Archive for: ‘October 2016’

Wells Fargo Sends Statement to Consumers with Important Updates following Scandal

October 24, 2016 Posted by kingcade

Nearly two months after the Wells Fargo scandal was first revealed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the bank has issued statements to customers with important updates about the steps the bank has taken to make amends.

The statement begins by apologizing to consumers stating that, “We are deeply committed to serving you and your financial needs, and in those instances, we did not live up to our commitment. This is inconsistent with our values and with the culture we work hard to maintain. It’s not who we are as a company.”

The statement goes on to say, “Here’s what we are already doing:”

  • Putting your interests first. We have eliminated product sales goals for our retail banking team and members who serve customers in our bank branches and call centers.
  • Proactively communicating with you. We now send a confirmation after you open a new consumer or small business checking, savings, or credit card account so you know what is happening and can tell us if anything we have confirmed is different than what you expected.
  • Full transparency. You can always see your active accounts any time when enrolled in Wells Fargo Online.
  • Fixing what went wrong. We have provided full refunds to customers we have already identified and we are broadening our scope of work to find customers we may have missed. If we have any doubt about whether one of your accounts was authorized, and any fees were incurred on that account, we will contact you and refund fees.

The statement issued by the bank is the result of a CFPB investigation which resulted in the Bureau fining the bank $185 million for unethical business practices. The CFPB found the bank had opened approximately two million unauthorized deposit and credit card accounts.

Click here to read a timeline of events of the Wells Fargo Scandal.

If you are in financial crisis and considering filing for 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.

Related Resources:

http://www.bizjournals.com/atlanta/news/2016/10/22/wells-fargo-sends-customers-statement-about.html

U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Debt Collection Appeal

October 21, 2016 Posted by kingcade

The U.S. Supreme Court has decided to hear an appeal filed by Midland Funding, a subsidiary of Encore Capital Group, which was sued by an Alabama debtor named Aleida Johnson. Johnson entered into bankruptcy in 2014 and claims Midland Funding has sought payment of $1,879 in debt that Johnson had incurred more than a decade earlier. Alabama has a six-year statute of limitations for debt to be collected.

Supreme Court Justices will decide whether or not people can sue companies who have attempted to collect debts that they are not legally required to pay back due to their state’s statute of limitations.

It is common practice for some debt collection companies to attempt to collect on an old debt that is not legally recoverable under state law. However, if a debtor does not object to the payment, claims can be made against them when they enter into bankruptcy.

Click here to read more on this story.

If you are in financial crisis and considering filing for 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.

What kind of credit counseling is required when you file for bankruptcy?

October 20, 2016 Posted by kingcade

For many people, filing for bankruptcy is a last resort to end the challenges they face struggling with insurmountable debt.  If you decide to file bankruptcy you will need to work with an experienced bankruptcy attorney and complete mandatory credit counseling through a government-approved agency.

In accordance with the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005, anyone filing for bankruptcy must receive two certificates: one for pre-filing bankruptcy counseling and one for a pre-discharge education course.

This counseling typically includes a complete review of your financial situation, including current income, household budget and a list of all unsecured debt. Counselors will discuss alternatives to bankruptcy, such as consolidation, debt management, and direct negotiation with your creditors.  The entire process takes up to one hour.

After filing for bankruptcy, you also must take a pre-discharge education course. This course lasts two hours and is evaluated by the Justice Department to ensure the topics are in compliance.  Topics oftentimes include: budgeting, financial products and tools, credit scores, contracts and consumer protection laws.

It can also include interactive tools, including pre- and post-tests, to measure the level of knowledge about these topics, which are important to understand in order to re-establish personal finances, rebuild credit and avoid getting back in debt.  These courses are available online and allow filers to meet the necessary requirements to earn their bankruptcy pre-discharge education certificate.

Here are some ways to get the most out of your bankruptcy counseling:

  • Make sure you receive counseling from a reputable agency (one that is not only approved by the government, but a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling and in good standing with the Better Business Bureau);
  • Commit to your credit counseling. Set aside a block of time dedicated to these sessions.
  • Ask the counselors to explain anything you do not understand. They will answer any questions you have, as long as they are not legal-related.  These should be directed to your bankruptcy attorney.

If you are in financial crisis and considering filing for 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.

Related Resources: https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/finance/know-credit-counseling-bankruptcy/

Mortgage Fraud Rising Most in Low Down Payment Loans

October 19, 2016 Posted by kingcade

Earlier this week, we did a posting on mortgage fraud being on the rise. As it stands, the report showed a 3.9% year-over-year increase in fraud risk, as of the end of the second quarter of 2016. CoreLogic’s Mortgage Fraud Report analyzes the collective level of loan application fraud risk the mortgage industry is experiencing each quarter.

However, what is most noteworthy about the report is the loan type that is showing the greatest fraud risk increase is high-LTV purchase loans.

Nearly two years ago, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac introduced 3% down mortgages, which have made their way into both big and small lender offerings since then, with some even offering as low as 1% down offerings.

The new low down payment programs were launched as a way to extend credit opportunities for first time home buyers since the access to credit tightened significantly after the financial crisis. But as the credit box loosens, the risk of mortgage fraud heightens, as seen in the report.

A balance is definitely needed. If current trends of higher LTV purchases and increased credit availability continue, mortgage fraud will likely rise over the next few years.

Click here to read more on this story.

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.

Global Debt Exceeds Levels of 2008

October 18, 2016 Posted by kingcade

A recent study by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) found that global debt, which includes the debts of governments, households and non-financial businesses, reached a record $152 trillion in 2015 – an amount much higher than before the 2008-2009 Great Recession.

While it seems everyone is fixated on the election, developments in the world economy threaten to create serious problems for the next presidential candidate. What is most concerning about this is that the global economic recovery has assumed widespread “deleveraging” – the repayment of debt by businesses and households.

It was assumed that these repayments would slow the economy. To reduce their debts, households would cut consumption and companies would cut investment. But once debts had receded to manageable levels, consumer and business spending would bounce back. The economy would accelerate.

Leading up to the Great Recession, the economy relied on debt-driven growth. People and firms could spend more, because they would borrow more. This was not only indicative in the United States with its housing bubble. Borrowing financed housing booms in Europe (Spain and the United Kingdom), consumer goods and investments in factories and machinery.

The IMF study fears “a vicious feedback loop”: High debts discourage more borrowing. A slowing economy then makes it harder to repay debts. The more that is borrowed, the more likely that borrowers, lenders – or both – will revert, further having a negative impact on economic growth and development.

Click here to read more on this story.

If you are in financial crisis and considering filing for 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.