Written by Charleston Bankruptcy Lawyer, Russell A. DeMott
I met this client back in 2010. Her financial problems were largely caused by a failed marriage in which she was left “holding the bag.” Her case was involved and required numerous meetings because, with her income, it was difficult to put her in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. At the same time, Chapter 13 didn’t seem appropriate because she would have been in bankruptcy for five years only to repay a very small amount to her creditors. We worked with her to detail all her expenses (including some which would change in the near future) and filed a Chapter 7. The hard work paid off, and she received her discharge without having to file Chapter 13.
Her case illustrates what I’ve said over and over: each case is unique. Her case required considerable work–maybe double the work of a more “normal” case, but the work paid off. I enjoyed working with her and seeing her re-start her life–debt free.
Life Begins AGAIN after 45….
Who would have thought that life truly begins again at 45? After two failed marriages, the financial picture for me was looking pretty grim. I was faced with single parenthood again and a “mountain” of debt from a second divorce. The housing market had crashed around us all, leaving short-sales and our investments in the proverbial toilet. If losing the relationship wasn’t bad enough, the financial position I found myself in was horrific at best! I like so many others, moved out and chose to let the family home go into foreclosure. The results were staggering, letters began pouring in requesting over $70,000 in cash from me to “settle the mortgage” from the dreaded short sale. The phone calls from the creditors (we had one joint credit card with $10,000 on it), came at a rapid, alarming pace. Some days, I was getting as many as 12 phone calls from them. Now, looking back, that probably was grounds for harassment, but, I guess I was a sucker for punishment. I should have changed my phone number! The creditors didn’t stop; they pursued my family members and even called my place of employment. Repeated attempts to get them to stop were falling on deaf ears!
I knew I had to do something drastic. As the saying goes, drastic times call for drastic measures. I asked a good friend for a recommendation to see a bankruptcy attorney. The first appointment I was made to feel at ease and comfortable. I was totally embarrassed about the situation and felt out of control. Times have changed; I had found myself in a similar situation over 20 years ago. The laws for bankruptcy now are much more stringent than 20 years ago. The barrage of paperwork has now increased considerably; I spent months of getting tax returns, bank statements, credit information, etc., together to file my case. That to me was probably the hardest part. I felt so exposed, so irresponsible, yet, so very desperate. I finally filed my petition in May of 2010. In August of 2010, I received my final discharge. The whole process took a little longer than anticipated because I had an unusual case, but I am now finally on the road to RECOVERY! Life is looking good again and I am hoping and praying that I can purchase a home again by the end of the year!
Notice Required by SC Rule of Professional Conduct 7.1 : “Any result the endorsed lawyer or law firm may achieve on behalf of one client in one matter does not necessarily indicate similar results can be obtained for other clients.”