When it comes to car repossession cases, keep in mind that the car you buy on credit is a co-owned car. You own part of it, and the creditor owns the other part. The creditor owns progressively less as you pay off the loan, and after the loan is paid the car is 100 percent yours – in this way a car loan is exactly like a mortgage. Unfortunately, sometimes car owners can fall behind on their bills and that can trigger a repossession. In Florida, this type of procedure does not require any court hearings or even a notice of warning. They are authorized to enter onto private property, take the car, and either keep it or sell it after informing the debtor of their decision. However, military personnel has special protections just for them against repossession through the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act.
Topics: Debt Collection
News of Payless Shoes filing chapter 11 bankruptcy hits Florida hard, with 50 stores being shuttered statewide, and putting hundreds of mostly low-wage people out of work.
I have written extensively about how for-profit colleges cashed in on higher education and vulnerable populations, but NPR has taken the lid off with a new article and interview with Tressie McMillan Cottom. Cottom, a former insider who helped recruit students into the for-profit college that employed her. Her book, “Lower Ed: The Troubling Rise of For-Profit Colleges in the New Economy” is a close and troubling look at how in the last three decades, for-profit schools have sucked up vast amounts of federal student loans, student aid, and veterans’ benefits.
Topics: Student Loans
When struggling with debt, there comes a time when personal bankruptcy may be the best choice. The most well-known types are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13, but the former is most since it’s quick and simple.
Choosing to go forward with a bankruptcy filing is an extremely stressful time, but the best and first proactive step you can take is choosing an attorney. Although filing for Chapter 7 is the simplest and most straightforward type of personal bankruptcy, it’s still very complex and requires the expertise of a lawyer. Here are a few tips about what you can to do to prepare for a meeting with a Chapter 7 attorney.
There is a time when you have to wonder if anything is sacred. The Mai-Kai Restaurant on North Federal Highway popped up on my radar screen because of an article announcing that the Temple of Tiki was slapped with a $2 million-plus foreclosure suit. The news caused a wild flutter online, even as one of the restaurant’s principals claimed that the matter had been resolved by press time. The restaurant and its property are on the National Register of Historic Places, but that doesn’t guarantee all will be well.
Topics: Bankruptcy for Businesses
Bankruptcy filings have fallen from their high of 1.2 million in 2012 to just over 800,000 for 2016. This significant decrease has been felt by most states aside from Alaska, North Dakota, Wyoming, and Montana owing to the downturn in the fossil fuel markets, Delaware, and areas of Appalachia and the South served by the fourth, fifth, eighth, 10th, and 11th circuit courts. In February 2017, bankruptcy filings have decreased 10 percent from the same period last year, with commercial filings representing a nine percent decline from this time last year. You can take from the figures just about anything you want, as figures are often used to represent and agenda. However, the facts remain that not all small businesses are thriving in this economy.
It astounds me that a number of people with student loans are still facing student loan litigation because of their Navient or Sallie Mae student loans. You may have heard about the recent government lawsuit alleging that the largest servicer of student loans routinely cheated their customers out of millions upon millions of dollars. Navient is facing lawsuits from several state attorneys general and a federal regulator alleging that the company handling 300 billion in private and federal loans for over 12 million people that echo the recent mortgage crisis. It is alleged among other misdeeds that Navient failed to steer clients into income-based repayment plans, deliberately misinformed clients, and even refused to release cosigners when qualified.
Topics: Student Loans
Anyone who has ever done a Google search for “how to file for bankruptcy with no money” has no doubt seen the ads offering so-called free bankruptcy filings. As with most things, these are too good to be true. I have often said that when you are facing the federal courts, as you are when filing for bankruptcy, you need an attorney on your side. Very often these “free” bankruptcy filings are anything but, and they often do not even have an attorney on hand to advise you. You will end up dealing with bankruptcy preparers - who simply fill out forms and cannot offer legal advice – or paralegals who despite the title are not allowed by law to offer legal advice. Think about it – paramedics are medical professionals, but you won’t see them performing surgery or diagnosing an illness – right?
A few things have changed since my last article on being sued for student loans. As many of you know – or should – the federal government is suing Navient over its mishandling of student loans. The company handles in excess of $300 billion in private and federal loans and handles one in four student loan borrowers. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau alleges widespread misdeeds and systematic failure that echoes the mortgage crisis of the last recession. The company is accused of enriching itself at the expense of customers who were often burdened by their student debt. Indeed, the company did not place borrowers in income-based repayment plans for federal loans that could have substantially lowered their payments, and urged their agents to enroll borrowers in more profitable repayment plans.
Topics: Student Loans
About Chad Van Horn
Chad T. Van Horn, Esq. is a South Florida business leader and founding partner attorney of Van Horn Law Group, P.A. Through a combination of dedicated philanthropy, spirited entrepreneurship and legal expertise, he applies his resources and network to helping people. Learn more about Chad Van Horn.