Filing for Bankruptcy

02 Mar Bankruptcy Means Test: Student Loans Used to Obtain Dentistry Degree Not “Consumer Debts” Under Section 707(b)

The 2005 Bankruptcy Reform Act's "means test" for chapter 7 bankruptcy filers was weakened by a recent ruling from a Texas bankruptcy court. Under this ruling, student loans incurred for the purpose of obtaining a professional degree to be used in business are not "consumer...

Read More

06 Feb Should You Try to Keep Your Home When You File Bankruptcy?

bankruptcy and my homeThis week an interesting article about Atlanta real estate appeared in a local business blog, and I think that the warning issued by the writer could apply to bankruptcy filers anywhere in the country. Entitled “Easy Money as Landlord of Cheap Homes Proving an Elusive Dream” explains how large investment funds purchased thousands of Atlanta area homes following the 2008 - 2010 real estate crash with the idea of renting them out, securitizing shares in the investment venture, then selling the properties six or seven years hence when prices rebounded. I had a first hand view of this business model because a close friend of mine in the real estate brokerage business worked with one of these investment firms and at times was writing hundreds of offers per week. Politicians and newspapers report that the housing market is improving and prices are headed back up, but no one is looking beyond the raw numbers.
Read More

20 Nov How to file bankruptcy – What are Executory Contracts and Unexpired Leases in bankruptcy?

List your executory contracts and unexpired leases on your bankruptcy petition and declare your intention either to accept or to reject those contracts. Contracts that are not timely assumed are rejected and the parties are released from further performance under those contracts. An executory contract is...

Read More

06 Nov Can Bankruptcy Help Solve Your Student Loan Problem Even if Your Student Loan Debt is Non-Dischargeable?

using bankruptcy to stop student loan collectionsAs a general rule, student loan debt is non-dischargeable. Bankruptcy Code Section 523(a)(8) provides that unless you can show “undue hardship” your student loans will survive your discharge. As my colleague Craig Andresen recently wrote on this blog, the Brunner case, which is the authoritative case defining undue hardship makes it almost impossible to meet this standard. Craig points out, correctly, that Brunner was decided at a time when the Bankruptcy Code did allow older (more than 7 years old) student loans to qualify for discharge based on their age and that the time has come to change this extremely difficult to meet standard. In any case, the harsh Brunner standard remains the law of the land and unless and until Congress or the Supreme Court changes it, student loan borrowers who are not on their deathbeds are going to have to find other ways to deal with crushing student loan debt.
Read More