News Feed Archive



2006 Bankruptcy Filings

Median Income Update

Divorces increasing?

Bankruptcy Myths

Foreclosures continue to climb

Bankruptcy Filing Fees increase, again

Bankruptcy filings fall

Foreclosures are climbing

You can still file bankruptcy

We're Still accepting new clients

Deadline is really close!

Deadline is approaching

Free Credit Reports

BK Filing Fee changes

CLIENTAID

Filing Chapter 20 (7 + 13)

A Bankruptcy Means Test

End of Bankruptcy as we know it

End of Bankruptcy as we know it

Bankrupty Bill Status

Divorce and Politics

Bankruptcy Reform Issues

Bankruptcy Reform Means Test - WI

Foster Kids Abuse Increase

Bk Reform Passes First House Hurdle

Means Test Gray Areas

Rebuttal to an Essay for Bk Reform

Median Income Table Added

Pre-nups and Support

Senate Passage of Bankruptcy Reform Act

Countdown to Disaster

Adoption gone bad, legal fees mount

Bankruptcy Reform Update

Adoption Scam

FREE CREDIT REPORTS

Divorce and Pregnancy

Paying off the Credit Card (companies)

Discussion Forums Added

New Mexico Foster Care Oversight Done

Adoption's Dark Site

Interest Rates and Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy Reform - An Analysis

One Reform, Two Reform?

Adoption and the best interests of the Child?

Medical Bills and Bankruptcy

ALERT! Bankruptcy Reform back on track

New web site devoted to bankruptcy in Wisconsin

 

2006 Bankruptcy Filings

Link Home Published Date Tue, 2 Jan 07 9:15 CDT Bankruptcy filings in this district fell by over 75% from last year and over 65% from the previous two years averages. At the same time a record number of foreclosures has occurred. These events do not make sense. One of the best ways to save a home in foreclosure is to file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Virtually every Chapter 13 bankruptcy we have filed for a client has involved foreclosure. Although more expensive than in the past, the new law encourages Chapter 13. Top
 

Median Income Update

Link Home Published Date Mon, 18 Sep 06 10:40 CDT The USTO has released the new median income numbers for the bankruptcy means test. The numbers go into effect on Oct. 1. We have updated the means test with the new income numbers. Overall, if you are single or a couple, it will be easier to file as the median numbers have gone up roughly $5k (except So. Dakota!). If you have 3 or 4 kids, it has gotten harder as your numbers have decreased substantially. Top
 

Divorce Uptick

Link Divorce Published Date Wed, 13 Sep 06 8:18 CDT For some unknown reason, we have been getting a lot of calls for divorce recently. Apparently the good economic conditions have stabilized enough to begin the divorce cycle again. It has been three years since we saw a uptick. If you are considering it, remember there is a very wide range of fee plans out there, but the first thing you should look for is an attorney you can work with and trust. Give us a call. Top
 

Bankruptcy Myths

Link Moderate Mainstream Published Date Wed, 13 Sep 06 8:16 CDT Tracy offers a review of bankruptcy myths on her blog. Bankrate.com published their 12 myths but added a few of their own in the process. Check out her take on their take. Top
 

Foreclosure Rates

Link Home Published Date Wed, 13 Sep 06 8:15 CDT Foreclosure rates continue to be well above last year. South Central Wisconsin is averaging over a 50% increase over last year. ARMs and rising gas prices have pinched homeowners. You have options if you are facing foreclosure, do not just walk away. Call us first. Top
 

Bankruptcy Court Costs Going Up - Again

Link Home Published Date Fri, 31 Mar 06 17:15 CDT The filing fees for bankruptcy are going up again, the second time in six months. Chapter 7 fees will be $299 and Chapter 13 will be $274 beginning with cases filed April 9, 2006 or later. Top
 

Bankruptcy Filings Down 80%

Link Home Published Date Fri, 31 Mar 06 17:15 CDT Although the number of bankruptcy cases filed last year set records, most of those filings occurred in September and October. Filings for January and February this year were down 80% from 2005 and an average of 2003 & 2004. Top
 

Foreclosures Soaring

Link Home Published Date Fri, 31 Mar 06 17:15 CDT The number of foreclosure filings are surging this year. Many districts are reporting 50% or higher. Here in South Central Wisconsin foreclosures are up 68%. Top
 

Yes You Can STILL File Bankruptcy!

