Posts Tagged: ‘wage garnishment’

5 Signs it’s Time to File for Bankruptcy

December 6, 2017 Posted by kingcade

Filing for bankruptcy is a complicated process and a decision that should not be taken lightly.  But for some, it is the only solution that will get them out of debt and serious financial problems.  So how do you know if bankruptcy is right for you?  Here are five signs it’s time to consider filing for bankruptcy:

You are being sued by debt collectors.  When you fail to make payments on a debt, that debt gets turned over to a collection agency.  If the collection agency’s calls and letters go unanswered they may file a lawsuit against you.  Fighting these lawsuits can be difficult and if you lose, you will likely end up paying more in attorneys’ fees and court costs.  It is best to not let it get to this point.  Filing for bankruptcy provides you legal protection against creditors and debt collectors.  Once the automatic stay is issued, it bars any additional collection attempts, including lawsuits being filed against you.

Your credit cards are maxed out.  This not only is affecting your credit score negatively, but you are likely trapped in a cycle of making only the minimum payment on these cards while the interest accrues to amounts you will never be able to pay off.  Credit card debt is one of the easiest kinds of debt to discharge in bankruptcy.

Your wages are being garnished. If a creditor obtains a court order for a wage garnishment, your employer is required by law to abide by the order and withhold money from your check each pay period until the debt is paid off.   If your wages are being garnished you can still be protected by the automatic stay, which will halt further wage garnishment.

You cannot afford your bills.  If you were recently laid off from your job or had an unexpected medical expense, for many Americans it is just a matter of time before even a small amount of debt can spiral into something much greater.   Chapter 7 bankruptcy is specifically designed for individuals and families whose income level is not sufficient to pay their debts.

You are in danger of losing your home.  If your financial situation has reached the point where you are behind on mortgage payments and facing possible foreclosure, filing for bankruptcy can help you get caught up on those payments while staying in your home.

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://smartasset.com/credit-score/4-signs-its-time-to-file-bankruptcy

Student Loan Debt Forgiven, but Tax Bill Remains

October 24, 2017 Posted by kingcade

Wounded war veteran Will Milzarski’s student loan debt was forgiven, but the IRS wants him to pay $62,000 in income taxes on the loan cancellation.  The retired 1st Lt. is a lawyer specializing in disability rights and took a leave from his state job to return to the Army to attend Officer Candidate School.

His two tours of duty in Afghanistan left him with a traumatic brain injury, post traumatic stress disorder and hearing loss. The Department of Veterans Affairs considers him totally and permanently disabled, which lead to a cancellation of $223,000 in student loan debt.

But what he didn’t expect was the IRS notice that followed.  Milzarski is facing $8,000 in Michigan taxes, penalties and interest in addition to federal taxes- that’s $70,000 in total. Milzarski’s high student debt is largely attributed to his law degree, which he earned in 2002 from Cooley Law School.

He was able to subtract his other debts to bring down the amount of income attributed to the loan forgiveness to $161,000. But that pushed him into the top tax brackets.

While there are some exceptions, canceled debt is often considered income.  Milzarski said he is facing garnishment of his disability pay and a lien against his home.  Milzarski led soldiers on 244 combat missions and 43 engagements with the enemy. Among his 18 awards are Purple Heart and Meritorious Service medals.

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. 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, 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.

When Filing for Bankruptcy- Timing Matters

July 7, 2017 Posted by kingcade

Timing the filing of your bankruptcy is important to obtain the best possible outcome in your case.  For example, waiting to file after creditors have already taken action against you can result in unnecessary legal costs and potential loss of property.  Filing shortly after transferring money or property to someone else, can run you the risk of being accused of bankruptcy fraud.

Here are a few points to remember when timing the filing of your bankruptcy:

Filing for bankruptcy will stop litigation.  It is best to file before a creditor receives a judgment against you.  This will save you the cost of legal fees and giving the creditor more rights to your property.

