Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

06 Feb Do Not Rely on Speculative Income When Commiting to Your Chapter 13 Plan

rolling the diceI knew that my Social Security disability client had filed a bankruptcy with another lawyer but I was not aware that my client planned to use his lump sum past due benefit check to fund his Chapter 13 plan. Not surprisingly, my disability client was especially unhappy when his case was turned down by the judge. I was not surprised - my client’s case was weak and he had appeared before a Social Security judge with a higher than average rate of denials. I was shocked, however, to learn that my client had promised his bankruptcy lawyer that his case was a slam dunk winner, and equally shocked the lawyer built the hoped for lump sum payment into my client’s Chapter 13 plan.
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13 Jan Texas Bankruptcy Court Upholds Attorney-Client Privilege for Bankuptcy Debtors

485424742_aa3739630b_mIn re McDowell, No. 12-31231 (Bky.S.D.Tex. Nov. 16, 202), involved a married couple who filed a chapter 7 bankruptcy case. After the U.S. Trustee filed a motion seeking dismissal of the case under section 707(b), the debtors filed an amended Schedule I, listing different figures for some of their living expenses. The U.S. Trustee then filed a motion requesting that the debtors turn over copies of all documents and notes used in the preparation of their bankruptcy case filing. The debtors opposed this motion, responding that attorney-client privilege, and the doctrine of attorney work product, protected the documents from being disclosed to the U.S. Trustee. Three documents were at issue: first, the Client Information Worksheet used by the law firm representing the debtors; second, the Schedule F listing the debtors' creditors and filled out mostly by hand by the debtors; and third, the Schedule F with the lawyer's handwritten notes for each creditor. The court noted that for the attorney-client privilege to apply, the communicationmust have (1) been made to a lawyer, (2) for the purpose of obtaining legal services or advice, and (3) with the intent that the communication be confidential.
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30 Dec Retirement Account Contributions Allowed for Under-Median Income Chapter 13 Debtors: More on In re Parks

A state of Washington bankruptcy court decided that chapter 13 debtors with household incomes that are below their state's median income levels can continue making contributions to 401(k) and other retirement accounts. In re Bruce, No. 11-40939-BDL (Bky.W.D.Wash. Dec. 11, 2012), held that the Ninth...

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