Personal Finance

28 Apr What Are The Real Benefits Of The Bankruptcy Discharge?

income for bankruptcy--profit loss statementA bankruptcy discharge is one of the primary reasons that a person files for bankruptcy protection. We all should know this, but do we really know what the bankruptcy discharge allows us to do? This is the question that really needs to be answered. First, we need to discuss what the bankruptcy discharge is and then we can speak about the benefits. The discharge can be defined in lawyer terms or in a way that non-lawyers can understand. A legal definition of the bankruptcy discharge is that the discharge creates a statutory permanent injunction against the collection of all dischargeable debts of the debtor. In non-legal terminology, the discharge prevents creditors, whose debts were properly included in the bankruptcy and legallydischarged, from taking any or all steps to collect on their debt.
Read More

13 Mar After Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Discharge: Can You Take A 401k Loan?

[caption id="attachment_38838" align="alignright" width="300"]Las Vegas Gambling Town Las Vegas Gambling Town[/caption]

It pleases me to no end when I get a call from someone I represented in bankruptcy a few years back and I find out they are doing great and are back on their feet. I like hearing fromformer bankruptcy clientsand getting good news.

Often the call from former clients is prompted in because they need something from me to get a loan.

Not all loans are bad, but I start out worried when I hear that they are about to get into debt. Bang! If youhit your headon a low branch once or twice, you'd learn to duck or walk down another path. It is always my hope that filing for bankruptcy helps people get onto a new path with a balanced budget, the ability to save to cover purchases they used to have to finance, and to hear that they also have gotten to the point where they even have enough money to do something a little extra for themselves or are buying a new [modest] home.

The question I got this week was from a former Chapter 7bankruptcy client who had received adischarge last year. His case was completed and closed, and he had been able to get a fresh start free from overwhelming debts.

He wanted to know if he could take a loan from his 401k retirement which he hadexemptedin his bankruptcy case.

The answer to his question is:

"Yes. You can take a 401k loan...

  but then I can't help myself from answering the unasked question.

You can take out a loan, but it might not be a good idea to do so.


"Can I get a loan now?"

Read More

09 Mar Justice Delayed is Justice Denied: The Case Against Big Banks

  I've seen lots of funny men; Some will rob you with a six-gunAnd some with a fountain pen.~ Woody Guthrie (Pretty Boy Floyd)Last month, Elizabeth Warren asked a pointed question of senior treasury department officials regarding why no enforcement action had ever been taken against...

Read More

21 Nov 6 Stress-Reduction Tips For Cash-Strapped Times

We live in a hyper-stressed world, with work and family pulling us in all directions at once. Sometimes I wonder how we're living longer as a society - after all, the stress can't be good for us. Lots of my friends respond to stress by working out, sitting by the television in an effort to dull their senses, or hitting the day spa for a massage. That's great for them, but not for me. I dislike gyms, am not much for most TV beyond The Big Bang Theory, and the thought of a stranger touching me at a day spa makes me want to run screaming from the room. It occurs to me that all three of these stress-reduction solutions require money, something you may not have all that much of right now. Given the fact that being strapped for funds is a stressful event, you could probably use some stress relief right about now. It's good to clear your head so you can focus on getting through these difficult times.
Read More