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Bots have slowly begun to creep onto the online payments scene, and they could offer a whole new, simpler way to part with our cash.

Read More from: BankThink

3 weeks 1 day ago

Gift CardsConsumers could be set to jump up the insolvency hierarchy if Parliament backs the latest Law Commission recommendations.

The Law Commission’s report, Consumer Prepayments on Retailer Insolvency, recommends, among other things, that consumers who prepay for goods or services over £250 in the six months prior to a formal insolvency process should be paid out as preferential creditors instead of unsecured creditors.

The report was commissioned by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (recently renamed the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) and laid before Parliament on 13 July 2016.

The recommendations have been welcomed by consumer rights groups, however questions remain over their wider impact.

Recommendations

The Law Commission recommends that consumers move up the insolvency distribution hierarchy to become preferential creditors if they meet the following criteria:

Read More from: eSQUIRE Global Crossings

3 weeks 1 day ago

Consistent marketing doesn't mean your offer gets better with each try, but it increases the odds of making a pitch when your customers are actually listening.

Read More from: BankThink

3 weeks 1 day ago

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Split the sheets in California, and your wages are no longer community property.

That’s because property acquired during marriage but after a marital separation isn’t community property.

That’s been California law for a long while.

The sticky wicket has been drawing the line when the marriage has broken down and the couple has separated.

“When” they separated determines whether the estranged spouses have to split their earnings with each other.  It determines whether the creditors of one spouse can reach the wages of the other to pay the other’s debts.

Can estranged spouses live under the same roof and be living “separate and apart”?

3 weeks 1 day ago

Breaking News This Morning ...

HSBC buyback: HSBC said it plans to buy back $2.5 billion of its stock despite a 40% drop in net income in the second quarter. The recently announced sale of its Brazilian until will help pay for the buyback. Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, New York Times Receiving Wide Coverage ... ...

Read More from: BankThink

3 weeks 1 day ago

In re Haber, 547 B.R. 252 (Bankr. S.D. Ohio 2016) – A foreclosure sale that occurred after a chapter 7 trustee abandoned the foreclosed property (and after the bankruptcy case was closed) unexpectedly resulted in surplus proceeds that were to … Continue reading

3 weeks 2 days ago

The homeownership rate in the United States is at its lowest level since 1965, according to a recent report from the US Census Bureau. This is actually an all-time low for homeownership in this country.

The main agency of the US Federal Statistical System found that homeownership is down to less than 63 percent. The last time the number was that low was in 1965, when the U.S. Census first started to track the total number of homeowners.

Just a decade ago, the nation’s overall rate of homeownership reached its highest level ever, 69 percent, with seemingly everyone and their sister being in a position to buy a house. Of course, the housing and financial markets eventually collapsed and brought an end to the “ownership society,” so the recent news about a continued decline in home owners has not come as a shock to many financial experts and interested real estate investors. That’s because homeownership rates have been trending in the wrong direction for a while, especially among millennials who are opting to rent rather than purchase homes due to debt-related struggles.

3 weeks 2 days ago

Once you have made the decision to at least talk with an attorney or lawyer about the prospect of bankruptcy, then it becomes important to find the right attorney to help guide you.  Here are a few tips that I think are important in finding the right attorney to talk with.

If possible, ask friends or family in the community where you live if they have ever had any experiences in talking with or being represented by a bankruptcy attorney.  If this is not practical, or you don’t feel comfortable doing this, you may want to talk to an attorney in the community that you know or has represented you or a family member with another legal matter.  Chances are that attorney may not handle bankruptcy matters, but most will know of the right attorney to refer you to assist you with bankruptcy.  It is very common for attorneys that practice in one area to know who is the best attorney in another area of law that they do not practice in.  They almost always want to be able to steer you in the right direction.

3 weeks 2 days ago

What was true in the late 1700s, the 1970s and the 1980s is still true today: bank customers want to interact with real-life people when managing finances.

Read More from: BankThink

3 weeks 2 days ago

attorney Robert ReeseThe discharge of student loan debt is possible in bankruptcy if the borrower can prove an extreme hardship. What does discharge mean? Simply that you are no longer legally liable to repay the debt. How do you prove an extreme hardship? The answer to that question is a much more difficult one to answer. I recently read about a gentlemen over the age of 60 who was able to discharge more than $200,000 in student loan debt. He took out several parent PLUS loans to pay for college for his 3 children. When he and his wife filed for bankruptcy, he had been unemployed for many years and they were living on his wife’s income of less than $20,000.

Read More from: Bonds & Botes, P.C.

3 weeks 2 days ago

In 2014 the Eleventh Circuit held that a debt collector violates the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act when it filed a proof of claim in a chapter 13 case on a debt that it knows to be time-barred. Crawford v. LVNV Funding, LLC, 758 F.3d 1254 (11th Circ. 2014). The United States District Court for the Southern District of Alabama subsequently held the Crawford decision as placing the FDCPA and the Bankruptcy Code in irreconcilable conflict. On appeal, the Eleventh Circuit found no such conflict, stating “Although the code certainly allows all creditors to file proofs of claim in bankruptcy cases, the Code does not at the same time protect those creditors from all liability,” and that a particular group of creditors—debt collectors—may be liable for damages for violating the FDCPA if they file claims in chapter 13 cases they know to be time-barred. Johnson v. Midland Funding, LLC, 2016 WL 2996372 (11th Cir. 2016).

Read More from: Creditors' Rights

3 weeks 2 days ago

In a perfect world, better financial literacy Â-- along with equipping bankers with ethical standards Â-- would make the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau obsolete.

Read More from: BankThink

3 weeks 2 days ago

Breaking News This Morning ...

Commerzbank stock plunges: Shares of Commerzbank dropped sharply Tuesday after the second largest German bank said it wouldn't be able to achieve its goal of keeping profit stable as revenues drop. Wall Street Journal, Financial Times Wall Street Journal

Right idea but wrong slice? Republican and Democrat party platforms favor a return to the Glass-Steagall separation of commercial and investment banking, but few investors would welcome it, says the Heard on the Street...

Read More from: BankThink

3 weeks 2 days ago

I collect links to student loan stories every day,

student loan update
question marks

then I look through the student loan update file

for the news across the nation

for topics to post on this blog.

The student loan stories just keep piling up.

Student Loan Update: Servicers

Nothing new here, another servicer concealing the best student loan repayment plans available.

Some restaurants have secret menus, special items that you can only get if you know to ask. New Jersey’s student loan program has secret options, too — borrowers may be able to get help from the agency, but only if they know to ask.

Read More from: Discharge Student Loan

3 weeks 3 days ago

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By Donald L. Swanson

Not everyone is a fan of mediation. And one Texas Bankruptcy Judge is emphatically opposed.

Judicial Actions

Here is an unofficial transcription (from the official recording) of an in-court exchange occurring on September 3, 2014, as reported on this webpage:

“The Court: . . . Is the Trustee eventually going to be using estate funds to pay the mediator?

Male Speaker: I think that’s what we had envisioned.

The Court: Over my dead body. I do not like mediation. I think it is wasteful for the most part and you all needed to get my permission.

As to possibilities for compensating  the Trustee’s efforts in mediation, the Judge says:

Ain’t gonna happen. Don’t you ever do that again.”

The Judge explains:

Read More from: Mediatbankry

3 weeks 3 days ago

For the past four years, Jim Greiner, Lois Lupica, and I have been working on the Financial Distress Research Project (FDRP)*, a large randomized control trial trying to find out what works to help individuals in financial distress. As part of the project, a large number (70+ at last count) of student volunteers have created self-help materials aimed at these individuals, using the latest learnings in adult education, psychology, public health, and more. Part of our work has focused on creating a set of materials to help pro se filers through a no asset Chapter 7 bankruptcy (I blogged about the student loan AP materials here).

Read More from: Credit Slips

3 weeks 3 days ago

Recently, in GSE Environmental, Inc. v. Sorrentino (In re GSE Environmental, Inc.), on a motion for judgment on the pleadings, the Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware held that the Chief Executive Officer’s claim for unpaid compensation payable in stock constituted an equity security rather than a general unsecured claim.  The facts of GSE Environmental are an all too familiar story in the bankruptcy context:  Company files for chapter 11, but certain employees, or in this case executives, were not paid their full compensation before the petition date.  Whether such unpaid compensation is treated as a general unsecured claim or equity securities can have a tangible effect on the employee’s recovery in the case.  GSE Environmental serves as one example of a variation of unpaid compensation that may be treated as an equity security. 

Background

3 weeks 3 days ago

Banks should assess a customer's full financial picture before deciding to sell a debt to a third-party collection agent.

Read More from: BankThink

3 weeks 3 days ago

Here at Shenwick & Associates, most clients come to us with concerns about debt, from either the perspective of a debtor or a creditor. This month, we’re going to take a look at the difference between how debts are treated by law and how debts are listed on a credit report. As with all actions (lawsuits), there is a statute of limitations on how long creditors can sue you to collect on a debt, get a judgment against you, and garnish your wages or levy against your financial accounts. In New York, the statute of limitations is six years, pursuant to section 213 (2) of the Civil Practice Law and Rules (CPLR) (for “an action upon a contractual obligation or liability, express or implied . . .”). However, once a judgment has been entered against you, a creditor has up to 20 years to enforce that judgment, pursuant to section 211(b) of the CPLR. However, there are two major caveats to be aware of regarding the statute of limitations:

Read More from: Shenwick & Associates

3 weeks 3 days ago

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