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April 2013 Archives

National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys 21st Annual Convention

In an effort to stay abreast of the most current events in bankruptcy matters, Bruce Levitt attended the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys 21st Annual Convention, held in San Diego on April 26-28, 2013. Some of the topics that were covered included:

How to Elminate Your Second and Third Mortgages From Your Home

If you have more than one mortgage on your home and the value of your home is less than what you owe on it under your first mortgage, you may be allowed to "strip" the subordinate mortgage lien in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Many homeowners obtained second mortgages in the form of home equity lines of credit when the value of their home was much higher than it is now. With the real estate market in a slump, it is common for the value of a home to be less than what is owed under the first mortgage loan, much less under the second loan! So, how does lien stripping work?  A Chapter 13 debtor must prove that the value of the home is insufficient to be used as collateral for the second or third mortgage.  As a result, the lien should be removed or stripped from the home.  For example, if the debtor owes $100,000 on the first mortgage and $20,000 on a second mortgage, but the value of the home is only $95,000, the debtor can argue that the second mortgage should be treated as an unsecured debt. Unsecured creditors are often paid pennies on the dollar, if anything, under a Chapter 13 plan. This could save you thousands of dollars! If you are considering filing a bankruptcy case and you have more than one mortgage lien on your home, you should discuss the possibility of filing a Chapter 13 case with the attorneys at Levitt & Slafkes, P.C. If you are interested in learning more about Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases or lien stripping, contact Levitt & Slafkes, P.C. We are experienced in handling a variety of bankruptcy issues. Our offices are conveniently located in South Orange, New Jersey. Please call us at 973-323-2953 or online to schedule your free initial consultation today.  

Facing Foreclosure in New Jersey? Bankruptcy may be the answer

If you are being threatened with the foreclosure of your home, it might be time to consider filing for bankruptcy protection. As soon as you file your bankruptcy case, the automatic stay is effective. The stay prohibits any collection activity, including a foreclosure action, from continuing. The two main types of personal bankruptcy filings are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13.  You should meet with an experienced New Jersey bankruptcy attorney to discuss which type of filing is best for your individual circumstances.  Both types of filing can provide you with help you need in dealing with your foreclosure action. A Chapter 7 case will temporarily stop the foreclosure action. This buys you extra time to remain in your home as well as time to negotiate with your mortgage lender.  However, if you are significantly past due on your mortgage payments, your lender will likely seek relief from the automatic stay in order to continue with the foreclosure proceedings. In a Chapter 13 case, the debtor must propose a feasible Chapter 13 plan for repaying the creditors, including the mortgage lender (if you intend to keep your home).  Your ability to create a feasible plan depends on a variety of factors such as your basic living expenses and the amount you are past due on your mortgage payments.  If the plan is successful, a Chapter 13 filing can stop a foreclosure action. Foreclosure can be one of the most unsettling occurrences for your family.  Before you walk away from your home and allow it to be foreclosed upon, meet with an experienced bankruptcy attorney at Levitt & Sflakes. If you are interested in learning how filing a bankruptcy case can benefit you, contact Levitt & Slafkes, PC, at 973-323-2953. You can also reach us by filling out our online form. We represent debtors in Chapter 7, Chapter 11 and Chapter 13 filings. Let us help you get the fresh financial start you need today.

Why Do a Loan Modification?

If you are struggling to pay your mortgage loan, a modification may be the answer to your troubles. A mortgage modification may lower your monthly payment to an amount you can afford, allowing you to stay in your home. Benefits of a loan modification may include:

