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Category: Bankruptcy

3 Benefits of Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Picture of a typewriter and paper that reads, "Bankruptcy."

Bankruptcy sometimes gets an unfair stigma attached to it. The reality is that it helps many people get out of financial trouble.

Credit card bills pile up, life circumstances suddenly change. Whatever the problem, bankruptcy gives people the chance to start over.

When you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you’ll be assigned a trustee to make a record of your assets and then sell the non-exempt assets to pay off your creditors. This is why Chapter 7 is known as liquidation bankruptcy.

Here Are 3 Reasons to File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

1) Most types of unsecured debt will be discharged, including credit card debt and medical bills.

2) If you stay current on payments and don’t have a large amount of home equity, you could keep your home and vehicles.

3) You can begin to re-establish your credit almost immediately.

Contact Our NJ Bankruptcy Lawyers

The bankruptcy lawyers at Brenner Spiller & Archer, LLP provide friendly, caring, and affordable legal services. We serve clients throughout central and south Jersey with offices in Collingswood, Mount Holly, Vineland, and Freehold.

Call 856.925.9215 Today to Get Your Free Consultation

We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.

Why Bankruptcy Doesn’t Always Erase Student Loan Debt

Picture showing a college graduation ceremony.
Filing for bankruptcy can be a difficult and frustrating time in your life, and any obstacles can only increase stress. Our lawyers will always try to help guide you through the process, but don’t be surprised if you read that student loans may not count in your bankruptcy.

Student Loans in the US

The first US student loans were offered in 1840 at Harvard, back when annual tuition was an unbelievable $75 per year (equivalent to $2,024 in 2017). And don’t even get us started on textbooks.

Today, the debt from student loans is the second-highest in consumer after mortgage debt. Unpaid student loan debt totals $1.3 trillion in the US. Most 2016 grads in New Jersey owe an average of $28,233, below the national average of $37,172.

Student loan debt has very exponential characteristics. In the mid 1990s, average debt was $9,000 ($15,300 adjusted), $17,500 in the mid 2000s ($23,300 adjusted), and over $30,000 today. 

Congress’s 1976 Legislation

Filing for chapter 7 or chapter 13 bankruptcy can be a smart way to get your finances in order and begin to repair your credit and/or repay your debts. But today, while large debts like mortgages, medical bills, and auto loans are dismissible, student loans are often not.

This is due to legislation passed in 1976. Back in the 70s, there was concern that more students would default on their loans, so Congress passed a bill stating borrowers had to wait up to five years before being included in bankruptcy discharges (unless undue hardships could be proven).

The original bill only applied to federal student loans. Later, the timeframe was extended from five years to seven years, then was changed to remove a timeframe altogether. In 2005, lawmakers added private student loans to the bill.

When loans can be discharged

Today, student loan debt can only be dismissed during bankruptcy filing if the borrower can prove undue hardship. For example, if a borrower had been working toward a college degree, and a family member passed away with no life insurance but several dependents to take care of, the borrower could argue that having to earn for and care for the dependents can claim as an undue hardship.

Luckily, a bill was introduced in the House of Representatives that pushed to include student loans in bankruptcies. Any hard action on this bill won’t occur for a long time, but it’s a welcomed start to financial relief.

This article should not be taken as legal advice. If you’re considering bankruptcy or another legal debt relief option, you need to consult an attorney for guidance. If you’re in New Jersey and seeking legal assistance, we can help you.

Brenner Spiller & Archer, LLP is a New Jersey law firm that is dedicated to helping families find relief from the burden of debt and other financial woes. For more than 35 years, our bankruptcy lawyers have provided effective guidance on all debt relief matters to clients throughout Central and South Jersey.

Click here to schedule a free consultation with our trusted bankruptcy attorneys.

Here’s How Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Can Save Your Home

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is also known as “reorganization bankruptcy.” Chapter 13 is a restructuring plan, unlike Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which can require you to give up many of your assets in exchange for the debt being wiped out.

