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07

Sep 2019

What to Expect at Your Bankruptcy Hearing

Posted by / in Blog, Virginia Bankruptcy, Weekly Posts /

What to Expect at Your Bankruptcy Hearing

For most people, your only bankruptcy hearing is what’s called the “meeting of creditors.”  (We almost never actually have creditors show up. We can also call it your “trustee hearing.”)

Here’s a video that explains where to go, best places to park, what to bring and what questions you’ll be asked.

I’ll be there as your lawyer, but you can review this video to know what to expect.

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01

Sep 2016

Why Filing Bankruptcy Stops Payroll Garnishment: Virginia Law

Posted by / in Virginia Bankruptcy, Weekly Posts /

Why Filing Bankruptcy Stops Payroll Garnishment: Virginia Law, Virginia Form

I’m surprised a couple times each month by Virginia employers who don’t know that bankruptcy stops payroll garnishment. Some employers think they need to keep on garnishing, until they get an order from a judge saying to stop. But if you read the Garnishee’s Answer Form, it tells you exactly what to do.  

(If you don’t have the form handy, please check the link so you can follow along. I’ve inserted the form down below, but it’s too small to read.)

Please Mail Checks or Responses

If you read the form, up at the top, point 4 says, “Please mail checks or responses….” That tells you right there, you can mail a “check” or a “response.” So you don’t have to mail a check. You can mail a response.

Below that, you have ten boxes you can select. The first one is “Enclosed is a check…” 

There are 9 Excuses for Not Mailing Checks

After “enclosed is a check,” there are nine other responses. Those nine are your excuses for not mailing a check. Those nine excuses are listed right on the form. They are called responses. Responses you can legally send in instead of checks.

After the “Enclosed is a check” response, look at the nine other boxes. The first one is pretty obvious: “the garnishee holds no money…” If the debtor does not work for you, or bank with you, you don’t have to send in any money. That’s clear.

The second one is slightly different: “The garnishee does not have sufficient information to reasonably identify…” If the garnishment is for John Smith, your company might have eight John Smith’s. If there’s no social security number and the address doesn’t match any of the eight, you’d select that box. (Or if your company only has one John Smith, but there’s no social security number and the address doesn’t match.) 

Then there are other boxes for: doesn’t work here anymore; the amount of the garnishment isn’t filled in; not making enough money to be garnished; already being garnished by someone else.

“The judgment debtor has filed a bankruptcy petition”

Bankruptcy stops payroll garnishment

“Judgment debtor filed bankruptcy” is one of the nine reasons to NOT send checks. Sorry this is so small, but you can see the form full size, here. Or here.  dc456

The eighth box is “the judgment debtor has filed a bankruptcy petition…” Like the other boxes, the debtor’s bankruptcy is a legal answer to the garnishment. Filing bankruptcy is a legal excuse for not sending in a check. It’s a response that’s right on the form that asks you to mail “checks or responses.” 

So if you get notice that your employee has filed bankruptcy, you don’t need to wonder what to do. Pick up the form. Select the box that says “The judgment debtor has filed a bankruptcy petition.” Mail that response. That’s it; you’ve done what the court asked you to do. Finished. You are supposed to send checks or responses. You’ve sent your response. 

You’ve checked the box you are supposed to check and done what you’re supposed to do.  

Bankruptcy Stops Payroll Garnishment: Does The Form Seem Too Simple?

Even if you didn’t have the form, you should know (or your lawyer, anyway, should know) that bankruptcy stops payroll garnishment. Bankruptcy Judge Stephen S. Mitchell explained why that is, in 18 pages, in the case of Madge Lebrun. (I was Ms. Lebrun’s lawyer.) If you don’t believe the form, you—or your lawyer—can read, here how Judge Mitchell explained bankruptcy stops payroll garnishment. 

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12

Dec 2015

Tonya is homeowner just two years after bankruptcy

Posted by / in After Bankruptcy, Virginia Bankruptcy /

Two years after bankruptcy, Tonya is as home owner.

Two years after bankruptcy, Tonya is a home owner.

Tonya M of Stafford Va, filed bankruptcy with me in January 2013. In May 2015, she was approved for a mortgage and bought a house.

Tonya M, of Stafford VA, came to see me in late 2012.  Her marriage had broken up, and she was working in a clothing store.  

Tonya was desperate.  She had just sold her engagement ring to keep herself afloat.  Her biggest problem was a $30,000 loan from Navy Federal Credit Union. She was also cosigner on a $7,000 card with USAA.  So far, her ex was paying that, but she was afraid he’d stop, then then then they’d come after her.  

