In Debt Today

The past few years have forced many residents of Baltimore and surrounding areas of Maryland to rely more heavily on debt to finance everyday needs and expenses. Many have seen their debt increase in the form of credit card debt, student loan debt or mortgage debt because all to often today, your house has lost value. In some cases, debt can be beneficial to the individual. Debt can help a student make it through school. Debt can also help a business get an idea off the ground. For example, the electric car company Tesla received a loan from the government, which it was able to fully repay in 2009. Tesla would never have been able to create the electric car without incurring that debt. Debt can be a necessary occurrence in these economic times. For example, it can be used to finance a car that will allow you to get to work or school. Debt can be a great tool to reach your goals. But sometimes your financial circumstances change through no fault of your own, causing these debts … [Read more...]

A Credit Card Company Has Filed a Lawsuit Against Me, What Do I Do?

This is one of the most commonly asked questions by people who are considering bankruptcy.  At the Maryland Bankruptcy Center we eliminate more credit card debt than nearly every other law firm in the state of Maryland.  Here is how it works. If you have an outstanding balance on a credit card, you will initially get phone calls from the credit card company.  Usually they will lie to you and tell you that if you don’t pay your wages will be garnished or your property will be taken immediately.  Not true. Usually, credit card companies in Maryland wait about 6 months to a year before they actually file a lawsuit against you.  And even then, the only way that they can garnish your wages or attack your bank account is to obtain a judgment against you, wait for the appeal period to expire, and then file more papers with the court.  In EVERY case, it takes the credit card company at least 120 days AFTER they file a lawsuit against you to be able to garnish your wages or attack your bank … [Read more...]

What is a Meeting of Creditors?

The meeting of creditors is provided pursuant to this Section 341 of the United States Bankruptcy Code. The meeting is often referred to as the 341 meeting of creditors or your bankruptcy court date. At the meeting of creditors, you along with your attorney are going to be present in front of either a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13 trustee. The purpose of the meeting is to administer any assets in a Chapter 7 that are administrable and in a Chapter 13, to verify that you are putting all of your disposable income towards your Chapter 13 repayment plan. At your meeting of creditors, you are going to be sworn in. You’re going to have to show identification and proof of your Social Security card. Once you are sworn in, you are going to be asked a series of questions based on the information provided in your documents. For example, the trustee is going to ask if you signed the documents under all penalties and perjury, if you listed all of your assets and all of your liabilities and … [Read more...]

Can Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Help Me?

I saw this article online and thought it was excellent, please read if interested in learning about or filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy, I couldn't have said it any better myself. Can Chapter 7 bankruptcy help? When most people think of filing for bankruptcy, they think of chapter 7 bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcy, often referred to as “straight bankruptcy,” is a much faster process than its slower cousin chapter 13 bankruptcy. Depending on income, chapter 13 bankruptcy lasts between 3 to 5 years, whereas a typical chapter 7 case is open and shut within 4 months. Within that short time frame, chapter 7 transforms the debtor’s financial life from a cluttered mess, to a clean slate. Here are 5 important ways that chapter 7 bankruptcy can help if you find yourself in financial distress. 1. Eliminate unsecured debt. This is the most obvious way that chapter 7 bankruptcy helps consumers. Filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy wipes out high interest credit card debt and medical bills. … [Read more...]

Can Bankruptcy Help?

At the Maryland Bankruptcy Center, we tell at least 1 person per day that they are NOT eligible to file bankruptcy or that bankruptcy is not a good idea. On the other hand, we tell most people who call that filing bankruptcy in Maryland is the right choice. Why is that? Chances are, if you are researching bankruptcy, you have found yourself in a very difficult financial situation and you are desperate for help. Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 are your last resort, but unfortunately in this economy, it is the only resort for hundreds of thousands of Marylanders each year. Consider the article below, and if you have any questions at all, feel free to call us anytime. Filing For Bankruptcy is a Major Decision. Necessary For Some, Unnecessary For Others… You don’t just throw a bankruptcy in your shopping cart and head for the check out, it’s a major life decision that should not be entered into lightly. In some cases, bankruptcy can really help. Some families who are avoiding filing … [Read more...]

