Posts Tagged: ‘Kingcade Garcia McMaken’

Tax Debt will Affect Passport Renewals and Applications for Thousands of Americans

August 3, 2018 Posted by kingcade

Americans who have overdue tax debts will soon find it difficult to receive a new or renewed passport, according to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It is estimated that approximately 362,000 Americans have overdue tax debts, and soon, Congress will be increasing efforts to enforce a law passed back in 2015.

The 2015 law requires that the IRS and State Department deny applications for new or renewed passports for taxpayers who have overdue tax debt in the amount of $51,000 or more.

Increased efforts to enforce this law began in February 2018, according to a recent Wall Street Journal report. Currently, the IRS is in the process of sending the names of these 362,000 individuals to the State Department.

According to the IRS Division Commissioner, Mary Beth Murphy, authorities are currently only denying passports rather than revoking them for people who hold excessive IRS debts. In fact, the State Department has stated that the agency has already denied passports for individuals who hold tax debts. For the time being, Americans with over $51,000 in tax debt will be able to continue traveling abroad if they hold current passports.

The IRS has accounted for inflation and other assessed penalties, taxes and interest when calculating the amounts owed.  These amounts do not include debts that were collected by the IRS, such as FBAR penalties due to the person’s failure to report foreign financial accounts or child support owed. If the taxpayer has entered into an agreement for installment payments, is in the middle of a bankruptcy proceeding, is a victim of identity theft or is in a federally declared disaster area is not subject to revocation of their passports.

The State Department is within its rights to issue a passport for emergencies or other humanitarian reasons should a U.S. citizen who is subject to this law need to return to the U.S. from overseas.  Individuals affected by the law will be notified in writing by the IRS.

Click here to read more on this story.

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.

 

 

Attorney Timothy S. Kingcade Obtains Successful Win for Bankruptcy Client

July 30, 2018 Posted by kingcade

Second Motion to Dismiss Granted & Hearing Cancelled due to lack of evidence to support the claims

Bankruptcy Attorney Timothy S. Kingcade, founding partner of Miami-based Kingcade Garcia McMaken successfully obtained an Order for his client in a Chapter 7 case, granting a Second Motion to Dismiss and cancelling a hearing scheduled for July 25, 2018.

“We are extremely pleased with the victory obtained for our client today. The allegations stated in the Complaint lacked sufficient evidence to support the claims. It was simply assumed that actions taken by Torres and PSI petroleum, LLC assigned liability to our client, without providing sufficient and specific allegations. The law was on our side in this case,” Kingcade said.

On March 5, 2018, the Plaintiffs in the case: Milan Gohil and GMC Law Firm, PLLC filed an adversary proceeding seeking a judgement against the Defendant. The complaint alleged three counts: (1.) False Pretenses, Fraud & Nondischargeability; (2.) False Financial Statements & Non-Dischargeability, and (3.) GMC Law Firm Claim for Attorney’s Fees. The Order Granting the First Motion to Dismiss included a provision that allowed the Plaintiffs to file an amended complaint, and on May 6, 2018 the Plaintiffs filed an Amended Complaint to Determine Dischargeability of Debt.  On May 18, 2018, Defendants filed the Second Motion to Dismiss stating the plaintiffs did not plead their claims for relief as required by law.

A court “weighing a motion to dismiss asks ‘not weather a plaintiff will ultimately prevail but whether the claimant is entitled to offer evidence to support the claims.’” (quoting Scheurer v. Rhodes). Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 7012, adopting Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12, authorizes the court to dismiss a complaint that fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted.

The Order directs the Second Motion to Dismiss be granted, all pending motions are denied as moot and the hearing on July 25, 2018 be cancelled.

###

Miami-based Kingcade Garcia McMaken was established by managing partner and bankruptcy attorney, Timothy S. Kingcade in 1996. The firm represents clients throughout the State of Florida in Chapter 7 bankruptcy and foreclosure defense cases. The firm is committed to providing personalized service to each and every client, clearly explaining the options according to the unique circumstances of his or her life. The office environment and the service provided are centered on a culture of superior client care for the financially disenfranchised. All partners and associates at Kingcade Garcia McMaken specialize in consumer bankruptcy and foreclosure and have dedicated their practices to this area of the law. Additionally, all attorneys and staff members at the firm are bilingual speaking Spanish.