She had never been a homeowner and never expected to be; she just wanted Navy Fed to leave her alone; and not still be worried about her ex paying the cosigned USAA card.

I told her bankruptcy would do that and more.  In three years, I told her, you can be back to good credit. 

“In three years you can be back to good credit–good
enough credit to get a car loan at 6.9% or maybe
lower–good enough credit, if the income is there, to
qualify for a mortgage and buy a place.”

Turns out, it didn’t take Tonya even three years to by a house after bankruptcy.

We filed Tonya’s Chapter 7 bankruptcy case in January 2013, and it was discharged April 25, 2013. 

In May, 2015, just two years after bankruptcy, Tonya was approved for a mortgage and bought a house.

So many people put off talking to a bankruptcy lawyer.  They are afraid if they file bankruptcy, they can never get anything.  For most people, that’s exactly backwards.  Tonya M would never had been able to buy that house, unless she filed bankruptcy.  Filing bankruptcy was what she needed to do, to fix her credit score and get her off the ex’s USAA card.  

If you are wondering if you should file bankruptcy, make an appointment with an experienced bankruptcy lawyer.   Don’t put it off.  Start toward your better future today.

Tonya still asked for my help.

That big Navy Fed debt, the one that got her to come see me, was still sitting on her TransUnion report.  Since both Experian and Equifax had it right, she had been able to get her mortgage.  But her TU score was lower than the others, and she wanted that fixed.

We got to work right away.

As part of my exclusive Five Year After Bankruptcy Warranty, I’ll fight for you, if discharged debts pop back up on your credit report.  No charge to you.  If they don’t fix it right away, I sue the creditor and credit bureau–and I send them the bill.  We get a couple thousand dollars for our clients, and a couple thousand as legal fees, doing that each month.  

And, of course, we get those after-bankruptcy credit reports fixed.          

 

 

 

 

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16

Jul 2015

Alexandria Bankruptcy Courthouse at 200 S Washington Street

Posted by / in Virginia Bankruptcy /

Here’s the Alexandria Bankruptcy Courthouse.

Most people who file bankruptcy never go to the courthouse.  Most people never see the actual bankruptcy judge.  

But complicated cases end up here, at the Alexandria Bankruptcy Courthouse, in front  of the Bankruptcy Judge.  It’s 200 S Washington St.  A real courthouse.  

Alexandria Bankruptcy Courthouse

Alexandria Bankruptcy Courthouse. 200 S Washington St.  This classic front entrance now is blocked off. You need to come in through security on the side door, Prince Street.

 

Judge Kenney’s court room is on the second floor.  Judge Kindred’s courtroom is on the third floor.

 

PS.  Are you looking for the bankruptcy “Meeting of Creditors,” that’s the hearing that all bankruptcy clients have to go to.  It is NOT here on South Washington.  Those bankruptcy hearings are at 1725 Dukes Street, #520, Alexandria,  More about that here.   

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03

May 2015

Cenlar Doesn’t Know Who They Send Bills To, or Why

Posted by / in Virginia Bankruptcy, Weekly Posts / No comments yet

Cenlar Doesn’t Know Who They Send Bills To, or Why

Cenlar is a mortgage servicer. On their website, Cenlar FSB claims to be “the nations leading loan servicing provider.”  What’s more, they say they have been…”actively engaged in mortgage loan servicing for more than 40 years.”

Cenlar wants you to know that they are big guys.  And that they know what they are doing.  Or so you’d think.

Cenlar-logo

Cenlar FSB, the nation’s leading loan servicing provider, has been actively engaged in mortgage loan servicing and subservicing as a core business for more than 40 years.

Last summer, Cenlar upset two of my former clients.  They sent bills Matthew and Christine, saying they were $31,000 past due for a second mortgage on a foreclosed house, in Michigan, that had been wiped out in bankruptcy back in 2008.

Matthew and Christine were understandably upset. They thought this had been taken care of, now it was coming back to haunt them.

They wanted to know if I had messed up on something when I handled thier bankruptcy. I told them I’d take care of it, and that it looked to me like Cenlar didn’t know what they were doing.

Now everybody make mistakes.  But I promise my bankruptcy clients that if an old debt pops back up, I’ll still protect their rights.  Even if it’s seven years later. So I wrote up court papers saying Cenlar had violated the bankruptcy discharge, by trying to collect a discharged debt.  And that Cenlar violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, trying to collect a debt that wasn’t legally owed.  I asked for a $1000 penalty.

I expected Cenlar to say, sorry, our mistake, but it was an accident, so no penalty.