Maryland Bankruptcy and Credit Card Debt

The Basics of Credit Card Debt and Bankruptcy In an economy where housing problems dominate the headlines, high interest credit cards still remain one of the largest issues consumers face in their fight for financial health. It should come as no surprise to learn then, that credit card debt is still one of the primary reasons consumers are forced to file for bankruptcy. When a credit card account has been delinquent for more than 180 days, banks will charge off what is owed as “bad debt” and sell the account to a debt collector who will call, harass and even sue if the past due balances are high enough. Mounting pressure from debt collectors pushes many consumers through the front door of a bankruptcy office because chapter 7 protection is widely perceived as the fastest and best way to get out from under unmanageable credit card debt. While it is true that filing for bankruptcy can help discharge credit card bills, there are some basics that every consumer needs to know before … [Read more...]

How Will Bankruptcy Affect My Credit?

Clients are always concerned about their credit score. It is not unusual for the question “How will bankruptcy affect my credit score?” to be the first thing that comes out of someone’s mouth when they consider bankruptcy as an option. Although bankruptcy does have an effect on your credit, the effect may not be as bad as many would have you believe. Further, most people fail to compare the alternative effect that not filing bankruptcy will and already does have on their credit. There are a number of facts that will appear on your credit report. Any type of loan, any credit you have taken out, how you use it, whether you have paid it or are in default, are all things that will appear when someone looks up your credit report. Bankruptcy will appear on your credit report for up to 10 years. Any negative occurrences will appear for 7. If your credit is poor, as most people’s is when they consider filing for bankruptcy, bankruptcy may not hurt your credit as much as not filing … [Read more...]

Getting Credit After Bankruptcy…..Is it really 10 years?

Clients are always concerned about their credit score. It is not unusual for the question “How will bankruptcy affect my credit score?” to be the first thing that comes out of someone’s mouth when they consider bankruptcy as an option. Although bankruptcy does have an effect on your credit, the effect may not be as bad as many would have you believe. Further, most people fail to compare the alternative effect that not filing bankruptcy will and already does have on their credit. There are a number of facts that will appear on your credit report. Any type of loan, any credit you have taken out, how you use it, whether you have paid it or are in default, are all things that will appear when someone looks up your credit report. Bankruptcy will appear on your credit report for up to 10 years. Any negative occurrences will appear for 7. If your credit is poor, as most people’s is when they consider filing for bankruptcy, bankruptcy may not hurt your credit as much as not filing … [Read more...]

Keeping Your Car When Filing Bankruptcy

I saw this article on a related bankruptcy website and thought it was very good and wanted to share it with you. If you have any questions regarding this issue or are looking into filing bankruptcy, please call us for a free consultation. You Can Keep a Car in Bankruptcy, But Under What Terms? In our current tenuous economic climate, more and more normal, honest, hardworking people are turning to bankruptcy for relief from overwhelming debt. In fact, most people who file for bankruptcy are perfectly responsible citizens who have lost homes, lost law suits, incurred unexpected medical bills or other large, unforeseen expenses. One of the most commonly held beliefs about the bankruptcy process is that by filing, you will automatically lose your car. This is simply not true. If you want to keep a car you are still paying for, you will have to give up some of the very benefit your bankruptcy discharge gives you. Reaffirmation Agreements To keep a car on which you are still … [Read more...]

Bankruptcy: What is it and how does it work?

As a Maryland bankruptcy lawyer, I have many clients that know very little about the bankruptcy process when they come in for a consultation. It is important that anyone considering filing for bankruptcy to have a basic understanding of the process before they make the decision to file. Everyone has a right to know what their options are and how these options can affect their future, especially when dealing with a bankruptcy. Types Of Bankruptcy There are two types of bankruptcy and each carry different qualification standards. Filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy produces a debt elimination at very little out of pocket cost to the debtor. However, a debtor must have a reportable income less than the median income level of their state of residence in order to qualify. This rule prevents abuse of the system by weeding out anyone who may be able to afford to repay their debts rather than have them eliminated. Filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows a debtor to develop a repayment … [Read more...]