What Happens to Assets During Bankruptcy?

Declaring bankruptcy is not a decision most people take lightly. It is something that is only considered in the most difficult of financial situations.

Perhaps the debt collectors’ calls are coming too fast for you to keep up with. You never intended to stop paying those cards, but you found yourself with very few options when the minimum payments skyrocketed and could not be met. You may not understand how bankruptcy works or what type of assets you will need to give up to fulfill financial obligations. See how assets are handled and if bankruptcy might work for you.

Depends on What Kind of Bankruptcy Filed 

Assets may not always be seized and sold by the trustee. This is the person appointed by the court to negotiate for you and the creditors clamoring for their money. The trustee takes a look at your financial picture and decides the best way to proceed forward. This may include getting a proper accounting of your assets and savings so the trustee knows how much money you can pay off. State laws differ, and in some places, some assets cannot be seized and liquidated by a trustee. These may include your primary residence in some states.

Chapter 7 Assets Liquidation 

There is another consideration when it comes to how assets are used during bankruptcy. There are a few bankruptcy routes that can be taken, and how assets are handled depends on which type you file. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is the avenue that will lead to asset liquidation. Creditors are notified of the bankruptcy filing and then have to file a claim with the trustee. Debts are put in order, and priority is given to those in the front of the line. These usually include secured debts or those that have collateral attached. When the trustee sells off assets, the creditors are paid in the order they appear. Once payments are made, all debts are discharged, even those that could not be paid.

Chapter 13 Payment Plan 

Chapter 13 bankruptcy involves a restructuring of your debt. The trustee meets with creditors and then negotiates a payment plan that is favorable to both parties. As long as the conditions of this plan are met within three to five years, your remaining debts should be discharged at the end. There is no requirement to sell assets, and some revolving loans like car payments and mortgages are not included in Chapter 13.

A bankruptcy lawyer in Tampa, FL can help you assess your financial picture and decide which type of bankruptcy filing works best for you.

 

Thanks to The Law Office of Michael A. Ziegler, P.L. for their insight into bankruptcy law and what happens to assets during bankruptcy.

 

Tips for Speaking With an Adjuster After a Crash

Dealing with the aftermath of a car accident can be stressful and exhausting. One of the necessary steps is speaking to the insurance companies involved, both yours and the other driver. If you were struck and not at fault, pay attention to these tips, so you know how to go about having a conversation with the other driver’s insurance adjuster.

Try To Stay Calm

The process of speaking to an adjuster, whether for your insurance carrier or the other driver’s, can be overwhelming and stressful. Especially when speaking to the at-fault party’s adjuster, tensions may run high. Remember, they are trying to gather evidence to try and prove you either played a part in the crash or that your damage and injuries were minimal. Therefore, you may feel frustrated and even angry with the way the adjuster speaks to you, and the questions they pose. Remember to try and remain as calm as possible. You are most likely on a recorded line, and anything you say can be presented as evidence.

Don’t Guess

An adjuster’s job is to determine who and what caused the crash. As such, they like to ask very specific questions such as:

  • How far into the lane was your vehicle?
  • How long was your blinker illuminated?
  • How many feet apart were you and the other vehicle when you started changing lanes?

They may ask questions in various ways to try and see if your answers change. If you do not know an answer, do not guess. They may ask you to give an estimate, but it is better if you don’t. Again, every answer you give goes toward determining liability and can be used against you later.

Keep Answers General

It is essential to keep your answers to the opposing driver’s adjuster as general as possible. Give an account of the accident, but don’t go into every detail. The more specific you get, the more likely your account will be questioned at some point. If you give incorrect information, even accidentally, the adjuster may not give you a chance to correct yourself. Keep your injuries vague as well. You may not know the extent of your injuries yet, and only naming what is bothering you now may close the door on future claims.

Keep Detailed Notes

Try to note the questions asked, and even how many times each was posed. Note any information the adjuster provides about the investigation. It may provide insight into the way the adjuster is leaning on reaching a liability determination.

Remember that at any time in the process, you may want to speak to a car accident lawyer in Minneapolis, MN for assistance. An attorney may provide valuable insight and help with recovery.

 

Thanks to Johnston | Martineau, PLLP for their insight into personal injury claims and speaking with an adjuster after a car accident

 

The Process of Receiving Your Settlement Check

Settling a claim for injuries sustained in a car accident can take a long time. It is usually a relief to reach a settlement and know that a check for damages will soon be on its way. However, you may have mistaken notions about when and how you will receive your settlement check. It will not come directly to you, and you may need to wait a little while longer before you receive it.

