What Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Can Do for Debtors

May 23, 2016 by

After the Great Recession of 2008-09, many Americans found themselves in financial crisis – the nationwide effect of mass lay-offs, reduction in income, underemployment and prolonged unemployment. Adding to these were other factors which contributed to the worsening of an individual’s financial situation, such as hospitalization, injuries due to an accident, natural calamity and divorce. All these factors can result to successive failures in paying monthly bills, including mortgage, personal loans, car loan, child support, alimony or spousal support and credit card bills. Due to lapses in payment debts only keep on getting bigger so that settling everything becomes an impossible task.

The pay of millions of wage earners in the U.S. is just enough to cover their basic needs and afford them a simple life style. Loss of job or reduction in pay, even for just a month, can very well be the start of a crushing debt crisis for them. This debt crisis, however, will not be the only source of pressure and stress which they will suffer. After only about three months of continuous lapses in payment of their loans, banks would already consider their loans as bad debts; a major reason for their account to be referred to a collection agency which never shy away from using hounding tactics just to make them pay. This means people calling any time of the day, especially during the late hours, receiving calls even at work and informing other workers about their debt, receiving emails, text messages, and/or letters/notices from law firms. Some collection agencies even go to the extent of requesting the court for garnishment of a debtor’s monetary compensation (until the entire debt is paid) or for a bank levy, which is the freezing of a debtor’s bank account.

Having debts, however, regardless of how big it is, does not need to be a cause of worry to debtors due to the Bankruptcy law, the government’s way of helping people find ways to pay their debts and, so, regain control of their financial situation. This Bankruptcy law or Bankruptcy Code was passed by the U.S. Congress in 1978; it replaces the Nelson Act or the Bankruptcy Act of 1898. There are various chapters under the Bankruptcy Code, one of these is chapter 7, also called Liquidation bankruptcy.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the bankruptcy chapter most commonly applied for, is specifically designed for individuals who have properties, but whose income falls within the limit set by the chapter. Under this chapter, a debtor will need to surrender his or her “non-exempt” properties for liquidation. If the surrendered property is a business firm, he or she will also have to cease operation of such firm. Included in the list of non-exempt properties are a vacation home or a second house, bonds, stocks, cash, and other forms of investment. Properties that may not be surrendered (“exempt” properties) include a house, clothing, necessary household appliances, a vehicle or vehicles but only up to a certain value, personal injury compensation, tools, including expensive musical instruments, that are necessary to the debtor’s trade or profession, and jewelry (up to a certain value).

All properties to be liquidated are to be under the charge of a court-appointed trustee. After the trustee has paid all the debts that need to be paid (these are called “non-dischargeable” debts), such as spousal support, child support, government-imposed penalties, court fees, student loan, debts resulting from wrongful death or personal injury, and taxes that are not more than 3 years old since they first became due, the remaining amount (if there is any) will have to be returned to the debtor. Creditors, on their part, will have to accept whatever legally determined amount they are paid, even if this amount falls short of what is actually owed them. This means that they will have to forgive the debtor of any remaining balance and waive their right to make any more collection or payment or suffer severe penalties under federal law.

As mentioned on the website of Ryan J. Ruehle Attorney at Law, LLC, “Chapter 7 bankruptcy offers the near-total liquidation of all debts that an individual may hold, giving those who pursue this option the ability to start their financial life anew.” Many people, however, find Chapter 7 quite complex due to all the legal issues it contains

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Affect of Credit on Bankruptcy

Jan 23, 2016 by

Maintaining a good credit score is one of the main concerns when people are trying to deal with their debts. Protecting your credit score would mean easier and faster transactions particularly in mortgages, loans, and credit cards and will be a major factor in whether you get approved or not and the amount of charges you might incur (in interest rate). This is the reason why choosing the right option for dealing with debts is important to avoid future financial restrictions and concerns.

There are three available options in dealing with debt: debt consolidation, debt settlement, and bankruptcy. Debt consolidation offers the chances of paying your creditors through one workable payment after all the debts are added together and computed to determine a fair monthly payment. It is a viable option only if you earn enough income to repay your debts; likewise your credit score will be greatly affected because debt consolidation will render you technically compliant to your obligations with your creditors and the negative record can stay with you for a very long time.

