Foreclosures are Now Becoming Free Homes

May 22, 2015 Posted by kingcade

Local homeowners are finding themselves in a “free” home because of the statue of limitations law surrounding foreclosures more than five years old.

Thomas Adams, a Maitland, FL man owns a pool home with a tennis court. Adams hasn’t paid on his mortgage in over seven years and does not intend to pay out any more ever again. Owing over $140,000 for his loan, Adams says his situation is only right. “It was justice quite frankly,” Adams said. His initial lender was Federal Home Loan Mortgage who filed foreclosure on Adams in 2008. Thereafter, the loan transferred over to Nationstar Mortgage.

Adams said, “They sold my loan so many times no one knew who had the paperwork.” Cases have been dismissed based on the belief that banks have five years to file a foreclosure after the homeowner defaults and the lender requires the full balance to be paid out. It has been argued in these cases that the lender can’t foreclose again once this five year mark has passed.

Large banks and lenders alike are arguing against this, saying that they have far more time and that the five year “timer” resets itself each time a mortgage payment is missed by the homeowner. The Florida Supreme Court has been presented with the issue and they are scheduled to review the law in October.

Since 2007, Florida has had more than 3 million foreclosures filed, according to RealtyTrac. Some find it unfair for homeowners to get out of meeting their mortgage obligations, and then be rewarded with a free home. Still, others hold little compassion for the banks.

Larry Furlong, who lives across the street from Adams said, “If they didn’t exercise their rights when they should have, it’s their tough luck. Good for my neighbor.”

“I think it is what you would call poetic justice,” Adams said.

Although Adams still pays taxes and insurance for his home, it is far cheaper than his prior mortgage payments of $1,400 per month. Also, until the home is sold, the bank can keep a lien on his property.

Choosing the right attorney can make the difference between whether or not you can keep your home. A well-qualified Miami foreclosure defense attorney will not only help you keep your home, but they will be able to negotiate a loan that has payments you can afford. Miami foreclosure defense attorney Timothy Kingcade has helped many facing foreclosure alleviate their stress by letting them stay in their homes for at least another year, allowing them to re-organize their lives. If you have any questions on the topic of foreclosure please feel free to contact me at (305) 285-9100. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Source: http://www.wftv.com/news/news/local/9-investigates-people-turning-foreclosures-free-ho/nmDhN/ 

5 Steps for Conquering Debt and Getting Your Mortgage Approved

May 21, 2015 Posted by kingcade

Today, first-time buyers are exposed to countless “free credit score” offers online which have allowed them to be knowledgeable about their credit histories and take steps to improve their scores by the time they are ready to buy a home. However, improving credit and tackling debt are two very different things. For many buyers, especially young adults with student loan debt, high debt levels can stop them from getting financed. Mounting debt may be more harmful than lower credits scores are helpful.

Lenders depend upon three major factors in order to approve a loan application: DTI, which is the ratio of debt to income; credit as measured by FICO scores; and the loan-to-value ratio, which is discovered once a home is appraised.  The credit score and loan-to-value ratio may cause the Lender to increase interest rates or limit the amount they will lend out, contingent on the appraisal.

Existing debt is important because it tells the lender about the applicant’s ability to pay back a loan. If an applicant’s DTI is too high, it greatly impacts their chances of getting financed, even if the borrower has a good credit score or job with excellent earning potential. The qualified mortgage (QM) rule regulates the cutoff for a DTI, only allowing up to 43%. This means that applicants’ monthly debt payments must be less than 43% of their monthly gross income. FHA has their own version of this rule, allowing for 41%.

Reducing your debt is the fastest and easiest solution for lowering your DTI. Below are five ways to reduce debt:

1. Become debt-aware.

Monitoring your finances and keeping track of your debt on a daily basis will help you to become more debt-aware. Utilize your bank’s online banking, money management or virtual wallet programs to help you better track your spending. By pacing yourself and staying committed, you can gain peace of mind in remaining debt-aware.

2. Pay off smaller balances.

Smaller balanced add up and can increase your monthly debt amount. By tackling these smaller amounts in one payment, you will significantly reduce your monthly payment obligations. Instead of paying the monthly minimum, pay off small balances first, then work on the larger debts in increments. If there is a line of credit that you don’t need, close the account or reduce the credit amount.

