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McLeod Law Offices McLeod Law Offices

Discussion of bankruptcy law and legal issues.
By Bill McLeod, Esq.

Post Frequency: 0.9/day

Last Entry: July 21, 2010 at 01:51:30

Recent Entries: 234

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Rocking On & Moving On

Posted on July 21, 2010
Every now and then, I come across something that I think my readers will find interesting? so much so that I want to put it here so everyone can get access to it. It?s easy to say ?hey, did you hear?read?see, etc.? and then when people say ?well, no, where can I find it?? I can just tell them it?s on this here website...

Birds flying high, You know how I feel

Posted on July 21, 2010
Back in September, I blogged about the conflict that existed with the rights of married spouses to file a joint bankruptcy petition, and the conflict posted by ? what I have now have problem calling the legislatively ill-conceived Defense of Marriage Act...

Now? About Those Secrets that the Credit Card Companies Don?t Want You to Know

Posted on July 21, 2010
You?ve seen the commercials and heard them on the radio: "don?t pay your debt, don?t go into bankruptcy, eliminate your debt!" Eliminate your debt without bankruptcy? Really? What the hell am I advising my clients then? So I did some poking around? which is big fancy lawyer talk for ?legal research...

A Friendly Reminder to List it or Lose it

Posted on July 21, 2010
If you don?t list all of your property on your bankruptcy schedules, you risk losing it. Let me repeat this again, just in case you think I might be kidding: if you do not list all of your property on your bankruptcy schedules, you will lose it. I?ve written about this before and I came across a recent decision out of the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia that reminds is that ?list it or lose it? is alive and well.

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Credit Fueled Drunken Debauchery

Posted on July 21, 2010
Come on, you had to know I was going to write about this: Her no longer royal highness Sarah Ferguson is blaming booze (and her debt) for her lapse in judgment in seeking money in exchange for access to her ex-husband, Prince Andrew. I'm still not entirely clear what "access" really meant...

Another Road to Failure: How Do I Qualify for Bankruptcy?

Posted on July 21, 2010
Once again, the misinformation about bankruptcy permeates the world wide inter-webs like a smelly fart on a school bus in the summery humid weather like we?re having here today in Boston. But since analyzing this ?information? is almost like shooting fish in a barrel, I?m able to take some time and again grade this really bad article entitled: ?How Do I Qualify for Bankruptcy??

Blackberries & Form-Fillers: What Bankruptcy Practice is Really About

Posted on July 21, 2010
When I got out of law school, the thought of being a bankruptcy lawyer never entered my mind. In fact, it was the last thing I wanted to do. I viewed it as little more than completing forms. Over time, I learned that I was wrong.

Do It Yourself Chapter 13: The Road To Failure

Posted on July 21, 2010
Through Twitter, I came across this article ?How to File Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Without a Lawyer.? Since I wrote a book about chapter 13 ? where I emphasize the need for competent representation ? and, since I am also a lawyer, the title alone intrigued me...

The Advertised Auction of 115 Cottonwood Street

Posted on July 21, 2010
My joyful descent into holiday weekend relaxation mode was interrupted by a Friday afternoon news story that caught my attention. Harmon Law Offices, a Massachusetts law firm, placed an ad in the New Bedford Standard Times announcing a land sale in Fairhaven.

Remembrance and Honor

Posted on July 21, 2010
They are dead; but they live in each Patriot?s breast, And their names are engraven on honor?s bright crest. ? Henry Wadsworth Longfellow I took that photograph Sunday on the Boston Common. On the grassy slope facing Back Bay, you’ll find hundreds of flags...

Cheap Becomes Expensive

Posted on May 25, 2010
Like many attorneys, I get calls from prospective clients asking me what my fee is for a bankruptcy filing. It?s not a particularly difficult question to answer ? in theory. But at the same time, it is. Generally, I know that if their concern is price, then who they retain as their attorney is not [...

When the Nest is not Empty: Some Food for Thought for Parents Struggling with Debt

Posted on May 25, 2010
Over the last several months, I?ve have met a number of parents seeking advice about bankruptcy. While every family has its own unique set of circumstances, all of these people I?m referring to are homeowners, and all have been struggling making mortgage payments...

E.D.Michigan Caps Petition Preparer Fees

Posted on April 27, 2010
I came across this interesting order issued on Tuesday, April 20th by the US Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. The Administrative Order caps the maximum allowable fee charged by a bankruptcy petition preparer in any case to just $100.

It Was 5 Years Ago Today

Posted on April 27, 2010
Five years ago today ? at approximately 2:42pm in the afternoon, I was using a elliptical machine at the gym. The news showed then President George W. Bush about to sign into law the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005, or what we commonly refer to as BAPCPA or ?the 2005 [...

Can Declaring Bankruptcy Improve Your Credit Score?

