BANKRUPTCY FAQ

Shannon May
Shannon May
2023-04-18
Very pleased with Scott's help on a case where we had a claim against a bankruptcy debtor. Scott monitored and got involved in the case as needed on our behalf, with an eye toward keeping our legal fees as reasonable as possible.
Mike
Mike
2023-01-05
Scott is an outstanding attorney and was a huge help in advising me on a case. Very impressed how quickly he was able to dissect a complicated case and advise on best path forward.
Giovanny Alfaro
Giovanny Alfaro
2022-12-23
Best of the best gets things done fast !!!!
Kribbd
Kribbd
2022-06-28
I went to them and they really helped me and solved all my legal issues that I had so unexpectedly encountered.
David Branch
David Branch
2022-06-11
Scott is an outstanding attorney. He helped negotiate a legal matter for me and did a fantastic job. This was not a Bankruptcy matter, but we did need help dealing with another attorney and a bank and he was thorough and detailed. The outcome was exactly what we wanted. Scott's a agreat communicator and kept me informed the whole way. In fact he was always calling me before I needed to call him. Great work Scott!
Douglas B Tunno
Douglas B Tunno
2022-05-05
Great attorneys

BANKRUPTCY FAQ

What is the Meeting of Creditors and do I have to go?

A: A Meeting of Creditors is required by the Bankruptcy Code for all persons seeking relief. It is an informal meeting between the Debtor and the Trustee to determine the Debtor’s compliance with the requirements of the bankruptcy code as well as confirm the assets and liabilities of the Debtor.

Will a Trustee take my tax refund if I file for bankruptcy?

A: That’s going to depend on the amount of the refund and the timing of filing. To have an analysis, please Contact Us.

What is this Confirmation Hearing in a Chapter 13 case?

A: Confirmation is the formal hearing where the court examines the Chapter 13 plan and the plan hopefully is accepted and becomes binding on all creditors in the case. Confirmation hearings generally do not require the Debtor to appear and may, in some cases, be waived by the Trustee if the Plan is sufficiently solid.

Do I have to pay my homeowner’s association dues, if I file for bankruptcy?

A: Yes. Any arrears that you may have accrued go away but the continuing obligation to pay homeowner’s dues is not erased by a bankruptcy case. In years past, Debtors could discharge and reject the homeowner’s dues obligation but Congress took away that loophole in 2005. In some states, not only do the homeowner’s dues create a personal responsibility against the homeowner but they also may become a lien on real property. This is the case in New Jersey.

Does my bankruptcy affect my spouse?

A: Generally no, however, joint debts might cause additional complications. This is a question that requires individual analysis on a case-by-case basis.

Why would I be asked for my spouse’s income and expenses?

A: The reason that the bankruptcy trustees will demand this information is because the Trustee wants to ascertain the complete household income and total expenses affecting the Debtor. It is often in your best interest to put in spousal expenses because every dollar the spouse spends for their own benefit and not for the household can make the means test easier to pass.

Should Both Me and My Spouse File for Bankruptcy?

A: It depends on whether the debts are primarily in one spouse’s name or in the names of both spouses. If the debts are in the names of both spouses and only one spouse files for bankruptcy, the other spouse will be liable for the outstanding debts. On the other hand, if significantly more debt is in one spouse’s name, then that spouse may file for bankruptcy on their own. However, in this case, it’s essential to speak with a bankruptcy attorney to learn your options and determine the best course of action.

How do I know if I can file for bankruptcy?

A. Bankruptcy, like ice cream, comes in several different “flavors”. For individuals, there are considerations such as your income, your interests in real estate, insurance policies, and other assets that may affect what kind of bankruptcy you need, Chapter 7, Chapter 13, Chapter 11 or Chapter 12. Businesses have different issues, most importantly – whether they intend to stay in business or shut down. The first task of any lawyer in bankruptcy cases is to have a detailed and careful discussion with a client to determine what will be in the client’s best interest and provide the most effective debt relief possible.

I have a car, a house, and other things. Will I lose everything in a bankruptcy case?

A. This is going to depend on what flavor of bankruptcy you are working with. In Chapter 7, the equity in your property will determine if you get to keep it. In Chapter 13, you can keep most things, but sometimes certain luxury items that you still owe money on may have to go in order to help you restructure your life. Nevertheless, in most cases, people keep all or almost all of their possessions.

Can I Lose My Job If I File for Bankruptcy?

A: Under Section 525 of the Bankruptcy Code, employers can’t deny employment, terminate employment, or otherwise discriminate against an employee who has filed for bankruptcy. However, a bankruptcy filing is a public record. In other words, future employers can find out that you have filed for bankruptcy before they decide whether to hire you.

Guardianship and Disability FAQ

My child is turning 18 and is disabled. Do I NEED to be his/her guardian?

A: Guardianship depends on the level of disability and whether or not the soon-to-be adult lacks the ability to function as an adult in society. You will need doctors’ evaluations to show that the potential ward is, in fact, disabled and “incapacitated” within the meaning of the law. Once a child turns 18, however, the law presumes him or her to be an adult and if he or she cannot take care of him or herself as an adult due to a disability, a guardianship may be required.

Who Can Be Appointed as Guardian?

A: Any individual older than 18 can be appointed as a guardian. In some cases, the Bureau of Guardianship Services, or an individual appointed by the Court may serve as a guardian if no other person can be appointed. The Court appoints a guardian if an individual needs assistance with personal needs or property management. The person needing assistance can either consent to the appointment or be deemed to be “incapacitated.” 

How do I know if I need to set up a special needs trust?

A. Special Needs Trusts are needed where the person who is to be the beneficiary is going to need federal or state benefits, such as Medicaid. These are asset-limited benefits, meaning that if the recipient has too much in the way of assets, benefits will be denied. If your child will be getting those kinds of benefits because of a disability, a Special Needs Trust may be needed to protect the benefits but let that child have the benefit of the family wealth.

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