Link Home Published Date Fri, 31 Mar 06 17:15 CDT Many people think the new bankruptcy law no longer allows most people to file bankruptcy. That is not true. Although the number of hoops and costs have gone up, it is still possible to file for almost everyone. Call now to see how the new law affects your situation. Top
 

Taking New Clients - Appts Still Available

Link Home Published Date Thu, 6 Oct 05 16:00 CDT Many attorneys have stopped taking new clients in the wanning days of the old law. We still have appointments available....please call now Top
 

New Clients - Changes

Link Home Published Date Mon, 3 Oct 05 12:00 CDT The deadline to file bankruptcy under the old law is less than 14 days away. Credit card companies are doubling their minimum payments to 4% starting this month. Home heating oil is 3 times the cost of 2 years ago, natural gas has doubled in the last year. With gas prices around $3, most people are going to get squeezed like never before. We are accepting new clients until October 12th...please call now Top
 

Filing Deadline Nears

Link Home Published Date Tue, 30 Aug 05 14:00 CDT While the new bankruptcy law (most provisions) goes into effect in just 47 days, many bankruptcy attorneys are gearing up for an onslaught. Finding an experienced attorney in October with the time to meet with clients and prepare filings may not be possible in many areas. Many areas are already seeing significant increases in clients seeking to file before the deadline. We expect very few attorneys will accept new clients for filing under the old law after October 1st. Top
 

Free Credit Reports

Link Home Published Date Tue, 30 Aug 05 14:00 CDT The final step for consumers seeking a free credit report occurs on September 1st when people from every state will be able to get a free report from each of the three reporting agencies each year. You may contact them online, by mail or by phone at: www.annualcreditreport.com; 877-322-8228 or at Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281 Top
 

Bankruptcy Filing Fees

Link Newlaw Published Date Thu, 11 Aug 05 23:35 CDT The court costs for filing bankruptcy are changing effective October 17, 2005. For Chapter 7 they will be $274, up from $209. For Chapter 13 they will be $189, down from $194. Top
 

CLIENT AID

Link Client Aid Published Date Sun, 26 Jun 05 22:20 CDT We would like to introduce CLIENT AID. A new service for attorneys that plan on continuing to practice bankruptcy under the new law. The service assists clients in obtaining the necessary information and documentation to file a bankruptcy petition. CLIENT AID works under the supervision of the client's attorney and does not help 'pro se' debtors file under the new law. CLIENT AID can be contacted via email at atty@clientaid.com or by phone at (800) 368-0920. Top
 

Chapter 20 Availability

Link Home Published Date Thu, 26 May 05 14:10 CDT Chapter 20 bankruptcy is when you file a Chapter 7 to eliminate unsecured debt and then file a Chapter 13 to deal with secured and/or priority debt. To file a "Chapter 20" under the current law, our deadline is June 17th. After that date there will be insufficent time to complete the filing process before the new law kicks in on October 17th. Top
 

Means Test and the New Bankruptcy Law

Link Means Test Published Date Tue, 26 Apr 05 14:15 CDT We have two versions of the Means Test available, one a general test to give you an idea of the results, the other a more comprehensive version that requires more information. Top
 

The End of Bankruptcy as we know it

Link Start here Published Date Tue, 26 Apr 05 16:15 CDT The Law has been signed. Some provisions are already in effect. If you are considering, or ever considered bankruptcy, CALL US NOW! Top
 

The End of Bankruptcy as we know it

Link Newlaw Published Date Thu, 14 Apr 05 14:25 CDT The House has passed the Bankruptcy Reform Act, next stop the Presidents desk... Top
 

Bankruptcy Reform Status

Link BK Status Published Date Wed, 13 Apr 05 22:00 CDT The House Rules Committee reported the Bankruptcy Reform Bill out with a closed rule - that means no amendments can be added to the bill in the House. Debate is limited to 1 hour and an up or down vote is expected tomorrow. We will adjust our doomsday clock only after the bill is signed by Bush Top
 

