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Author Archives: Michael J. Berger

U.S. Supreme Court Rules Another Person’s Fraud Can Bar a Debt Discharge

Bankruptcy law has long barred the discharge of debts when the debtor has committed fraud. The rationale is that people should not be rewarded for the negative consequences of their unlawful actions. Now, the U.S. Supreme Court has settled the question of whether the fraud exception can apply when someone other than the debtor is […]

How Long Does it Take to Restore Your Credit After Bankruptcy?

Some people would rather struggle with debt — perhaps for years — because they believe that filing for bankruptcy will destroy their credit rating. While it is true that bankruptcy has an initial negative impact on your ability to get credit, the long-term effects of bankruptcy are beneficial. Bankruptcy is in fact designed to give […]

What Does it Mean if Your Bankruptcy Filing is Dismissed with a Bar?

When you file for bankruptcy, there are specific rules that you need to follow in order to have your debts discharged. Failing to follow the rules or engaging in certain acts of misconduct during bankruptcy can lead the court to dismiss your case, leaving you burdened with debt again. Bankruptcies in California can be dismissed […]

What Are Your Options if You Can’t Make Your Payments Under Chapter 13?

The core of a Chapter 13 bankruptcy is the establishment of plan calling for you to repay a portion of your unsecured debt on a monthly basis over a three- to five-year period. These plans are designed to be manageable, but things can happen in life that cause you to struggle to make your payments. […]

Debts That Cannot be Discharged in Bankruptcy

The purpose of bankruptcy is to give people a method for eliminating most of their debts and to get a fresh financial start. When you successfully complete your Chapter 7 or 13 case, you are freed of all debts that are eligible for discharge, such as medical bills, credit card debts and personal loans. Some […]

Powers and Duties of a Chapter 11 Debtor in Possession

A Chapter 11 bankruptcy allows a business facing insolvency to reorganize its debts so that it can have a chance to return to financial health. In most cases, the business continues to be operated by its owner, but under the supervision of the bankruptcy trustee. The owner becomes a debtor in possession. The role of […]

Adversary Proceedings Regarding Discharge of Debts

The major goal of a bankruptcy is the discharge of all or some of your debts, thereby giving you a fresh financial start. However, there may be grounds for a creditor or the bankruptcy trustee to object to the discharge of certain debts. This sometimes results in an adversary proceeding, which is a case within […]

The Critical Role of Disclosure Statements in Chapter 11

A type of bankruptcy often used by businesses and individuals with large debt burdens is Chapter 11, in which the debtor retains control of its assets and operations while it works to return to financial solvency. The debtor must make regular payments for the benefit of creditors in accordance with a debt reorganization plan approved […]

How Often Can You File for Bankruptcy?

Often, successful completion of a single bankruptcy case is enough to put a debtor back into solvency, but there may be further financial crises in store that require additional filings. There is no limit to the number of times you may file for bankruptcy, but there are limits on how often you can do it. […]

The Effects of Bankruptcy on Your Tax Obligations

While tax obligations generally cannot be avoided by filing for bankruptcy, there are certain exceptions. Taxes may be dischargeable depending upon the nature of the tax debt and the debtor’s actions prior to filing bankruptcy. There are two prerequisites for seeking discharge of taxes in bankruptcy. First, the obligations must be for federal, state or […]

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