Posts Tagged: ‘Bankruptcy Chapter 7’

5 Alternatives to Charging Your Medical Bills

April 13, 2018 Posted by kingcade

If you are like many individuals today facing serious medical bills, it is important to know that you have options.  The rising cost of healthcare, combined with the growing number of Americans without adequate health insurance has led many people to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. In fact, medical debt is the No. 1 reason people file for bankruptcy in the U.S.  In 2014 alone, an estimated 40% of Americans accumulated medical debt resulting from a health issue.  Instead of putting medical expenses on your credit cards or worse signing up for a medical credit card, here are some alternatives that can help you stay out of medical debt.

  • Enroll in a payment plan. Certain hospitals and doctor’s offices offer payment plans for low-income patients. This will allow you to work out a payment plan directly with the healthcare provider, pay your bill overtime and avoid interest charges.
  • Ask about charitable funds. If your household income is low enough, you may qualify to have your medical bill completely dismissed.  Some hospitals have money set aside to pay for treatment of patients who cannot afford to pay their bill.  This is especially common in emergency health situations.  However, be warned the paperwork and forms involved is extensive but is worth it in the end.
  • Negotiate a lower amount. Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to negotiate a lower bill.  It never hurts to ask.  In some cases, hospitals may agree to settle the debt for less than you owe.
  • Consider taking out a personal loan. If you have exhausted your other options and still need help paying your bill, consider taking out a personal loan rather than using credit cards. If you have good credit and a stable income, you could qualify for a loan with an interest rate as low as 5 percent.

Click here to read more on this story.

Those who have experienced illness or injury and found themselves overwhelmed with medical debt should contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney. In bankruptcy, medical bills are considered general unsecured debts just like credit cards. This means that medical bills do not receive priority treatment and can easily be discharged in bankruptcy. Bankruptcy laws were created to help people resolve overwhelming debt and gain a fresh financial start. Bankruptcy attorney 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 McMaken, 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 McMaken website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

 

Determining Dependents in Bankruptcy

January 31, 2018 Posted by kingcade

When you file for bankruptcy, whether it is Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, you will be required to complete a set of schedules that lists information about your debts, expenses, income, assets and transactions.  Schedule J: Your Expenses requires you to provide details about your current household budget.  The court uses this to determine several things, including: whether you have too much income to qualify for a Chapter 7, and if you can afford to make your proposed payments in a Chapter 13 repayment plan bankruptcy.  You also must provide information about your dependents.  We have explained below how to determine whether someone counts as a dependent and should be listed on this form.

Minor Dependents

Any child under the age of 18 for whom you pay at least 50% of the bills should be listed on the form. This includes your own children who live with you, your spouse’s children who live with you, and children who might not live with you all the time but for whom you pay at least half of their support.  This can also include children you have agreed to care for (i.e. – a foster child or another family member’s child for an extended period of time.)

Adult Dependents

Dependents can also be adults. For example, if you provide at least 50% of the support for a parent or grandparent, or an adult relative (such as a child or sibling), that person should be listed as a dependent.

Adults Who Are Not Dependents

There may be adults who live with you but are not your dependents. For example, if your parents allowed you to move back into their house while you get back on your feet financially, they are not your dependents. Similarly, if you have allowed an adult child to move back in with you, but your child pays his or her own way, that child is not a dependent. Roommates who pay their fair share of the bills are not to be listed as dependents. Your spouse does not count as a dependent, regardless of your financial relationship.

If you have any questions on this topic or 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 McMaken 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 McMaken website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Related Resources:

http://www.alllaw.com/articles/nolo/bankruptcy/schedule-j-expenses.html

https://www.thebankruptcysite.org/resources/bankruptcy/filing-bankruptcy/determining-dependents-for-bankruptcy-schedule-i

 

5 Companies that will help you pay off your Student Loan Debt

January 3, 2018 Posted by kingcade

A recent survey conducted by IonTuition found that 80 percent of workers would work for a company that provided assistance with their student loan payments; which makes sense given that 44 million Americans are struggling with student loan debt.  Here are five companies that are helping their employees pay off their student loan debt.

Aetna. The healthcare company offers full-time and part-time employees tuition reimbursements on student loan repayment. Their student loan repayment program matches part-time employee student loan payments up to $1,000 per year with a lifetime maximum of $5,000. For full-time employees, Aetna matches student loan payments up to $2,000 per year with a lifetime maximum of $10,000.

Chegg. The textbook rental and online tutoring company gives eligible employees $1,000 a year as part of their student loan repayment benefit.

Fidelity Investments. Not only does this company offer tuition reimbursement for work-related educational expenses, it offers up to $10,000 ($2,000 a year contribution) paid directly to your student loan servicer.