Instead Cenlar denied knowledge of the whole thing!

Cenlar said they didn’t know who Matthew was, or where he lived.  (Even though they sent him the bill.)

Cenlar said they didn’t know who Christine was.  (They sent her the same bill.)

They said they didn’t know whether the bill was for the property in Michigan.  (The bill had the Michigan property address right on it; now Cenlar says they don’t know if that’s right?!)

And that they didn’t know whether the house had been foreclosed!

That’s not all

Cenlar even refused to admit they were the people who sent the bills to Matthew and Christine.

We don’t have to tell you, they said, whether we sent those bills.  You can look at the bills, they told me and the Judge, and figure out for yourself if it was us.

(Now it would be one things to say, that’s not our bill, Matthew and Christine faked it.  But to say, we don’t have to tell you whether that’s our bill.  Come on, guys?!)

Cenlar’s Cute Answer May Not Help Them

I guess Cenlar thinks this kind of B.S. makes them look clever, but actually they may have dug themselves in deeper.

They have said we don’t know who they send bills to, or what we send bills for.

Does a mortgage company want to put that in writing?  To a Judge? They just did!

And on the way to pleading stupidity, they also admitted another violation of the FDCPA. The FDCPA provides a $1000 penalty for harrassment, abuse and unfair methods to collect a debt.

Sending a bill to people you don’t know for a debt you don’t know about–that’s pretty clearly unfair harassment and abuse.  Another $1000 penalty.

I’ll Keep You Posted

This case is in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.

That Court is known as the “rocket docket.”  The Judges there say they run the fastest Federal Court in America.

By the end of the summer, Cenlar will have to explain themselves in more detail.  Will they stick to this BS of not knowing anything?  Or will they come up with a different excuse? I’ll let you know.

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14

Mar 2015

Falls Church Bankruptcy Lawyer Information and Reviews

Posted by / in Virginia Bankruptcy /

Looking for a bankruptcy lawyer near Falls Church VA?

If you are looking for a bankruptcy lawyer, you want to make the right choice.

Virginia Bankruptcy Lawyer Robert Weed

Hi, I’m bankruptcy lawyer Robert Weed. I live in Falls Church, VA. I serve Falls Church at my bankruptcy lawyer office in Annandale.

Hi.  I’m Northern VA bankruptcy lawyer Robert Weed. I first opened my Falls Church bankruptcy lawyer office in 1993. I now have four convenient bankruptcy lawyer offices across Northern VA.  Today, I serve Falls Church Virginia from my office in Annandale. Bankruptcy is all I do. Since 1993, I’ve helped more than fourteen thousand people get a new start in life by filing bankruptcy.  Five hundred from Falls Church.

There are no full-time Falls Church bankruptcy lawyers

Although I’ve moved my office to Annandale, I’m still the full-time bankruptcy lawyer closest to Falls Church. Here are what some people like you have to say.

 

Guy from Falls Church 3-14-2015 5-23-56 PM

Guy from Falls Church. Click to see full size.

Michael Falls Church bankruptcy lawyer review 3-14-2015 5-28-36 PM

Michael from Falls Church. Click to see full size.

 

Mesfin of Falls Church bankruptcy lawyer review

 

Hieu of Falls Church bankruptcy lawyer review

Falls Church Bankrutpcy lawyer review

 My Annandale Office is 15 Minutes from Falls Church

Most weeks, I see appointments in Annandale on Tuesday.  Laura Jones my experienced bankruptcy paralegal is usually in this office on Wednesdays.

Annandale bankruptcy lawyer office, serving Falls Church.

This is my Annandale bankruptcy lawyer office, in the Springdale Professional Center, 5019-C Backlick Rd, Annandale VA 22003. Near the corner of Backlick and Braddock.

Here’s a map.

Laura Jones, Falls Church bankruptcy paralegal.

Laura Jones is the experienced bankruptcy paralegal in charge of my Annandale office. Laura habla español.

Bankruptcy is all I do. More than eight hundred five star reviews!

You’ll like our friendly service. For hundreds more reviews, click here.  When you read the reviews, you can see the smiles.

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10

Mar 2015

Springfield VA Bankruptcy Lawyer Information

Posted by / in Virginia Bankruptcy / No comments yet

Are You Looking for a Bankruptcy Lawyer in Springfield VA?

Springfield VA bankruptcy lawyer Robert Weed

Hi, I’m Northern Va bankruptcy lawyer Robert Weed. Every Tuesday I meet with people who live in Springfield VA at my Backlick Rd office, in Annandale.