In other words, Chapter 13 lets you pay back your debt to creditors over a longer period of time. It usually takes between three and five years to complete this plan and fully get back on your feet financially.

Here’s how Chapter 13 bankruptcy can save your home:

  • Payments of your mortgage arrears will be spread out over the repayment period.
  • In addition to repaying the arrears, you will also have to stay current on mortgage payments going forward.
  • If you keep up with your mortgage payments during the repayment time, you will be able to remain in your home and stave off any foreclosure proceedings.

Contact a South Jersey Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Lawyer Today

Bankruptcy laws are extremely confusing and can easily overwhelm anyone who doesn’t have considerable experience navigating these complicated laws. If you are reading this page, it’s likely you realize you need a Chapter 13 specialist to help you save your home. You’ve come to the right place.

At Brenner Spiller & Archer, LLP, we provide friendly, caring and affordable legal services. We serve clients throughout central and south Jersey with offices in Collingswood, Mount Holly, Vineland, and Freehold.

Contact Us Today to Get Your Free Consultation

What is Automatic Stay in Bankruptcy?

Picture of a person paying back their debts.Being in debt is hard. It’s even worse when debt collectors hound you every day. To the collectors, it’s only a job and nothing personal. But to you, it feels like harassment.

Despite the fact that there is a law in place that’s supposed to keep you from being called at certain times and while you’re at work, many credit companies break those laws.

One of the big reasons people file bankruptcy is to keep creditors from contacting them. Filing for bankruptcy will keep you safe from creditors from a provision called Automatic Stay.

When you file for bankruptcy, any calls, direct mail, emails, or any other form of communication by a creditor meant to collect money from you must cease immediately. Basically, this provision gives you a little peace while you’re paying back your debts.

Get Legal Advice From Our Experienced Bankruptcy Attorneys

This article should not be taken as legal advice. If you’re considering bankruptcy or another legal debt relief option, you need to consult an attorney for guidance. If you’re in New Jersey and seeking legal assistance, we can help you.

Brenner Spiller & Archer, LLP is a New Jersey law firm that is dedicated to helping families find relief from the burden of debt and other financial woes. For more than 35 years, our bankruptcy lawyers have provided effective guidance on all debt relief matters to clients throughout Central and South Jersey.

Click Here To Get Your Free Consultation With Our Trusted Bankruptcy Attorneys

5 Possible Loan Modification Options for Your Mortgage

Sometimes bankruptcy isn’t the right option for people, but they still want to save their home from foreclosure. For those in this situation, a loan modification might be the best choice.

loan modificationPeople can apply for a loan modification on their first and second mortgages, especially if they’re behind in their payments or if their interest rate is higher than the market rate.

However, your income and delinquency can come into play for loan modification eligibility. It’s important to hire an attorney to help you through the process.

Attorneys are necessary for the loan modification process because mortgage companies need to agree to participate in the program.

They are rarely concerned about your best interests, and therefore you’ll most likely receive the run-around when trying to communicate with them.

Having an experienced lawyer on your side to aggressively fight for you is critical to success. Once your lender or mortgage company agrees to modify your loan, there are five ways they might lower your payment:

1) Lowering your interest rate

2) Extending the term of the mortgage/loan (loan extension)

3) Placing your arrears at the end of the loan

4) Reducing the balance due on the mortgage (this is rare)

5) Putting arrears on the back of the loan, which allows you to pay your arrears once the rest of your payments are met.

Talk With Our Experienced Loan Modification Attorneys in NJ

This article should not be taken as official legal advice. If you’re considering a loan modification or another legal option, you need to consult an attorney for guidance. If you’re in New Jersey and seeking legal assistance, we can help you.

Brenner Spiller & Archer, LLP is a New Jersey law firm that is dedicated to helping families find relief from the burden of debt and other financial woes. For more than 35 years, our lawyers have provided effective guidance on all debt relief matters to clients throughout Central and South Jersey.

Schedule Your Free Consultation Now!

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