3. Consolidate monthly payments and reduce interest.

The more you owe the higher your interest rates will be on credit cards and installment plans. Bad payment history also makes those rates increase. First tackle your higher interest cards for consolidation. You can lower monthly payments by consolidating and refinancing debt. This includes car loans and student debt.

4. Stop buying with credit.

Commit to one week without buying anything with credit and see how much you save. Implementing a cash-only plan will help you to become more aware of everything you spend. By exercising restraint you can save a lot of money by making smarter spending decisions. On a daily basis, log your savings and place that amount in a savings account. This will help you pay of current debt without racking up more debt.

5. Begin with FHA.

FHA finances for applications that have lower credit scores and higher DTIs. If your DTI is over 30%, you have a better chance with FHA, than with a conventional loan. You may have a down payment, but the recent reduction in annual mortgage insurance premiums makes FHA more appealing to borrowers.

If you are in a financial crisis and are considering filing bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Source: https://www.inman.com/2015/05/18/5-steps-to-beating-debt-and-getting-mortgage-approved/

Some Homeowners Keep Their Homes, 5 Years after Foreclosure

May 20, 2015 Posted by kingcade

Since Florida’s courts were bombarded with foreclosure cases over five years ago, some homeowners who were sued have managed to remain in their homes without paying mortgages because of a law called the statute of limitations.

Certain Florida courts have declared that lenders will not be able to bring forth foreclosures, according to a set criterion. If the lender has already filed for foreclosure on a home, demanded payment of monies borrowed, lost the case, then failed to file another action within five years of the original suit, they will no longer be able to foreclose or evict the homeowner from their residence.  However, other courts throughout the state disagree with this.

On October 6, the Florida Supreme Court will hear oral arguments regarding this matter and may issue an order to finally resolve this conflict. The outcomes are expected to vary per foreclosure case but homeowners are cautioned that in most cases, if they do not pay, they will not keep their homes. According to NBC 6 Investigators, many people are living in their homes without paying mortgage and it looks like they might be able to continue doing this.

Nick Matthews of Dadeland, was 19 when he received a loan of nearly $190,000 for an apartment in 2007. Shortly after the purchase, Matthews was in a serious accident and was unable to use his leg for eight months. By then, the computer technician position he’d had was gone. Unable to make payments, his lender filed for foreclosure.

In February 2011, the case was thrown out when the attorney for Matthews’ lender, Chase Home Finance, failed to appear. Nearly two years later, Matthews received a new foreclosure lawsuit notice. After seeking an attorney, the case was finally dismissed this past October, due to the statute of limitations law.

“We learned that there’s an actual statute of limitations on this kind of thing, five years from the initial filing.” Matthews said. He also said that he felt as though he did nothing wrong in this case. “It seems kind of un-American, honestly, if they can keep coming at me for something they’ve already lost on twice,” Matthews added.

Susan Rodolfi, bought a home near Coconut Grove in 2001. Shortly after the 2008 recession, Rodolfi also had trouble making her mortgage payments. “There was a lot of back and forth with the bank,” Rodolfi explained. In 2009 a foreclosure action was filed against her by her lender, Nationstar Mortgage. Rodolfi stopped making payments, saving funds while she tried for a modification.

After a botched contract and miscommunications with the lender, Roldolfi sought legal help. The case was finally dismissed last June when Nationstar failed to appear before the judge. Since then, the lender has requested to reinstate the foreclosure, before the five year mark. Rodolfi is appealing this action and if she is successful, she too might be living in her home without mortgage payments and fear of foreclosure.

While some homeowners prevail with the Supreme Court, it is still likely that they will need to face outstanding liens and claims by the banks. Some recommend that homeowners should not stop making payments, solely based on the hopes that the statute of limitations will expire. Now that the number of foreclosure cases has fallen to a manageable amount, it is likely that the banks that truly have a right to the property will be prepared for court and present adequate evidence to prove their cases.

Choosing the right attorney can make the difference between whether or not you can keep your home. A well-qualified Miami foreclosure defense attorney will not only help you keep your home, but they will be able to negotiate a loan that has payments you can afford. Miami foreclosure defense attorney Timothy Kingcade has helped many facing foreclosure alleviate their stress by letting them stay in their homes for at least another year, allowing them to re-organize their lives. If you have any questions on the topic of foreclosure please feel free to contact me at (305) 285-9100. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Source:  http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Five-Years-After-Foreclosure-Some-Keep-Homes-303817841.html

Florida’s Foreclosure Courts’ Funds are Being Cut Off

May 19, 2015 Posted by kingcade

Over the past two years, Florida’s foreclosure courts have been receiving extra funds in order to expedite cases, but this assistance is about to come to a stop.

