A Skilled New Jersey Lawyer To Help You Save Your Home And Protect Your Future
Filing For Bankruptcy Protection
Difficult financial circumstances may call for the need to seek bankruptcy protection, most likely under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is often the more desirable option, as it eliminates all or most of your unsecured debts, including medical bills and credit cards. The court will appoint a trustee, who is responsible for selling any nonexempt assets or property to pay back your creditors. However, Chapter 7 is typically reserved for people with very little disposable income.
If you do not pass the “means test,” indicating whether you qualify for Chapter 7, you may still have options through Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Rather than wiping the slate clean, this form of bankruptcy requires you to set up payment plans with your creditors to eventually pay back at least a portion of what you owe. In most situations, Chapter 13 payment plans last between three and five years.
Regardless of the type of bankruptcy you pursue, it’s critical to work with a trusted lawyer to make sure the process is fair and efficient. I can also help you understand which assets or property is exempt from bankruptcy proceedings.
Protecting Your Home Against Foreclosure
Families fall behind on their mortgages and risk home foreclosure for many reasons, ranging from job loss and financial difficulties to misleading or fraudulent practices on the part of lenders. Increasing numbers of homeowners today are asserting their right to defend themselves against foreclosure. If you believe that the terms of your mortgage are overtly unfair, you may be able to persuade a judge that the actions of the bank or lender were unconscionable. You may also have options if the party foreclosing on your home did not follow strict state guidelines.
The New Jersey Foreclosure Mediation Program is a great resource for people who need to save their homes. The program helps homeowners and lenders find alternative solutions that avoid foreclosure. Similarly, the New Jersey Bankruptcy Court Loss Mitigation Program provides a formal line of communication through the assistance and supervision of the United States Bankruptcy Court for debtors and lenders to negotiate and hopefully reach a resolution that works for both parties. The former is offered through the state of New Jersey and the latter is offered through the United States Bankruptcy Court. Solutions reached through these programs may include loan modifications, forbearance agreements, new payment structures, deed in lieu of sale and short sales, among others.
COVID-19 (coronavirus) Mortgage Help
As a result of the coronavirus, homeowners who have suffered a financial hardship, such as a job loss, income reduction, sickness, or other issue may be eligible for a forbearance plan. If eligible, the forbearance plan may reduce or suspend your mortgage payments for up to 12 months while not incurring any late fees or negative reporting to the credit bureaus. After the forbearance period, your loan servicer must work with you on a permanent workout option to help maintain or reduce your monthly payment amounts as necessary, including a loan modification.
Seeking A Loan Modification
Another option for individuals facing foreclosure is to seek a loan modification, which restructures mortgages to allow for more affordable payments. Your lender may agree to reduce your interest rate, convert to a different type of interest structure or extend the time period over which the loan will be repaid. You and your attorney will need to demonstrate that financial hardships or other extenuating circumstances have made it impossible for you to make mortgage payments under the existing arrangement.
Work With A Trusted Bankruptcy And Foreclosure Defense Lawyer
If you’re facing serious financial issues in New Jersey or New York, consult the Law Offices of Craig A. Squitieri today. My firm is based in Englewood and I serve clients across the region, including all of Bergen County. To learn more about your options related to foreclosure, loan modifications or bankruptcy protection, call (201) 676-0018 or contact me online.