Monday, January 30, 2012

2012-The Year to Trim Fat, Trim Debt

Two important New Year’s resolutions for many Americans – lose excess weight; lose excess debt. 

States John Ulzheimer, president of Consumer Education with SmartCredit.com and contributor at the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, “’Getting out of debt is more strategic than simply writing a check to your creditors. You can save hundreds or thousands of dollars by prioritizing your debts. You can also get the benefit of a higher credit score by being smart about what you pay first.’”

Following, from Ulzheimer in an article on www.wxyz.com (ABC-News) are some helpful ideas to help you reduce your debt this year.
  • Make at least your minimum payments on all of your bills, every month. Pay as much as you can and never skip a payment.
  • Pay off those retailer cards first (i.e. Nordstrom, Penney’s), since interest on those cards is often 10-12 percentage points higher than on such bank cards as Visa or MasterCard. He adds, “’…by paying off retail cards, you’ll also improve your credit score because you’ve lowered the number of cards with a balance and the infamous “debt utilization” percentage – both of which are very important in your FICO scores.’”
  • You may consider temporarily stopping contributing to your 401K and IRA until you have paid off (or down) your credit card debt.  The amount you are earning in “gain” is probably not as much as you are paying in interest. 
  • Do not pay off installment debt before credit card debt. Rates on auto, home and student loans are normally much lower than credit card balances; you are also likely getting tax advantages from your mortgage and student loans.

The Macey Bankruptcy Law attorneys are an unsurpassed staff of the most knowledgeable consumer bankruptcy attorneys in the country, representing tens of thousands of new clients each year in consumer bankruptcy matters. Macey Bankruptcy Law attorneys are current on all of the new Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy laws and, with 100 offices across the country we are familiar with specific bankruptcy law in many states. Macey Bankruptcy Law attorneys answer their phones six days a week and weekends so you can get your initial complimentary consultation at a time that is most convenient for you. Our aggressive representation and extensive experience have earned the Macey Bankruptcy Law attorneys a national reputation for excellence in the representation of debtors in financial distress. Call us toll-free at 1-800-260-2402 and log onto our newly designed, easy-to-navigate, interactive website, www.maceybankruptcylaw.com. Do it for yourself; do it for your family. Do it today.

Friday, January 27, 2012

J.M Products CEO Files Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Thelma Joshua, widow of the founder of J.M. Products, an ethnic hair care products maker, has declared Chapter 7 bankruptcy after being unable to cover a $5 million loan to the company that she personally guaranteed. Arkansas Business has reported that Ms Joshua reported $768,000 in assets and $5.74 million in debts. Ms Joshua, who was CEO of the company, had guaranteed a $5 million loan from Bank of America.
The company collapsed in 2009 after defaulting on a $9 million loan made in 2007. The company was unable to reorganize and emerge from bankruptcy and the firm was liquidated, according to reports on www.therepublic.com.
Ernest Joshua Sr., who died in 2005, founded J.M. Products in the early 1970s and was later named to the University of Arkansas Business Hall of Fame.
Filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 personal bankruptcy is complicated. You need the knowledgeable and experienced bankruptcy attorneys from Macey Bankruptcy Law to help you with all of your legal proceedings. We have been helping consumers since 1994 and have successfully guided hundreds of thousands of consumers like you to the discharge of their debts. Log onto our new, interactive website at www.maceybankruptcylaw.com or call us toll-free 800-260-1402 for your free initial consultation. It could be the key to your financial freedom.