How to Elminate Your Second and Third Mortgages From Your Home

If you have more than one mortgage on your home and the value of your home is less than what you owe on it under your first mortgage, you may be allowed to "strip" the subordinate mortgage lien in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Many homeowners obtained second mortgages in the form of home equity lines of credit when the value of their home was much higher than it is now. With the real estate market in a slump, it is common for the value of a home to be less than what is owed under the first mortgage loan, much less under the second loan! So, how does lien stripping work? A Chapter 13 debtor must prove that the value of the home is insufficient to be used as collateral for the second or third mortgage. As a result, the lien should be removed or stripped from the home. For example, if the debtor owes $100,000 on the first mortgage and $20,000 on a second mortgage, but the value of the home is only $95,000, the debtor can argue that the second mortgage should be treated as an unsecured debt. Unsecured creditors are often paid pennies on the dollar, if anything, under a Chapter 13 plan. This could save you thousands of dollars! If you are considering filing a bankruptcy case and you have more than one mortgage lien on your home, you should discuss the possibility of filing a Chapter 13 case with the attorneys at Levitt & Slafkes, P.C. If you are interested in learning more about Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases or lien stripping, contact Levitt & Slafkes, P.C. We are experienced in handling a variety of bankruptcy issues. Our offices are conveniently located in South Orange, New Jersey. Please call us at 973-323-2953 or online to schedule your free initial consultation today.

Facing Foreclosure in New Jersey? Bankruptcy may be the answer

If you are being threatened with the foreclosure of your home, it might be time to consider filing for bankruptcy protection. As soon as you file your bankruptcy case, the automatic stay is effective. The stay prohibits any collection activity, including a foreclosure action, from continuing. The two main types of personal bankruptcy filings are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. You should meet with an experienced New Jersey bankruptcy attorney to discuss which type of filing is best for your individual circumstances. Both types of filing can provide you with help you need in dealing with your foreclosure action. A Chapter 7 case will temporarily stop the foreclosure action. This buys you extra time to remain in your home as well as time to negotiate with your mortgage lender. However, if you are significantly past due on your mortgage payments, your lender will likely seek relief from the automatic stay in order to continue with the foreclosure proceedings. In a Chapter 13 case, the debtor must propose a feasible Chapter 13 plan for repaying the creditors, including the mortgage lender (if you intend to keep your home). Your ability to create a feasible plan depends on a variety of factors such as your basic living expenses and the amount you are past due on your mortgage payments. If the plan is successful, a Chapter 13 filing can stop a foreclosure action. Foreclosure can be one of the most unsettling occurrences for your family. Before you walk away from your home and allow it to be foreclosed upon, meet with an experienced bankruptcy attorney at Levitt & Sflakes. If you are interested in learning how filing a bankruptcy case can benefit you, contact Levitt & Slafkes, PC, at 973-323-2953. You can also reach us by filling out our online form. We represent debtors in Chapter 7, Chapter 11 and Chapter 13 filings. Let us help you get the fresh financial start you need today.

How Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Can Benefit You

Individuals filing for bankruptcy protection most commonly file under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. Check back with us to learn more about Chapter 13. This blog will focus on the advantages of a Chapter 7 filing: Discharge of unsecured debts. Most personal debts are unsecured debts such as medical bills or credit card bills. These types of debts are discharged or eliminated in a successful Chapter 7 filing. This means at the conclusion of your case, you are no longer liable to pay those debts. Stops collection. When you file a bankruptcy case, all lawsuits, foreclosures, garnishments, repossessions and harassing collection calls must stop. Quicker resolution. The term of a Chapter 7 filing takes less time than a Chapter 13 case. Chapter 7 cases generally last about 3 to 6 months, while a Chapter 13 lasts 3 to 5 years. Less expensive. In most cases, a Chapter 7 filing costs less than a Chapter 13. A typical Chapter 7 does not last as long as a Chapter 13, so your attorney's fees and costs are less. Exemptions. The law provides numerous exemptions which protect the majority of your assets that you want to keep (house, car, retirement accounts, etc.). Many Chapter 7 debtors keep all of their assets while still getting the benefit of discharging their debts. It is important to contact anexperienced bankruptcy attorney to discuss whether filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case could be beneficial to you. We are bankruptcy lawyers who know how to make a difference in your financial situation. We have experience you can rely on and we care about your results. Contact our New Jersey law firm online by filling out the form or by calling 973-323-2953 to schedule a free initial consultation with a knowledgeable and compassionate attorney.

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