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Bankruptcy and Income Tax Refunds: What You Need to Know

This year, both the Easter Bunny and the Tax Man will make their rounds after the traditional April 15 tax filing deadline. The date can’t be on a weekend, and Emancipation Day is observed in Washington, D.C., on April 17. These circumstances push the cutoff to Tuesday, April 18, giving taxpayers three days more than usual to submit their income taxes. If you have recently filed for bankruptcy or are contemplating it in the near future, you may have questions about how it affects your taxes. Let’s take a brief look. Tax Refunds Post-Bankruptcy Bankruptcy […]

Debt Collection Abuses

For most people, debt is a part of life. When you’re behind on payments, life is generally more difficult. Chances are, you’re not only having a hard time paying your bills, but you’re also having to make choices about which bills to pay, how to adjust your shopping habits, and how to save money on the kids’ school clothes. Some people lose their jobs, some people suddenly fall behind because of a recent divorce, separation, or sudden death of a family member. A lot of hard-working people encounter tough times and don’t know where to […]

What is a Bankruptcy Audit?

New Bankruptcy Bar Date Drops from 120 Days to 70 Days

  The word “audit” tends to strike fear (or at least mild apprehension) in the heart of every taxpayer, but the Internal Revenue Service isn’t the only government entity that can use its official powers to investigate citizens and their paperwork. The United States Trustee Program (USTP), part of the Department of Justice, oversees the administration of corporate and consumer bankruptcy cases. One of its specific responsibilities is “taking legal action to enforce the requirements of the Bankruptcy Code, and to prevent fraud and abuse.” When the Bankruptcy Code was overhauled a decade ago, it gave the […]

Sued by Creditors?

KY Bankruptcy Lawyer

Collection lawsuits can be costly and time-consuming, so many creditors look for alternative debt repayment. They will repossess the collateral, stop providing the service, or accept reduced payments. While not all creditors turn to the courts to collect on an overdue debt, they do retain that right and may choose to pursue legal action if the debtor has any income or assets. Many creditors sell defaulted debt to collection agencies for pennies on the dollar, figuring that some payment is better than none at all. The collection agencies take on the headache and the possibility […]

Financial Planning for College

College isn’t for everyone, but if you are college-bound, or have children who are, your bank statements may be making you wonder if higher education is worth the financial risk. College tuition rates are increasing at a higher rate than general inflation. The average 2014-2015 tuition increase among private colleges was 3.7 percent, and 2.9 percent among public schools. That means that right now, 4 years of a private school will cost around $135,000, and in 18 years it will cost nearly $325,000. Four years of a public school is now approximately $40,000, and will hover […]

Help! I’m in Bankruptcy and Just Inherited Property. What Happens Next?

They say timing is everything, and that is certainly true when it comes to bankruptcy. What you own and what you owe must be listed in the schedules that you file with the bankruptcy court. But what about income or assets that come your way while your case is pending? Whether anticipated or not, the federal Bankruptcy Code requires the reporting of any funds that a debtor becomes entitled to within 180 days of the date he or she filed for bankruptcy. That means inherited money or property becomes part of the bankruptcy estate if […]

The End of January Brings Tax Identity Theft Awareness Week

Kentucky Tax Attorney

With tax season underway and the filing deadline of April 15 looming in the near future, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has chosen January as a good time to help educate Americans on tax identity theft. This incredibly invasive misconduct occurs when a person uses stolen personal information to file a fraudulent tax return claiming a refund. Observed this year from January 30 to February 3, the FTC is sponsoring specific events each day, including webinars and Twitter chats, addressing topics such as cybersecurity, how to lessen risk of identity theft, IRS imposter scams, and […]

Trends in Consumer Spending

Lexington Bankruptcy Attorney

Earning more than you spend is a dilemma for many people. While the definition of what constitutes a necessity can vary widely across class, gender, and age, all groups struggle with the delicate balance of income versus expenses. What do you spend your money on? Have you ever wondered how you compare to other Americans? There is a lot of data out there on the subject. Consider: Just two years ago, the average American spent $98 a day to cover expenses and had a personal savings rate of only 4.9 percent. The average U.S. income […]

Why You Shouldn’t File Bankruptcy on Your Own

Kentucky Bankruptcy Attorney

Bankruptcy makes a long-term financial and legal impact on your life. Not to mention the emotional toll it takes, having to decide whether it’s even the wisest course of action, having to go through the process, then having to essentially start your financial life over again. Filing for personal bankruptcy under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 takes extraordinarily careful preparation, as well as understanding of the law. Misunderstandings or mistakes end up affecting your rights, more often than not. Life is complicated, and so are your finances. It is perfectly legal to file “pro se,” […]

November 26 is Small Business Saturday

It’s getting to be that time of year again. The time when people stand in line to wrestle each other over that last TV at the big box store. The time when people hover over their computers, anxiously awaiting the next clickable deal. The busiest shopping days of the year are just ahead, and tucked in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is Small Business Saturday. Created by American Express in 2010 as a way to support small companies, this day has been officially recognized by Congress, is gaining in consumer awareness, and is a […]