U.S. Credit Card Debt Dropped Sharply in 2011

Consumer credit card debt fell a whopping 11% in 2011, after having fallen 7% in 2010, with debt loads declining in all 50 states.
According to a report from credit tracking and financial education website CreditKarma.com, and reported on www.money.cnn.com by Blake Ellis, the average credit card balance was $6,576 in 2011, down from $7,404 in 2010. Ken Lin, CEO of Credit Karma, said that “the decline came as weak consumer confidence kept spending in check and banks continued to tighten their lending and slash credit limits for many existing customers”. However, Lin opined that as the economy continues to strengthen, debt will probably increase since lending institutions have started to relax their credit requirements.
By state: consumers in Wisconsin had the lowest average credit card debt last year at $5,062.Mississippi and Alabama followed closely as well as posting the largest declines, with residents reducing their balances by 23% and 16%, respectively. The great state of Alaska saw the most credit card arrears, with consumers owning an average debt load of $7,937; they were followed byNew Hampshire and Connecticut.
In other U.S. debt news, mortgage debt remained at an average of $173,876, although levels varied greatly among states. California held the most mortgage debt at an average of $313,749 per person. West Virginia residents had the lowest level at $104,279. Mortgage debt increased the most in South Dakota, increasing nearly 12%, while Nevada saw the biggest decline at 6%.
Auto loan debt was the only type of debt to increase, rising 2% to an average of $15,504. It soared 30% in Alabama, the most in any state, to an average of $20,996.
With all debt totaled, the average consumer (if there is such a person) held a total debt load of $210,236 at the end of 2011, down a paltry 1% from 2010.
Filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 personal bankruptcy is complicated. You need the knowledgeable and experienced bankruptcy attorneys from Macey Bankruptcy Law to help you with all of your legal proceedings. We have been helping consumers since 1994 and have successfully guided hundreds of thousands of consumers like you to the discharge of their debts. Log onto our new, interactive website at www.maceybankruptcylaw.com or call us toll-free 800-260-1402 for your free initial consultation. It could be the key to your financial freedom.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Ohio Mayor Files Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Glenn Broska, the newly-elected mayor of Streetsboro, Ohio, confirmed recently that he is currently making payments in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy reorganization plan, according to RecordPub.com.  Broska filed his Chapter 13 case in 2009 and has been making monthly payments of $455 to creditors since then according to his bankruptcy plan.

Broska turned to Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection after his 2006 divorce; divorce is a leading cause of personal bankruptcy filings. He also quit his part-time job at the Streetsboro Fire Department, from which he earned up to $42,000 annually. Broska stated that he also assisted with his son’s college expenses. He incurred additional debt when his unemployed adult daughter, who remained on his health insurance, faced health issues, putting a greater strain on his already “reduced, divorce-depleted income”.

Talking openly and recovering from serious setbacks could be an asset for any politician during these difficult economic times when many Americans are facing financial struggles of their own.

Whether you are a politician, a potato farmer or a plumber you may be facing piles of unpaid credit card invoices, mortgage bills or tuition statements. Filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 personal bankruptcy with a knowledgeable and experienced Macey Bankruptcy Law attorney at your side may be the key to your financial freedom. For your free initial consultation, please call 800-260-1402 or log onto our new site, www.maceybankruptcylaw.com. We answer our phones Monday-Saturday and evenings.

NPO Owes Big Bucks to City; Files Bankruptcy

New Horizons Family Center, a now-defunct nonprofit entangled in financial issues that promised to repay hundreds of thousands of dollars it owed the city of Glendale, California, has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The NPO reportedly faces liens, legal issues and a long list of unhappy creditors.

According to bankruptcy records, the nonprofit has estimated assets and liabilities of between $500,001 and $1 million. New Horizons sold its Glendale headquarters this summer to a local businessman for $1.73 million. That money went to repay government grants and back taxes. The state got about $1.5 million and Glendale got $46,000.

New Horizons has provided child-care services to low-income families in Glendale since 1994, receiving over $1 million in federal community block grants and stimulus money for social services and capital improvements since 2000. It closed after funds for a multimillion-dollar building project fell through. Glendale gave New Horizons about $300,000 in federal funds despite the fact the group had been facing financial problems. In an article by Brittany Levine for www.glendalenewspress.com, City Attorney Mike Garcia stated that the bankruptcy doesn’t necessarily mean the city won’t get paid, but that it will affect just when that may happen.
J.P. John Perron, New Horizons’ real estate broker, said that the nonprofit also plans to repay the city from about $1.4 million it expects to make by selling its former building to a Los Angeles-based affordable housing developer called PATH Ventures.

PATH is currently in escrow on the properties with the sale contingent on city approvals and funding to construct an affordable-housing project for U.S. military veterans. According to John Molloy, PATH’s executive director, “those approvals have been on hold as the city grapples with court issues that leave the future of its redevelopment agency uncertain”.
New Horizons was also about to go to trial concerning a lien that Glendale-based George Hopkins Construction Co. had placed on the NPO’s properties. The company claims the nonprofit owes them over $200,000 for construction work connected to the scrapped child-care center.