Penguin Random House. The publishing company offers up to $9,000 through their student loan repayment benefit (up to $1,200 a year).

PwC. The accounting firm provides associates up to $10,000 in total (up to $1,200 a year) through their company’s student loan repayment benefit.

For borrowers who are struggling with student loan debt, relief options are available. Many student loan borrowers are unaware that they have rights and repayment options available to them, such as postponement of loan payments, reduction of payments or even a complete discharge of the debt. It is important you contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all 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 McMaken 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 McMaken website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Related Resources:

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/12/22/5-companies-that-will-help-you-pay-off-your-student-debt.html

Increase in Personal Bankruptcy Filings among LuLaRoe Consultants Spark Speculation

November 10, 2017 Posted by kingcade

A number of women who currently or formerly sold clothing through LuLaRoe have seen income from their “small businesses” decline dramatically in recent months, forcing some of the women to file for bankruptcy.

The personal bankruptcy filings- from January 2016 to October 2017- came up during a search of court records because the women or couples filing said they were “doing business” as Lularoe or LuLa Roe.”  At least 24 have been identified, but it is estimated the number is much higher.

Experts noticed on average that the families reported a “quick downward fall” in income from their business from around 2015 to when they filed.  For example, one woman, a single mom in California reported she made $61,330 in 2016 from “operating a business,” which is presumed to be her LuLaRoe business since it is the only one she says she owns.

But from January to July 2017, she had only made $10,547.42 from her business, less than half she had made midway through the year before. She reported her average net income in 2017 from her business was $184.39 a month.

She was spending just as much in some months, if not more, on “operating expenses” for her business as she was making, according to the filing.  For example, in May 2017 she earned $1,796.12, but spent $2,666.13 to keep her business afloat.

She lists $28,991 in assets and $8,000 worth of “inventory.”  Her $85,253.43 in debts include thousands of dollars on multiple credit cards and almost $1,000 owed to her Paypal merchant account.  She filed for bankruptcy in July of 2017.

Some of the other women identified, listed unpaid unsecured business loans, which shows a “clearer tie to the LuLaRoe” business.”

The co-founders of LuLaRoe appeared on CBS This Morning to speak out against the recent allegations the company is facing about merchandise quality and refund policy complaints.  A $1 billion lawsuit was filed on October 23 by two former consultants on behalf of all LuLaRoe consultants alleging the company is operating a pyramid scheme.

If you have any questions on this topic or 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 McMaken 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 McMaken website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Related Resources:

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/lularoe-clothing-retailer-founders-speak-out-against-pyramid-scheme-accusations/

https://www.buzzfeed.com/stephaniemcneal/lularoe-bankruptcy?utm_term=.bjkXAJ1kn#.vva5gXLwK

New Rule makes it Harder for Medical Debt to Impact your Credit Score

October 5, 2017 Posted by kingcade

Consumers are getting some good news when it comes to their credit scores.  A new set of rules have taken effect this week that will make it more difficult for medical debt to damage your credit score, it will also not hurt your chances of qualifying for new credit.

The three credit reporting agencies now have to wait 180 days before putting an unpaid medical bill onto your credit report.  Going back and forth with your insurance company over an outstanding medical bill?  Unpaid medical bills that later get paid by your insurance must be removed from your credit report as well.

This new rule builds additional time between patients and insurance companies to resolve such matters.  Up until this point, there was no grace period and medical debt could appear on your credit report as soon as it was reported as an unpaid debt.  Medical offices tend to do this on their own schedule, sometimes as early as 30 days, while insurers may take longer to fully process claims.

The new waiting period carves out time for patients, their doctors, and insurers to work through legitimate grievances, and makes it harder for unpaid bills to hurt your credit score.  It also allows much-needed time for those suffering from illness and injury to sort out who owes what.

Credit bureaus have taken steps to remove medical bill collections that are less than 180 days old.  One out of five credit reports contain overdue medical debt, according to a 2014 report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. That means 43 million Americans have unpaid medical debt negatively affecting their credit.

If you are on a fixed income or struggling financially, letting the medical provider know you are not able to pay will give them a reason to offer you a discount or be placed on a reasonable payment plan.  If you cannot pay, tell them why you cannot pay.  Some states require hospitals provide free or reduced care to consumers within certain income limits.  Florida is one of these states.

Click here to read more on this story.

Those who have experienced illness or injury and found themselves overwhelmed with medical debt should contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney. In bankruptcy, medical bills are considered general unsecured debts just like credit cards. This means that medical bills do not receive priority treatment and can easily be discharged in bankruptcy. Bankruptcy laws were created to help people resolve overwhelming debt and gain a fresh financial start. Bankruptcy attorney 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 McMaken, 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.