New York Bankruptcy Attorney
Has debt become too overwhelming for you to handle? You have various options at your disposal to make it more manageable or discharge it completely. Bankruptcy may seem like giving up, but in reality, it offers several paths to regaining financial security. Based on your situation, either chapter 7 or chapter 13 bankruptcy can be what you need to best handle your debt.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy can discharge many different types of debt. Chapter 7 is for those who don’t have the means to pay back their debt. The types of debt that can be discharged with chapter 7 include:
- Medical bills
- Unpaid credit card balances
- Phone bills
- Car loans
- Deficiency after car repossession or home foreclosure
Though some debts cannot be discharged, including:
- Child support
- Taxes and government fees
- Court fines
- Certain taxes
- Liens on cars and homes
Some types of debt can sometimes be eliminated with chapter 7, including student loans and tax debt. Whether these can be discharged is dependent on your situation. Chapter 7 stays on your credit report for a shorter time than chapter 13. Chapter 7 stays on your credit report for up to 7 years compared to up to 10 years with chapter 13.
One reason someone might be hesitant to file for chapter 7 bankruptcy is that their assets can be liquidated to pay back as much of their debt as possible. This means homes being foreclosed and cars being repossessed. However, the debt relief it offers might appeal to those buried in debt with no way to pay it back.
Having a New York bankruptcy attorney can explain each of these points to you in depth. New York also offers exemptions on which charges can be discharged, especially with the unprecedented impact of COVID. Reach out to The Law Offices of Lorna LaMotte to see if chapter 7 is the right path forward.
If you make a decent wage but not enough to meet debt payments, then chapter 13 bankruptcy might be more suitable. You can avoid liquidation by setting up a repayment plan suitable to your financial situation. You will be able to meet all your essential needs, and what is left over will go towards your debt. This plan will also protect co-signers who will not suffer the repercussions of delinquent loans. Under chapter 13, a trustee is set up who will distribute each of your payments among your different creditors. Your debts will be split by order of priority which is adjusted as you progress along your plan.
It is not the end of your repayment plan if your income changes. Your recurring payments can be reduced for nonpriority unsecured debt, such as medical, credit card, and personal debt. You also might qualify for a hardship discharge based on the reason for your income change. If neither of these are possible, you could convert to chapter 7 and discharge your debt. However, your assets would be subject to liquidation.
When in chapter 13, obtaining additional credit or a mortgage will be nearly impossible. It also remains on your credit report for up to 10 years and can take up to 5 years to fully complete the plan. For these reasons, one might just pursue chapter 7 and be rid of their debt. However, if you want to protect your assets from being liquidated, a chapter 13 bankruptcy might be your best option.
Having a New York bankruptcy attorney can help set up and guide you through your repayment plan. I can also help adjust your plan when your income changes. Reach out to the The Law Offices of Lorna LaMotte so I can put together a plan that gets you on track to financial recovery.
An Expert in Bankruptcy
I will work tirelessly to find the best solution for you. Whether you are an individual or small business, I will find the best way for you to regain financial stability. Your entire financial situation will be taken into account, and every option available to you will be explained in depth so that you can make an informed decision. My goal is to ensure that you get the best outcome and you don’t feel like you are buried in debt with no way out.
Being in deep debt can be incredibly stressful, but The Law Office of Lorna LaMotte is here to help you regain financial stability one step at a time. Bankruptcy can be complex, but a New York bankruptcy attorney will guide you through the process step by step, so you are never confused about your current situation. If you are in New York, contact me for a free consultation.
New York Family Law Attorney
Family issues can be one of the most difficult times of your life but having the right attorney on your side can go a long way in easing your stress. Whether you are going through a divorce or custody battle, no matter where you live in New York, I am here to get you the best outcome as amicably as possible.
Emotions change, and a once strong relationship can become untenable. Once you and your partner agree to a divorce, you will be put through the legal process of diving assets and creating custody arrangements. This doesn’t have to be a process that ends in hostility and bad feelings. The right New York family law attorney can walk you through every step of the process, whether spousal support, child custody, child support, or visitation. We will be your advocate to ensure that you can reach an arrangement where you and your former spouse are both taken care of and still can play a part in your children’s lives.
