the case can file…

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When you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in New York, your lenders may try to reclaim any assets that you posted as collateral for a loan. However, Section 722 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code allows you to keep this property by “redeeming” it, meaning that you pay the remaining debt balance or the current replacement…

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If you’re thinking about filing for bankruptcy, your debt situation has probably reached crisis level. Perhaps your creditors are calling you on a daily basis, and one or more of them is threatening to sue you. Shouldn’t you see a bankruptcy attorney immediately and receive the protection of the automatic stay? In most cases, the…

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Section 550 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code allows a trustee to sue creditors to recover any payments made by a debtor within the 90-day period prior to their bankruptcy filing. These actions, which as known as preference lawsuits, apply to payments that were made: On a previously incurred (as opposed to current) debt While the…

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Sometimes you can find yourself so deep in debt that you owe more on your household goods, car, and other real property than they are worth. If this happens and you don’t want to risk surrendering these assets in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, a then Chapter 13 may allow you to “cram down” these debts,…

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Most bankruptcies in New York go smoothly. If your trustee or one of your creditors has questions or concerns, then they are generally raised and resolved during the meeting of creditors. In some rare cases, a party seeking additional information will file a motion for a Rule 2004 examination. The Rule 2004 examination explained Debtors…

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You’ve heard about how bad faith on the part of a debtor can impact their bankruptcy filing. When they are motivated by anything other than unmanageable debt and the desire to start over, the court can dismiss their case. However, there are also cases where creditors can act in bad faith, particularly when they force…

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When you think of bankruptcy, you probably imagine an indebted person or business owner visiting a bankruptcy attorney’s office and filing a chapter that is best suited to their circumstances. While this is the most common way to file, it’s not the only one. There are actually two types of bankruptcy in New York: voluntary…

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When you approach the bankruptcy process from an honest and informed perspective, you have an enviable opportunity to eliminate a crushing debt load and start over. Unfortunately, too many debtors are dishonest or uninformed, causing them to risk dismissal of their case and, in some cases, charges of bankruptcy fraud. Before you file, make sure…

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You filed for bankruptcy in New York, and now you’ve heard that an aunt has made you one of the beneficiaries of her sizable estate. You haven’t received your discharge yet, so how much of that money will you be allowed to keep? It’s a question anyone would ask when they receive an inheritance in…

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The month of January can be a difficult time for financially for anyone. They may have acquired even more debt due to holiday spending and are reaching the point where they have to choose between paying the rent and paying their credit card bill. People stuck in this situation may benefit from Chapter 7 bankruptcy.…

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A recent report by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York indicates that the third quarter of 2018 saw increases in practically all types of borrowing, making it the 17th consecutive quarter that America’s debt load has increased. Household debt rose yet again to $13.51 trillion, most of which was mortgage debt at $9.14 trillion.…

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The holiday season can be as stressful as it is magical. This reality can become even more difficult when you know that your debt load has become more than you can handle yet you still have holiday gifts to buy. Your son wants a new PlayStation and your teenage daughter insists that her social life…

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Many consumers have heard of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, which protected them from abusive, unfair, and unconscionable treatment by third-party debt collectors. What may not be as well-known is that individual states have their own debt collection laws, some of which extend greater protection to residents. The New York debt collection regulations were…

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Filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy can provide you with relief from creditor collection actions, but it takes time. You have to complete and file a multi-page petition, attend the 341 meeting (Meeting of Creditors), and more. But what if you can’t wait that long? What if you’re facing a wage garnishment, repossession, foreclosure, or other…

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The Truth in Lending Act, or TILA for short, was passed 50 years ago to ensure protection and transparency for consumers in their interactions with creditors and lenders. Today, it is part of the more encompassing Consumer Credit Protection Act, but its echoes can be felt in the measures taken to help consumers avoid a…

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When you’re burdened by debt and unable to make the minimum payments on your student loans and credit cards you’re probably going to hear from a credit collector or a third-party debt collector. Although dealing with both types can seem like the same frustrating experience to you, the truth is that the law has different…

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At one time it was relatively common for people to file for bankruptcy without an attorney. They would get copies of the required forms, fill them out by hand, and file their own bankruptcy petitions at the clerk’s office. Afterward, they would appear on their own at the meeting of creditors and, if they were…

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You’ve been living in Germany for nearly a year, but have a mountain of debt back home. You also have important property and assets that creditors are threatening to seize if you don’t start paying down the arrears. Even though you live overseas, these creditors can still seek judgments against you and place liens on…

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How many times have you turned on your TV or radio and heard an ad proclaiming how a particular debt settlement company can negotiate with your lenders to lower your interest rate and reduce your monthly payments. Does it sound too good to be true? Chances are that it is. How debt settlement companies work…

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It almost sounds like a plot from a movie. You file for bankruptcy to deal with your financial struggles. Then, seemingly from nowhere, you become rich. You’ve won the biggest jackpot in history or a wealthy relative who didn’t seem inclined to help you financially in life dies and leaves you a fortune. This sudden…

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When your creditors are closing in and you’re facing loss of your home, vehicle, and even a percentage of your wages, Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows you to get everything under control without losing assets in the process. Unlike Chapter 7, which may require you to surrender property in exchange for a total discharge of all…

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Many New York residents who are contemplating bankruptcy worry that their friends, family, and employer will find out, causing them to lose respect and even their job. The bad news is that your bankruptcy filing is a public record, meaning that anyone can look it up—provided they know about it in the first place. In…

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For many of us, the holidays are when budgets go out the window. In 2016, the average American shopper spent $935.58 on Christmas presents, and this year the total will probably go up, thanks to higher-priced gifts and advertisements that make it difficult to resist overspending. For some people, the intention is to spend as…

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Many people opt to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy without assistance from an attorney. Sometimes it is because they feel their cases are simple and straightforward, while in other instances they feel that they can’t afford the attorney fees. While you certainly have the legal right to file for Chapter 7 on your own, help…

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If you are thinking of filing for Chapter 13, then you’re bound to have concerns about any investments you may have. Can creditors like the IRS touch them? Which ones are protected? It’s a complicated area that a New York bankruptcy attorney can clarify for you. 401(k) plans The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA)…

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