Category Archives: Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

US Supreme Court Decision in In re Law Limits Courts’ Discretion to Paint Debtors with the “Bad Faith” Brush

Nearly a year ago, The Supreme Court held in Law v. Siegel (In re Law), No. 12-5196, 571 U.S. ___ (March 4, 2014), that despite a debtor’s misdeeds, the Bankruptcy Court still has to follow the Bankruptcy Code and can’t just dispense its own sense of justice ad hoc. This same reasoning was recently applied […]

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Reverse Mortgages and California Bankruptcy

As many of our clients filing personal bankruptcy get older, we often see clients who have taken reverse mortgages on their homes. Either because they needed income to live on or to deal with a spouse’s end-of-life care, I meet with a growing number of bankruptcy clients who have turned to these types of loans […]

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Can The Bankruptcy Trustee Take Money That I Win In a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

No one ever wants to be involved in an accident, but unfortunately, they happen all the time. As the medical bills and other expenses start to pile up because of an injury and/or inability to work, many seek relief by filing for bankruptcy to manage all of the debts that they have accumulated during this […]

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California Bankruptcy Exemptions Given Modest Increase

Those filing personal bankruptcy in California in 2013 can now protect a little more of their assets in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, and potentially pay a little less into a Chapter 13 plan. That’s because the California bankruptcy exemptions have been increased modestly as of January 1, 2013. I’m not complaining as this is the […]

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Those Who Filed Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in 2005 May File Again in 2013

In April 2005, Congress passed the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act, or “BAPCPA” as we bankruptcy attorneys call it. On the day BAPCPA passed, I was interviewed by our San Jose CBS affiliate, KPIX, about the sweeping changes to bankruptcy law contained in BAPCPA. Among consumer bankruptcy lawyers everywhere, there was a good […]

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Why Do Big Banks File Frivolous Motions for Relief from Stay in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Cases?

I’ve written several articles over the years explaining the Automatic Stay in Bankruptcy, but before I get to the subject of this post—when a creditor’s Motion for Relief from Stay is frivolous—a brief refresher on the Automatic Stay is in order. Bankruptcy Code section 362 grants a debtor in bankruptcy an immediate and powerful protection […]

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Reaffirm a Home Equity Loan in California Bankruptcy? Are You Kidding?

Every now and then my San Jose bankruptcy law firm still gets a fat letter from one of the Big Banks soliciting to try to convince us and one of our bankruptcy clients to reaffirm a California home mortgage loan. If I’m in a relatively good mood that day, I’ll scan the bank letter and […]

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Making Voluntary Payments to Student Loans During Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

From time to time, I receive a form letter from a student loan servicing company concerning one of my Chapter 7 bankruptcy clients that goes something like this: “We have received notice that your client has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection. In response, we have applied a forbearance to the student loan listed below. […]

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Why a Sole Proprietor Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Had Better Retain a Good Bankruptcy Lawyer

My simple advice to self-employed business owners needing to file bankruptcy, is to consider filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy. But let’s say that there is some reason why the debtor cannot file a Chapter 13–for example, she has debts greater than the limits set for Chapter 13. If you own and operate a small business as […]

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When Does It Make Sense to Reaffirm an Auto Loan in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Our Bay Area Chapter 7 bankruptcy clients as well as those who have read my previous posts know that I can be fairly hostile to reaffirmation agreements of car loans in bankruptcy. After all, the whole idea of reaffirming a personal debt that would otherwise be discharged in bankruptcy runs counter to what I, as […]

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