Stopping a Foreclosure – The Automatic Stay

,

Clients facing foreclosure or repossession need immediate relief to stop the foreclosure or repossession.  When you file a Chapter 7 or 13 bankruptcy, the automatic stay is triggered.  This is the immediate relief that is needed in that the automatic stay stop most creditors from continuing with collection activities, such as filing or continuing lawsuits, making written requests for payment, or notifying credit reporting bureaus of unpaid debt.  Importantly, it stops foreclosures and repossessions in their track.  This can provide a period of relief to debtors as well as the opportunity to a fresh start during bankruptcy.  The courts understand how it can be hard to organize your financial affairs with constant creditor harassment.  However, there are some exceptions to the automatic stay, so it’s important to learn about these before you file.

Actions not stopped by the stay:

  • Divorce and Child Support
  • Tax Proceedings
  • Pension Loans

Some debtors file bankruptcy just to trigger the automatic stay.  The debtor might not go through with the bankruptcy if they get their affairs in order.  For example, this may happen when a debtor is dealing with a foreclosure sale notice on their home and they may need extra time to gather money or to sell their home in a short sale before it is sold in a trustee sale.  Just filing the bankruptcy usually gives the debtor an extra month, at a minimum, to find a solution for their home.

If you are dealing with non-stop creditor harassment or you are facing your home being foreclosed on and you need a solution, we can help! At the Law Offices of Michael H. Raichelson we can help you get creditors off your back and stop home foreclosures. Call us now for your free consultation.

Sinbad Files for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Protection

Sinbad (real name David Adkins) filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy on April 4, 2013. The 90’s comedian has actually filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy two times since 2009 and the current filing is Sinbad’s third time. The first attempt to discharge his debts was dismissed due to lack of document production. The second bankruptcy filed was dismissed because of the Financial Management Course Certificate, a required credit counseling course that must be taken and completed for a chapter 7 bankruptcy, was not filed. Let’s hope this third time is a charm. The ball has been dropped twice by two different attorneys that each represented him in the last two bankruptcies filed. This third bankruptcy filing is yet by another attorney which must be under a lot of pressure to follow through with finally getting Sinbad a discharge, since the last two attorneys failed to.

According to the bankruptcy petition documents, Sinbad’s main debts and the reason for filing bankruptcy are income tax creditors, for his 1993-2005 Franchise Tax Board and 1998-2006 Internal Revenue Service unpaid taxes. There is also an unknown amount of taxes owed for unfiled taxes for 2009-2012 tax years. If done right, his taxes owed for 1993-2006 will be discharged in the bankruptcy.

At the Law Offices of Michael H. Raichelson, we are diligent in doing things right the first time and we do not fail; we do our part in not letting cases get dismissed. You too can get your taxes discharged, if you qualify, through a chapter 7 bankruptcy. If you are in tax debt, like Sinbad, and you are wondering if filing bankruptcy is the right option for you or want to know what your options are and want it done right, the first time, call us now for a FREE consultation.

Bankruptcy Fraud

,

Some debtors may think they can get away with hiding, selling or transferring assets before filing a bankruptcy, but the truth is it is nearly impossible to not get caught. In fact, it is a federal crime to conceal assets in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy and if done it can result into some serious federal prison time and other federal punishments.

For instance, the Federal Investigation Bureau just convicted a woman named Diana J. Stout in Bethesda, Maryland for making a false statement and concealment of assets in her Chapter 7 filing. Stout thought she could transfer property to her daughter, withhold vehicles and jewelry from her bankruptcy petition to sell for money and not have to face any consequences. Inevitably, Stout is now facing 27 months in federal prison following with three years of supervised release along with a restitution obligation to be paid of $155,747.83.

It is always best to be completely honest when it comes to seeking federal help out of debt. At the Law Offices of Michael H. Raichelson we practice our integrity and protect our clients by making sure all assets are disclosed to prevent any legal problems in the long run. We follow through with the best possible solution for each client’s needs. Call us today for your free consultation.

Oreck Vacuum Company Files Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

One of America’s best-known vacuum and cleaning supply company Oreck filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Chapter 11 is a chapter of the United States bankruptcy code that allows reorganization, which is most prominently used by corporate entities. Oreck is still going to continue to operate its business while it seeks a buyer; however, documents filed suggest the company is unable to generate enough funds to cover necessary expense.

If you are a business owner, drowning in debt similar to “Oreck”, and need some reorganization, the Law Offices of Michael H. Raichelson can help. If you click on “Recent Bankruptcy Successes” (above) you will read how Michael H. Raichelson has been able to overcome seemingly impossible debt resolutions and he will do the same for you.