Divorce and Politics

Link Divorce Published Date Wed, 13 Apr 05 22:00 CDT We had decided not to post divorce notices, especially when it involves famous people (Aniston/Pitt for example) because there are so many outlets with the information....however, Senator from Wisconsin Russ Feingold announced that he and his wife of 14 years(?) will be getting a divorce. Feingold has broad appeal to Democrats and Republicans in Wisconsin and has gained a national audience. Some have encouraged him to consider the Presidency in 08....this will not help...unless it is to get it out of the way early... Top
 

Bankruptcy Reform Issues

Link S.256 - Title I Issues Published Date Wed, 6 Apr 05 22:30 CDT We have listed each section of the Reform Bill and the issues as we see them with each one. Top
 

Bankruptcy Reform Means Test - Wisconsin Residents

Link Means Test Published Date Thu, 24 Mar 05 21:30 CDT We have added a functioning Means Test for Wisconsin residents. See how the new means test might be applied to your situation. Top
 

Foster Kids Abuse Increase

Link Forum Discussion Published Date Thu, 17 Mar 05 10:00 CDT AP: MILWAUKEE - The number of Milwaukee County children who were abused or neglected after being placed in foster homes increased last year, a new analysis said. Forty-one foster children were abused or neglected last year, compared with 32 in 2003, according to the analysis released Wednesday by the state-run Bureau of Milwaukee Child Welfare. The analysis also found that the number of times foster children were forced to move to different placements went up in 2004. Close to 170 children had three or more placements within 12 months, compared with 100 in 2003. Top
 

Bankruptcy Reform Passes First House Hurdle

Link Bankruptcy Reform Analysis Published Date Thu, 17 Mar 05 08:45 CDT From the AP on Forbes.com: On a party-line vote of 22-13, the House Judiciary Committee approved the bill, which would make it harder for people to wipe away debts in bankruptcy. A lone Democrat, Rep. Rick Boucher of Virginia, joined the majority Republicans to support the legislation. Top
 

Means Test Gray Areas

Link Chart of Income v Expenses Published Date Wed, 16 Mar 05 01:00 CDT The IRS Guidelines for Allowable Living Expenses will govern in the means test under the new law. For Debtors with income BELOW THE MEDIAN but well above the Guidelines, we expect creditors and Trustees to object to Chapter 7 filings. We have posted a representative chart for those incomes likely to come under scrutiny. Top
 

Rebuttal to an Essay for Bankruptcy Reform

Link Rebuttal Published Date Tue, 15 Mar 05 12:45 CDT An essay supporting Bankruptcy Reform was recommended to us, so we read it, and responded to it. Top
 

Median Income Table Added

Link Median Income Published Date Sat, 12 Mar 05 22:45 CDT We have added a page to our discussion of the new law to list each states median income. There are percentages on the page to calculate the median income for different size families. This is the version for FY 2006 produced by the Government. Top
 

Pre-nups and Support

Link Divorce Page Published Date Fri, 11 Mar 05 08:30 CDT Source Argus Leader In an appeal involving the divorce of multi-millionaire Sioux Falls banker T. Denny Sanford, the South Dakota Supreme Court ruled Thursday that prenuptial agreements cannot limit alimony because that runs counter to state public policy. The high court's unanimous decision said the provisions on alimony in a 1995 agreement between Sanford - whose net worth was estimated at $55 million - and Colleen Anderson cannot be enforced. However, the part of the agreement dealing with a division of property is valid and can be enforced because South Dakota law allows prenuptial agreements to set conditions for dividing property in the event of divorce, the Supreme Court said. Top
 

Senate Passage of Bankruptcy Reform Act

New Law Published Date Thu, 10 Mar 05 18:00 CDT The Senate has passed the Bankruptcy Reform Act. Several minor admendments were added, but the House is expected to take up the bill and provide it's own swift passage. Check out our countdown clock to see how long is left in bankruptcy as we know it. Top
 

Countdown to Disaster

Link Clock Published Date Thu, 10 Mar 05 09:00 CDT We have added a countdown to the expected date the new bankruptcy act provisions take effect. Some will take effect immediately after passage. Top
 

