The basic qualifications to file bankruptcy again remain the same. U.S. citizens, army personnel serving over seas, and any person who owns property or does business within the U.S. may file bankruptcy. Chapter 7 imposes additional restrictions based on a previous case. You cannot re-file Chapter 7 within eight years of a prior Chapter 7 discharge, or within six years of a prior Chapter 13 discharge (unless unsecured creditors received at least 70% of their total debt), or if a prior case was dismissed with prejudice within the last 180 days.
The means test poses the greatest hurdle if filing Chapter 7 again, and determines the amount of the monthly payment owed to a Chapter 13 trustee.
The means test became effective in late 2005. Since that time, all people who file bankruptcy under either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 must take the test. In theory, the test measures monthly disposable income for each debtor. The calculation starts with total income, subtracts expenses, to find disposable income (Accountants call this discretionary income). If filing jointly with a spouse, total household income, less allowed monthly expenses, determines disposable income.
Importantly, disposable income is a far different measure under the U.S. Code than the common understanding of discretionary income. In the later case, expenses include all basic necessities based the current cost of goods. This basic concept is absent in the U.S. Code definition of disposable income.
The test imposes national standard allowances and local standard allowances for the majority of allowed expenses used in the test. Debtors may not deduct any expense unless specifically authorized. Further, as a rule for necessities, the actual cost of living, actual cost of goods, and historical expenses of each debtor are irrelevant.
In a few important expense categories however, the test does permits debtors to deduct actual expenses. Additionally, debtors may also petition the court for a 5% increase in a few standard allowances for good cause shown.
The test uses monthly disposable in a three-pronged test. First, if the debtor(s) earns more than their state median income, Chapter 7 is not available unless qualifying under two exceptions. These exceptions apply in limited circumstances when the means test measure of disposable income is less than $200.
Taking the test the first time is frustrating for most people. The mandatory allowed budget is not adequate in many situations. Yet many opportunities exist to change results and even improve results substantially over time.
The test relies on income and expenses over last full six months. Each month, test results change. The oldest month disappears and latest month becomes part the test. Over six months, the test result is entirely new.
Small changes in lifestyle may qualify a debtor to file Chapter 7. Debtors who become acquainted with the test and a few advanced bankruptcy strategies may swing the test result dramatically. To swing the test in your favor, you must know how to calculate income, the expenses used in the test, and the expenses that remain irrelevant. When taking the test, time and knowledge combine into the power to exert great influence over next five years of your life.
If you pass the test, you may discharge all debt in as little as four months and receive a final order closing the case. If you fail the test, you must repay at least a portion of all debts and live on a mandatory budget under court supervision for the next five years.
Dave Clark is a lawyer who enjoys bankruptcy strategies questions. This article is for a client who asked, "Can I file Chapter 7 second time?" & "Does bankruptcy eliminate judgements?"
A lemon law is a type of law that protects consumers from getting bad products, in this case, vehicles. In the United States, each of the states has its own form of lemon law. Each state regulates how much is to be provided as well as what standards each vehicle must be sold under. In basic terms, if the manufacturer says that the vehicle runs well and it doesn't, then they are in violation of the lemon law of that state depending on the state's specific standards. In most cases, anyone selling a bad car must replace it or refund the money for the car.
But, remember that each state is different. Each state has its own requirement for how much should be provided by the previous owner to the current owner. Also, in most cases, any defaults in the vehicle should be presented to the new owner prior to the purchase. If you find that a new car has actually been used, for example, you can have the dealership repurchase it from you or provide you with the new car.
It is important, though, that you check out your state's exact wording on the lemon law. What should you do if you think someone has violated the lemon law on your purchase?
* Contact your attorney and ask them if they feel that you may have been violated. Many will provide free counseling to provide you with an understanding if you do have a case or not.
* Make sure to keep your paperwork. It is very important for you to have any and all documentation of the car, its history and its current condition in your hand.
* The attorney will tell you about the lemon law of the state and you will decide what the next step is from there.
* You should contact your attorney prior to trying to deal with the company yourself as to avoid more problems.
For more information please see http://www.lemon-law-help.co.uk
A motor vehicle crash can be terrifying event, and when it happens, most people are utterly unprepared for what to do next. What you do, what you say, and how you deal with the other people at the crash site can have legal implications that affect you for the rest of your life. Both at the time of the crash and later on, there are some basic actions that seasoned auto collision attorneys recommend as legal first aid to protect your rights: * At the time of the crash After a crash you may be in a state of shock, and too seriously injured to do anything on your own behalf. If you are able to move about safely, it is important to obtain names of witnesses who observed what occurred and to exchange driver's license and insurance information with all other drivers involved in the crash. This is essential to do whether or not a police or highway patrol officer is called to the scene. * As soon as possible afterwards Be sure to notify your insurance carrier of the collision and to cooperate fully with your own insurance company. * Be aware of statutes of limitation in your state These laws limit the time by when you must file a claim or a lawsuit. It is important to know which statutes apply to your particular circumstance. It is wise to contact a knowledgeable automobile collision lawyer as soon as possible after the crash in order to make sure that your rights are not forfeited, and that you can pursue your civil remedies. * Investigation and gathering evidence It is crucially important for investigation to start before memories fade and before critical evidence at the collision scene has been removed, washed away or otherwise eliminated. Experienced automotive collision lawyers work with motor vehicle collision investigators who can travel to wherever your vehicle collision occurred to help find vital evidence and secure it for your case. While you are receiving medical care and recovering from your injuries, you many not feel ready to have your case resolved. Nonetheless, evidence collection needs to be under way. An experienced auto collision lawyer can obtain factual statements, scene photographs, accurate measurements, and collision photographs, leaving you to focus on your recovery and return to the quality of life you enjoyed before your injuries.
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