Monthly Archives: May 2018

Common Questions About Creditor Harassment and Reporting After Bankruptcy

If you have to obtain a bankruptcy discharge after declaring either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you are likely anxious to begin the process but are uncertain about how to proceed. While there are numerous areas in which questions arise, one of the most common types of questions that people who have to obtain bankruptcy discharge ask are about creditor harassment and credit reports. This article will provide some of the most commonly asked questions regarding these subjects. As always, while navigating the bankruptcy process, it can help significantly to rely on the assistance of a seasoned attorney who has helped others navigate the process. Question # 1: What if a Creditor Tries to Collect on a Discharged Debt? If a creditor contacts you after your debt has been discharged through bankruptcy, the best way to respond is to notify the creditor that the debt has been discharged. If the creditor contacts to you despite knowing the discharge has occurred, this is viewed as a serious violation of the Bankruptcy Code and likely violates the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. As a result, a creditor can end up paying significant fines. Question # 2: What if You Forgot to     Read More

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Firearms and Estate Plans

Estate plans are designed to ensure a smooth transition of a person’s assets to his or her beneficiaries while also reducing the associated taxes. Many estate planners are concerned with the transfer of real property, but overlook some tangible assets like firearms. If firearms are not properly accounted for, there is a significant risk that some undesired effects might occur. As a result, it is critical that people who want to make sure that a firearm is properly received by a beneficiary obtain the assistance of a skilled estate planning attorney. Laws Regarding the Transfer of Firearms Federal laws specifically address the issue of firearms. These laws prohibit any individual from receiving or possessing a firearm that is not registered to him or her in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record. Laws also prohibit the transportation, delivery, or receipt of any firearms in interstate commerce which have not been properly registered. Violations of these laws can result in people facing up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. Many people who have firearms with which they have a personal connection, however, might not remember to take these laws into consideration when creating an estate     Read More

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The Nature of Pet Trusts

Most people who have pets understand that a significant bond is created between the animal and its owner. Many people, however, fail to consider what to do if something happens to their animal after they die. Statistics suggest that over 500,000 animals each year are abandoned due to the death of the animal’s owner. With adequate planning, however, these pets can be protected. Some of the advantages of including a pet in an estate plan are that it helps to make sure there is someone to take care of the animal after the owner’s death. Also estate plans help to provide clear instructions about the animal’s care. There are fortunately several available methods for a person to make sure that their pet is care for after their death. Outright Gifts Some people decide to leave their pet as well as a gift of money or property for the care of their pet directly to a family member or friend. This gift is often made on the condition that the caregiver receives the assets on the condition that they be used to care for their pet. This option is often best for people who are certain that their chosen caregiver is     Read More

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Things Not to do if You are Debating Filing for Bankruptcy

People who are debating filing for bankruptcy frequently think about what they must do to prepare for their case. There are, however, several things that a person should not do when debating proceeding through the bankruptcy process. To provide a better understanding of what actions should not be taken during bankruptcy, this article will review five mistakes that you should avoid when navigating the bankruptcy process. Things to Avoid: Paying Off Creditors The purpose of bankruptcy is that it helps all or some of a person’s debts be dismissed. Certain unsecured debts including credit cards and medical bills are capable of being discharged through Chapter 7 bankruptcy, while a person who files for Chapter 13 bankruptcy will create a new payment plan. Things to Avoid: Maxing Out Credit Cards It might be tempting to make frivolous purchases prior to filing for bankruptcy, but courts will review all of a person’s financial documents. Many of these last minute bills will not be discharged through bankruptcy, which means that a person will still be required to pay the amount. Things to Avoid: Cashing Out Retirement Savings Workers under the age of 59½ are permitted to take a loan against their retirement accounts.     Read More

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The Role of Disinheritance Clauses in Estate Plans

There are many reasons why people are disinherited from obtaining another person’s assets through an estate plan. No matter the reason why a person wants to disinherit an individual, however, it is important to understand that disinheritance clauses are the most common and effective way to disinherit someone. Important Things to Understand About the Law To disinherit a person, it is essential to use clear language in estate planning documents. Sometimes, however, you might not be able to completely disinherit certain types of heirs. During a consultation, an attorney can help you determine if it is possible to disinherit the desired party. People Who Should Not be Disinherited Before making any changes to your will to disinherit a person, there are some important things to keep in mind. First, it is often not necessary to disinherit a person who is not a relative because that individual would not be to able to inherit under the laws of intestate succession. It is also a wise idea to refrain from disinheriting anyone who needs to handle certain matters after your death. Using a Disinheritance Clause for a Former Spouse If you have been involved in a divorce, but did not revise your     Read More

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