D is for Debt Buyer

D is for Debt Buyer in the Bankruptcy Alphabet. Debt buyers are companies around the country which purchase debts for pennies on the dollar and then attempt to collect them. Examples of such companies are Portfolio Recovery Associates, eCast Settlement, B-Line, Midland Credit Management and others. I confront these types of companies frequent as a Pittsburgh bankruptcy attorney. These companies … Read More

9 More Tips for Budgeting to Chapter 13 Success

Okay, your Chapter 13 case has been filed and your creditors have been notified. Congratulations– for the first time in a long time, your creditors aren’t calling you night and day. The automatic stay is in effect, which means that your creditors can’t sue you and have to abide by the terms of your Chapter 13 plan, once confirmed. So, … Read More

10 Tips for Success in Your Chapter 13 Case

So, you filed a Chapter 13 case and your Chapter 13 plan has been confirmed by the Court. Your goal at this point is to pay off the total amount in your plan, also known as the plan base. Here are ten things to prepare for: 1) complete your Pre-Discharge Financial Education course and establish a good budget; 2) make … Read More

4 Ways how Bankruptcy can help you modify your Mortgage Loan

I was recently in Bankruptcy Court in Pittsburgh on a Chapter 13 case. It was a difficult case, in which the client was over $20,000 behind on his primary mortgage. My client could afford to make his regular mortgage payment, but to pay that in addition to such a high percentage of arrears was too difficult for him. He really … Read More

Happy Thanksgiving!

My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving. It comes at a good time and it gets me to reflect on friends and family and the things that are going well. Sure, the food is good too, and it’s fun to get together with folks, but what I appreciate is the time to reflect. So, what does this have to do with bankruptcy … Read More

6 Steps on Getting a Car Loan While in a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Case

Okay, there you have it!! I will start screaming if I hear about another car salesman telling one of my Chapter 13 clients that “all you need is a letter from the Trustee saying the car loan is approved”. News Flash to All Car Salesman of Western Pennsylvania: the Chapter 13 Trustee doesn’t issue letters like that. Don’t ask them. … Read More

I just moved to Pennsylvania. Can I file bankruptcy here now?

I frequently get calls from people who have recently moved to the Pittsburgh area and want to immediately file a bankruptcy case. They are generally impatient to file a case, but I have to caution them that they must follow the rules on where to file their case. The Bankruptcy Code requires that an individual can only file a bankruptcy … Read More

How to Protect your Retirement Plan by Filing Bankruptcy

One of my pet peeves as a Pittsburgh bankruptcy attorney is not using one’s retirement funds to pay off debts. My big objection is that those funds are supposed to be used for your retirement, not for your supposedly productive earning years. I can, however, understand that people can have financial problems and that a 401k loan could possibly help … Read More

3 Tips to Success in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Okay, your Chapter 13 case has been filed and you have attended your Section 341 Meeting of Creditors. Let’s say that the Trustee has recommended that your Chapter 13 plan be confirmed on an interim basis. Now what? Here are three tips to remember: Watch out for Force-Placed Insurance! This is the type of very expensive insurance that mortgage companies … Read More

How to Get Back Your Drivers License by Filing Bankruptcy

If you are facing a judgment due to a motor vehicle accident, then you risk losing your drivers license if you fail to pay off the judgment. On the other hand, you can file a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy and discharge (wipe out) that debt in order to retain your drivers license. The State cannot discriminate against people … Read More