An Update on How Long for a Mortgage Foreclosure in Pennsylvania

Back in 2010, I wrote about how long mortgage foreclosure takes in Pennsylvania. Again, here are the basics. In Pennsylvania, we have a judicial foreclosure system, which means that foreclosure cases must be filed in Court. Still, there are specific steps to follow: 1) Notice of Intention to Foreclose, which is a letter sent to the homeowner by the mortgage … Read More

How are Missed Chapter 13 Payments Made Up?

This is a frequent question, and it’s best understood by learning more about the concept of the “plan base”. Let’s say that your Chapter 13 plan is for 60 months and that the payment is $1,000 per month. Then your plan base is $60,000. Obviously, this is a total of all of your payments over the course of the plan. … Read More

Beware of Payday Loan Telephone Scam

A follow up on the recent post on payday loans. I’m finding a lot of my clients with old payday loans are getting threatening phone calls from debt collectors. These collectors will call cell phones or at home or at work. They use highly-aggressive tactics. For example, they may pose as a police investigator or court official. These callers will … Read More

P is for Payday Loans in Bankruptcy

P is for Payday Loans in the Bankruptcy Alphabet. I love it when clients tell me that they have payday loans. Why? Because bankruptcy is a great tool with which to fight back against these lenders. Recently, Pennsylvania legislators chose not to permit payday loans in Pennsylvania. However, folks in Pennsylvania can still go to the Internet to enter into … Read More

J is for Judgments in Bankruptcy Court

J is for judgments in the Bankruptcy Alphabet. What is a “judgment”? It’s simply when a court rules against you. More specifically, what I’m referring to is a money judgment. I’m specifically focused on removing or preventing judgments from being entered against my clients. So, if a prospective client has retained me to file a bankruptcy case, then my goal … Read More

G is for Gambling Debts in Bankruptcy

G is for Gambling Debts in the Bankruptcy Alphabet. Those of us practicing bankruptcy law are surely seeing an increase in new clients who have incurred debts from local casinos. The general rule in bankruptcy law in Pennsylvania is that you can discharge (wipe out) gambling debts in bankruptcy (if you do it properly). First, if you’ve incurred any gambling … Read More

F is for IRS Form 1099-C and Bankruptcy

In the bankruptcy alphabet, F is for IRS Form 1099-C. What is that, you ask? Form 1099-C is for the cancellation of debt. When creditors such as banks, credit unions and mortgage companies write off or “settle” or cancel debts with individuals, they frequently report those write-offs to the IRS, provided that the amounts forgiven are more than $600. Therefore, … Read More

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

“C” is for Credit Card Creep

Many prospective clients, when meeting me for the first time in my office, seem to shake their heads and wonder what happened with their finances. They say that they never imagined that they would be considering bankruptcy. I don’t know the percentages, but the financial problems of most people are rooted in the following: divorce or separation job loss medical … Read More