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Author Archives: Jeff Aleman

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Private Tuition Loans Most Oppressive, Not Likely Discharged in Bankruptcy

Much has been written about the stringency of American bankruptcy laws since passage of the 2005 Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act. The law targets individuals who might try to game the system, declaring bankruptcy while retaining significant assets. The provisions of the 2005 act have largely succeeded in preventing abuse. But in a… Read More »

Why Can’t You Erase College Tuition Debts in a Bankruptcy?

In America, most private debts outside of home mortgages fall into three primary categories: auto loans, credit cards and student loan obligations. This last category, tuition debt, topped out at $1 trillion in 2012, surpassing the other two categories as it grows as a percentage of total debt in the United States. According to the… Read More »

What Kind of Unusual Assets Are Exempt in a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

A Chapter 7 bankruptcy essentially eliminates debt for the filer but requires liquidation of assets. In other words, federal law dictates that most of what the filer owns must be sold off to pay creditors some fraction of what is owed. Even though the net value of these assets may not meet all debts, the… Read More »

How Much Does the Chapter 13 Homestead Exemption Vary?

The nature of a Chapter 13 bankruptcy is that it does not necessarily require filers to liquidate their assets to pay off debt. Instead, filers need to show the court they will be able to pay off those debts over approximately three to five years. This type of bankruptcy arranges for better terms for repaying… Read More »

How Do Homestead Exemptions in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Work?

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is advised when debts so overwhelm the individual’s ability to repay that assets have to be liquidated. This means that items of value – car, home, furniture, art, jewelry and sometimes even clothing – will be sold by the trustee in the bankruptcy. The proceeds from the sale of those items are… Read More »

How Quickly Can Credit Worthiness Be Rebuilt After Bankruptcy?

Filing for personal bankruptcy may seem like a seven to ten year sentence. After all, that is how long it will be before you can get loans and credit cards, right? Well, not exactly. If you have a stream of income, many financial institutions may still want your business. Within a relatively short time after… Read More »

Why a Shopping Spree Just Before Bankruptcy Won’t Work

The thinking goes, “what have I got to lose?” Or so one imagines the words people say to themselves who max out their still-working credit cards right before filing for bankruptcy. That approach is wrong on several levels. If you’ve got an itch to spend the remaining balances of your credit cards before you file,… Read More »

Taking Advantage: Bankruptcy Fraud

Bankruptcy is a welcome but serious tool for consumers and businesses in need of structured debt-relief. When debt-relief tools such as consolidation or debt settlement are not enough to address debt or improve pay-down ability, filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy can be good options. Relief from debt through bankruptcy is based on identification… Read More »

The Myth of Irresponsibility: Why Most Individuals File for Bankruptcy

The good news on bankruptcy is that the number of filings in the United States went down in 2012. About 1.25 million people are expected to file this year for one of the versions of bankruptcy (Chapters 7, 11 or 13). This is down from 1.38 million in 2011. The Great Recession that began in… Read More »

The Three Primary After-Effects of Personal Bankruptcy

Contrary to what is sometimes said by politicians and in the blogosphere, most people do not enter into bankruptcy lightly. Bankruptcy is a means to manage difficult finances and overwhelming debt – or as in the case of Chapter 13, a reorganization that enables you to pay off debts over time. Still, individuals who are… Read More »