Beyonce’s Father, Mathew Knowles owes $1.2 million in taxes to the IRS

Superstar singer Beyonce Knowles’s father and former manager Mathew Knowles was recently hit with an IRS tax lien of $1.2 million.  Knowles still hasn’t paid his tax bills for tax years 2010 and 2011. For 2010 he owes $485,575.95 and in 2011 $728,004.89, totaling $1,213,580.84 of debt, according to TMZ.  Even though Knowles no longer manages Beyonce’s career, he was during 2010 and 2011 and as we know, Beyonce is one of the highest paid acts in the industry. Therefore, father Knowles earned millions of dollars managing his daughter and should not have a problem paying his taxes. 

Knowles isn’t the first to face tax issues and definitely won’t be the last. If you are in a similar situation, the Law Offices of Michael H. Raichelson can help come up with a resolution that may best suit you. Call today for your free consultation.

Criminal Prosecution of Grammy Winner Lauryn Hill for Tax Evasion

The famous Grammy award-winning singer Lauryn Hill was sentenced on May 6, 2013 to three-months in federal prison for failing to pay taxes on approximate earnings within a five year period of $2.3 million. After serving her three-months in prison, Hill will be electronically monitored in her home for three additional months and will be obligated to pay not only her unpaid tax debt of $1,006,517 but an additional $60,000 in fines.

If your tax obligation is on the rise and you need help resolving your tax issue before you get sentenced to prison or result in any type of consequences regarding the federal court, there is help available to you.

At the Law Offices of Michael H. Raichelson located in Woodland Hills and Oxnard, Californa, we prevent such consequential results and resolution options to your tax debts.

Income Taxes can be Discharged in Bankruptcy

Most people do not know they can discharge debts for federal income taxes in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, however there are exceptions. If all of the following conditions are met, income taxes may be discharged: 1. The taxes are from unpaid income taxes from filed tax returns. You must have filed a tax return for the debt you wish to discharge at least two years before filing for bankruptcy. 2. You did not commit fraud or willful evasion. If you filed a fraudulent tax return or otherwise willfully attempted to evade paying taxes, bankruptcy can’t help. 3. The debt is at least three years old. To eliminate a tax debt, the tax return must have been originally due at least three years before you filed for bankruptcy. 4. You pass the “240-day rule.” The income tax debt must have been assessed by the IRS at least 240 days before you file your bankruptcy petition.

At the Law Offices of Michael H. Raichelson, we can analyze if you are a good candidate for bankruptcy and/or if your taxes are dischargeable in bankruptcy. 

The Rich Dodge Paying Taxes

As the middle and lower class continue to pay their taxes (to the best of their ability) and deal with the IRS on a day to day basis, the upper class continues to duck and dodge the IRS bullet of paying taxes. The wealthiest get away with hiding their fortunes by using offshore accounts to avoid paying taxes, and the United States struggles and continues to enforce taxes to be paid by the hard working lower and middle class American citizen. A new level of financial transparency is required for all countries to report all financial information to each other to avoid tax evasion. Until then, the rich will continue to get away with paying taxes.

At the Law Offices of Michael H. Raichelson located in Woodland Hills and Oxnard, California, we focus on tax resolution and bankruptcy.  For those who feel that they are struggling with past tax debt, contact our office and we will help you. 

What happens if I do not pay my taxes in full?

If there are monies owed on unpaid taxes, the IRS charges interest from the due date of the return, i.e., typically April 15th, until the date of payment.  The interest rate is the federal short term rate plus three percent, and the interest rate is calculated on a quarterly basis.  Also, if you file a return and fail to pay the entire amount due, you will be hit with a late payment penalty.  The IRS late payment penalty is equal to one-half of one percent of the tax owed for each month, or part of a month, that the tax remains unpaid from the due date, until the tax is paid in full or the 25% maximum penalty is reached.  So, for example, if you owe the IRS $10,000, you will be hit with a $50 (i.e., .005 * $10,000) late payment penalty for every month the taxes remained unpaid.

The one-half of one percent rate increases to one percent if the tax remains unpaid 10 days after the IRS issues a notice of intent to levy. For individuals who file by the return due date, the one-half of one percent rate decreases to one-quarter of one percent for any month in which an installment agreement is in effect.  So, it is important to meet with qualified tax resolution counsel to work out an installment agreement, or alternatively, some other tax resolution such as an offer in compromise. 

 

OFFER IN COMPROMISE BASICS

An offer in compromise is an agreement between the taxpayer and the IRS that settles a tax debt for less than what is owed.  Eligible taxpayers will get a fresh start.  Applying for an offer in compromise does not ensure that the taxpayer will be successful.  It is necessary to hire experienced counsel to walk you through the process.