Signing the Necessary Forms

Before you can receive your settlement check, you will have to fill out some paperwork. The most important of these forms is the release. A defense attorney will prepare it, and you and your attorney must review it to ensure that it complies with the terms you have agreed on.

One of the conditions for receiving your settlement is that you must agree not to take any further legal action against the at-fault party in regard to this particular accident. Therefore, it is important to read it carefully before signing. It is also important to return the form within the specified timeframe, usually 30 to 60 days.

Reasonable Versus Unreasonable Delays

It is usually not the at-fault party but his or her insurance company that is responsible for making out your settlement check. Legally, the insurance company must begin to process the check as soon as it receives the release. However, there may be reasonable delays to the process. Reasonable delays include technical difficulties and backup due to a natural disaster.

If the check has been delayed by several weeks, however, it is appropriate to ask your attorney to follow up with the insurance company and find out what has caused it.

Multiple Recipients

The insurance company will not send the check directly to you. Rather, it will mail the check to your attorney’s office having made the check out to both you and the attorney. This is so that the attorney can deduct legal fees and pay any liens. For example, if you received treatment in the emergency room for injuries sustained in the accident, the hospital and treating physician are entitled to payment out of your settlement check.

Once the fees are paid and the liens have been handled, your attorney can then write you a check for the remainder of the settlement payment. Upon receiving the check, it is yours to keep and to do what you like with, as you would with any other check.

The whole check disbursement process can take months to complete. A car accident lawyer in Staunton, VA can walk you through the process and let you know what to expect. Contact a law firm today for more information.

 

Thanks to MartinWren, P.C. for their insight into personal injury claims and the process for getting your settlement check.

 

Divorce and Disability Payments

Divorce and Disability Payments

Your disability benefits can be greatly affected if you are going through a divorce. If you are receiving supplemental security income disability benefits, your benefits could improve, however, if you are receiving social security disability insurance through your spouse, the benefits could diminish. Working with a Social Security disability benefits lawyer while going through your divorce could help ensure you are able to receive the help that you need. 

SSI Disability Benefits

Your payments could increase after your divorce if you have received Supplemental Security Income disability benefits. This is because SSI is a benefit that is based on need. Your level of eligibility and how much money you should receive each month is determined based on how many resources you are able to receive, including a part of your spouse’s income and their finances towards your living expenses. It is important to note that if you are to receive alimony through your divorce, it will be considered as part of your unearned income that applies towards the SSI limit by the Social Security Administration . This will decide if they amount your receive each month will change. It is important to remember to let the agency know if you have gone through a divorce so they can recalculate the benefits you are to receive. 

SSDI from Your Work History

If, based on your work history, you have received Social Security Disability Insurance, your payments will not be changed at all by your divorce. This is because your disability payment is only related to your work history, not your spouse’s. On the other hand, if you receive Social Security Disability Insurance and have to pay child support or alimony after a divorce, some of your benefits may be used to fulfill these requirements. It depends on the types of benefits you receive if your Social Security dependents benefits will be impacted by the divorce. 

  • Spouse: If you received a spouse’s benefit during your marriage, this payment should not end when the divorce is final, unless one of the following take place:
      • Your marriage was less than ten years
      • You become remarried
      • You can receive a larger Social Security benefit based on your personal work record
  • Divorced Spouse: If you were not receiving your spouse’s benefit, you could collect dependent benefits based on your former spouse’s work record, if one of the following take place:
    • Your marriage lasted more than ten years
    • You are currently unmarried
    • You are over 62 years of age
    • You are not able to receive a larger Social Security benefit based on your personal work record

What Happens If I Remarry?

If you were receiving Social Security benefits due to your former spouse’s work history and then you get remarried, in most instances, you will no longer receive these benefits. However, if your new spouse is able to receive benefits, you could continue to receive your benefits. If you get remarried and your former spouse is receiving benefits based on your work history, your former spouse’s benefits will not change. 

It is important to speak with a social security lawyer in Memphis, TN to understand how your benefits may change following a divorce. Contact a law firm to schedule a consultation. 

Thanks to Darrell Castle & Associates, PLLC for their insight into social security law and divorce.

Common Types of Medical Malpractice

Personal Injury Lawyer

When we go to a hospital or doctor’s office for an illness or injury, we expect to come out feeling better. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always happen. Sometimes medical professionals make mistakes that end up causing harm to patients. If you were injured while under a doctor’s care, you may be eligible for compensation.

