Posts Tagged: ‘Chapter 7 Miami Bankruptcy’

5 Ways to Erase Your Credit Card Debt

May 9, 2018 Posted by kingcade

Credit card debt can be frustrating to no end and is easily one of the most common debts individuals who later file for bankruptcy find themselves battling. Every situation is different, and while there is not a single solution for getting out of credit card debt, certain tips and tricks can help individuals who find themselves drowning in this type of debt.

  1. Use All Resources to Pay the Debt

The most common method used in the past was to take all resources available to pay off the debt. While it is an effective method, it is one that requires a lot of dedication, as well as a lot of time. It starts with the individual cutting up their credit cards and using cash only to pay for essential living expenses. It is recommended that the person first sit down to make a list of all cards he or she has, writing down the interest rate for each card, as well as the minimum payment on each.

Utilizing what is known as the “debt avalanche” method, the person targets one credit card balance at a time. This means that the person pays the minimum payments on all other cards with the exception of the first card with the highest interest rate. To come up with the amount the borrower can afford to pay towards this car, he or she will need to create or revise a budget, eliminating all unnecessary expenses, and see what amount is left after all living expenses are covered. The person will throw all of the money towards the first debt, and as soon as that debt is paid, the card with the next highest interest rate is handled and so on until all debts are paid.

However, when the card’s interest rate is too high, the individual has too many debts to handle or he or she has no extra money to contribute to paying the cards off, other options may need to be used.

  1. Balance-Transferring Card

If the individual still has a good credit score, it is possible he or she could transfer the balance from one or more of these cards to a newer one with a lower interest rate. Many cards offer a limited-time 0 percent annual percentage rate for a certain period of time and waive a balance transfer fee during this period. This time period can allow the payer a chance to catch up without the debilitating interest rates preventing any progress. However, the key is the person needs a good credit score, as well as savings or funds available to pay off the balance during this period of time with 0 percent APR.

  1. Credit Card Consolidation Loan

Sometimes paying off the credit card debt can be too much to pay without help. In these situations, credit card consolidation loans are a possibility. According to Bankrate, the average rate for these loans is 16.84 percent for credit cards these debtors are facing, which can be near impossible to conquer. A credit card consolidation loan allows the person to pay off the credit card balance with a loan for the same amount but a lower rate. The rates for these loans start around 10.00 percent with lower fees than the credit cards. These personal loans are available for borrowers with less than perfect credit, but the borrowers will need someone to cosign the loan or at least put up collateral to cover the loan.

  1. Debt Management

Another option is for the borrower to enroll in a debt management program or plan (DMP) and receive assistance from a credit counseling service. A qualified credit counselor will work with the individual to put together a budget, create a plan to pay off the debt and to work with the creditors to negotiate the debt. Also, under a DMP, the person will consolidate the debt into one monthly payment with a small monthly fee that is capped by the state. This option is available for individuals with poor credit, and the process can take approximately four to five years.

It is important that the person find a company who is qualified, such as the Financial Counseling Association of America. If a company promises the debtor that it will be able to completely get rid of the debt, it is likely a scam. Do the homework before choosing a company.

  1. File Bankruptcy

Sometimes, the individual has no choice but to file for bankruptcy if the amount of debt is too much to handle. It is at this point that a bankruptcy attorney needs to be consulted. An attorney can help the person determine whether other options exist, and if no other option does exist, the attorney can advise the individual on what type of bankruptcy is best for his or her situation, whether that be Chapter 7, 11 or 13 bankruptcy.

If you have 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://blog.credit.com/2018/05/5-ways-you-can-erase-your-credit-card-debt-183081/

 

Can a Person File for Bankruptcy More Than Once?

May 2, 2018 Posted by kingcade

Many clients want to know if a previous bankruptcy filing is going to prevent them from being able to file again. Many factors go into when and whether it can be done, but the two biggest factors are what type of bankruptcy was filed previously and how long ago the case was filed.

No Bar for Subsequent Filings Exist

The good news for bankruptcy filers is there are no limits on the number of times a person can file for bankruptcy. However, the bankruptcy courts do not want to see individuals misuse the system with multiple filings made in bad faith. It is for this reason that the law does impose certain statutory requirements and prerequisites that filers must meet to be able to file again. If an individual has filed for bankruptcy previously, it is important that he or she contact an experienced bankruptcy attorney to discuss the options available, as well as the requirements for filing again.

Previous Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Filing

If the previous bankruptcy filing was a Chapter 7 case, the individual must wait at least eight years from the date of the previous bankruptcy filing before filing a second filing, if that person wants to file another Chapter 7 case. However, if the person filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case for the first filing but now wants to go forward with a Chapter 13 reorganization case, the time is shorter, and that person must only wait four years from the date of the first bankruptcy filing date.

Previous Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Filing

If the previous bankruptcy filing was Chapter 13, certain time limits do apply. If the previous case resulted in a bankruptcy discharge, the filer must wait at least six years from the date the first Chapter 13 case was filed before he or she can file for and get another discharge in a later Chapter 7 case. However, exceptions do exist to this rule. If the filer paid back all of his or her unsecured debts or at least 70 percent of the unsecured debts were paid, and the plan was to pay them back in good faith, the six-year rule does not apply. If the later case is a Chapter 13 bankruptcy again, the filer cannot get a later Chapter 13 bankruptcy unless the case has been filed at least two years after the date the first case was filed.

Case Dismissed with Prejudice  

However, other exceptions exist to the rules listed above. The filer can be prohibited from filing a later bankruptcy case if the bankruptcy court dismissed the previous bankruptcy case with prejudice, meaning the person who had filed the case failed to comply with court orders, filed multiple cases with the purpose of deceiving creditors or the case was not filed in good faith.