On the other hand, debt settlement offers the legal protection provided by bankruptcy without having to pay for all of your debts. You will be making a monthly payment (called a war chest) to a debt settlement company who will then send a proposal to your creditors stating you will are willing to pay for your debts but only with a lofty discount. Generally, creditors will be greatly against the idea, but may agree to the conditions hereafter. However, the danger of scam debt settlement companies is a serious risk and your credit score will still suffer significant impact because your records will show you paid your debts in less than the actual value. It will be treated as not paying your debts, which can significantly impact your credit score.

Many people choose to avoid bankruptcy because of the belief that it will be damaging their credit score, but according to the website of the Bradford Law Offices, PLLC, it may be a better option in many situations. Filing for either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy will have the same effect to your credit score and they provide a better solution for those who already have lower credit scores. This is because you will have the chance of rebuilding your credit scores after the bankruptcy. It is important to note, though, that your bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for no less than 10 years, so it might be a factor that financial institutions will look into when extending your credit.

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Proving Negligence

Nov 22, 2015 by

For an activity to be considered “negligent,” it needs to pass four determining factors. You will find four facets to a negligence claim that overall discover if compensation ought to be given.

The first step asks if the defendant had a lawful duty-of-care. For instance, motorists have a legal duty of care for other drivers around them. Their obligation is always to generate safely, with consideration for the others on the road’s personal safety.

According to the website of Houston personal injury attorneys at Williams Kherkher, pursuing legal duty’s opening is the part of a breach of obligation. This factor entails that somebody using a legal obligation breaks that duty and served unlike a “reasonably prudent person” might. The phrase “reasonably prudent person” merely means an average man. Breach of responsibility is clear when the defendant’s action is located to be opposite to what an ordinary, reasonable person would do.

After past the first two steps, the next component to think about is causing. A violation of this obligation has occurred as well as in case the defendant’s duty was determined, then there should be motive to confirm the action is the source of the plaintiff’s harm. Also, there must be evidence that the defendant could anticipate and stop the accident from occurring.

Lastly, the damages are evaluated. This determines the settlement sum, if any, which will get to the complainant, and is the measure that is final.

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Content and Marketing: A Competition or Collaboration?

May 23, 2015 by

The importance of the written word has not exactly had the best reception from today’s audiences. A lot of audiences are more enthralled with the idea of waiting for a bestseller’s adaptation into a blockbuster movie or a hit TV show instead of actually reading it. Studies have predicted that consumers will take the validity of a 140-character bit of news from a trusted source rather than actually pick up a newspaper or actively seek out information.

This kind of mentality has led many heads of marketing and business into thinking that content is dead. It isn’t – much like everything else that survives, content evolves. There would be no fancy graphics or viral videos without the content writing behind it. That is why there is no such thing as something being more important than another in this kind of set-up.

If your website isn’t aesthetically pleasing, it won’t attract audiences; if there’s nothing at the core of your website, it won’t retain loyal clientele. According to the website of Kinetic Word, a website can get thousands of hits per day and still not have an interested customer at the end of the day. Everything has to work together. You have to realize that your business’s branding and marketing isn’t a hierarchy of what’s more important – it’s an entire structure with bits and pieces forming a perfect picture of what you want your business to be.

Today’s audiences are not interested in being swallowed whole – as if treated as a single entity. Consumers of this day and age want and crave that feeling of being individual, of being personally spoken to. It is in acknowledging individual power that you can see what kind of content it is that your consumer base wants to see and needs to know.

Understanding your audience is the first step into a mutual collaboration between the creator and the consumer, allowing for there to be something achieved on both ends.

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First Aid Measures for Burn Injuries

Mar 23, 2015 by

Responding to a burn injury will depend on the severity of the burn. As you may already know, burn injuries are typically classified into three types. You could be a parent concerned with the safety of your children. You could be working in an industry with high risks of injury, concerned with making sure you remain safe while on the job. Whatever the case, it’s important to be prepared and learn which first aid measures to take in case the worst happens.

First degree burns are the least alarming, with the injury affecting only the epidermis or top layer of the skin. Sunburns and other superficial burns fall under this category. It causes pain, redness, and swelling in the skin, which are pretty easy to remedy. Start by running the injured area under cool water or holding a cold compress against the area for 3-5 minutes. Make sure you don’t use ice or water that is too cold because it can cause even more damage to the skin. After that, you can apply some burn ointment or aloe cream to the affected area. You can also cover the injury with a gauze pad or bandage to keep the area sterilized.