Here are the common types of medical malpractice:

Medication Errors

There are countless medications available today to treat various illnesses. When used correctly, they can improve a patient’s quality of life. However, if they’re not used correctly, the patient can experience serious complications. For example, if the doctor prescribes the wrong medication or incorrect dosage, the patient could get ill. Medication errors can also occur when a doctor fails to consider a patient’s age and medical history when prescribing medication.

Surgical Errors

Whether it’s a minor or major surgery, going under the knife can be a little scary. It’s even more terrifying to imagine your surgeon making a critical error while you’re lying on the table. Unfortunately, when surgeons and other surgical staff are careless, mistakes in the operating room can happen. Some of the most common surgical mistakes include performing the wrong procedure, leaving a surgical instrument inside the body, failing to control bleeding and operating on the wrong body part.

Misdiagnosis

A misdiagnosis occurs when a doctor diagnoses a patient with one condition when they actually have a completely different condition. This most frequently happens when a condition has very similar symptoms to other conditions. Some of the most common misdiagnosed health conditions include heart attack, fibromyalgia, lupus, lyme disease and cancer. If a patient is misdiagnosed, they lose valuable time to treat the actual condition and may get even sicker.

Birth Injuries

A mother’s worst nightmare is to have her baby suffer injuries during the delivery process. However, if the doctor is negligent during delivery, injuries are more likely to occur. Some of the most common medical problems associated with negligence during delivery include oxygen deprivation, improper use of forceps, brachial plexus injuries and nerve damage. Some of these birth injuries can affect the child for many years and take an immense financial and emotional toll on families.

Anesthesia Errors

Anesthesia is necessary for many surgical procedures. However, it can be incredibly dangerous if it’s not administered correctly. That’s why it’s always administered by a doctor specifically trained in how to safely give anesthesia. However, even trained professionals can make mistakes. If the anesthesiologist administers too much anesthesia for example, severe brain damage can occur.

If you’re a victim of medical malpractice, you should speak to a medical malpractice attorney in Naperville, IL as soon as possible. They have helped many people in similar situations and want to help you get the justice you deserve.

 


 

Thanks to The Law Offices of Konrad Sherinian, LLC for their insight into medical malpractice and common types.

Working With a Lawyer Two Years After Your Car Accident Injury

Life tends to get chaotic after a car accident. You have the immediate chaos at the scene, as well as the issues that ensue in following days, weeks and months after. If you were injured in a car accident two years ago and you’re just barely able to think about hiring a lawyer, are you still able to file a claim?

The Insurance Company

Most insurance companies require you report your accident within a day or two. Claims are often required in just a few days after that. If you wait too long, you may not be able to prove your injuries were an actual result of the accident, and this could result in you forfeiting your right to obtain compensation this way. Be sure you understand the terms of your insurance policy to avoid this type of situation. If you are unable to contact the insurance company yourself, you should have someone designated to do so.

A Legal Standpoint

If you plan to sue the at-fault driver, you have to do so within the statute of limitations. It varies by state, with some being two years and others being four. If you live in a state in which the statute is shorter, you might have to look at the exact day the accident took place and the exact day you’re at today. If it comes short of two years, it’s possible you can hire a lawyer and move forward. If not, you may be out of luck.

Exceptions to the Rule

There always seems to be an exception to every rule, and the same holds true for the statute of limitations. Some exceptions that may extend the statute for your situation include:

  • Being unconscious or not of sound mind. If that is the case following your accident, the statute would begin when you woke up or when you could think clearly and reasonably.
  • Being a minor at the time of your accident. Minors can’t take legal action in a car accident, so you would be able to begin the process when you turn 18 years old, even if your accident occurred when you were 12.
  • The other driver has left the state. If you can’t serve the other driver with a lawsuit because he or she left the state, the law will wait for you.

Getting Legal Help

Whether your accident was yesterday or yesteryear, getting legal help is important to a successful case. Contact your personal injury lawyer in Philadelphia, PA today for answers to your questions or for help getting started with the legal process.

 

Thanks to Wieand Law Firm, LLC for their insight into personal injury claims and working with a lawyer for a car accident injury.

 

Finding the Right Business Law Attorney

 

People who run their own business frequently consult with a seasoned attorney for advice and support. Business law can be tricky when it comes to standards and how rules can affect a company. For our clients to be successful in their business, it is key they get the information they need in order to make smart choices. When you hire a business litigation attorney you can expect to get the legal guidance you need.