To add judicial manpower to the bench, over $21 million was budgeted in 2013. This is set to expire as of June 31 this year.

Homeowners will get the benefit of having a single judge dedicated to their case instead of multiple judges. Lawyers anticipate varying levels of confusion as cases are transferred to different divisions.

Palm Beach County Chief Judge Jeffrey Colbath said, “The legislature gave us enough money to get to the five-yard line, but it would have been nice to get across the goal line.”

Florida has gained control of their foreclosure system’s backlog, which was once flooded. Since 2013, Florida has seen a 66% statewide reduction in foreclosures with just 109,706 pending foreclosures statewide in January.

Curiosity as to how it was done depends upon who you ask. Some believe that judges rushed through many cases with minimal consideration of their merits. Many judges differ, saying that getting the case right was more important than how quickly the case was closed.

At this time Florida foreclosure cases are yet to return to how they were before the recession, but it is a work in progress.

Choosing the right attorney can make the difference between whether or not you can keep your home. A well-qualified Miami foreclosure defense attorney will not only help you keep your home, but they will be able to negotiate a loan that has payments you can afford. Miami foreclosure defense attorney Timothy Kingcade has helped many facing foreclosure alleviate their stress by letting them stay in their homes for at least another year, allowing them to re-organize their lives. If you have any questions on the topic of foreclosure please feel free to contact me at (305) 285-9100. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Source: http://postnow.blog.palmbeachpost.com/2015/05/18/cash-flow-to-floridas-foreclosure-courts-is-being-cut-off/

Seniors Can Protect Assets through Bankruptcy

May 18, 2015 Posted by kingcade

For some Senior Citizens, bankruptcy may provide greatly needed debt relief after growing medical expenses or years of supporting their children. Bankruptcy experts say that filing for bankruptcy can be a useful tool for retirees seeking to protect their retirement assets, after negotiating with creditors. Unfortunately, fear of shame brought on by financial troubles, often deters many older Americans from seeking bankruptcy help earlier.

Deborah Thorne, an associate professor of sociology at Ohio University said, “People usually postpone bankruptcy for several years before filing. When finances head south, they should file right away.” Thorne who has studied bankruptcy and older Americans explained that retirees face a greater risk of financial ruin than younger individuals do. She proposed that the best strategy is to always protect assets.

401(k)’s, pensions, social security payments, qualified profit-sharing plans, and individual retirement accounts worth up to $1.245 million are all exempt from creditors during bankruptcy. This means that retirement income and savings are out of reach and protected under federal law. Protecting equity, which is the value of a property, minus the amount owed, is important for seniors. Using a homestead exemption, designed to protect the equity of a main residence in a bankruptcy, will usually keep retirees from losing their homes. Florida homeowners can take advantage of the fact that Florida does not have a limit on the equity that is exempt.

When work began to dwindle down, 66 year old retired nursery owner and Orlando resident, George Maxey wanted his financial stability back. Mr. Maxey quickly saw his debt situation growing larger while his income grew smaller. As a result, he declared Chapter 7 bankruptcy, allowing him to liquidate some of his assets in order to repay creditors.

“I wanted to leave money, not debt, to my grandchildren, and begin rebuilding my life,” Maxey said. Overcoming the harsh stigma of bankruptcy was the most difficult part for Maxey, but filing bankruptcy was the chance he needed to start over financially.

Certain debts such as child support, alimony, federal tax bills less than three years old and student loans are usually not discharged with a bankruptcy, said Orlando bankruptcy laywer Walter Benenati.

A means test can assist with deciding which type of bankruptcy best fits a particular situation. According to specialists, those with higher income fair best with Chapter 13 bankruptcy, which allows for a repayment plan. John Pottow, a professor at the University of Michigan Law School and a bankruptcy specialist said, “It lasts for a minimum of five years, and it’s a budget that’s created to pay back creditors.” For those with lower income or assets, Chapter 7 works best.

Johanna Sweaney Salt, a certified public accountant, said people should try to negotiate with the creditors before filing for bankruptcy. She recommends contacting the credit card companies and asking for reduced interest on outstanding balances. Medical debt can also be negotiated. “In many cases, hospitals have even cut balances in half,” she said.

