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Posts Tagged ‘debt’

Paid More than $150,000 on a $40,000 Debt

Monday, December 6th, 2010

In a familiar but shocking scenario, Robert Meixner, 62, filed for bankruptcy a year after losing his job as an ambulance-company controller.  He wanted to shed credit-card debt related to a failed flower shop he had been paying on since the late 1980s.  Mr. Meixner said he felt guilty at first, but after calculating how much interest he had paid—more than $150,000 on an original $40,000 debt—he felt much more comfortable.  Mr. Meixner had repaid the original debt almost four full times over and yet still owed more than he originally borrowed!  Outrageous!

Source:  Wall Street Journal article, Rebuilding Lives After Bankruptcy

What’s Wrong with $795?

Monday, November 8th, 2010

We all want a deal, especially when we’re struggling financially, but a deal is not a deal when you have to start all over.

I recently met with a woman that had a real mess on her hands.  When she hired her cut-rate attorney, she had a sneaking suspicion something was off, but it wasn’t until she was one day away from having her bankruptcy dismissed that she realized the gravity of the situation.  She came to me with a folder full of papers and a list of questions.  Despite her bankruptcy filing, her husband’s wage garnishment of $1,300/month hadn’t stopped.  Her house was at stake and she paid thousands of dollars to this attorney who clearly did not know what he was doing.

Unfortunately this client needed to start back at the beginning which was going to be time consuming and costly.  I wish I had spoken with her before she was seduced by the $795 come-on.  Just like dentistry, hairdressing, accounting, child-care and any other profession, you get what you pay for and a bargain isn’t a bargain when you need professional help.

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Saturday, November 6th, 2010

It’s hard to enjoy the holidays when you have a monkey on your back.  Will the unopened credit card bills shoved in the drawer nag at you while you prepare the Thanksgiving meal?  Will creditors call while you decorate for Christmas?  Will you have a sinking feeling while watching your children open gifts?

This time of year it’s tempting to put off taking action, but the financial monkey on your back won’t allow you to fully enjoy the holidays.  A half hour consultation with Doan Law Firm can change that.  You will receive hope and a go-forward plan that allows you to relax with your family and truly enjoy the most wonderful time of the year.

Whatever you do, absolutely don’t…..

Friday, October 8th, 2010

Don’t, under any circumstances, even if it seems like a good idea at the time, even if everyone else is doing it…use your retirement funds to pay creditors without talking with us first.  This is so very important I’m considering a forehead tattoo.

Once your retirement funds are spent, they’re gone forever.  With few exceptions, you can keep all of your retirement funds in bankruptcy.  It breaks my heart to meet people after they’ve cleaned out their retirement and are filing bankruptcy.  They tried to keep the ship afloat, but in so doing spent a major asset they could have kept.

If you’re considering this irrevocable step, please, please see us for a free consultation.  Help is just around the corner.

Can I keep my house in bankruptcy? Another exciting installment of “Ask Doan Law Firm” (Part 2).

Friday, October 1st, 2010

Q:  Can I keep my house in bankruptcy?

A:  In the last post we analyzed this question in a Chapter 7.  Let’s look at a Chapter 13.

Just like a Chapter 7, in a Chapter 13 you receive an automatic stay on the date of filing.  That means no foreclosure can take place without court permission, i.e., the court grants a Motion for Relief from Stay.

Chapter 13 is a bit different because you are proposing a holistic financial plan for the next 3 – 5 years.  Your intention with the house will be a driving force in the plan.  Just like in a Chapter 7, you can surrender the house.  If you do, the resulting debt will put into the pot with your unsecured debt, credit cards, medical debt, etc., and will be addressed in your plan.

If you’d like to keep the house in a Chapter 13 plan, it needs to be part of the entire plan.  That means you need to be able to pay the payment, taxes, insurance and repairs going forward.  This often works because when the rest of your debt is worked into an affordable plan payment, the house may become affordable.

The Chapter 13 plan must address any missed payments.  These are priority claims and will be given special treatment.  You need to make sure you can make a plan payment large enough to catch up the house over the 3 – 5 years of your Chapter 13 plan.

As you might guess, keeping your home in a Chapter 13 is complicated to determine; you’re going to need assistance.  Doan Law Firm has a team of Chapter 13 professionals that do only Chapter 13 bankruptcies all day, every day.  They’re very knowledgeable, caring, and are ready to help you.

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