The Law Offices of Jonathan Stone
Hackettstown law firm serving clients throughout New Jersey
Call Today 800-491-5622
Areas & Topics

Hackettstown New Jersey Legal Blog

Bad spending habits that can leave you in debt

Poor spending habits can easily lead to debt for many people in New Jersey. Identifying bad habits is the first step to changing your behavior and fixing your finances once and for all. The following are a few examples of spending habits you must change if you want to avoid financial instability.

AARP cautions against letting late fees pile up regarding credit card payments. You can avoid these late fees by implementing automatic payments through your bank, for both credit cards as well as other recurring bills. That way you won’t need to worry about remembering to make payments each month, which can be difficult when you have numerous bills to pay. 

Can I discharge a student loan through bankruptcy?

Many college graduates in New Jersey find themselves unable to pay back their student loans, which can sometimes be exorbitant. However, unlike other types of debt student loans are not typically able to be discharged in bankruptcy. According to Forbes, this trend could be changing, which might help students get a handle on debt and prevent future financial hardship.

In the past student loans were able to be discharged in many instances. After 1976 Congress enacted laws that stated that these loans could only be discharged if students had been repaying them for five years, which was then extended to seven years. In 1998 the laws changed yet again to stipulate that student loans could not be discharged unless the debtor showed that repaying a loan caused undue hardship.

Credit card debt and Chapter 7

Many people choose to move forward with a bankruptcy because they are struggling with credit card debt, a problem that has become especially common in the U.S. Not all of the people who take on a significant amount of credit card debt do so out of irresponsibility. In fact, some find themselves in this tricky position because of a health crisis or an injury that left them unable to work, prompting them to turn to their credit card to buy groceries or take care of bills. Worse, interest may have made their debt balloon out of control.

For some people in New Jersey, Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a smart way to tackle credit card debt. There are, of course, many different options when it comes to eliminating credit card debt through bankruptcy so it is important to review all of your choices before settling on one particular route. Chapter 7 bankruptcy can be a great way to discharge credit card debt and find a new financial start. By taking this route, you may be able to completely free yourself from the debt that has been bringing you down for months (or maybe years). However, each case is unique and a creditor may decide to file a complaint.

Chapter 7 or Chapter 13: Which is best for you?

If you are struggling with overwhelming debt in New Jersey, you may be considering bankruptcy as the only way out. If so, you likely have many questions about Chapter 7 versus Chapter 13 so you can make an informed decision as to which one is right for you.

As FindLaw explains, both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 have their own advantages and disadvantages. Determining which one best suits your purposes depends on your own financial situation and what you wish to accomplish with your bankruptcy.

Should I file for chapter 11 bankruptcy?

While Chapter 11 bankruptcies are normally utilized by businesses, individuals can also pursue this option. Doing so takes a bit of work however, as Chapter 11 can be more complicated than Chapter 7 or 13, which most people go for when filing for bankruptcy. Debt.org explains what you need to know if you choose this debt relief option and how you can ensure the best possible results.

Much like Chapter 13, Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganizes debt into a manageable payment plan, which entails making payments over a period of time. A person can opt to file or can be forced into filing for Chapter 13 when receiving petitions from three or more creditors. A repayment plan is then created, and creditors get to vote on whether it’s accepted. If not, you have the option of requesting a cramdown, which means creditors will be forced to accept it. You may also want to take the plan offered by creditors to protect your property. 

What are some benefits of Chapter 13?

When it comes to filing for bankruptcy, you may have a number of options in front of you. Some people move ahead with a Chapter 11 bankruptcy, while others turn to Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. It is vital to understand the benefits and possible drawbacks of each option and find out which makes the most sense for your personal financial circumstances. In this post, we will take a closer look at some of the reasons why Chapter 13 can be advantageous. As with any form of bankruptcy, it is essential to have a good understanding of the ins and outs of the process before filing a petition.

First of all, Chapter 13, along with other types of bankruptcy, can provide people with a fresh financial start and help them get their lives back on track. Chapter 13 is especially beneficial for those with regular income since it can enable them to pay back some or even all of their debts under a plan. Moreover, Chapter 13 may also be ideal for those who want to avoid foreclosure. By successfully filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, many people have been able to set up repayment plans that work out well and allow them to finally tackle their debts.

How can budget my finances?

If you’ve recently filed for bankruptcy in New Jersey, you may be concerned about rebuilding your finances once again. Creating a solid budget is crucial in this case, as it can help you cover recurring expenses while also putting money aside for the future. Because budgeting can be difficult for many people , Bankrate.com offers the following advice.

Know how much to save

Decades of debt accrual forces hospital network into bankruptcy

Even when a business in Hackettstown struggles with debt to the point of considering bankruptcy, its potential to continue to operate (and even grow) does not go away. Business owners might even use a bankruptcy case as the springboard needed to make organizational and cultural changes that place a company back on the path to sustainability. This may not be easy, however, as news of a bankruptcy might impact both a business' patrons as well as its employees, prompting them to call its future into question. 

network of hospitals in California currently faces this challenge after its leadership filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The hospital system faces debts of more than $500 million that have built up over the course of 20 years. Yet the system's leaders have stated their intention to keep all six of the hospitals open using $185 million in secured financing. The hope is that the network will be able to sell some (or even all) of the hospitals in order to eliminate its accrued liabilities. Experts in healthcare finance point to the fact that while hospitals can survive bankruptcies, the care they offer does suffer somewhat due to staff turnover and issues negotiating with insurers. Despite these potential challenges, the leaders of this particular network of facilities are promising patients the same quality of care even as its bankruptcy case moves forward. 

How can your creditors force you into bankruptcy?

The common school of thought is that the primary benefit of a Chapter 11 bankruptcy is that it allows business owners in Hackettstown to continue to operate their companies while reorganizing their infrastructures and simultaneously stopping creditors from taking actions against them. Yet creditors may also view a Chapter 11 bankruptcy as a way of forcing a debtor company to stop avoiding its liabilities. Thus, your creditors can indeed try to force you and your company into bankruptcy. 

How can they do this? It depends on the number of creditors you have. According to Section 303 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, if you have more than 12 creditors, than at least three of those creditors must jointly file the petition against you. These creditors must have claims against you totaling at least $15,775 if unsecured or an equal amount secured through liens. Their claims must also not be contingent upon liability or subject to any bona fide dispute. 

How can I recover from chapter 7 bankruptcy?

If you’ve recently filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy in New Jersey, it may seem like there is no end in sight to the cycle of debt. However, it is possible to recover from chapter 7, provided you take the right steps. Forbes offer a few effective tips on how you can rebuild your credit and work towards a brighter financial future in the aftermath of a bankruptcy filing.

Create a Budget (and Stick to It)

Contact

The Law Offices of Jonathan Stone
490 Schooley's Mountain Road
Building 3A
Hackettstown, NJ 07840

Toll Free: 800-491-5622
Map & Directions