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Medical Debt and Bankruptcy

The link between medical debt and bankruptcy has become surprisingly controversial over the past decade. In 2005, then-Harvard-Law-Professor Elizabeth Warren published a study concluding that about half of U.S. personal bankruptcy filings were triggered in part by medical expenses. An update published four years later put that number even higher. Quibbling over those conclusions began almost immediately and hasn’t slowed. …

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The High Cost of Being in Debt

When you’re overwhelmed by debt, it’s often difficult to look beyond the “minimum payment due” box on your bills. Constantly racing against disconnection dates, juggling payments, and fielding debt collection calls leaves little time or energy for long-term planning. Often, the loudest debt collector or the one with the most intimidating threat gets whatever funds you have on hand, re-starting …

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What are the Bankruptcy Exemptions in Nevada?

Last year, more than 8,000 Nevadans filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. Bankruptcy is a legal process through which Americans struggling with overwhelming debt can obtain some relief. At the end of the process, the debtor receives a bankruptcy discharge, which is a court order terminating his or her obligation to repay …

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Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy: What’s the Difference?

When individuals file for bankruptcy, one of the first choices they must make is under which chapter of the Bankruptcy Code to file their case. In general, individuals choose to file either under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. Each of these chapters provides its own set of rules and offers different advantages and disadvantages for debtors. If you’re considering filing …

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What Happens if You Forget to List a Creditor When Filing Bankruptcy?

Every bankruptcy case begins with a flurry of paperwork. In addition to the bankruptcy petition, you’ll need to file multiple schedules and other documents listing comprehensive information about your assets, debts, creditors, and other financial information. Given the complexity of the information requested, it can be easy to make mistakes. One mistake that people sometimes make when filing for bankruptcy …

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Credit Card Debt Increasing Fastest in Nevada

In August 2018, Experian, one of the nation’s three consumer credit reporting agencies, released the findings from a study of nationwide credit card trends. According to that study, credit card debt in the United States grew from $734 billion in the second quarter of 2017 to $782 billion in the second quarter of this year, an increase of about 6.6%. …

HAMP Denial May Mean Lawsuit

Under the Home Affordable Modification Program (“HAMP”), an underwater homeowner may request that a lender modify his or her home mortgage. Typically, a request is made after the homeowner has missed payments and needs the modification to eliminate negative equity, reduce monthly payments (and interest in some cases), and bring the mortgage current. If the homeowner meets certain eligibility requirements, …

Bankruptcy Dishonesty Means No Discharge and Worse

Overwhelming debt causes a great deal of stress. You may lose sleep, become angry, or get scared. Fortunately, the federal bankruptcy laws can restructure your debts, provide a fresh start and alleviate your stress. However, it is critical that you play by the rules. A man in Tama County, Iowa, recently discovered the importance of honesty and fair dealing during …

Courts Relax Rules for Bankrupting Student Loans

You can’t discharge student loans in bankruptcy. Everyone knows that. Nevertheless, recent federal court decisions indicate that restrictions on discharging student loans during bankruptcy are relaxing. Most public and private student loans are excluded from discharge unless the bankruptcy debtor can show that repaying the loan would “impose an undue hardship on the debtor and the debtor’s dependents.” Because Congress …

Buying a Vehicle before Filing Bankruptcy

While having reliable transportation is important for most American families, it can be critical for a debtor in Chapter 13 bankruptcy. The average Chapter 13 case lasts three to five years, and during that time the debtor is prohibited from incurring additional debt without court approval. While it is possible to get court approval for a different vehicle during the …