Credit Card Debt? Be Cautious of Debt Settlement Companies


Many consumers with outstanding credit card obligations notice the late night commercials offering to settle or negotiate their debts. Consumers should be wary of such organizations, as there may be hidden fees associated with such programs, and these groups cannot give you legal advice or represent you in court. In fact, the Consumer Protection Financial Bureau (CFPB) has been investigating and even fining debt-settlement companies for false and misleading practices.

If you have credit card debt that is hard to manage, schedule a free consultation with a consumer attorney at the McIntyre Firm. A qualified consumer attorney can discuss the various options available to you including bankruptcy and debt settlement. Further, if you are sued by a credit card company or debt collector, the attorneys at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A. can help you as we have represented hundreds of consumers in similar cases. Knowledge is power. Be informed by contacting a consumer attorney at the McIntyre Firm and scheduling a free consultation.

Department of Justice provides directive on bankruptcy cases involving marijuana assets

The multi-billion dollar marijuana industry is growing quickly, with twenty-eight states now approving the legalization of recreational or medical marijuana to some extent. On April 26, 2017 the Director of the United States Trustee Program provided a directive to Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy Trustees – do not administer cases involving marijuana assets. Apparently there has been an increase in the number of bankruptcy cases involving marijuana assets. The take-away for potential Debtors: even if certain marijuana assets, or income derived from such assets, are not considered illegal under state law – they are under federal law. If a Debtor files for bankruptcy relief and has an interest in marijuana assets, they will certainly be smoked out!

If you or your business is considering filing for bankruptcy relief, contact the McIntyre Thanasides law firm to schedule a consultation with an attorney who is a qualified bankruptcy professional.

Do not ignore your student loan debt

student debtIt is estimated that U.S. student loan debt exceeds $1.2 trillion, with over 7 million individuals currently in default.  There is approximately $1.3 trillion of outstanding student loan debt in the U.S. that affects 44 million borrowers who had an average outstanding loan balance of $37,172.  It is further estimated that over 77 billion of dollars is currently in default.  Put simply – many who attend college or other professional schools are not producing the income necessary to pay their student loan debt.   In such situations, it is easy to give-up. You can click to read more about this issue. However, giving-up can be the worst thing you can do. The consequences of ignoring your student loan debt can be severe (learn about it here) , including, derogatory credit reporting, garnishments of your paycheck, garnishments of your IRS tax refund, and even garnishment of your social security benefits.  The good news, there are options.  The difficult part for any consumer is navigating the various options available, fully understanding the ramifications of each, and making sure you are choosing the option that best works for you.

At the McIntyre Thanasides Law Firm we have formed a student loan law practice group devoted to helping consumers who need guidance in addressing their student loan dilemma and taking back their future. Contact us today to learn more. For more loan options you can also browse around this web-site and get the necessary help.

Behind on Car Payments? Bankruptcy can help!

car_payments_bankruptcyMany consumers find themselves in a tough position when they fall behind on their monthly car payments. Once a payment is 30 days past due the collectors begin to call. Repossession companies begin to look to repossess the vehicle around 45-60 days from a payment default. A consumer with limited income is confronted with difficult choices – you need your car to get to work, but you also need to put food on your table (not to mention all of life’s other daily expenses).

Bankruptcy allows consumers a number of options to deal with late car payments. Once a bankruptcy case is filed with the help of lawyers from the reputed Hyannis bankruptcy law firm, an “automatic stay” is invoked, meaning that the repossession company must stop attempting to secure the vehicle. In the case a chapter 13 bankruptcy, a consumer may file a plan where the past due amounts are cured over a period of time while the monthly payments are made going forward. Alternatively, many consumers take advantage of bankruptcy rules that allow the consumer to pay the amount the vehicle is worth when the case is filed, rather than the amount that is owed on the vehicle. Filing a chapter 7 bankruptcy will also accomplish the same. This may be accomplished in a chapter 7 or chapter 13 bankruptcy (Learn more here), and provides huge relief where a consumer owed a lot more than what the vehicle is worth.

We encourage you to contact a qualified consumer bankruptcy attorney at the McIntyre Thanasides Law Firm to fully understand the relief that is available. The McIntyre Thanasides Law Firm represents consumers throughout West Florida and the Tampa Bay area. Contact us today to get started.

Second Mortgages Still Being Discharged in Tampa Bankruptcy Cases

Second Mortgages Still Being Discharged in Tampa Bankruptcy Cases

After the market crash of 2008, and the resulting depreciation of many residential properties, many home-owners in the Tampa Bay area were able to get rid of second mortgages on their properties. This allowed a great benefit for those seeking to retain their homes, by way of eliminating the debt service of the second mortgage. Bankruptcy law is complicated, but the basics are that if you owe more on your first mortgage than the property is worth, you may void the lien of the second mortgage and discharge the debt in a chapter 13 bankruptcy. While home prices have been steadily gaining over the last few years in the Tampa Bay region, the McIntyre law firm is still working with many homeowners to discharge their second mortgages in bankruptcy. Further, we can assist consumers with restructuring their first mortgage loans. You can learn more about them here. If you are facing issues regarding the servicing or payment of your home loans, we encourage you to speak with the bankruptcy attorneys at the McIntyre law firm.

How to file for bankruptcy without your spouse

how-to-file-bankruptcy-without-your-spouseFiling for bankruptcy is a daunting process. Throw a marriage into the mix and it can feel extremely complicated. Many people wonder if filing for bankruptcy is possible without bringing their spouses into the issue. The short answer is yes, but the thorough answer is to discuss it with your attorney.

The attorneys at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A. are trained in handling problematic situations such as these. If you are planning to file for bankruptcy without your spouse, keep these three key steps in mind:

1. Consider joint debts vs. individual debts

Be sure to review your marital property with your spouse. If you and your spouse have joint bank accounts and mostly shared assets, those of which are contributing factors to your bankruptcy, then filing separately might not actually help. Even if you file bankruptcy on your own, your spouse will still be held responsible for his or her shares of the joint assets. If your individual debts far outweigh your joint debts, however, it is a good idea to file separately.

2. Determine which bankruptcy chapter you will file

There is a variety of bankruptcy chapters but as an individual, you will most likely choose between two when you file: chapter 7 or chapter 13.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharges most of your obligations and you keep property that is exempt.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a reorganization. You can utilize it in order to lengthen your time of payment for your debts and effectively reduce the amounts each payment is worth.

Chapters 7 and 13 both require spouses to file these four pieces of information together: (1) a list of creditors with the amounts and nature of their claims, (2) source, amount and frequency of your income, (3) a list of all your property and (4) a detailed list of your monthly living expenses such as food, housing, clothing, transportation, taxes and more. According to the United States Courts official government website, “married individuals must gather this information for their spouse regardless of whether they are filing a joint petition, separate individual petitions, or even if only one spouse is filing.”

3. Consult with an attorney

When considering filing for bankruptcy – especially as an individual without your spouse – it is beneficial to discuss your courses of action with a professional. Your attorney will help you examine all the possible outcomes of your decision and offer sound advice on how you should go about filing for bankruptcy.

If you are filing for individual bankruptcy, you are not alone. The lawyers at McIntyre Law Firm are determined and ready to strategize and give you guidance during this time. Call our office at (844)511-4800 to make an appointment with one of our lawyers and get a head start on solving your bankruptcy claims.