August 2008

31 Aug Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Home Mortgage Strip-Down Would Stop Foreclosures

Strip-down of residential mortgages in chapter 13 bankruptcy would cause an additional 109,000 homes to be saved from foreclosure, two California academics concluded recently. "Although small compared to the current level of foreclosures," Professors Ning Zhu and Michelle 'White conclude, strip-down "would contribute to solving the...

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31 Aug Why You Should Tell Your Attorney Everything About Your Finances

The penalty for intentionally failing to be complete with the information on your bankruptcy petition and schedules can be a Federal criminal offense punishable by a sentence of up to 5 years in jail and a fine of up to $250,000.00. Under cetain circumstances, the attorney filing such a petition can also be sanction by the Bankruptcy Court costing thousands. Recently while walking into the hearing room for the Trustee's First Meeting of Creditors, I overheard a lawyer talking with his clients who were trying to be quiet. "Attorney Smith, my husband has something to tell you.", the wife said. "Yes?" "Well, I forgot to tell you that my name is on my mother's house." "Oh? Did you mother give it to you?" "No, she died." "When?" "Ten years ago." "So she left it to you?" "No, to me and my three brothers. My brother Billy gave his part to me for $10,000 five years ago and my other two brothers still live in the house." "So, there are three owners of the house?" "No, my brother Pete gave his part to my other brother, Rocco." "For $10,000?" "Naw, he gave his part of the house over so we could refinance it. He still lives there with Rocco." "When was that?" "Eight weeks ago. He needed to borrow money to pay his bills so he wouldn't have to file for bankruptcy. I had to go to his lawyer's office to sign some papers and I completely forgot all about it." This is a serious problem on several fronts.
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