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Questions Answered by W. J. Winterstein Jr.
5 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for New York on
Q: I'm not sure if I should claim bankruptcy. I have just over $16,000 in credit card debt, also I'm paying on my car.

I'm on disability. So I get a check for $1,558 at the first of any month. My rent takes up most of that it's $788 a month. Do you think bankruptcy is right for me? Thank you

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
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W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Jun 10, 2024

My NY colleague's answer is correct, as far as it goes.

To declare bankruptcy over just $16K is at the low end of debt issues, and may well be solved by lesser means. Most credit card issuers are pretty savvy, and will offer some altered payout/discount for you.

You can only...
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3 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy and Collections for California on
Q: Should I use affirmative defense or "other" to explain my bankruptcy in PLD-C-010 form?

I am being sued by a credit card company in California Superior Court. Due to my current financial situation, I cannot afford a lawyer, so I am handling everything on my own. After receiving the summons, I decided to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and have already done so. Now, I need to respond to... View More

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
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W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Jun 3, 2024

I've practiced in several states, from TX and OK, to GA, DE, NJ and PA, and I've always promptly filed a simple Suggestion of Bankruptcy, with the bankruptcy court district and bankruptcy case number, and nothing more. That's always worked.

I recommend it as a show of...
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2 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Georgia on
Q: How long after filing will I be able to purchase a home? I am reading horror stories of people being told by lawyers

That when you file you’ll be able to get a home in 2 years but I’m being told by people who have been through it already they are 7 years out and they still cannot get a home and having trouble building credit because no one will give them loan or credit card or home etc

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Jun 2, 2024

This question is best directed to any of the lenders out there, each of whom makes a "credit decision" upon loan applications.

Currently, interest rates are high, and the Fed has been tightening the money supply.

My own experience is that, more than usually, lenders, even...
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4 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy, Consumer Law, Personal Injury and Real Estate Law for Virginia on
Q: Can I sue a firmer creditor for a lien on my new house? Chapter 7 was discharged in 2012.I just bought this home in 2019

I lost 3 refinance loans so far and can’t sell either. I asked them to remove the lien they said 24,000 dollars and they’ll remove it.

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Jun 1, 2024

With the majority opinions of the US Supreme Court, despite the express wording of Section 506 of the Bankruptcy Code, the secured amount of any "perfected", i.e., validly filed, liens against a debtor's property will survive a bankruptcy discharge. The deficiencies, if any, of... View More

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4 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Kentucky on
Q: I am considering a chapter 7 bankruptcy. Do i stop personal loan pymnt thru my bank or loan co? Do i tell my loan co?

I am not sure if i put a stop on the ach withdraw through my bank for $30 and not contact my loan company or do I send an email to my loan company and tell them, and revoke authorization? I don’t think I am supposed to tell them i am going to be filing bankruptcy?

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on May 31, 2024

I disagree somewhat with my KY colleague.

First, because most financial institutions have, under each state's law, a right of "offset", and that is often buttressed by a written agreement or notice, which the courts may recognize as sufficient to create a lien, it is always...
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4 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for New York on
Q: Chapter 7 bankruptcy over 10 years ago. Safe from any personal lawsuits? Or is statue of limitations involved?

Filed chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2013. 2024 have a personal injury lawsuit small award, can the bankruptcy court take it? It was Discharged in 2013.

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on May 28, 2024

My colleague, Mr. Siegel, is right as far as he goes, but,

a bankruptcy discharge works holders of claims that existed prior to the bankruptcy filing, not those that happened afterward. And, the bankruptcy discharge works on claimants named by you as the debtor in the bankruptcy. If, for...
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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Pennsylvania on
Q: My son’s grandmother passed away July 2023. She had left him $25,000 through a life insurance policy from Prudential.

They are requesting I get a court order for guardianship of a minors estate. Can I do this myself or do I need to contact a lawyer? What should my next steps be?

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on May 22, 2024

My experience with insurance companies is that 1) they usually hope to delay payments out as long as possible, though they demand immediate payment of premiums, and 2) the quickest way to get payment if for a beneficiary to give them what they want (they have armies of lawyers on the payroll.... View More

3 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Arizona on
Q: After a bankruptcy that was discharged in 2010 can Bank of America still try to collect on a HELOC that has a lien for

49k and I was told they wrote off the debt in 2017?

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on May 21, 2024

A properly recorded lien is not discharged by a bankruptcy proceeding, whether a Ch.7 or Ch. 13 (there may be a way in a Ch.13 if there is no equity for the HELOC to attach, but that will be litigated).

Likewise, a creditor's "charge off" of any loan balance is in *internal*...
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3 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Florida on
Q: Is it normal for a bankruptcy attorney to change your home address on your credit bureau.
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
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W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on May 18, 2024

My gut reaction to your "normalcy" question is "No". While every prospective debtor should be totally candid with bankruptcy counsel, we use a debtor's credit report(s) to satisfy the "due diligence" requirement added to the Bankruptcy Code in the massive 2005... View More

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4 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy, Civil Litigation and Contracts for Washington on
Q: Is it possible to file Chapter 11, Subchapter V for my business PRO SE?