The bankruptcy attorneys at Macey Bankruptcy Law experts offer a free initial phone consultation to start you on the path to a brighter, more secure financial future. We will even give you a range of fair legal fees during your phone call. Some bankruptcy lawyers charge $2,500 or more for a basic Chapter 7 bankruptcy; Macey Bankruptcy Law experts provide the highest quality legal representation, often at a fraction of that cost. Our bankruptcy attorneys have over 100 years of combined bankruptcy representation experience and have saved over 100,000 satisfied clients more than $500,000,000 since 1994. You can rely on the Macey Bankruptcy Law experts for knowledgeable and experienced Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection and representation. Call us Monday thru Saturday toll-free at 1-800-260-1402 and go to www.maceybankruptcylaw.com for vital information on filing Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Chicago, That Toddlin’ Town Sees Home Sales Soar

According to an uplifting report from the Illinois Association of Realtors, Chicago-area home sales soared almost 21% in November compared with the same period 2010. In the nine-county Chicago area, 5,453 single-family homes and condos sold in November 2011, an increase of 20.7% from 4,518 in November 2010. Sales in the city of Chicago rose 20.4%, to 1,377, compared with 1,144 in November 2010; statewide sales rose 14.1% in November to 7,954 compared with 6,966 in November 2010. The nine-county Chicago area consists of Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will counties.

As reported on www.chicagorealestatedaily.com, Geoffrey J. D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory at the University of Illinois, recently stated, “’Little by little, there is some accumulating evidence that there may be some measure of recovery in the housing market.’”

This can be seen as the first meaningful increase in home sales in months. Until now it was probably merely a reaction to how bad things were a year ago. The outlook for continuing sales is positive into Spring 2012, based on strong contract activity.

It can be problematic comparing such numbers when the numbers from the second half of 2010 were so dismal. However, any positive news shows optimism for the housing market. The process for a real estate resurgence will, most likely, see a slow, but steady growth over the next few years.

If you have been thinking about filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 personal bankruptcy due to a negative equity mortgage or overwhelming debt, contact the lawyers at Macey Bankruptcy Law. We are experienced and knowledgeable in all aspects of personal bankruptcy protection. Call us toll-free at 800-260-1402 today for your initial free consultation; we answer our phones Monday-Saturday as well as evenings. Log onto our newly-designed, easy-to-navigate website at www.maceybankruptcylaw.com for important and timely bankruptcy information. The bankruptcy attorneys at Macey Bankruptcy Law are here for you. Call us today; you will be glad you did.

Important New Ruling on Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

A recent ruling from the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel of the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals stated that people who file for Chapter 13 protection can discharge their second or any junior mortgages (called lien stripping) and still keep their house if the value of the house is less than the first, or primary mortgage, reports Jim Buchta on www.grandforksherald.com.  

This is important to the clients of Macey Bankruptcy Law, as those consumers who have a paycheck and who want to continue making their mortgage payments could do so via the financial reorganization that accompanies the Chapter 13 bankruptcy process. A big obstacle for debtors seeking Chapter 13 debt consolidation is that they owe much more than their house is worth and they also have a second mortgage. This has become a common and serious problem following the bursting of the housing bubble some three years ago.

The case has been appealed by the Chapter 13 trustee to the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals; a decision is likely in early summer 2012. We will keep you up-to-date on this issue that is very important to both the bankruptcy attorneys at Macey Bankruptcy Law and their clients. We will report any new court decisions on our newly-designed, user-friendly website, www.maceybankruptcylaw.com. For your initial complimentary phone consultation, call us toll-free Monday through Saturday and evenings at 1-800-260-2402.

We are here to help with your Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 personal bankruptcy.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Young Buck Files Personal Bankruptcy

Nashville, Tennessee, rapper Young Buck, real name–David Darnell Brown–is currently having his Chapter 11 bankruptcy case converted to a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, on an order from Judge George C. Paine II. The bankruptcy trustee and her lawyer maintain that the conversion was necessitated by the fact that there was no money to pay bills and ongoing administrative costs and there was no finalized plan that would allow the case to remain under Chapter 11. The original bankruptcy was filed October 10, 2010.

The shift in bankruptcy status, reports the Detroit Free Press, is “frustrating the multiplatinum rapper’s attempts to sign with Cash Money Records and end a contract dispute that has stifled his career since 2008”. The musician is reportedly exasperated, saying in a recent interview that the bankruptcy conversion is counterproductive since he was “close to signing a recording deal with Cash Money Records that would allow him to pay all his debts and exit bankruptcy orderly”. The recording company, one of the country’s leading hip-hop labels, counts such noted celebs as Lil’ Wayne and Nicki Manaj as among their clients.

