Menu Contact Attorney Advertising

Long Island Bankruptcy Law Blog

Best ways to pay off your credit card debt

It's not uncommon for residents of New York to suffer from credit card debt to some degree. There are many options out there when it comes to paying off these debts, but what works best can differ from person to person depending on their needs and situation. shows that if a person wants to pay off credit card debt smartly, there are several actions they can take. Some include paying off the balance and keeping it below 30 percent of the credit line. Overspending is a huge issue with credit cards and an equally large contributor to debt. Only making minimum payments every month can also add up quickly. Avoiding these two common mistakes is a step forward in debt management. People are also encouraged to experiment with what methods work best for them personally. Deciding whether to pay off credit cards by balance or by interest rate depends on what someone is looking for in their debt relief.

Bankruptcy is meant to help you regain control of your finances

Your finances shouldn't be the top stressor in your life. When they are, you need evaluate the circumstances to determine what you need to do. You might be tired of always worrying about how you are going to pay bills. You may dread the thought of hearing the phone ring or of getting the mail. You could be losing sleep because of all of this.

When you feel like you are drowning in debt, you may want to find out if you might be able to file for bankruptcy. Bankruptcy is actually a tool that can sometimes help people regain control of their finances. Below is some important information for those considering filing for bankruptcy protection.

Feds begin discussion about student loan debt

Student loan debt is a known problem that sets many young people back as they enter the workforce. With debts of $30,000 and more, the monthly payment on these loans can make or break a budget, which limits spending power, increases the dependence on credit cards, and has other wide reaching effects on personal budgets and the greater economy. The payments last for years, which makes it feel as though no end is in sight.

Student loans were a frequent talking point in the last election and education costs continue to rise. Sometimes student loan payments make or break a budget. While we’ve previously discussed the challenge of bankruptcy and student loans, the federal government is gathering information. In late February, the federal register requested public comments about claims of undue hardship.

Job loss: what you need to know

The economy with all its ups and downs can affect your company—and your continued employment. If you’ve ever lived through a company layoff, you know how it can shake you to your very foundation. It’s been said that over half of us get our sense of identity from our jobs. When job loss happens, it can hurt.

How do you know if your company is struggling and is contemplating layoffs? Experts say there are warning signs to watch for that should trigger the updating of your résumé and your LinkedIn profile. Some warning signs include:

What are the risks of non-lawyer debt negotiators?

New Yorkers will undoubtedly be aware of the number of debt settlement companies who advertise and say they can help people facing financial challenges to get a fresh start. While this is a tempting proposition, there are certain dangers with getting involved with these companies and not using a qualified lawyer who can assess all the alternatives, give the positives and negatives of consumer bankruptcy vs. debt settlement and help with all aspects after a decision has been made.

Debt settlement companies might have the ability to assist with some debts, but the initial phase of the program generally requires the debtor to place money in a savings account for three years or more prior to the debts being settled. Making the payments can be difficult and those who cannot do so frequently leave the program before clearing the debts. A budgetary review is vital to making an informed decision as to whether it will be possible to stay in the program for its duration.

Legal assistance for Long Islanders dealing with medical debt

Long Islanders who find themselves deep in debt are not necessarily in that position because of job loss or due to spending beyond their means. One of the most common reasons for filing for bankruptcy to have a financial fresh start is through medical debt. Medical expenses can arise for a multitude of reasons and those who are dealing with it must be aware that they have options to move on with their lives.

People can accrue medical debt through an unexpected illness, an injury, a sick child or by simply losing a job and losing health insurance that they previously had. Out of pocket costs can lead to massive medical bills in short order. One of the biggest moneymakers for collection companies is pursuing people who have vast amounts of medical bills that they have not paid and likely cannot pay. While filing for bankruptcy or seeking another method to overcome these financial challenges is often perceived as a negative, it is a sound strategy to get back on stronger financial ground and get a fresh start.

When will my debts be discharged after filing for bankruptcy?

Long Islanders who are having financial challenges and have sought relief through filing for bankruptcy might not be fully cognizant of certain basic factors. These are important to understand as the process moves forward. One question that might be foremost in the debtor's mind is when the discharge of debts will take place. Knowing the answer to this foundational question can help the debtor prepare for the future.

There is no ironclad time at which the discharge will be given. It depends on the chapter under which bankruptcy has been filed. For a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the court will generally grant the discharge when the time frame for a complaint by the creditors can be filed has expired. Creditors sometimes have a reason to object. Once this time has passed, then the discharge can be granted. This is 60 days after the first date of the meeting of 341 creditors. The discharge will happen approximately four months after the date of the debtor filing the petition.

Former MLB player files for Chapter 13 bankruptcy

Financial challenges can happen to anyone in New York and across the country. Even those who seemingly had it all with major paychecks, fame and a prominent lifestyle are vulnerable to financial realities and must consider alternatives such as filing for bankruptcy if they are no longer able to make their payments and the debt turns into an endless cycle. For any debtor who has reached the point where it is necessary to find a way to get back on stronger financial ground, it is wise to consider bankruptcy.

The former Major League Baseball pitcher Livan Hernandez has filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. After defecting from Cuba to the U.S., Mr. Hernandez played 17 seasons in the majors and earned slightly more than $53 million in contracts during his playing career. The case was filed in Florida. It is early in the process, but he claims to owe up to $1 million and has up to 50 creditors. According to the filing, many of his debts are consumer-based to various businesses and credit card companies. He also owes a local businessman $220,000 that was said to be a loan and was never repaid.

Financial challenges and disclosures debt collectors must make

Long Islanders who are facing financial challenges and might be dealing with delinquent payments on their credit cards will have a lot to consider as they seek out options. While they are in the process of straightening out their finances, a frequent concern is that there will be a series of phone calls, letters and emails trying to collect on the debt. After a certain period, many companies will sell the debt to a third party. That third party will then try to collect the debt. There are certain laws that these collectors must follow. Unfortunately, some flout these laws or push them to the brink and end up committing creditor harassment. Understanding what disclosures these collectors are required to provide is essential for the debtor to avoid being harassed.

After the initial communication with the consumer, within the next five days, a debt collector must inform the consumer the that the debt collector is adhering to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and are not allowed to behave abusively, deceptively or engage in certain behaviors. The collector cannot: threaten the debtor with violence; use obscenities or profanity; or continually make phone calls with the intention of annoying, abusing or harassing.

An overview of how Chapter 7 bankruptcy works

Even though the national economy has rebounded nicely in the last few years and the stock market is regularly reaching all-time highs, the unfortunate reality is that there are still millions of Americans who are facing difficult financial challenges every day. For some, the most pressing concern is overwhelming debt. That is where Chapter 7 bankruptcy could help.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is intended to be a tool for consumers to use to discharge debt, face their financial challenges and get a fresh start. However, New York residents who are interested in pursuing this tool must first determine if they are eligible. There are certain restrictions on who can file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. For instance, a person who has filed for bankruptcy recently is not eligible to file again. Debtors are also required to attend credit counseling prior to filing for bankruptcy.

Send Your Message

How can we help?

Call us at 631-479-2869 or use our contact form to arrange a free consultation with an experienced Long Island bankruptcy attorney.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy