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Posts by Michelle Labayen

Got the Black Friday Bankruptcy Blues?

Thanksgiving Day is coming up soon, and that means black Friday is just around the corner. The holiday will kick off a storm of spending. The average American spends $920 on holiday gifts every year. This time of year can be rough for people who are experiencing financial problems. There’s a web of expectations and…

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How to Handle a Debt Collection Call

It’s natural to get stressed out during a debt collection call. Debt collectors are in fact trained to ramp up that stress. It’s important to realize you have the power in this situation. The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act protects you.  Take these steps to ensure you get the full extent of that protection. #1)…

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6 Actions to Avoid Prior to a New York Bankruptcy

Timing matters to the successful execution of a bankruptcy. The things you do directly prior to your bankruptcy can make a big difference to your outcome. A good bankruptcy attorney will ask if you’ve engaged in any of these activities prior to filing. If you have, you might need to wait a few months to…

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In the News: Financial Protections for Veterans, Reservists

If you’re a veteran or Reservist living in New York you’ll want to know about some financial protections that have been put into place for you this year. These may impact whether you file for bankruptcy, and how you do so. There are three items of interest. Relief for Student Loans For decades, disabled veterans…

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Do Both Spouses Have to File Bankruptcy in New York?

Bankruptcy is all about strategy. And sometimes the biggest strategic decisions are the ones that people don’t think much about. For example, there are three ways for you and your spouse to handle a bankruptcy. You could file together. You could file separate bankruptcy cases. One spouse files while the other spouse doesn’t. In New…

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Does It Make Sense to “Settle” a Debt?

Every now and then a new collection agency will take over one of your accounts. And if the account is very old, they might offer to let you “settle” the debt for less than the full amount. It may even seem like a great deal. You pay 60% or 70% of the debt, and they…

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What Happens to My Co-Signers if I File Bankruptcy?

If you used a co-signer to secure a mortgage, lease, car loan, or student loan, then you’re right to have some concerns over how bankruptcy will impact them. While it is possible to get through the entire bankruptcy process without hurting your cosigner at all, there are moves you can make to their detriment. Understand:…

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What Happens to Liens in a NY Bankruptcy?

Mortgages may disappear after your bankruptcy discharge, but liens stick unless your lawyer can make a case for removing them. Fortunately, there are established mechanisms in place which allow us to do just that.  Your loans just have to meet some specific conditions to allow it. And you have to file the right type of…

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Don’t Pay Debt Collectors: Here’s 4 Reasons Why

There’s nobody more persistent than a debt collector. If you let them, they will call your phone over and over again and badger you into making payments. They may browbeat you with morality, imply dire consequences, or simply assume that you’re ready to pay them. If you tell them you don’t have any money, they’ll…

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7 Mistakes to Avoid When Filing for Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy is a complicated legal matter. There are many pitfalls. Running afoul of one of these pitfalls can cost you. In some cases, these mistakes may mean losing assets you could have kept. Others may mean you receive a case dismissal, instead of a discharge. I n the most severe cases, bankruptcy mistakes like the…

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Yes, You Can Get Credit After Your NY Bankruptcy

If you’re afraid to file bankruptcy, you’re not alone. Most of the people we talk to say they’re scared they’ll never be able to get credit again. And they say it because they’re aware that it’s very difficult to function without credit in our society. Fortunately, we don’t have to hesitate when we say that…

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Is There New Hope for Student Borrowers in NYC?

Student loans have been a sticky problem for borrowers for a long time. And even though the Law Offices of Michelle Labayan have been helping people with their loans for some time, our abilities to help you get your loan discharged through bankruptcy have always been limited. In the past, it was all about proving…

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Why You Should Not File Your NYC Bankruptcy Pro Se

One of the biggest fears clients in NYC have about filing for bankruptcy is the cost of the bankruptcy lawyer. It’s easy to see why a lot of people are tempted by Internet sites that try to make it seem like filing is as easy as printing out a form. But hiring a bankruptcy lawyer…

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