Accusations of abuse often arise in particularly contentious divorce battles. Being accused of abuse, especially of your children, is emotionally devastating. It can also cause serious reputational damage. The legal consequences can also be severe, with criminal charges being a real possibility when these accusations are raised. You could lose custody of your children and be removed from their lives completely. These accusations can be made falsely because the other party feels it will help them obtain a favorable outcome. Do not take this accusation lightly. We will fight for you so that a divorce does not turn into criminal proceedings and the complete loss of child custody.
If, however, you know that your partner has abused you or your children, then I will fight to remove you from that situation and make you and your children’s safety my top priority. Orders of protection will instruct an abuser to keep away from you and your children or face severe consequences. Do not hesitate to contact me about abuse as these situations often turn fatal. There may even be legal consequences against you if you keep your children in a situation where you know they are being abused, so act as soon as possible.
Abuse can take many forms, including:
- Denial of education
- Denial of Medical care
- Excessive or needless punishments
- Excessive paranoia and need for control over your life or relationships
Don’t suffer in silence, reach out to The Law Office of Lorna LaMotte where a seasoned New York family law attorney will help remove you from a dangerous situation.
In New York, adoption is an option available to many people in various situations. If you are 18 years of age or older, then you can adopt regardless of your marital status or sexual orientation. New York wants to ensure that any responsible adult can adopt a child, so if this is an option you are considering, let me help expand your family.
There are two types of adoption in New York:
- Private Adoption
- Agency Adoption
Private Adoption – This occurs when a child’s parent(s) agrees to give up a child to another party directly. This can happen between family members, like a parent giving a child to a grandparent or between siblings. This can also happen between total strangers. The key characteristic of this type of adoption is that it happens outside of an agency. Having a lawyer ensures this is done in a legally binding way, so there are no issues regarding the custody of the child in the future.
Agency adoption – Agency adoptions occur when a child has been handed over, voluntarily or involuntarily, to an agency. The agency then bears the responsibility of taking care of the child and finding new parents for the child. This form of adoption tends to be more rigorous as the agency will conduct background checks and ensure the prospective parent has a living situation suitable for the child. A lawyer helps ensure that you have everything you need to adopt from an agency and handle any issues that may arise in the process.
Whether you are going through the stress of a divorce, a custody battle, or the joy of adopting a child, I will be your advocate and guide. I am an experienced New York family law attorney who will is willing to fight for you and be your advocate. Contact me for a free consultation.
Real Estate Closings
New York Real Estate Attorney
Whether you are finding your dream home or selling property, having a New York Real estate attorney can save you from a lot of headache down the road. Finding an issue with the property or title after the property has been sold can be a frustrating and disappointing experience. Having an attorney seasoned in New York real estate law ensures no part of the closing process is skipped over or done incorrectly.
An offer being made and a sales contract being signed is just the beginning of the closing process. The closing process consists of a checklist of items that must be completed before a specified date. This is where any possible issues with the title can be discovered, as it would be very disappointing to buy a house only to find out the seller never had the right to sell it. It can also be disappointing to finalize a sale only to find out the house had an issue that made it uninhabitable or required extensive repairs. Avoid these problems by having a real estate attorney work with you through these steps of the closing process:
Offer and contract
The first step of the closing process is after the offer is accepted and the sales contract is written. The sales contract includes the checklist that needs to be completed before the deal is officially complete. Typically, the time between the sales contract and the final transfer of title is between 1-2 months. The steps in the process include, but are not limited to, gaining a mortgage, inspection, title searches, appraisals, picking an escrow agent, and transferring funds and documents to this agent. The buyer will often make a deposit to show their commitment to purchasing the property.
