September 2011

28 Sep Means Test and Attorney Fees

I wrote about attorney fees as a means test deduction some time ago.BAPCPA's provision, codifiedat section 707(a)(2)(A)(iv) of the Bankruptcy Code, says that priority claims are deducted from income. Priority claims include a Chapter 13 debtor's counsel's fees. See sections 507(2), 503(b)(2), and 330(a)(4)(B). Therefore,...

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28 Sep Chapter 20 Lien Stripping Doesn’t Fly In Florida Despite Judge Schermer’s Opinion in In Re: Fisette

As a Consumer Bankruptcy Attorney, I really enjoy explaining the benefits of Chapter 7 Bankruptcy and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy to a potential client. Bankruptcy is a financial planning tool, plain and simple, kind of like a Swiss Army Knife. Inside this one tool, you have many different options. I enjoy watching their faces light up when they begin to realize the possibilities that they never knew existed. It's as if the proverbial "light bulb" goes on inside their heads and they begin to see the future as opposed to their current reality which one client compared to a hamster running on a wheel day in and day out.
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27 Sep Should I Keep Paying My Mortgage if My Home Was Destroyed in a Natural Disaster?

Natural disasters have recently destroyed countless homes and uprooted huge numbers of individuals and families. When the flood/hurricane/tornado/wildfire is over you focus on the destruction to your home, car, and business. You concentrate your concerns on whether or not you should rebuild, and on how to put your family’s life back together. In upstate New York we have suffered through the wake of Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee. The Binghamton, NY area experienced the second “500 year flood” in five years. Entire neighborhoods and towns were under water. Tens of thousands were evacuated, and many returned to condemned homes. In the wake of this destruction many face the dilemma of what to do about their mortgage payments and other debts. Usually, the credit industry puts out “public service announcements” reminding people in disaster areas to keep paying their mortgage, car payments and credit card debts or risk late payment fees, damaged credit scores and foreclosure. But many people did not have or could not get flood insurance. So in the overall scheme of things, how high a priority should it be to stay current on the mortgage and debt payments? What help is available? And what steps can you take to relieve some of the pressure?
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