Cleveland bankruptcy lawyer Paul Kuzmickas stated, “A lot of people who jump into bankruptcy never know what settlement they could have had. So it’s always better to negotiate first.” Kuzmickas also pointed out that creditors know they are unable to touch retirement funds, which gives seniors leverage.

Another strategy is so refuse to pay the outstanding debt. If a retiree has little else outside their retirement fund, the creditors will likely not collect anything, even if it went to court. Kuzmickas terms it as being judgment-proof. Credit scores will be affected by filing for bankruptcy and a bankruptcy can stay on a credit report for up to 10 years, but credit can be restored. Those who declare bankruptcy are required to take credit and debtor counseling classes, which will help with rebuilding their finances.

After declaring bankruptcy, Mr. Maxey’s score dropped 200 points. Since then, he has begun rebuilding his credit by leasing a car. “Now it’s slowly coming back,” he said.

If you are in a financial crisis and are considering filing bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/14/business/retirementspecial/bankruptcy-can-help-seniors-protect-assets.html?_r=0

Lowest Levels since 2007 for 1st Quarter 2015 Foreclosures and Mortgage Delinquencies

May 15, 2015 Posted by kingcade

In the first quarter of 2015, the percentage of delinquencies and loans in foreclosures has dropped to their lowest since the last quarter of 2007. According to the National Delinquency Survey of the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), housing loan delinquency rates were at 5.54% on a seasonally adjusted basis for residential houses. Also, 2.22% of mortgage loans were in foreclosure.

Joel Kan, Associate Vice-President of Industry Surveys and Forecasting for the MBA, stated, “The foreclosure inventory rate has decreased in the last twelve quarters, and now is at the lowest level since the fourth quarter of 2007. With a declining 90+ day delinquency rate and the improving credit quality of new loans, we expect that the foreclosure inventory rate will continue to decline in coming quarters.”

The survey also revealed that legacy loans accounted for the highest percentage of problem mortgages. Reviewing the  total number of problem loans, 73% of mortgage loans originated in 2007 or earlier. According to Mortgage Bankers Association’s records, applications for mortgage loans also dropped by 4.6% in the last week of April, 2015.

As of March 2015, foreclosure activity has spiked. Realty Trac’s records show that the total number of foreclosures rose above 120,000 in March 2015, following a decrease in January and February. March’s average foreclosure rate in the United States was one foreclosure out of every 1,082 houses. Florida held the highest amount of foreclosure activity with one foreclosure out of every 446 houses.

Choosing the right attorney can make the difference between whether or not you can keep your home. A well-qualified Miami foreclosure defense attorney will not only help you keep your home, but they will be able to negotiate a loan that has payments you can afford. Miami foreclosure defense attorney Timothy Kingcade has helped many facing foreclosure alleviate their stress by letting them stay in their homes for at least another year, allowing them to re-organize their lives. If you have any questions on the topic of foreclosure please feel free to contact me at (305) 285-9100. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Source: http://usfinancepost.com/foreclosures-and-mortgage-delinquencies-fall-to-the-lowest-levels-since-2007-in-first-quarter-of-2015-25063.html

Bankruptcy Loophole Exploited by Trustees for Tuition Money

May 14, 2015 Posted by kingcade

According to The Wall Street Journal, trustees handling the collection of monies owed to creditors have come across a stealthy way to regain funds owed, by demanding the academic institution return a part of tuition received. These aggressive tactics to take back tuition payments are being used by parents filing for bankruptcy. As more and more Americans are sinking deeper in student loans and filing for bankruptcy, court-appointed trustees are seeking to recover as much money as possible in order to repay creditors.

“In a growing number of personal bankruptcy cases, trustees responsible for collecting money for creditors have moved to claw back tuition payments that insolvent parents made for their children. The trustees argue the funds should be recovered to pay off the parents’ debts instead. In many cases, they’re succeeding,” the Journal reports.

Originally, these cases were few and far but with increased tuition costs and heavy student loan debts, bankruptcy experts foresee more of these lawsuits to come. The University of Bridgeport paid $4,000 in such a lawsuit, over the last year. New York University was sued to claim tuition money by Trustees for a Minnesota couple last October. A spokesman for NYU, John Beckman called it “deeply unfair to that institution which has provided real value to the family.”