Hi. I’m Northern VA bankruptcy lawyer Robert Weed.  I’ve helped twelve thousand people in Northern VA get anew start in life with bankruptcy.  Do you need a new start?

Are you looking for a bankruptcy lawyer near Springfield VA?  There are no full-time bankruptcy lawyers in Springfield. So, please make an appointment in my Annandale office. It’s just ten minutes away.  We’re at 5019 C Backlick Rd.  Come in for your free consultation.

I know it’s hard to share your financial situation with someone.  Bankruptcy is all we do.  You’ll like our friendly service with a smile.

Laura Jones

Laura Jones is the experienced bankruptcy paralegal in my Annandale office at 5019 C Backlick Rd. She lives in Springfield VA

 

Laura Jones is the experienced bankruptcy paralegal in charge of my Annandale office.  I’m usually with her in Annandale on Tuesdays.  (I also have locations in Stafford, Sterling and Woodbridge.)

Where are the Springfield VA bankruptcy hearings?

The bankruptcy hearings for people in Springfield VA–and all of Northern VA–are NOT in Fairfax,  They are in Alexandria.  The address is 1725 Duke Street #520.

Springfield VA bankruptcy hearings are at 1725 Duke Street.

The bankruptcy hearings are at 1725 Duke Street, Alexandria. Rom 520. That’s the office building next to the Quatro Formaggi New York Style Pizza.

Parking location for Springfield VA bankruptcy hearings

A good place to park for your bankruptcy hearing is along John Carlyle Street, where there are plenty of parking meters just two blocks from 1725 Duke St.

We’ve helped two hundred people from Springfield get a new start in life.

Here are two Springfield VA bankruptcy reviews.  Honest comments from people like you.

Springfield 3-10-2015 6-44-35 AM

Click on this five star Springfield bankruptcy review to see it in full size.

Springfield 3-10-2015 6-45-29 AM

Click on this five star Springfield bankruptcy review to see it in full size.

Hundreds additional reviews are right, here.  When you read our reviews, you can see the smiles.

Springfield VA bankruptcy.

I’m the full-time bankruptcy lawyer closest to Springfield, VA.  And I love being a bankruptcy lawyer, because I can help almost everyone I see.  Call us today and take control of your life, again.  

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07

Mar 2015

Triangle VA Bankruptcy Lawyer Information

Posted by / in Virginia Bankruptcy /

Looking for a Bankruptcy Lawyer Near Triangle VA?

Hi, I’m Prince William County Bankruptcy Lawyer Robert Weed.

Virginia Bankruptcy Lawyer Robert Weed

Hi. I’m Prince William County Bankruptcy Lawyer Robert Weed. I have two locations convenient to Triangle VA. Most weeks, I’m in Woodbridge on Monday, and Stafford on Friday.

The Law Office of Robert Weed has handled six thousand bankruptcies in Prince William County. About three hundred with people in Triangle VA. We’ve done the most bankruptcies of any law firm in Prince William County. More than 600 people have voted us five stars, the most of any lawyer in Northern Virginia.

Two of my four locations are convenient to Triangle.  I hope to see you soon in one of these two convenient locations.   My Woodbridge location, is just off the Prince William Parkway, across from the county building. It’s 4008 Genesee Place, Suite 201.  

Google maps says it’s about twenty minutes from Triangle.

Even more convenient to Triangle is my Stafford office, on Garrisonville Rd. It’s 300 Garrisonvile Rd, Suite 201. Google maps says it’s only about ten minutes away.

Most weeks I’m in Woodbridge on Monday and Stafford on Friday. Val Settles is my full time senior paralegal in my Woodbridge location. AJ Jones is my fulltime senior paralegal in Stafford.

In Woodbridge, my bankruptcy lawyer office near Triangle VA

My Woodbridge office at 4008 Genesee Place, Suite 201. It’s twenty minutes from Triangle. Near the County Building, on the Parkway.

In Stafford this is my bankruptcy lawyer office near Triangle VA

This is my Stafford Bankruptcy Lawyer office, at 300 Garrisonville Rd. It’s about ten minutes from Triangle VA.

Three hundred people in Prince William County have given us five star reviews.  Acquilla, Oswaldo, and Nancy, all from Triangle, gave us five stars.

Oswaldo Triangle VA bankruptcy lawyer review

Bankruptcy Lawyer Review Triangle VA

nancy-triangle-1-1-2017-4-44-30-pm

(For hundreds more reviews, you can go here.  And here.) We know that it’s hard to discuss your financial situation with strangers. Call today!  You’ll like our friendly service with a smile.