Some real estate deals may be done remotely. To ensure the seller that they will receive the agreed-upon down payment, the buyer will place this payment in an escrow account. Once all the sales contract terms are complete, the funds are released from escrow to the seller. Any documents signed in the closing process may also be placed in escrow until the deal is complete.
Title searches are conducted to check if the property has any liens, easements, mortgages, wills, or deeds that may affect the property’s title. This ensures that you have full knowledge of the legal status of the property and that the seller is able to transfer the title to you.
Don’t trust the seller to disclose any issues with the home. You must schedule an inspection of the home to ensure there are no undisclosed issues. Do not just walk through the house and do an inspection yourself, as some issues are not easily spotted by people who do not know what to look for. Hiring an inspector, especially for insects, is necessary when getting ready to purchase a home.
What happens if the property burns down during the closing process? Is the contract void? Insurance can protect a buyer, so they aren’t locked into paying the same price for property that is now destroyed.
Some property could be purchased with cash outright, but if this isn’t the case, the buyer needs to secure financing. In this situation, sales contracts are contingent on the ability of the buyer to secure a mortgage within a period set by the contract. The inability to secure a mortgage within the specified limit results in the sale being void unless extensions are granted.
If you are purchasing a Co-op or Condo in New York, you must obtain board certification. This means additional documents and a commitment letter from your bank before the transaction is approved. It is important to have these additional documents on hand as it can be a lengthy process that risks exceeding the timetable set by the sales contract if these documents aren’t readily available.
At the end of the closing process, the actual title and money are transferred for the property. It is important to attend this meeting with your lawyer to ensure the sale is binding. The seller will sign over the deed of the property, and you will transfer over your down payment and mortgage. Any old mortgage is paid off, and you become the new property owner or receive the final payment for the property you just sold.
Having a New York real estate attorney to guide you through the closing process is essential. This can be a complex process that requires a significant amount of work done in a short period. An expert in New York real estate law will make this process much easier. Contact me for a free consultation so we can get you through the closing process as smoothly as possible.
Commonly Asked Questions
Bankruptcy can be confusing, but a knowledgeable attorney can answer any questions you may have. It’s important that you understand what is happening, so ask any questions you have so you don’t feel lost. Your attorney is your advisor, so we are here to ensure you have all the necessary information.
Q: How do I qualify for chapter 7 bankruptcy
A: If you have less than $136.25 disposable income, you are eligible for chapter 7. If you have upwards of $227.50 of disposable income, then you may still be able to qualify, depending on your financial situation over the next five years.
Q: What assets are at risk under chapter 7 bankruptcy?
A: Cars and homes may seem like obvious assets that will be seized; however, an asset can mean anything you have of value. Federal and New York law does offer exemptions that can protect certain assets from liquidation. If there are assets you don’t want to lose, it’s important to check if they can be exempt.
Q: What is considered when establishing a repayment plan under chapter 13 bankruptcy?
A: Your income and debt are taken into consideration to see if you can pay back your debt within five years. A bankruptcy court gives final approval of the plan, and a trustee is assigned to ensure that payments go to each of your creditors in order of priority.
Q: How long does a bankruptcy show up on my credit report?
A: A chapter 7 bankruptcy shows up on your credit report for up to 10 years, while a chapter 13 bankruptcy falls off your report after seven years. Both these chapters appear on your report from the day you filed for bankruptcy.
Q: Can I attempt to negotiate with creditors on my own
A: Creditors know that most people aren’t bankruptcy experts and will take advantage of that. Contact a seasoned attorney to negotiate for you so you can have every advantage available from somebody who is a bankruptcy expert.
Frequently Asked Bankruptcy Questions
- How do I qualify for chapter 7 bankruptcy?
- What assets are at risk under chapter 7 bankruptcy?
- What is considered when establishing a repayment plan under chapter 13 bankruptcy?
- How long does a bankruptcy show up on my credit report?
- Can I attempt to negotiate with creditors on my own?
Were You Financially Affected By
New York was one of the hardest hit states by COVID and is still recovering two years after the virus initially spread. Reach out so you can take full advantage of the benefits available to you.