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Are Debts Really Discharged In Bankruptcy?

Of course the answer is yes, absolutely, by federal law.  However, some questionable practices exist among banks and collection agencies which, according to lawsuits filed about the country, prey on those who do not know their rights.

If your debts were discharged in bankruptcy, and a creditor, be it the same lender, bank, or credit card, or a new one, attempts to collect a debt that you know to be discharged, contact your attorney immediately.  There could be a bankruptcy fraud violation there. Read more

Television’s “Real Housewives” Star Convicted of Fraud and Bankruptcy

TV star Teresa Giudice was convicted of fraud in the filing of her federal personal bankruptcy petition and has been sentenced to prison.  How did this happen?  We don’t follow this tv show but we learned that when Giudice filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in 2009 along with her husband, her Petition and Schedules listed $13.5 million in debts with assets of $2,261,150 and an income of $79,000 per year.  Given that they have four children, these simple facts would lead to a straight forward discharge of debt and allow for a “fresh start” under the bankruptcy law.  Read more

Bankruptcy and How to Improve Your Credit Score in The New Year

Many of our Massachusetts bankruptcy clients ask how much will a chapter 7 bankruptcy harm their credit score.  Will it really stay on my credit report for ten years?  Will I be unable to get credit during that time?

While the fact that you filed for personal bankruptcy may stay on your credit report for a decade, it should matter less and less to your score as time goes on.  This is because your credit score is a function of your recent credit history, not your ancient credit history. Read more

How To Hire a Massachusetts Bankruptcy Lawyer

While it is not the situation anyone wants to be in, there comes a time for many folks that you need to retain a Massachusetts bankruptcy lawyer.  How do you do it?  A client who moved to Hawaii called me this week, asking if I could represent him.  I couldn’t, because the cab fare would be pretty high, but I could give him advice as to how pick a competent bankruptcy lawyer. Read more

Bankruptcy Fraud

We have written about bankruptcy fraud, Chapter 7 fraud, and filing bankruptcy petitions with misinformation or fraudulent information in the past.  The federal bankruptcy court is likely to find out.  The United States Attorney’s office is likely to investigate and prosecute.  It’s simply wrong.

When you complete a bankruptcy petition and schedules, and sign them under the pains and penalties of perjury, the federal Bankruptcy Court takes your oath very seriously.   There can’t be any mistakes or misleading information.  The federal government has vast resources and if they discover fraud, they will investigate. Read more

Credit Scores and Bankruptcy

“Credit” from the Latin credere means “to trust.”  It is unquestionable that your credit score is critical these days.  Employers are increasingly requiring permission to secure your credit score before hiring, landlords are using scores to keep low and moderate people out of units, and what you ultimately pay for a car or a home is a function of your credit score as a lower score may result in higher interest rates.

Filing for Chapter 7, or personal bankruptcy, will have a negative effect on your credit score.  Are there any numbers or rules of thumb about credit scores?
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Bankruptcy and the Massachusetts Elections

We’re not advocating for any candidate…and there are no Massachusetts bankruptcy ballot initiative. So we thought we’d take this timely opportunity to point out that after a bankruptcy you can do (almost) anything. Even run for office.

Take Wilbraham Selectman Robert (Bob) W. Russell, for example. He’s running for the State Senate notwithstanding a federal chapter 7 bankruptcy he filed, and resolved in 2013. The seat he is running for covers Wilbraham, and parts of Springfield and East Longmeadow. Read more