What amount can you settle my debt for?

On May 16, 2011, in Debt settlement, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Clients often ask: “What amount can you settle my debt for?”

Our answer is almost always: “It depends on several factors.”

These factors include:

  • the creditor
  • the type of debt
  • the age of the debt
  • how many times the debt has been transferred
  • the hardship claimed
  • how the settlement will be paid out

Secured debts (i.e. mortgages, car loans) are much harder to settle than unsecured debts (i.e. credit cards, medical bills). Some debts can be settled for as little as 10%. However, there are creditors that insist on having a much higher percentage of the debt paid back. The creditor starts high, we start low. We never know exactly where the negotiations will end. Creditors have their target settlement amount, and we have ours.

So, no one can guarantee you that they will settle your debts for a sum certain. Be wary of any company that guarantees they will save you a bunch of money. We have numerous clients who have paid at least double our fee to a debt settlement company before coming to us. Many of these companies failed to deliver any results at all, or produced dismal results at best. What’s even more shocking is that none of the individuals understood the agreements they signed. They had no idea where their money was going!

If you choose to hire someone to settle your debts, please choose wisely!

Vaughn & Weber, PLLC  proudly negotiates and settles debts for residents of Long Island, Nassau county, Suffolk county, New York City, Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, and Manhattan.

Call (516) 858-2620 to arrange a FREE  consultation with a Debt Settlement attorney!

Cash Advances and Bankruptcy

On May 12, 2011, in Bankruptcy, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Cash advances taken shortly before filing bankruptcy can be problematic for the debtor. Some creditors will file an adversary proceeding if they believe the cash advance is nondischargeable. This type of adversary proceeding  is basically a lawsuit against you to determine the dischargeability of the cash advance. It must be defended like any other lawsuit or a default judgment will be taken against you. This type of action is by no means a slam-dunk for the creditor. However,  some cash advances are presumed nondischargeable. This basically makes it easier for the creditor to make their case. Therefore, it would be wise to mention cash advances you have taken to your bankruptcy attorney before he of she files your bankruptcy case.

We proudly assist residents of Long Island (Nassau county, Suffolk county) and New York City (Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, Manhattan) with their bankruptcy filings. 

Call (516) 858-2620 to arrange a FREE  consultation with a bankruptcy attorney!

Bankruptcy and Exempt Property

On August 13, 2010, in Bankruptcy, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Exempt Property

What is Exempt Property?

Exempt property is property that is protected by law from the claims of creditors. However, if exempt property has been pledged to secure a debt or is otherwise encumbered by a valid lien or mortgage, the lien or mortgage holder may claim the exempt property by foreclosing upon or otherwise enforcing the creditor’s lien or mortgage. In bankruptcy cases, property may be exempt under either state or federal law. However, NY has opted out of the federal law exemptions. Exempt property typically includes all or a portion of a person’s home equity, motor vehicle equity, household furniture and personal effects.

What Will Happen to My Non-Exempt Property If I File Bankruptcy?

Non exempt property is part of your bankruptcy estate and is subject to sale by the bankruptcy trustee (the debtor is entitled to receive any exempt portion of the sale proceeds).  However, even if your property is not fully exempt, you may be able to keep it if you pay its non-exempt value to your creditors in a chapter 13 bankruptcy.  Also, you could agree to pay the trustee an amount that would allow you to, in essence, buy back the non-exempt property.  The money that you pay to the trustee will be distributed to your creditors.  You may also be able to “trade” exempt property for non-exempt property.  Essentially, you allow the trustee to take and sale exempt property to avoid losing non-exempt property.  There are additional options available.  A knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney will be able to assist you with “exemption planning .”

Call (516) 858-2620 to arrange a FREE  consultation with a bankruptcy attorney!

Please visit our Bankruptcy category to learn more about filing bankruptcy.

News: No Upfront Fees For Debt Relief Companies

On August 6, 2010, in Message/News Board, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Federal Trade Commission (FTC)  issues rule prohibiting debt relief companies from collecting advance fees.

“Starting on October 27, 2010, for-profit companies that sell debt relief services over the telephone may no longer charge a fee before they settle or reduce a customer’s credit card or other unsecured debt.

Advance Fee Ban

The Final Rule contains specific requirements for debt relief providers related to charging an advance fee before providing any services. It specifies that fees for debt relief services may not be collected until:

  • the debt relief service successfully renegotiates, settles, reduces, or otherwise changes the terms of at least one of the consumer’s debts;
  • there is a written settlement agreement, debt management plan, or other agreement between the consumer and the creditor, and the consumer has agreed to it; and
  • the consumer has made at least one payment to the creditor as a result of the agreement negotiated by the debt relief provider.

To ensure that debt relief providers do not front-load their fees if a consumer has enrolled multiple debts in one debt relief program, the Final Rule specifies how debt relief providers can collect their fee for each settled debt. First, the provider’s fee for a single debt must be in proportion to the total fee that would be charged if all of the debts had been settled. Alternatively, if the provider bases its fee on the percentage of what the consumer saves as result of using its services, the percentage charged must be the same for each of the consumer’s debts.”

Click this link to read the entire FTC press release

The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation. This website is Attorney Advertising. It does not form an attorney-client relationship. We are a debt relief agency and a law firm that helps people file for bankruptcy relief under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code – Title 11. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Proudly assisting residents of Long Island, Nassau county, Suffolk county, New York City, Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, Manhattan