Prevents wage garnishment.  A creditor who has obtained a judgment against you can force your employer to deduct money from your check, even require your bank to withdraw the funds directly from your account.  You can save this money by discharging the debt before such actions can be taken.

Puts an end to creditor harassment & collection calls. As soon as you file for bankruptcy, creditors must stop contacting you and deal only with your attorney.  Creditors who continue to contact you are in violation of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code’s Automatic Stay and face sanctions by the Court.

Allows you to stay in your home. Filing for bankruptcy will stop the foreclosure process and allow you additional time to stay in your home.

Divorce & Bankruptcy: If you are in the middle of a divorce, it is best to file a joint bankruptcy with your spouse to discharge all debt before the marriage ends.  However, if your income is too high to qualify as a married couple you will need to decide whether the best option is to file individually while you are still married or wait until after the divorce.  When it comes to timing your bankruptcy filing while going through a divorce, you cannot go wrong setting up an appointment with an experienced bankruptcy attorney to discuss the best path for your financial future.  Many offer free consultations and Saturday appointments.

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://bankruptcy.lawyers.com/bankruptcy-basics/time-matters-when-filing-chapter-7-bankruptcy.html

Social Security Checks Being Garnished for Unpaid Student Loan Debt

December 29, 2016 Posted by kingcade

In an effort to recoup millions of dollars in unpaid student loan debt, the government has resorted to taking money from borrowers’ social security checks.  Since 2001, the government has collected about $1.1 billion from recipients of all ages.  In 2015 alone they collected $171 million. This has left thousands of retired or disabled Americans with below-poverty incomes, according to a recent report from the Government Accountability Office.

As of September 2015, 114,000 Americans who were 50 and older had their Social Security benefits reduced to offset defaulted student loans, according to the report. Since 2002, the figure has increased by 440%.

The report identifies an increasing trend of baby boomers entering retirement with student loan debt. According to the report, approximately 43% of people whose Social Security checks were decreased have held their student loans 20 years or more.

Borrowers who are determined to be permanently and totally disabled are entitled to have their student loan debt forgiven, though many are unaware of the option, according to the Wall Street Journal. Currently, the government’s student-loan portfolio is $1.26 trillion, with an increasing number of people continuing to fall behind on their payments.

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, 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.wsj.com/articles/social-security-checks-are-being-reduced-for-unpaid-student-debt-1482253337

http://fortune.com/2016/12/20/social-security-checks-garnished/

Student Loan Debt Forgiveness Signed into Law in New Jersey

December 7, 2016 Posted by kingcade

Governor Chris Christie signed a bill into law this week that will eliminate student loan debt in the event of death and total disability, and allow for deferment of payments and interest accumulation for those who are temporarily disabled.

The change comes after an investigation into the case of a mother who was forced to continue paying her son’s student loans after his senseless murder.  It brought to light New Jersey’s punitive lending practices.  The bill’s sponsors in the lower house called its success a victory for students and parental co-signers who could have been left with insurmountable debt after a tragedy.

The primary sponsor of the bill, State Assemblyman Vince Mazzeo, made the following statement:

“Imagine you’re a family who always pays their bills, has good credit and then you lose a child and in the midst of your grief, you’re saddled with tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of dollars in their remaining student loan debt,” Mazzeo wrote.  “That’s just something we can’t allow to happen on our watch.”

Fellow sponsor Andrew Zwicker also praised the change.

“To expect a student’s family or other survivors to pay their college loan debt in the event of their death is cruel and unacceptable.  We can do better than that,” Zwicker wrote.

New Jersey’s Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (HESAA) will now be obligated to forgive those debts.  In cases of permanent or temporary disability, borrowers will have to provide a written statement from their physician attesting to their condition.

Unlike other states, New Jersey does not allow for payments to be adjusted by income and charges higher interest rates than similar federal programs. The state can also garnish a borrower’s wages for non-payment and revoke professional licenses without court approval.

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. 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, 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.