If you have 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.attorneys.com/bankruptcy/can-a-person-file-for-bankruptcy-more-than-once

http://www.alllaw.com/articles/nolo/bankruptcy/how-often-file.html

The Dangers of Filing Bankruptcy Pro Se

March 6, 2018 Posted by kingcade

Filing for bankruptcy “pro se” means that an individual represents himself or herself in the bankruptcy process.  It is a risky decision and there are a number of pitfalls associated with the same.  Filing for bankruptcy has a complex set of rules, forms, statutes and judicial decisions.  Some people choose to represent themselves because they think they cannot afford to hire a bankruptcy attorney or they may think they have a simple case.  Whatever the reasoning, it is not a wise decision.

Here are some of the most common problems with filing for bankruptcy pro se (without an attorney):

Filing the wrong type of bankruptcy– Each type of bankruptcy is designed to solve specific problems.  Property is treated very differently when it comes to Chapter 7 and Chapter 13.  If you file the wrong Chapter bankruptcy, you run the risk of losing valuable property or end up not being able to discharge certain debts.

Losing property you should have been able to keep– Filing for personal bankruptcy allows you to claim “exemptions,” which can save your home, even your business.  If you are filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Florida, you can use Florida bankruptcy exemptions to protect your property.  Florida has one of the most generous homestead exemptions in the country. To use Florida’s exemptions, you must have resided in Florida for at least 730 days before filing your bankruptcy petition. Here are the most common Florida bankruptcy exemptions.

Not properly filling out the bankruptcy forms– When filing for bankruptcy, you will have to fill out much more than a standard bankruptcy petition.  You will be expected to submit dozens of supporting documentation, listing every single debt, all of your creditors and all of your assets.  If you make a mistake or miss something, costly delays can result.  Not to mention, you run the risk of your case being completely dismissed and rejected all together.

Continued creditor harassment– When you hire an attorney to file your bankruptcy, creditors are required by law to only speak with your attorney and may no longer harass you about your debt.  If you choose to represent yourself in bankruptcy, the lender may try and lift the automatic stay, which is what protects your from continued creditor calls while your bankruptcy is ongoing.   A consumer has specific rights when a creditor violates the automatic stay.

Failing to take required education courses– In Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy filers must take approved credit counseling courses before filing for bankruptcy, and complete a financial management course before receiving their bankruptcy discharge. Many pro se filers get confused about these requirements and if they fail to file the proper certificate, their entire case can be dismissed.

Failure to understand the above concepts will be problematic if a creditor challenges the dischargeability of a debt or if the bankruptcy trustee alleges you have committed fraud—or anything else that could crop up during the case. When you find yourself on the receiving end of a complaint or motion, an attorney is essential to your success.

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.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/pitfalls-filing-chapter-7-bankruptcy-without-attorney.html

What is considered bankruptcy fraud and what are the consequences?

February 23, 2018 Posted by kingcade

When you file for bankruptcy, you are required to list all of your property and any assets you have transferred to others within a particular time period on your bankruptcy paperwork.  Failing to do so can cause you to be accused of bankruptcy fraud.  The relief bankruptcy affords you is a powerful one, and frees you from the burden of overwhelming debt.  However, it does cost your creditors.  Bankruptcy law attempts to mitigate this loss by establishing a bankruptcy ‘estate’ (i.e. – the remaining property) after your exemptions (those assets which are kept to maintain a job and household).

Although, most people who file for bankruptcy are honest hardworking people, some individuals can be tempted to hide property and assets.  Here are some examples that if caught, could be considered criminal:

  • Failing to list all assets on the appropriate bankruptcy schedule;
  • Concealing a property transfer prior to the bankruptcy filing (i.e. – giving a boat or car to a friend or family member);
  • Creating a false document;
  • Destroying or withholding documents, and
  • Paying someone to help hide property from the court.

The consequences of engaging in such activities are harsh. Anyone who makes a knowingly false statement in association with a bankruptcy filing can be assessed fines up to $250,000 and receive up to 5 years in prison. Regardless of your occupation or status in life, if you are found guilty of bankruptcy fraud- you face real consequences, criminal prosecution and even jail time.

Bankruptcy trustees are experts at finding undisclosed cash, property, vehicles, boats, jewelry, antiques, and collectibles. If you are caught trying to hide assets, the consequences are big. Your discharge will be denied, and you will be unable to discharge the debts you listed in a subsequent bankruptcy filing.

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 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.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/bankruptcy-fraud.html

Millennials Slower to Pay Down Medical Debt

February 14, 2018 Posted by kingcade

A recent study by TransUnion revealed that millennials pay medical expenses at a lower rate than Gen X or baby boomers. The study did a comparison of credit data and it revealed five key findings.

  1. Millennials use fewer credit cards than Gen X consumers. In fact, their use of private label cards is 23 percent lower than Gen X consumers, while their usage of bankcards is 22 percent lower.
  2. Millennials prefer to make every day purchases using cash and debit cards, according to TransUnion.
  3. When it comes to credit cards, subprime millennials carry a serious delinquency rate of 23 percent, which is lower than the Gen X rate of 28 percent.
  4. Millennials tend to pay medical bills at a slower pace compared to other generations, according to TransUnion. The study found 74 percent of millennials did not pay their medical bills in full in 2016, a 6 percent increase from 2015. That compares to 68 percent for Gen X consumers and 60 percent for baby boomers.
  5. Millennials’ slower rate of paying medical bills is occurring in a healthcare environment where patients are taking on more financial responsibility for their care. The study found healthcare provider revenue collected directly from patients increased from less than 10 percent to more than 30 percent over the last 10 years.

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