December 16, 2017

Bankruptcy Specialist: Do I need one?

People choose bankruptcy lawyers based on many things, including their experience.  How do you choose the right one? While there are a number of Charlotte attorneys who practice bankruptcy law that are competent, if not at the highest level, to handle most bankruptcy matters, there are a few extremely capable bankruptcy attorneys in western North Carolina. Unfortunately, there are a number … [Read more...]

Receivership: North Carolina Bankruptcy Equivalent

While most people have some familiarity with the concept of bankruptcy under federal law, many people are unaware of the concept of receivership under North Carolina law. What is receivership? A federal bankruptcy judge oversees the bankruptcy case, with the help of the Bankruptcy Administrator. In a receivership, the North Carolina court appoints a receiver who is an officer of the court and … [Read more...]

Can my Homeowners Association (HOA) force me into Foreclosure?

This video of a Charlotte, NC family being foreclosed upon by their homeowners association (HOA)  is a cautionary tale illustrating the power of HOAs and is one reason I wrote this . If you are facing a foreclosure by your homeowners association, or are substantially behind on HOA dues and have concerns about how to resolve this, you are not alone and a bankruptcy filing may be a viable … [Read more...]

Marital Property and Bankruptcy: Allocating Exempt Property

Each state has different laws on what is recognized as exempt property, that is, property that is out of the reach of creditors (including bankruptcy trustees). Further, there are federal exemptions. I wrote about this extensively and you may find it helpful reading. Here's the kind of question that occasionally comes up when we counsel a married couple about bankruptcy. Q: The exempt … [Read more...]

Help Homeowners Facing Foreclosure: Part Three of Three

In my first post of this series we covered how foreclosure works, step by step, and defined some basic real estate terms related to distressed sales. In the second post, we answered questions on preventing foreclosure, negotiating with a mortgage company, and what to do about an adjustable rate mortgage that will soon reset. This post addresses questions on short sales and sifting through … [Read more...]

How Debts are Collected in North Carolina

You may know that North Carolina law allows judgment creditors to collect judgments owed to them in certain ways and under certain circumstances, and that these laws vary from state to state. You may also know that North Carolina does not allow wage garnishment for consumer debts (credit cards, auto loans, mortgages, and the like) or for many private business debts (money owed to vendors, banks, … [Read more...]

Liability for Unpaid Taxes: Five Remedies, Including Bankruptcy

Often, new client calls to my office are prompted by the unpleasant discovery that a tax authority wiped out their bank accounts to pay back taxes. Callers want to know if there is anything they can do to get their money back (generally, it’s gone for good) and if bankruptcy is an option for their larger financial troubles. Five options for taxpayers who are unable to pay their taxes in full and … [Read more...]

What to Look for in a Bankruptcy Attorney: Experience

Unfortunately, in this recession, bankruptcy and debtor/creditor relations is a growth industry, and as such there are some Johnny Come Latelys. The fact is, experience counts, and the cheapest bankruptcy attorneys in town are not the most experienced.   When it comes to handling your financial concerns, you want experience. When I meet with new clients, I sometimes find out that they've … [Read more...]

Charlotte Home Equity Falls, Self-Financing Options Diminish for Unemployed

Charlotte made the news this week, but not in a way that makes homeowners happy, especially those who are un- or under-employed.  The Case-Shiller Home Price Index found that values in the Charlotte market are back down to 2004 levels. In Charlotte, homes are going for 2004 prices. Last year, more than half of the homes sold in surrounding Mecklenberg County were foreclosures, says Mark Vitner, a … [Read more...]

Charlotte’s Greater Salem Church Obtains Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection

I recently filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy case to stop a foreclosure that was threatening a well known local church, demonstrating the power of the automatic stay. Chapter 11 is not just for businesses Greater Salem Church was threatened with the loss of its church building. The Chapter 11 filing caused the automatic stay to stop the foreclosure proceeding. This will allow the church membership … [Read more...]