Adoption gone bad, legal fees mount

Link Discussion Forum Published Date Thu, 10 Mar 05 08:30 CDT From the Chicago Sun Times: This adoption story is all about what is wrong with adoption in the US. An agency takes advantage of the system and a vunerable woman, and when someone calls them on it, the lawyer disparity comes crashing in on the families. In somewhat related news, Canadian families are adopting African-American babies faster than Americans are. Top
 

Bankruptcy Reform Update

Link New Law Published Date Tue, 8 Mar 05 17:00 CDT The Schumer Amendment to the Bankruptcy Reform, the poison pill for the bill in previous sessions was defeated today. This opens the door for a final vote in the Senate tomorrow. The bill is expected to pass. Top
 

Adoption Scam

Link Adoption Page Published Date Thu, 3 Mar 05 12:00 CDT A Wetumpka Alabama woman and her mother have pleaded guilty in an adoption scam in which they used the daughter's unborn children as bait. Cherish Tarbox, 20, and her mother, Jenny Lodge, 42, entered the pleas in Elmore County Circuit Court on Tuesday. The women pleaded guilty to three counts of theft by deception each and face a maximum sentence of 20 years for each charge, said District Attorney Randall Houston. Tarbox and Lodge scammed five prospective adoptive couples by offering to allow then to adopt Tarbox's twin boys if they paid for medical and other expenses, police reports said. The scam continued after the babies were born. Top
 

FREE CREDIT REPORTS

Link Bankruptcy Page Published Date Wed, 2 Mar 05 14:15 CDT A new law went into effect yesterday that allows you to receive a free credit report every year. No fees, no subscriptions: The reports can be ordered online here or by calling, toll-free, (877) 322-8228. Top
 

Divorce and Pregnancy

Link Divorce Page Source Seattle News Published Date Wed, 2 Mar 05 11:20 CDT Spokane County Superior Court Judge Paul Bastings retired about four months after refusing to allow a woman to divorce her estranged husband because she was pregnant. Shawn Hughes and her child, due this month, are not likely to be mistaken for fairy-tale stars. Hughes was trying to divorce her husband, Carlos, who two years before had been jailed for beating her. Hughes sought the divorce so she could marry the man she said was the unborn child's father, Chauncey Jacques, who in 1998 pleaded guilty to a gang-related shooting that blinded an elderly man. That said, Bastings' application of statutes and case law to deny this uncontested divorce on the sole ground that Hughes was pregnant and that allowing the divorce would render the child illegitimate was at best quaint, and certainly wrong. NOTE: Wisconsin has similar statutes Top
 

Paying off the Credit Card (companies)

Link Credit Card Calculator Published Date Sun, 27 Feb 05 20:50 CDT Why are credit card companies SO in favor of bankruptcy reform? It protects their cash cow. On a credit card @ 18%, paying on the minimum payment: A $2,000 balance will take 18.50 years to pay off A $4,000 balance will take 24.25 years to pay off A $6,000 balance will take 27.50 years to pay off A $10,000 balance will take 37.75 years to pay off But do you know how long it takes for the credit card company to get back what it loaned? 51 months.....no matter how much you borrowed. That means after 51 months of carrying a balance on the credit card, every penny paid to the credit card companies for as long as 33 years, is profit. At 24%, it would take only 45 months to get back the balance but to pay off? $2,000 would take 33.5 yrs $4,000 would take 45.17 yrs $6,000 would take 51.75 yrs and $10,000 would take 60.25 yrs ONE $6,000 credit card with a full balance would take someone their ENTIRE working life to pay off at the minimum payment. If the credit card companies have their way, the new law will make anyone with $100 a month extra repay their $6000 in ....5 years. Let's make this easy. Instead of allowing credit card companies to structure their repayment plans over 30, 40 or 60 years, require them to schedule minimum payments based on the highest balance ever held. $2,000 highest balance @ 24% would be $40 $4,000 highest balance @ 24% would be $80 $6,000 highest balance @ 24% would be $120 $10,000 highest balance @ 24% would be $200 In each case, the balance would be paid off in just 5 years....just like in bankruptcy....Bet they will not like it...MBNA, the largest issuer of credit cards earns almost a billion dollars a year PROFIT.....cash cow indeed. Top
 

Discussion Forums Added

Link Forums Published Date Thu, 24 Feb 05 22:40 CDT We have added discussion forums for each area of practice. Topics of interest will include news of the day related to each area. Top
 