 

An Arlington Business Litigation Attorney You Can Trust

 

Our legal team has helped an enormous number of clients and a wide range of businesses. We can help make you feel confident about making important decisions related to your business, and offer guidance when you need it. It can be critical to have a knowledgeable business litigation attorney to help them make informed decisions. An attorney can assist your company in many legal matters. Common areas of focus include but are not limited to:

 

Business Law Common Matters

 

              Partnership disputes

              Estate litigation (civil and probate)

              Intellectual property

              Employment litigation

              Residential landlord/tenant disputes

              Commercial litigation

              Labor law

              Wrongful termination

              Manufacturing

              Scientific litigation

              Trademark, copyright and/or patent

 

We firmly believe a business should not suffer due to unfair or untrue allegations of negligence or other accusations. We can help your company manage a difficult situation which can negatively affect your company’s professional reputation. We understand that unfounded allegations can be financially devastating. Our skilled attorneys provide a wide variety of legal services, including the following:

 

Business Law Legal Matters

 

1)        General – speak with a knowledgeable business litigation attorney over the phone about matters of concern to you.

2)        Letters and Other Communication– your attorney can contact others on your behalf, including submitting legal notices on your behalf.

3)         Designated  – receive very specific legal advice regarding business issues over the phone.

4)        Trial Support – a lawyer can represent you and defend your case in the court of law.

5)        Debt Collection – assist in protecting you from legal issues that small business may face.

6)        Drafting Contracts and Review of Documents – Ensure your paperwork is in order and protect you and your company’s best interests.

 

 

Please do not hesitate to give us a call so we can start your free consultation with any of our attorneys today.

 

Contact a lawyer, like a business attorney in Charlottesville, VA, for more information.

 

Thanks to Dale Jensen, PLC for their insight into business law.

What to Do After a Workers’ Compensation Denial

Workers Compensation Attorney

Coverage for injuries sustained at your workplace are usually covered under an employer’s workers’ compensation coverage. The majority of states require employees to have workers’ compensation coverage. If you’ve gone through the process but you had your claim denied, it may not be the end of the road. There are still steps that you can take. In fact, you can appeal the decision through the state’s board of workers’ compensation. Here is what you need to know about filing an appeal.

Why Was Your Claim Denied?

Before you can take the steps to rectify the denial, you need to figure out why it was denied in the first place. Usually, you will see the reason in the denial letter. This might be because you didn’t meet the eligibility requirements. Many of the reasons that you’ll see for a denial include:

  • You didn’t report the injury in time
  • You did not file the claim on time
  • Your injury is not compensable
  • You cannot receive medical treatment
  • You have insufficient evidence

Since there are a lot of reasons that a workers’ compensation claim is denied, it’s important for you to figure out why and determine if it was fair.

How Can You Appeal the Denial?

Once you know why you received a denial, you can appeal the decision. The denial letter will provide you with a final deadline for your appeal. In some states, you may have 30 days to file the appeal. Before you begin the process, you want to meet with your employee to determine if you can resolve the dispute easily. In some cases, it may have been a clerical error or something simply fixed.

Now, if it is a case where you need to appeal the decision, then you it’s time to think about an official appeals process. Every state has its own laws and process for appeals, but there are some similarities throughout the country. The appeals process involves a hearing before a judge through the state workers’ compensation board or the labor department. Make sure that you bring all of the proper documentation. This includes medical records and time sheets.

When it comes to workers’ compensation, most people rely on it after a workplace injury. If you feel as though you were wrongly denied your compensation, then you may want to file an appeal. As long as you have evidence on your side and file the appeal on time, it shouldn’t be a difficult process. To learn more about what to do after a denial, hire a workers compensation lawyer in Franklin, WI to speak to as soon as possible.

 


 

Thanks to Hickey & Turim, SC for their insight into workers compensation and denied claims.

Knowing When to Handover the Keys

Car Accident Lawyer

When we get behind the wheel to operate a motor vehicle, we are expected to drive responsibly, refraining from the use of drugs or alcohol. Despite this, people still have trouble in determining when they’ve had too much to drink in order to get behind the wheel. It can be hard to hand over the keys. Alternative plans such as asking someone for a ride home, sleeping over at a friends house, staying in a hotel, or taking a cab home can sometimes be less than ideal. However, making alternative plans if you have consumed alcohol is essential to ensuring not only that you are safe on the road, but that others are as well. Additionally, nothing is worse than the inconvenience and expense you will have to face if you are charged and convicted with a DUI. DUI lawyers have compiled a list of frequently asked questions to provide more information about the consumption of alcohol, getting behind the wheel and DUIs. 

What is the impact that drinking has on drivers?