The proposed multiparty negotiation, independently confirmed by The Tennessean, would have settled Buck’s contractual disagreement with former mentor, rapper 50 Cent and his G-Unit Records and sent him to New Orleans-based Cash Money. Buck is still under contract with G-Unit but has been prevented from recording since 2008 due to “a personal falling-out with 50 Cent”, real name — Curtis Jackson.

Another twist in this bankruptcy is that the bankruptcy trustee who is administering Buck’s estate states she is planning to sell the “Young Buck” name along with his other assets. The 30-year-old rapper argues that, “’My name, Young Buck, has been with me since I was 12, 13 years old,” Buck said. “At the end of the day, it’s ridiculous. My name wasn’t given to me by G-Unit Records. They didn’t name me Young Buck. My mother calls me Young Buck.’”

Buck is also currently facing a pending federal criminal charge of being a convicted felon in possession of a gun and ammunition, which is scheduled to go to trial in April. He vows that these adverse experiences have taught him to be a better businessman and to be more focused and that he will persevere and “go forward”.

The Macey Bankruptcy Law attorneys are an unsurpassed staff of the most knowledgeable consumer bankruptcy attorneys in the country, representing over 40,000 new clients each year in consumer bankruptcy matters. Macey Bankruptcy Law attorneys are current on all of the new Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy laws and, with 100 offices across the country we are familiar with specific bankruptcy law in many states. Macey Bankruptcy Law attorneys answer their phones six days a week and weekends so you can get your initial complimentary consultation at a time that is mostMacey Bankruptcy Law convenient for you. Our aggressive representation and extensive experience have earned the  attorneys a national reputation for excellence in the representation of debtors in financial distress.

 Call us toll-free at 1-800-260-2402 and log onto our newly designed, easy-to-navigate, interactive website, www.maceybankruptcylaw.com. Do it for yourself; do it for your family. Do it today.

U.S. Economy Still Chugging Along

In a recently released report from the U.S. government, economic growth has increased, showing the most solid rate of expansion in a year.

In an article by Neil Irwin on www.washingtonpost.com, the GDP (gross domestic product) swelled at a 2.5% annual pace during the third quarter 2011, according to figures from the Commerce Department. This is much better than the 1.3% gain seen in the second quarter and the 0.9% rate of growth for the first half of this year.

Despite ongoing fears of a forthcoming economic collapse throughout Europe and a downgraded status of the U.S. debt, the numbers indicate a U.S. economy that “will keep on truckin’”.

However (there always seems to be a ‘however’), the GDP, which is the broadest measure of economic activity, is not strong enough to significantly reduce the unemployment rate in the foreseeable future.
The 2.5% increase, instead, represents a break-even point in U.S. economic growth;  “the approximate rate of economic expansion that would be expected, given an ever-increasing labor force and rising worker productivity, but not enough to put many of the 14 million unemployed Americans back to work.”

Third quarter growth was strengthened when automobile supply chains that had been disrupted by the Japanese earthquake reopened and oil prices moderated (somewhat) after peaking in early 2011.

The GDP, which ascertains the value of goods and services produced within U.S. borders, were overall more favorable than had been earlier expected. Consumer spending rose at a 2.4% annual rate, showing that we are still shopping, despite a low level of American consumer confidence. As we write this just days before Christmas, U.S. shoppers are hitting the malls, Main Street and Internet shops with a vengeance not witnessed for several years. Economists who were skeptical as to the efficacy of the holiday retail numbers are (happily) wiping the egg from the faces, as cash registers chime out in time with Salvation Army bell-ringers.

In addition to stronger-than-anticipated consumer spending, corporate investment was a source of particular strength: spending on equipment and software increased by 17.4%, while spending on structures such as office buildings and factories increased by 13.3%. Trade was also a contributor to growth, with exports soaring at an annual rate of 4%, and imports at a slower 1.9% rate.

The one impediment to U.S. growth, however (there’s that word again), was government. Huge budget cuts by municipalities across the country led spending by state and local governments to decrease at an annual rate of 1.3%.

If you are contemplating filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 personal bankruptcy due to overwhelming debt, don’t proceed without an experienced and trustworthy bankruptcy attorney from Macey Bankruptcy Law at your side. For your free initial consultation, call toll-free 800-260-1402, come into one of our 100 offices nationwide or log onto our new, user-friendly, interactive website at www.maceybankruptcylaw.com.