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Thousands of New Yorkers have lost their jobs in the last several weeks because their employers ceased operations to control the spread of COVID-19. Those who rent their homes or have a mortgage are understandably worried. What happens if you can’t pay? On March 20, Governor Cuomo issued an executive order that prohibited enforcement of…

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Last month, the New York unemployment rate went up to 14.5%, taking it to its highest level since the Great Depression. According to the New York State Department of Labor (DOL), it was the biggest monthly drop in employment numbers on record. Nationally, the April unemployment rate was 14.7% (compared to 4.1% in March), mostly…

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Anyone who files for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in New York will have to include a form called a Statement of Intention, which is used to provide the following information to your creditors, trustee, and the court: Which debts are secured by collateral (secured) How you plan to address your secured debts Although the automatic stay…

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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 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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When you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in New York, one of the biggest advantages is that the automatic stay protects you from most creditor actions such as collection agency calls, wage garnishments, lawsuits, foreclosures, and repossessions. The automatic stay is an injunction issued by the bankruptcy court. Once creditors are notified, even a lawsuit…

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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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When you accumulate a certain amount of tax debt, the IRS may file a lien against your property, including your home. These liens effectively encumber everything you own, such as your house, motor vehicle, bank account, and real estate, and everything that you acquire while the lien is still in effect. Once a tax lien…

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Anyone can run into financial difficulties, and members of the U.S. armed forces are no exception. However, because they are tasked with the monumental responsibility of defending the nation, laws are in place to protect them during civil matters like lawsuits, foreclosure, and even bankruptcy.  The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) is a federal law that evolved from…

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If you are thinking about filing for bankruptcy, then you may be wondering if you will ever be able to buy a home before the filing disappears from your credit report (10 years for a Chapter 7, seven years after a Chapter 13). The answer is a definite yes, but you should generally wait a…

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When you’ve scheduled a consultation with an attorney to discuss a New York bankruptcy, it’s normal to wonder what to expect. Although every bankruptcy attorney has their own approach, there are questions and discussion topics that appear in the majority of first meetings.  There are also documents you should bring that will make the whole…

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In times of extreme financial difficulty, many people fall behind on their mortgage payments. In some instances, the mortgage company or lender will work with the homeowner by modifying the terms of the loan or facilitating a short sale, but other times they will start the foreclosure process, which entitles them to repossess the house…

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Chapter 13 has often been referred to as a wage earner’s bankruptcy plan, because those who file must earn a regular income and be able to prove to the court that they can repay some or all of their debts. Unlike Chapter 7, which can eliminate credit card bills, unpaid medical accounts, outstanding utility balances,…

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Even though it sounds a little complicated, the term ‘underwater’ is not as difficult as it might appear at first. Underwater (alternative options include “upside down”) means that you owe more on your current mortgage than your actual home is worth. Even though it is a relatively simple concept, the truth is that it is…

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If you owe more on your property than the actual property is worth, then your home is considered ‘underwater’. If you are faced with that situation, then there are some options that you can take to either remove you from the property altogether or bring your mortgage back above the surface. Go into strategic default…

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During the home mortgage crisis, many homeowners faced foreclosure. Banks took back homes when people could not afford to pay the mortgage. Oftentimes when this happened, the value of the homes was lower than their mortgages. Banks made many errors during this process, notably in 2009 and 2010. According to a recent New York Times…

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In 1992, the Supreme Court determined that homeowners whose first mortgage was underwater could not have their bank’s lien cancelled. This especially applied to people filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy. That ruling said that if someone had a mortgage on their home and the home was worth less than this mortgage, then the bank still owned…

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We are offering 10% off legal fees for customers starting a bankruptcy between December 15, 2014 and January 31, 2015. A personal bankruptcy can eliminate many of your debts allowing you to get a fresh financial slate. Call 718-514-6619 to learn more and set up a free in-person consultation with attorney Jayson Lutzky who has…

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Loans guaranteed by the government’s Federal Housing Administration (FHA) have, between 2000 and 2012, faced higher default rates than loans partially guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). When understanding the reason or reasons for the different default rates, one might assume it has to do with the type of borrowers the FHA lends…

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Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, home mortgage agencies, take over or issue many American’s mortgages. The US government backs Fannie and Freddie mortgages. While some may think that Fannie and Freddie will always help borrowers in financial trouble that is not always the case. Some organizations, such as Stabilizing Urban Neighborhoods (SUN), a Massachusetts non-profit,…

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Forty-eight states and New York agreed to the National Mortgage Settlement last year. This settlement prohibits lenders, which are usually banks, from foreclosing on a homeowner who is in the process of refinancing his or her home mortgage. This settlement is an important agreement that will help keep individuals and families in their homes. Some…

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The Truth in Lending Act (TILA) was signed into law in 1968. It requires banks and other lending institutions to layout terms and costs related loans in a specific manner. In one case covered by the New York Law Journal on January 8, 2014, a borrower asked the court for partial summary judgment relating to…

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Today many people are unable to keep up with their mortgage payments. As a result, the lender or the bank is stepping in and foreclosing on the property. A lender recently foreclosed on property when the borrower defaulted on his mortgage payment. The borrower wanted to “vacate the judgment of the foreclosure and the sale,…

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A February 8, 2013 Reuters online article announced that Florida’s Supreme Court issued a ruling that prevented a homeowner from re-opening a voluntarily foreclosure even though it was found that the bank falsified documents. The Florida case involved a Florida homeowner who filed for foreclosure after receiving a past due mortgage notice. The homeowner agreed…

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Going through a bankruptcy can be a stressful process to a person who is unaware of procedure, but it does not have to be. When deciding whether bankruptcy is right for your financial needs it is important to look into the risks and benefits of filing. Chapter 7 personal bankruptcies are more common than the…

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