I'm not an attorney and it seems that there are very few attorney's that are filing subchapter V's in Washington state and perhaps the entire country. I understand it is a new law, but it is supposed to be easier and smoother than a standard Chapter 11. The estimates I've gotten... View More

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
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W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on May 17, 2024

Nationally, and for the last two decades at least, the success rate of the popular "save-the-house" Chapter cases has been less than twenty percent, even with bankruptcy counsel. Those cases run for three to five years, much like the Ch. 11 business reorgs.

The chances for...
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4 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Kentucky on
Q: I was put on my mothers car title when she purchased her lease buyout in 2022, I was removed in April 2024, an issue?
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on May 11, 2024

Every case has context, i.e., a broader factual picture.

In your case, if you file for bankruptcy relief within the next two years, under the Bankruptcy Code, a trustee can look back and recover any transfer of property/value and recover that if the value lost is large enough to merit the...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Probate for Pennsylvania on
Q: Last Will. I received a copy of my father's will naming his girlfriend as executor. I m a beneficiary. Any rights?

His girlfriend was named beneficiary. Went to lawyer who wanted $5k. She wouldn't pay. My 3 sisters n myself and his church are to evenly divide 50% of his estate but we do not have access to anything. We have never had a good relationship with her. As benefactors, should we be updated on... View More

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on May 5, 2024

Heirs' rights?

Yes, you actually do have many. The best starting point is duties of an Executrix in PA, which are many, but the overriding drive is that every personal representative of a probate estate is to maximize the value of the Estate for the benefit of creditors and the heirs,...
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3 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Kansas on
Q: I didn’t show all income while receiving food stamps. How do I report this while filing bankruptcy?
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on May 1, 2024

Honestly, is how you report all bankruptcy submissions.

What you file in Bankruptcy Court is subject to the penalty for perjury, a major felony penalty.

It is never a good idea to morph a mere debt problem into a potential criminal exposure.

Especially given the possible...
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2 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Missouri on
Q: Is it true that the chapter 7 trustee can sell my home that is paid off? I am married and only I would file in Missouri.

We live in Missouri. The home is paid in full. I’m being told because we bought the home together 3 months before we were married, that even if my husband doesn’t file the 7 trustee will sell the home we both own. True?

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Apr 30, 2024

I work in PA, not Mizzou, although my daughter lives in St. Louis.

Both PA and MO authorize "tenancy by the entireties", e.g., a non-severable by one joint ownership, with right of survivorship.

In PA, you should be good if only one of you files for bankruptcy relief...
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3 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Colorado on
Q: Filing Chap 7 Pro Se. Trustee asked for Divorce decree

I am filing Pro Se as i sincerely do not have the funds for a lawyer, i sent in my paperwork and the trustee asked for my divorce decree, no problem! I am looking through it to send and my ex husband had filled out the paperwork, and yes i signed it. In the section asking if there was any debt my... View More

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Apr 30, 2024

First, relax.

The Official forms of every bankruptcy case are signed by you under penalty of perjury, a serious crime. By all means, tell the truth on Bankruptcy filings.

Please rethink your decision to proceed in bankruptcy without counsel. And know that however engaging the...
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2 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Texas on
Q: Can I redeem my repossessed vehicle by filing chapter 13 bankruptcy?
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Apr 29, 2024

In large part, the Bankruptcy Code accommodates applicable State law with respect to whatever property rights have been created as of the bankruptcy filing date.

So your first stop is your written agreement with dealer/lender with whom you have had a car loan. If you have a right to...
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2 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Illinois on
Q: I need a bankruptcy lawyer credit card company going after me for5.93835 I don't have a job
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Apr 28, 2024

It's a good thing that you don't get sucked in by the recurring "debt consolidation" ads that pop up in everyone's feed, on phones, pcs, etc;, but your question doesn't say much.

While a bankruptcy discharge is unique (no "debt consolidator can offer...
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1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Civil Litigation, Collections and Small Claims for Pennsylvania on
Q: What legal rights do I have for doing mechanic work at my house on someone else's car

I perform mechanic work for people that can't afford the price of dealerships or a mechanic shop I charge half price or less before I start the work the owner of vehicle and myself having agreement on cost of parts, labor and total price. When I complete the work and it's time to pay... View More

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Apr 24, 2024

First, is your agreement with an owner in writing?

And that document should set out the work to be performed, the costs for that work, and the due dates for payment.

And then the document should state the various remedies for default in payment.

In PA, and most other...
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2 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Colorado on
Q: Divorced in March before filing. Signed quitclaim deed before final. Do I add that to Chap 7 if so ,where? filing pro se

I have filed Chap 7 bankruptcy through up solve pro se as I do not have the funds for an attorney. I filed for divorce in November and shortly after signed a quitclaim deed so he could get the house. Divorce was final March 5th and filed for Chapter 7 in April. I did not add the home to my... View More

W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Apr 20, 2024

There will be questions about that on the Statement of Financial Affairs, and more indirectly, on the Schedules.

It's bold to attempt to do a bankruptcy without counsel, whatever your reason. We recommend that you inquire at your County Bar Association, or the office of the US...
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3 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy for Kentucky on
Q: I filed bankruptcy 2 days ago and want to stop the process. Can this be done. I live in Kentucky.
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
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W. J. Winterstein Jr.
answered on Apr 19, 2024

A caution- the Bankruptcy Code provides that conversion/dismissal of a case is addressed to the discretion of the Bankruptcy Judge, who will decide which path is in the "best interest of creditors".

Your post fails to indicate which Chapter of bankruptcy has been chosen (that can...
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