New Mexico Foster Care Oversight Done

Link Adoption Page Source Albuquerque Trib Published Date Thu, 24 Feb 05 16:00 CDT A landmark federal consent decree that brought shame to New Mexico for the way it ran its foster care ends today after a quarter-century of fighting in the courts and, ultimately, finding more adoptive homes for children. Parties on both sides of the 1983 federal consent decree - the first to be imposed on a state human services department - were expected to gather today at the Roundhouse in Santa Fe to commemorate the decree's demise. Top
 

Adoption's Dark Site

Link Adoption Page Source Salt Lake Trib Published Date Tue, 22 Feb 05 09:50 CDT From Salt Lake Tribune: The court order was made public last week by attorneys for Carmen McDonald, a Chicago woman who also has sued A Cherished Child. McDonald alleges the agency took advantage of her financial and emotional vulnerability and in December coerced her into surrendering her 3-month-old girl for adoption. Attorneys for A Cherished Child refuse to comment on the lawsuits. But McDonald's attorneys hope the Baby Wade ruling will help give them the leverage they need for an injunction ordering "Baby Tamia's" immediate return. Top
 

Interest Rates and Bankruptcy

Link Bankruptcy Page Source Detroit Free Press Published Date Tue, 22 Feb 05 09:20 CDT "A missed payment can complicate the situation. Metzen said he has seen bad credit drive some people's mortgage rates above 15 percent and credit card rates to more than 29 percent. "The credit-card industry will have you believe people plan to go into bankruptcy (while running up big balances). But for most it's a last resort," he said. "They just want the phone calls to stop." Top
 

Bankruptcy Reform - An Analysis

Link Analysis Published Date Sun, 20 Feb 05 16:10 CDT We have posted an analysis of the new bankruptcy reform bill and the impact certain sections will have on individual debtors. Overall, the bill does not provide for a fresh start, it demands debtors start all over... Top
 

One Reform, Two Reform?

Link Divorce Page Source Canyon News Published Date Sun, 20 Feb 05 15:15 CDT Nathan Tabor, an activist in North Carolina writes in the Canyon News of California: "We can stop the soaring divorce rate in America by discarding the failed no-fault divorce model and toughening the laws on getting a divorce. Laws proposed in many states say that when a couple has children under 18, they can only get a no-fault divorce if they both consent to it." Top
 

Adoption and the best interests of the Child?

Link Adoption Page Source PlanetOut.com Published Date Fri, 19 Feb 05 10:05 CDT From PlanetOut.com - Florida: State Sen. Nan Rich has proposed that judges could allow adoptions if they conclude a permanent placement with a gay or lesbian foster parent is more important to a child\'s development than maintaining a temporary placement. Florida is the only state in the union that prevents gays and lesbians from adopting under any circumstances. Convicted felons and drug abusers, however, can adopt as long as they are heterosexual. Homosexuals in Florida are allowed to be foster parents. Top
 

Medical Bills and Bankruptcy

Link Bankruptcy Page You may have seen this as it got some serious coverage. A study released last week indicates that a large percentage of people filing bankruptcy did so because of medical bills. I have always commented that about 1/3 of the people that file do so because of medical bills but the study puts the number closer to 1/2. Whether it is 1/3 or 1/2 is not relevant, the fact that a majority of those HAD medical insurance is. I am encouraged that the study is getting some Congresspeople more focused on the reform bill and the damage it might (will) cause. Top
 

ALERT! Bankruptcy Reform back on track

Link Our Analysis For the last 8 years credit card companies and banks have been trying to change the bankruptcy law to make it much more difficult for PEOPLE to file bankruptcy. The law is very lopsided and will hurt many people that need bankruptcy protection. The President has said he will sign it if it gets to him. Last year, both the House and Senate passed versions but could not reach a compromise on ONE issue. That issue has been ommitted from the current version. Top
 

New web site devoted to bankruptcy in Wisconsin

Link Wisconsin Bankruptcy Help Cazel Family Law has provided a new website to help people considering bankruptcy. WisconsinBankruptcyHelp.com offers information and resources for Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 and help for people dealing with debt issues. Top


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