For more information visit, https://www.miamibankruptcy.com/.

 

 

Miami Residents Carry Second Highest Credit Card Debt Balance in the Country

July 5, 2018 Posted by kingcade

Credit card debt is a problem for many people and breaking the cycle can be even more of a challenge. While no one specific timeline works for every person when it comes to paying off credit card debt, it can take years of dedication and regular payments above the minimum to finally pay off a credit card. According to a recent study, it takes the average Florida resident around two years to get out of credit card debt.

The study published by CreditCards.com reported that people living in the Miami metro area, which includes both Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, carry the second-highest credit card debt balances in the country, second to San Antonio, Texas. Texas was reported as being a state with three of the five cities that reportedly had the highest credit card debt.

According to the study, Florida residents holding this much credit card debt would need an estimated 21 months to pay off the current card balance. Those living in San Antonio were reported as only needing one more month, meaning 22 months, to bring the balance to zero.

The CreditCards.com study reviewed median income across the country to average credit card debt by taking data that was provided through the credit reporting company, Experian. The data looked at high debt burdens when the balance on the card was significantly high as compared to the residents’ income being reported as average or below average.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, San Francisco, a well-known area for residents living with higher-than-average income, was reported as having the lowest-reported credit card debt. The average San Francisco resident can pay off his or her debt in 13 months. The reason that debt can be paid off so quickly is the average San Francisco resident earns enough income to pay off this debt comfortably.

Other cities that reported lower debt burdens included Minneapolis, Boston, Seattle and Washington, D.C.

The report indicated that the size of the debt was not so much the problem in the Miami area but rather the debt-to-income ratio. \South Florida residents are taking on more credit card debt than they have the income to handle.

The CreditCard.com study is not the first one that had reported that many Miami-area residents suffer from low income and high financial obligations. An additional report recently shows that Miami residents paid the highest proportions of their income on rent than any other area in the nation. In fact, it has been reported that the Miami-area is one of the least affordable places to live in the nation.

Click here to read more on this story.

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.

 

10 Things Debt Settlement Companies Won’t Tell You

May 17, 2018 Posted by kingcade

When facing overwhelming debt, it can seem like there is no way out, the thought of a third-party debt settlement company coming in and negotiating down the debt can seem like a dream come true. While it can be tempting to jump at this offer, there are several important facts that debt settlement companies will not tell you.

It is important to first understand what makes a debt settlement company different from the normal credit counseling service. A debt settlement company assists in negotiating down the individual’s debt. To qualify, the individual must stop making payments on any debts. All of the late fees, interests and penalties will continue to grow during this time, and the debtor will make payments to an escrow account held by the debt settlement company. When a specified amount has been saved, the company contacts your creditors and tries to get them to accept a lower amount to settle the debt.

  1. If it seems too good to be true…

The consumer facing mounds of debt is able to settle the case for less than what he or she owed. In return, the debt-settlement company collects fees from the consumer for having to negotiate the debt. However, like many things that sound too good to be true, it is not always that easy. In fact, the consumer can end up in a much worse financial situation than they were in before. The debt settlement company, on the other hand, comes out earning fees on the payments made by the consumer. Many times, the consumer will never end up seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and will end up filing for bankruptcy anyway. In the meantime, he or she has been making payments in an escrow account, while accruing fees and costs accumulate.

  1. Debt settlement is not an easy process.

The individual has to basically stop paying his or her bills and let all debt go into delinquency or default. The money that would be going towards the debt goes towards the debt-settlement firm and into an escrow account. By stopping payments on current debts, the creditors are supposed to be fooled into believing they will never receive payment, which will make them desperate to take a lower settlement. However, until that happens, it does not mean the collections efforts will stop. The creditors will want to receive payment and will continue doing anything they can to receive it. The debt settlement firm cannot stop the calls from coming, and they cannot stop the collection efforts during all of this.

  1. Debt-Settlement Companies Cannot Ask for Upfront Fees

In 2010, the Federal Trade Commission made it illegal for for-profit debt-settlement companies to charge upfront fees. Firms are not allowed to collect fees from the consumer before they have settled the debts. If the company is settling debts one debt at a time, fees can be collected on that settled amount, but they are not allowed to ‘front-load’ fees.