Drinking alcohol limits cognitive functioning, making it difficult for someone who has indulged to respond appropriately and make quick and solid judgement calls when faced with the unexpected. Because of this, those who get behind the wheel intoxicated, could be putting not only themselves at risk, but others on the road. Across the country there are laws in place prohibiting driving if their BAC is above .08%. Meaning, someone who gets behind the wheel of a car with a BAC over .08% is likely to be charged with a DUI if they are pulled over. 

How will I know if I have consumed too much?

Interestingly enough, people often gauge how much they’ve had to drink based upon how they are feeling. This is a dangerous way to make decisions regarding whether you should get behind the wheel. What many do not realize, is the number of beverages they should consume in order to stay below the legal limit, is far less than people believe. Take the following examples into account, bearing in mind that the body can realistically get rid of one drink per hour: 

  • A person weighing 120 pounds consumes 3 beverages, before being at .08% BAC.
  • A person weighing 160 pounds consumes 4 beverages, before being at .08% BAC.

It’s important to bear in mind that a double, or a larger glass of wine will consist of more drinks than what may be listed above. Having some awareness of what you have consumed is important. If you have consumed more alcohol than you should have, it’s essential that you find an alternative way of getting home. 

Can I get a DUI if my BAC is below .08%?

It’s important to be aware that any amount of alcohol consumption can potentially result in a DUI if you get behind the wheel and drive. Meaning, a BAC of .08% doesn’t always matter. If you are noticeably impaired, you may still obtain a DUI, even if your BAC is below the legal limit. 

What should I do if I am pulled over with a DUI?

There are a number of key steps to take if you have been pulled over under suspicion of a DUI. It’s important that you try to remain as composed and rational as possible. Do not make any sudden movements, and be polite to law enforcement. Know that you have the right to refrain from answering questions from police. Be careful in how you answer the questions that are an attempt by law enforcement to gather information, your answers could be incriminating. It’s important to be aware that if an officer asks you to endure a field sobriety test, you may decline. However, you must submit to a breathalyzer, urine or blood test if the officer has reason to do so. 

Have you recently been charged with a DUI? Chances are this can feel like a nightmare situation. The impact of a DUI charge and conviction can be incredibly shameful and impactful for the driver. Working with a DUI lawyer will be essential to ensuring that you do not receive heavier consequences than necessary. Contact a DUI attorney in Virginia as soon as possible so that they may review your case and provide you with the representation you need. 

 


 

Thanks to Frederick J. Brynn, P.C. for their insight into criminal law and avoiding DUI charges.

What to Do When Injured in an Uber Accident

Personal Injury Lawyer

Ridesharing companies like Uber have changed the way we think of taxis altogether. They’re cheaper, often have nicer vehicles, and the drivers are pleasant most of the time. The advantage of taxis, however, is that in most states they are required to obtain special licensing and go through a few additional training sessions before being able to work for a taxi company. if you were to get into an accident while riding in a taxi, most taxi companies are responsible for covering your injuries. But how does that work with Uber?

After an Uber Accident

Immediately after an Uber accident, call the police and get medical attention if needed. If possible, take pictures of the accident and the damage. Collect contact and insurance information from both drivers, as well as the contact information from any willing eyewitnesses.

Who Pays for the Injuries?

Uber requires its drivers to hold insurance that covers passengers. This would be a type of commercial insurance policy or personal car insurance with special coverage for ridesharing. If they do not have enough coverage or are lacking the special coverage that applies while using their vehicle for business purposes, Uber does carry liability insurance. Uber’s insurance will pay up to $1 million per accident for injuries and property damage, but this is only after the driver’s insurance has been used up.

Uber Was Not at Fault

If the Uber driver was not at fault for the accident, you would file a claim with the other driver’s insurance company. Now, if on the off chance this driver has inadequate insurance or does not have insurance, Uber has coverage for uninsured and underinsured drivers, which would also cover up to $1 million in an accident.

Recoverable Damages

You should be compensated for all of your losses in any accident, which can include:

  • All medical bills, rehab, disability, or other health expenses related to the accident
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Property damage
  • Wage losses from any lost time at work
  • Future income loss related to long-term or permanent disability
  • Punitive damage if the accident was due to negligence or outrageously reckless driving

Protect Your Rights

If you have been involved in a serious accident that seems more complicated than filing a claim with an insurance company, speak with an experienced car accident lawyer in Longwood, FL. Especially if your situation requires settling with Uber’s insurance, they might try to cut you short. A lawyer will ensure your rights are protected and that you get adequate coverage for your injuries and losses.

 


 

Thanks to David & Philpot, PL for their insight into personal injury claims and uber accidents.