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24

Feb 2015

Nokesville Bankruptcy Lawyer Information

Posted by / in Virginia Bankruptcy /

Looking for a Bankruptcy Lawyer Near Nokesville VA?

Hi, I’m Prince William County Bankruptcy Lawyer Robert Weed.

The Law Office of Robert Weed has handled more than six thousand bankruptcies in Prince William County.  About two hundred with people in Nokesville.

We’ve done the most bankruptcies of any law firm in Prince William County.

Two of my four locations are convenient to Nokesville.

My Woodbridge location, is just off the Prince William Parkway, across from the county building. It’s 4008 Genesee Place, Suite 201.

Google maps says it’s about half an hour from Nokesville.

Also convenient to Nokesville is my Stafford office, on Garrisonville Rd. It’s 300 Garrisonvile Rd, Suite 201.

Google maps says it’s also about half an hour from Nokesville.

Most weeks I’m in Woodbridge on Monday and Stafford on Friday. Val Settles is my full time senior paralegal in my Woodbridge location. AJ Jones is my fulltime senior paralegal in Stafford.

We know that it’s hard to discuss your financial situation with strangers.  I can promise, you, in either location, you’ll like our friendly service with a smile.

Nokesville bankruptcy lawyer office in Stafford

This is a picture of my Stafford location, at 300 Garrisonville Road, near Doc Stone. Going the “back way,” it’s about half an hour from Nokesville.

 

 

Nokesville bankruptcy lawyer office in Woodbridge

Here’s my Woodbridge location, 4008 Genesee Place, #201, just off the Parkway, across from the County Building. Depending on traffic, about half an hour from Nokesville.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PS If you are wondering, the Bankruptcy Court is NOT at the courthouse in Manassas.

Nokesville bankruptcy lawyer information

The bankruptcy hearings for Nokesville–and everybody in Northern VA–are at 115 S Union Streert, Alexandria. Suite 206.

The Bankruptcy Court in Alexandria handles all of Northern Virginia.

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17

Dec 2014

Loan Mod–Even At the Last Minute, Bankruptcy Worked

Posted by / in Virginia Bankruptcy, Weekly Posts / No comments yet

This time bankruptcy worked better than I hoped

John and Val filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy with me in 2004.  A lot of their problem then was medical bills.

John’s health continued to decline.   When they came to see me in 2012, he was disabled.  He was confined to a wheel chair.  And they were back in debt.  No surprise.

But John wanted to “protect his credit” so they decided to do nothing.

jpg_wheelchair401

After their 2004 bankruptcy, John’s health kept getting worse. No surprise they were in financial trouble again.

They came rushing back this month, December 2014.  They had gotten a trial loan mod–getting them a house payment they could afford

But, they hadn’t been able to make the loan mod trial payments!  Two reasons.  First, they had been taking pay day loans–and a car title loan!  And now were paying those instead of the mortgage!  (Why; well payday loans will call and threaten you, if you don’t pay them.) Second, Val had gotten garnished for back Home Owner Association dues.

So, they were back to the mortgage they couldn’t afford.  They now had a car payment they couldn’t pay.  And Vicky would have a new paycheck garnishment starting in two weeks.

This was a case for Chapter 13

I always look first at Chapter 7, but this was a case for Chapter 13.  I could use Chapter 13 to take the interest on the title loan from 240% down to 5%.  Saving nearly $325 a month. With John on social security disability, that $325 was lot of money.

Second, I thought there was a chance that the bankruptcy judge could undue their “default” on the trial mod payments.  (Force the mortgage company to accept the loan mod trial payments late, and then lock in the modification.)

The husband threatened to leave my office unless I could promise him this would work.  No promise: loan mods are voluntary.  I’ve never tried to force a bank to accept one.  His wife told him, what choice do we have?

Loan Mod Offer Comes in the Mail

Worked better than I hoped.  In less than two weeks, the mortgage company offered them the loan mod again.  Make three trial payments, and we’ll make it permanent. (I didn’t have to try to argue the judge had the power to bring back the defaulted mod.)

Now that Val is not being garnished, and they are not being bled by payday loans, they can make that payment. (And I didn’t have to try my long-shot argument in front of the judge..)

House saved; family saved.

Wew.  No guarantee this would work again.

Even at the last minute, for most people bankruptcy works

These folks would have saved enormous stress–and probably helped John’s health–if they had gone ahead with bankruptcy in 2012.  (They chose “protecting their credit”  instead of protecting their family.) But even at the last minute, for most people, bankruptcy works.

 

 

 

 

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NORTHERN VIRGINIA BANKRUPTCY LAW OFFICES