  1. There are other alternatives to debt relief.

Other debt-relief options are out there. Credit counseling is available, and many non-profits offer education for consumers on how to get rid of debts. Debt management programs offered through non-profit credit counseling services are also available. Additionally, if all else fails, bankruptcy is an available option. It helps to sit down with a bankruptcy attorney to discuss the possible options, as well as the best ones for the specific debtor.

  1. Debt-Settlement Will Not Save Your Credit Score.

The fact that the consumer simply stops paying his or her credit cards, letting them go delinquent means that the individual’s credit is going to take a hit. Even missing a payment for 30 days means that the consumer’s credit score is going to get hit. Once that happens, it can be hard to get it back.

  1. The Consumer May Still End Up Filing for Bankruptcy.

When all is said and done, the debtor may end up back at the point where he or she would have ended up had he or she not sought debt-settlement.  The bankruptcy process provides some protections for debtors that debt-settlement does not. All collection efforts stop with the automatic stay, including the fees from accruing. Also, the Chapter 13 bankruptcy process allows a more structured way for the individual to pay back the debt.

  1. Not All Debt Will Be Settled.

It is possible that the debt-settlement company may not end up settling all of the debt. They normally deal with liabilities that are unsecured, like credit cards, medical bills and unsecured loans. Debts that have collateral attached to them, such as mortgages or car loans, can be a little more difficult. Creditors are not under an obligation to work with debt-settlement companies, which is why many debts end up not being successfully settled.

  1. Debt Settlement Lawyers Do Not Represent You.

Many debt-settlement firms will tell consumers that their attorney represents them in negotiations with the creditors. However, half the time that means the attorney is basically letting the debt-settlement company utilize their letterhead. Most of the time, the attorney on the letterhead will never truly represent the consumer, and consumers should never assume or rely on false promises that they are legally protected by representation.

  1. You don’t need them.

One big issue debt-settlement companies do not want you to know is that you can do this alone. Nothing prevents a consumer from negotiating a settlement directly with the creditor. Many consumers are actually successful in working with creditors on a mutually-beneficial solution, independent from third-party intervention.

  1. Prepare for Tax Consequences.

The Internal Revenue Service considers debts that are forgiven, cancelled or discharged to be taxable income. If a consumer is successful in reducing or paying off their debts through settlement, they may still owe taxes for the amount that has been written off. In fact, consumers will receive a 1099-C form for any debt that applies as income, and this will need to be reported as gross income for taxes. The only exception to this rule is for taxpayers who are insolvent, meaning they owe more than they own.

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: https://www.marketwatch.com/story/10-things-debt-settlement-companies-wont-tell-you-2016-07-19

 

Changes on the Horizon for Bankruptcy and Student Loan Debt

May 16, 2018 Posted by kingcade

In the past it has been nearly impossible to discharge student loans in bankruptcy. This issue has kept many individuals from filing for bankruptcy as they have seen it as not helping relieve them of the biggest debt they carry: student loan debt. That all could change after the U.S. Department of Education announced this year that it will be reviewing its policies and potentially changing the way student loan debt is treated in bankruptcy.

It is estimated that student loan borrowers in the U.S. owe a total of $1.5 trillion in student loan debt. According to the Brookings Institute, around 40 percent of these individuals will end up defaulting on their loans by the year 2023.

The current test for showing that student loan debt should be discharged bankruptcy is the undue hardship test. However, this standard is very subjective, and does not leave a definitive standard across the board of what amounts to undue hardship. Even Florida bankruptcy courts vary in their determination on what defines undue hardship.

The most commonly-used test is the “Brunner Test,” which requires the borrower to show that he or she cannot maintain a basic standard of living while making student loan payments. The borrower has to show that this undue hardship would last throughout the entire repayment period in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, and he or she will need to show that efforts have been made to try to repay federal loans.

The Department of Education is looking for ways to clearly define the undue hardship standard. According to Clare McCann, a deputy director of higher education policy at New America, it is likely the Department will broaden the definition.

The Chair of the Federal Reserve, Jerome Powell, recently testified before Congress that the student debt crisis has the possibility of seriously hurting the economy if changes are not made.

A date has not been given for when the determination will happen, but it is one step closer to a change that will make a difference in the current student loan debt crisis in the country.

Click here to read more on this story.

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. There are ways to file for bankruptcy with student loan 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.