Consumer Bankruptcy, COVID-19

Personal Bankruptcy Filings Drop in Light of COVID-19 Pandemic Relief

Personal bankruptcy filings are down, leaving many financial analysts questioning whether the drop in filings can be attributed to financial relief offered from governmental pandemic relief programs or to other economic factorsThis stimulus relief offered consumers a much-needed financial boost, but the question remains how long this boost will hold off future bankruptcy filings. 

Bankruptcy Law, COVID-19

November Personal Bankruptcy Filings Drop to a 14-Year Low

Personal bankruptcy filings reported in the country for the month of November hit a low not seen in 14 years. Financial analysts believe the drop in personal bankruptcy filings can be attributed to the current national and statewide moratoriums on evictions and foreclosures, as well as the availability of governmental stimulus aid related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

According to figures from the legal services provider, Epiq Systems, Inc., the total number of personal bankruptcy filings in the month of November amounted to 34,440 filings. This is the lowest monthly total reported since January 2006.  

Credit Card Debt, Debt Collection, Debt Relief

How to Continue Paying Debt While Unemployed During COVID-19

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has caused countless Americans to lose their jobs. More than 30 million Americans have filed for unemployment in the wake of the outbreak. Paying for basic expenses can be difficult enough but paying down debt while unemployed can seem impossible.

However, with proper planning and by taking advantage of opportunities available during this time, it can make things a little easier. The first step is to evaluate all expenses coming out monthly and create a budget to see what payments can be made. Additionally, the Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES) provides some relief, as well, that can make this process easier.

Bankruptcy Law, COVID-19, Debt Relief

Unemployment Skyrockets as a Record Number of Bankruptcies Anticipated

The coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis has hit the American economy hard, which is evident in the number of unemployment claims being filed. It has been reported that approximately 17 million American workers have filed for unemployment over the course of three weeks after many businesses have shuttered.

Research from three different Federal Reserve banks have shown that bankruptcies related to the economic downturn from the COVID-19 crisis could increase by 200,000 to reach a record 1 million filings. However, this increase is possible only if government stimulus programs do not offset this increase.

Bankruptcy Law, Credit, Debt Relief, Timothy Kingcade Posts

Increase in Personal Bankruptcy Filings among LuLaRoe Consultants Spark Speculation

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

Bankruptcy Law, Credit, Debt Relief, Timothy Kingcade Posts

Tennis Star Boris Becker Declared Bankrupt

Boris Becker, the three-time Wimbledon champion has been declared bankrupt over a debt outstanding since October 2015.  Becker’s lawyers pleaded with the bankruptcy court in London for “a last chance” to pay the longstanding debt.  They argued there was sufficient evidence to show that Becker would be able to pay the debt soon through a refinancing arrangement, involving remortgaging a property in Majorca.

However, the judge in the case denied it, saying:

“He should have thought about that a long time ago.  It is not often the case that a professional person has a judgment [debt] outstanding against them since October 2015. This is a historic debt.”

To add to his financial woes, his blue Maserati- on loan from a sponsorship deal- was taken away from him after he failed to pay the fines he received from numerous parking tickets.

Becker, who is currently working as a television commentator during the Wimbledon championships for the BBC and other outlets, has denied the bankruptcy claims, telling the German press he can meet all of his financial obligations.

Last week he presented the state of his finances to a London bankruptcy administrator in a private meeting, where he reportedly was given a living allowance and ordered to register any income.

Becker, who won six grand slams in the 80’s and 90’s, including three Wimbledon, two Australian Open and one US Open titles has been consistently creating headlines off the tennis court.  Co-Author of Becker’s 2013 biography Life Is Not a Game, said his excessive lifestyle had been the one thread of continuity in his life.

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.

Bankruptcy Law, Credit, Debt Relief, Timothy Kingcade Posts

When Filing for Bankruptcy- Timing Matters

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

Bankruptcy Law, Credit, Debt Relief, Timothy Kingcade Posts

How a debt avalanche strategy can eliminate your debt

One of the smartest and fastest ways to eliminate your debt is a strategy known as a debt avalanche.  To start, you must first take inventory of your debt- meaning you need to write down all outstanding debts- including credit card balances, student loan payments, car payments, etc. and determine the interest rates you are paying on each of the balances.