The reason these lawsuits are able to proceed is because of a loophole in the bankruptcy code, permitting trustees to sue in order to collect money that a bankrupt person spent several years before filing for protection. It is contingent on if a trustee finds that the person didn’t receive ‘reasonably equivalent value’ for that expense.  The Journal reported, “But in the case of a child’s tuition payment, the filer didn’t get the value for the expenditure — the child did.”

Marquette University fought a lawsuit against them in 2010, arguing that Carmen and William Leonard’s the son had received “reasonably equivalent value” for their tuition amount. The court sided with the Leonards, stating they “did not receive any ‘value’ for their tuition payments to Marquette,” and that the school “points to no economic benefit to the Debtors, other than to speculate that a college education for Debtors’ son may in the future enable him to be financially independent of his parents, and thereby relieve Debtors of any need to financially support their son.” According to the Journal, Marquette was eventually compelled to repay $21,527 to the trustees, who had filed suit after both of the Leonards had lost their jobs during the recession.

Not all cases are successful. A New York bankruptcy judge ruled in favor of St. Andrews University and they were not required to repay $35,055 in demanded tuition costs. Also, unsuccessful lawsuits can be very costly for the families as well. Additionally some parents were afraid that their child might be expelled, denied a transcript or asked to repay tuition money received, according to the Journal. Trustees are less likely to go after tuition for private elementary and secondary schools, because in most states this money is protected by laws that require a parent to care for their children until adulthood.

If you are in a financial crisis and are considering filing bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Sources: http://www.newsmax.com/US/college-tuition-parents-bankruptcy-trustees-creditors/2015/05/06/id/642927/

http://blogs.wsj.com/bankruptcy/2015/05/06/whats-behind-bankruptcy-lawsuits-over-college-tuition/

Have Zombie Debts Finally Met an End?

May 13, 2015 Posted by kingcade

According to the New York Times, JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America will remove all Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharged credit card debts from consumer credit reports in the next 3 months. In a written statement coming close to finalization, Citigroup will be doing the same. The nation’s largest banks are ready to put an end to zombie debts.

Pending litigation accuses these banks of attempting to receive payment by leaving these discharged debts on credit reports. Synchrony Financial has also been accused of this as well. Financial institutions are required by federal law to cease reporting defaulted credit card accounts, once a bankruptcy has discharged them.

Ira Rheingold, executive director of the National Association of Consumer Advocates, said, “The bankruptcy then indicates that (it was) taken care of. The notion that it should stay on your credit report is inaccurate and it does damage to consumers.” If a bankruptcy and the eliminated credit card debt appear together on a consumer’s credit report, the consumer is penalized twice, making it harder to gain future financing. It can also harm potential future job opportunities as well, since certain employers will not consider prospects with delinquent accounts.

JPMorgan Chase would not report, comment or confirm to the Times why these discharged debts might have been reported. Synchrony Financial would not respond either, but they did agree to offer similar relief for consumers. According to an email statement, Bank of America feels that their reporting on sold credit card accounts is accurate. Spokeswoman Betty Riess said, “However, given the issues raised by the court, we have made the decision to delete credit reporting for the sold credit card accounts.”

According to the Times, if these agreements follow through, more than a million Americans will be helped by the banks’ decisions.

If in the event a discharged bankruptcy debt still shows up on your credit report, it is advised that you do not pay it since you no longer owe the debt. It is suggested that you file a dispute with the credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion) instead. By asking to have it removed from your reports, an inquiry will be launched. It is also helpful to provide the credit bureaus with as much information as possible to prove that the debt is gone—indeed dead.  Also attach your bankruptcy discharge notice, which lists the debt on it. According to Rheingold, “If the bureaus don’t fix it, you have them on a fair credit reporting violation.”

If you are in a financial crisis and are considering filing bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Source: http://www.bankrate.com/financing/credit-cards/death-to-zombie-debts/

Mortgage Relief for Borrowers from Bank of America is Questioned

May 12, 2015 Posted by kingcade

The record setting $16.7 billion settlement between Bank of America and the Justice Department, was a big deal last August. Bank of America agreed to the settlement regarding questionable mortgage practices. The bank was required to provide $7 billion for consumer relief, including loan modifications.

Since the settlement, there have been questions as to whether the money will go to those deserving it, or if Bank of America will be allowed to claim credit for the relief well beyond the actual value. The bank has made a $3.4 billion profit, a vast improvement from the $276 million loss, one year before.