Posted on April 27, 2010
Clients will almost always ask me what the impact a bankruptcy filing will have on their credit score. Usually, the question I am asked is “will I ever be able to get a loan again?” In all my years of practicing bankruptcy law, the response has never changed...

When Bankruptcy Attorneys do a Wicked Bad Job

Posted on April 27, 2010
I?ve been doing a lot of research lately on attorney malpractice? specifically, bankruptcy attorney malpractice. More and more attorneys are popping into bankruptcy practice because they think it?s the new growth area. And sadly, some are doing a god-awful job at it ? and in some cases, they are hurting debtors.

Some ?Provocative? Questions about ?Extend and Pretend?

Posted on April 27, 2010
I read this today on HousingWire. Its publisher, Paul Jackson, poses the following “provocative” question about all of those modification plans and programs we keep hearing about (and I often write about): [W]hat if ?extend and pretend? within our nation?s troubled mortgage markets is actually providing a lift to consumer spending? Or, perhaps it can be said [...

Why Not Wipe The Slate Clean?

Posted on April 27, 2010
I question to what degree this country can move forward without first wiping the slate clean, especially when people are hell bent to scare folks away from bankruptcy ...and ultimately, from the life that awaits them after the case is closed.

Some People Fear Spiders?

Posted on April 27, 2010
Others fear bankruptcy.

Two Cents, and Some Concerns about Espinosa

Posted on April 27, 2010
I?ve been reading many interesting comments online about yesterday?s Supreme Court ruling in Espinosa. Some of my colleagues are suggesting that this is a huge win for consumer debtors. I think Mr. Espinosa is justifiably happy. I'm not sure creditor's attorneys are happy...

The US Supreme Court Rules in United Student Aid Funds, Inc. v. Espinosa

Posted on April 27, 2010
In another unanimous decision relating to an important bankruptcy issue, the US Supreme Court today ruled that a student loan creditor?s failure to object to confirmation to a chapter 13 plan was fatal to the creditor?s post-discharge attempts to collect the debt.

That Servicemembers Notice & Your Loan Mod Request

Posted on April 27, 2010
I received a call today from a client what we in the biz refer to as a ?Soldiers and Sailor?s Notice.? I had met this caller a few weeks ago ? and at that time, was told that the home mortgage and loan were ?in review? by the lender and servicer. The caller was confident that a modification would be offered ? and it would be one they could live with...

?We Are A Debt Relief Agency??

Posted on March 09, 2010
Have you see advertisements for bankruptcy attorneys and seen this phrase? Has a bankruptcy attorney ever said to you “sorry, we cannot advise you to incur debt because you’re seeking bankruptcy protection”? Ever wonder why? Well, wonder no more...

Redux Predators in our Midst: A Warning for Homeowners Facing Foreclosure

Posted on March 07, 2010
I know that attorneys and other professionals may send written solicitations to homeowners who are facing the possibility of foreclosure. However, I have heard that there are unscrupulous individuals who may be posing as attorneys or are providing bankruptcy ?assistance? when in fact, they are not qualified to do so.

Redux: Things Will Get Worse Before They Get Better

Posted on March 07, 2010
I first posted this on February 18, 2008 – more than two years ago… before the election. As I was reading through it, it occurred to me… I wasn’t far off base. Some of the links no longer lead to the page intended, but it’s worth a second look – and perhaps a [...

Guest Blog: Perspectives

Posted on March 07, 2010
Today, we have something a different… our first guest blogger: a former client who shares her perspectives on her journey into, through and out of bankruptcy. Perspectives So many people are one paycheck away from disaster. This past week two of my friend?s husbands got laid off...

Talking to the Kids: Dealing with Failure

Posted on March 07, 2010
I use the ?F? word. Now, I want to point out that by using the ?F? word, I?m not saying that you ? as a parent deep in debt ? are a failure. Yet talking to your kids might raise some concerns that you have about how they might perceive you ? and the choices you have made...

Kids Aren?t Stupid (Really)

Posted on March 07, 2010
You can shield them all you want, but if the financial health of the family has descended into a bad place (and I've described above how the debt can push the financial health into a bad place) eventually they will know ? one way or another. And with that said, I ask you this: is it not better for them to hear it from you and discuss it all with you ? than to hear it from or discuss it with someone other than family?

Talking to your Kids

Posted on March 07, 2010
I was talking to a client she expressed her concerns about her kids finding out how bad the household finances are. It?s not the first time I?ve heard clients express those concerns to me. And when parents are facing some real tough decisions, there are no easy answers I can provide...

Loan Modification Scams

Posted on March 07, 2010
As more and more people try anything to avoid losing their homes, more and more people are getting scammed. Here are two links with important information for homeowners contemplating modifications: This from The Christian Science Monitor: TransUnion, a credit reporting company, released its own numbers on Tuesday...

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