Consumers who are overwhelmed with debt have two options in Bankruptcy Court. The most popular option by far is Chapter 7, where the consumer’s debts are eliminated without a repayment plan. But Chapter 13 is also a powerful tool for adjusting your debts over a three-to-five year time frame. Which one is right for you?
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is a powerful tool which can eliminate consumer debt, stop debt collection lawsuits in their tracks and allow debt-strapped consumers to open their mail and answer their phones again.
One of the most persistent questions which arises in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy is what to with secured creditors whose debts are secured by the debtor’s property. In such cases, the secured creditor is likely to pressure the Chapter 7 debtor into signing a “reaffirmation agreement.”
The Supreme Court unanimously decided today that denial of confirmation is not a final, appealable, order. Bullard v. Blue Hills Bank, 575 U.S. ___, No. 14-116 (U.S. May 4, 2015).
When a consumer collections lawsuit is filed by a junk debt buyer, there are two proper courts where the lawsuit can be filed – either 1) a court where the consumer signed the original note which the lawsuit was based upon, or 2) a court where the consumer resides at the time lawsuit was filed. The federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act ( or “FDCPA” for short) gives consumers powerful rights if the collections lawsuit is filed in some other court, including the right to recover up to $1,000 in statutory damages.
WE GOT THEM TO PAY OUR CLIENTS!
My clients here in Cleveland, Ohio, were sued by a Cincinnati debt collection law firm on behalf of a “Care Credit” credit card they had opened up. Due to health reasons and a loss of income, they had defaulted on their credit card payments. Care Credit then sold the debt to a collection agency called Asset Acceptance. Fortunately for them, instead of ignoring the lawsuit, they came to see me, and we started to defend the lawsuit. The law firm, Greene & Cooper, represented Asset Acceptance, which is a huge buyer of defaulted credit card debts. In summary, the Plaintiff in the lawsuit (the person bringing the lawsuit) was not Care Credit, but Asset Acceptance.