According to the settlement, the bank was expected to reduce or forgive first and second mortgage amounts owed, as well as make loans more affordable for borrowers. In return, the bank was to receive a specified dollar amount of credit for these reductions. Several borrowers were told that the bank intended to “forgive” certain loans discharged in their bankruptcies, but those debts were already forgiven.

Florida borrower, Patti Coleman received correspondence from Bank of America earlier this year, stating that Ms. Coleman had been approved for a “full principal forgiveness” of $54,732 for a home equity line of credit, and that she would “no longer owe” the amount. However, Ms. Coleman’s 2010 bankruptcy had already discharged this debt. In an interview, she stated, “In my Chapter 7 filing, the debt was extinguished. They can’t come back to me and try to collect.”

It did state in the letter that Ms. Coleman’s debt was discharged under bankruptcy law, and that she is not personally liable for it, but such a large amount may automatically counted unless she contacted Bank of America to opt out. This suggests that under the Justice Department deal, the bank will still claim credit for these loan forgiveness actions.

A Bank of America spokesman, Richard Simon, argued that Ms. Coleman’s offer from the bank was an opportunity for her to eliminate the lien the banks still holds and clear title to the property. “The vast majority of customers benefit when their second lien is extinguished,” he stated. Mr. Simon was unable to comment when questioned if Bank of America would be submitting the $54,732 that Ms. Coleman no longer owes on her home equity loan.

Under the settlement, Bank of America receives additional credit, over $1 for every dollar of forgiven loans, if it provides certain types of relief by Aug. 31.

According to Jacksonville, Fla. Attorney Chip Parker of Parker & DuFresne, over 100 attorneys said they had clients who have received these letters. “Releasing a debt that has already been discharged is not in the spirit of the settlement. My concern is that the bank will use these cases to avoid having to give true principal reductions to people who need it. ” Mr. Parker said.

Retired Boston University law professor, Eric D. Green, is overseeing Bank of America’s performance under the settlement. As an independent monitor, he validates the bank’s claims for credit under the consumer assistance portion of the agreement. He stated that the bank had not yet submitted claims for credit under the settlement.

“We are working out the definitions and methodology of checking the credits the bank seeks.” said Mr. Green. He also said that bankruptcy discharged loans will not be acceptable for credit. Regarding Ms. Coleman’s case, Mr. Green concluded it to be an honest mistake. Periodic reports on the bank’s progress will be filed by Mr. Green’s office. His office has already completed a report for February and another is expected at the end of July.

If you are in a financial crisis and are considering filing bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/10/business/bank-of-americas-relief-for-mortgage-borrowers-is-questioned.html?_r=0

Bank of America and JPMorgan Finally Agree to Remove Debt from Credit Reports

May 11, 2015 Posted by kingcade

Consumer debt previously eliminated during bankruptcy proceedings are finally being wiped clean from credit reports by America’s two largest banks: Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase. This movement finally puts these two banks in line with the federal law.

According to The New York Times, over the course of the next three months, the banks will update borrowers’ credit reports, to the great relief of millions of consumers. The bank is required to update a consumer’s credit reports, showing that the debt is no longer owed, once a debt has been erased by bankruptcy, under federal law. Because this rule was disregarded by America’s largest banks, consumers had to deal with unfair red marks and inaccurate credit reports.

Several lawsuits have shed light on how many larger banks are ignoring the discharges from bankruptcy, in an effort to sell off the debt and still collect money from debt collectors, the Times explains.

Neither Bank of America nor JPMorgan are admitting to any misconduct, but they do agree to correct credit reports. JPMorgan said they would correctly record all discharged debts from Chapter 7 bankruptcy by this upcoming August. Also, Bank of America will be making changes on how they report cleared debts that have been sold to financial firms. Credit card debt that has been sold since May 2007 is expected to be removed from consumers’ credit reports.

In addition to Bank of America and JPMorgan, Synchrony Financial and Citigroup have also allegedly deliberately ignored bankruptcy charges, and they face lawsuits as well. Like JPMorgan and Bank of America, Synchrony will be providing similar relief.

The Times reports that although the banks have tried to have these lawsuits thrown out, all attempts have failed. In response to the judge’s criticism in Citigroup’s case, Citigroup stated that they have made a proposal to plaintiffs much similar to what other banks have done.

If you are in a financial crisis and are considering filing bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Source: http://consumerist.com/2015/05/08/jpmorgan-chase-bank-of-america-agree-to-wipe-debt-cleared-by-bankruptcy-from-credit-reports/