The debt avalanche strategy begins by ranking each of your debts by interest rate, from highest to lowest.  No matter the size of the loan balance, it will always be less expensive (and faster) to pay off your debts in order from highest to lowest interest rates.

For example, your interest rate on a credit card is probably going to run much higher than the interest rate on your vehicle.  Tackle those debts with the highest interest rates, first and save as much money on interest payments as possible.

Finally, if the debt inventory process reveals an overwhelming or confusing amount of debt, consider meeting with a financial expert who can discuss your options in greater detail.  Sometimes a simple debt consolidation can reduce your payments by thousands, just by reducing the interest amount.  If you fear you might be at risk of personal bankruptcy, it is best to meet with a professional as soon as possible to know exactly where you stand.  Many bankruptcy attorneys offer free consultations and have appointments available on the weekend.

Click here to read more on this story.

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, 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.

Bankruptcy Law, Credit, Debt Relief, Timothy Kingcade Posts

“Disappearing” Bankruptcies Could Prompt new wave of Home Buying

Approximately 6 million Americans will have their bankruptcies disappear from their credit reports over the next five years.  Chapter 7 personal bankruptcies peaked in 2010 during the housing market crash then decreased over the next few years before leveling off in late 2015 – 2016.

The number of Chapter 7 bankruptcies, the most common type of bankruptcy, which involves no repayment plan and in most cases is a complete discharge of debt, increased to nearly 1.14 million, in 2010.

Now seven years later, millions of Americans are seeing these bankruptcies fall off their credit reports, improving their credit scores and allowing them to re-enter the housing market and purchase a home.

Credit scores reached a record high this spring, which we discussed in a recent blog.  This will create even more buyers in an already competitive market.  With home prices continuing to increase as inventory levels drop, experts do not expect it to let up anytime soon.

Hispanic homeownership could also see an increase in the next few years as the President and his administration seek to “dismantle” the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act, which could give lenders more freedom to originate loans outside traditional qualified mortgages.

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 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.

Bankruptcy Law, Credit, Debt Relief

How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Personal Bankruptcy

If you are facing financial trouble, it can feel like the end of the world. People do not realize that filing for bankruptcy is a viable solution to their problems, can alleviate the financial stress, put an end to collection calls and even raise your credit score.

Here are some tips to remember along the way:

Do not be afraid of filing bankruptcy.  Debt can be overwhelming and sometimes instead of facing it head-on, people bury their heads in the sand.  This is the worst thing you can possibly do.  This approach could result in you facing numerous lawsuits, automatic judgments against you even wage garnishment.  By filing for bankruptcy protection you are getting a second chance and taking control over your finances once and for all.

Avoid running up new debt prior to filing. Do not make the mistake of running up a lot of new debt before filing for bankruptcy.  The court will take all of your spending into account, including recent debts incurred, and the judge may not be willing to waive debts if it appears that you are trying to “game the system.” Make sure that your spending habits reflect a true desire to change.

Be aware of ALL of your options. For example, you may want to consider credit counseling. There are some reputable non-profit organizations that can help. With their assistance, you can reduce the payments you have to make and even get some of the interest removed from your debts.

Hire an experienced bankruptcy attorney. The laws surrounding personal bankruptcy are complex. If you feel unsure about the steps to take moving forward, consulting with an attorney may be your best option. Many offer FREE consultations. An attorney can be the guiding hand you need to make the process go as smooth as possible. When meeting with your bankruptcy attorney, make sure you have all of the necessary paperwork with you (i.e. – loan documents, credit card bills and any other relevant financial documents).

Create a post-bankruptcy budget. When you file bankruptcy, you want to avoid finding yourself in the same financial predicament that got you there.  Planning for and making a post-bankruptcy budget is a smart idea. When you can create such a budget and stick to it after bankruptcy, you are far less likely to find yourself in the same position in the future.

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, 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://techfeatured.com/automotive/1198/how-to-avoid-the-pitfalls-of-personal-bankruptcy