A second degree burn is more serious because it involves the other layers of the skin protected by the epidermis. Aside from pain and redness, you will also see blisters in the skin that might break open and cause the injured area to look wet and raw. When this happens, it’s best to seek out emergency medical attention immediately. As you wait for help to arrive, you can try to ease discomfort by removing the clothes surrounding the burn, applying cool water to the injury for about 3-5 minutes, and keeping the area covered with a clean piece of cloth.

Third degree burns are the most severe cause the injured area to look charred, white, brown, leathery, dry, or waxy. Most of the time, the injured area will also feel numb. The most severe of these burns may feel painless due to nerve damage. Again, you will need to call 911 and seek immediate medical attention. Follow the same steps you would in case of a second degree burn. Just be sure you don’t try to force or peel off pieces of clothing that have been stuck to the injured skin.

According to their 2013 fact sheet, the American Burn Association estimates that over 60 percent of hospitalization cases are related to burn injuries. Majority of these injuries are caused by accidents at home, but some also happened due to accidents on the road or in the workplace.

The website of Tennessee personal injury lawyers Pohl & Berk LLP also noted that some cases of burn injuries could have been due to someone else’s negligence. When this happens, victims can pursue just compensation and find accountability for the devastating outcomes they’ve experienced. If you or anyone you know are in a similar scenario, don’t hesitate to seek legal counsel and learn which options are available for you.

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Laws Connected to Paternity Actions

Jan 15, 2015 by

Like any other legal matter or court proceeding, the issues covered under family law are also intricate in detail. Besides the complexity of the law is the sensitivity or each topic, which also causes much emotional distress. Divorce and the many different issues related to it, namely, child support, visitation rights, child custody, division of properties and debts, alimony, and paternity action are among these.

Paternity disputes or paternity actions can be a frightening ordeal for someone who is being named as a child’s father, but who is definitely not prepared to be one yet. When a person denies any possibility of having fathered a child, the court can be requested to intervene in the matter and help in proving whether the child’s or any other’s claim to such person’s fatherhood is true or not.

In the UK, for the court to be able to act on the dispute, the child making the claim can file his/her application to the court based on the stipulations of the Family Law Act of 1986. This Act recognizes a child’s act of “Declaration” that a certain person is his/her parent and that he/she is the legitimate child of such person.

According to Raleigh divorce attorneys, children who have not reached the age of 18 cannot make the application, though; someone above 18 years old should, instead, apply on his/her behalf. This older person, regardless of his/her real relationship with the child, is legally identified as a “Next Friend.”

On the other hand, if it is the father who would like to prove or disprove any claim that he is a particular child’s father (due to the child support he is being asked to pay for the child’s welfare), the he can make his application under the Child Support Act of 1991, for a “Declaration” that he is either the father or not the father of the child making the claim.

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Causes of Car Accidents

Sep 19, 2014 by

When fatal car accidents happen, there is a tendency for people to look for a serious cause for it to at least mitigate the tragedy it represents. If the brakes failed, for instance, or the ignition switch failed, these are at least circumstances that are beyond the control of the driver. Unfortunately, too many car accidents happen for the most ridiculous reasons.

One of these is driving while intoxicated with drugs or alcohol, but this is increasingly being rivaled in frequency by the use of handheld devices, mostly texting and mostly involving teenagers. This may be because while most states ban texting while driving, including Kentucky, it is not sanctioned with the same severity as drunk driving. This is a form of reckless driving that according to the website of the Sampson Law Firm can be life-changing, and not in a good way.

Another cause is distraction, such as changing the radio station, fiddling with the GPS, or simply picking up something from the car floor. These are momentary distractions, but it only takes a moment for a child to run across the street or for a car in front to suddenly brake.

And then there are some accidents that have no immediately apparent cause. A recent single-car accident on the Second Street Bridge in Louisville, Kentucky was reported where the driver died on the scene. It seems that for some reason the driver who had been driving south had drifted to the northbound lane and then swerved back only to strike an iron support of the bridge hard enough to kill her. Investigation into the incident is underway, but reports that the driver had been going 65 mph on a 35 mph stretch does not explain why the car would swerve the way it did.

In that instance, only the driver and some property were affected, but it could easily have involved other vehicles and people. If you have been seriously hurt in a negligent car accident, you may be eligible for compensation. Consult with a skilled car accident lawyer in the area to review your case and give advice about what can be done.

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