Written by Canterbury Law Group

Dealing With the Emotions of Bankruptcy

For many, accepting the fact that their finances are beyond their control and that bankruptcy is the only option is challenging. The thing is, though, bankruptcy should not be looked at as the end of the world.

Filing for bankruptcy is a way of admitting that you need help with your finances, and are willing to put in the work to regain control. However, the word bankruptcy still has a negative connotation to it. With that can come the stress on your mental and emotional well-being.

When going through bankruptcy, it is important that you remain as strong as you can. That is why we have the following six tips to help you deal with your emotions while going through bankruptcy.

Realize You Are Not the Only One

Filing for bankruptcy can be a blow to the ego. Your debt got out of hand to the point that there was nothing more you could do to control it. It can negatively affect your mental well being. The last thing you need, though, is for you to be hard on yourself which will only make you suffer even more.

Understand that you are not alone. Many people go through a bankruptcy claim, and many of them come out better after it’s all said and done. Look at a bankruptcy claim as a step you’ve taken to regain control of your finances, and not that you’ve given up. The truth is, you haven’t given up by taking this path because it’s only the first step of many that you’ll be taking to get out of debt.

Speak With Your Attorney

Your bankruptcy attorney is there to answer all of your questions and to guide you through the bankruptcy processes. By going with the top bankruptcy attorney in Scottsdale, they know how difficult a bankruptcy claim can be on someone’s mental well being. A good attorney will be compassionate and understanding, all while not allowing you to give up mentally and emotionally.

Lean on Family and Friends

Even if you want to keep your bankruptcy claim very private, it is still beneficial to have someone you trust to lean on. A close friend or family member will be able to listen to your problems and give you a shoulder to cry on. Take advantage of this as to avoid bottling everything inside.

Educate Yourself on Finances

After filing for bankruptcy, it’s a good idea to start reading up on what you can about finances and recovering from bankruptcy. Financial education will help you through your bankruptcy journey, as well as prevent you from ending up where you were before all of this. 

Seek Counseling

If you find that bankruptcy has taken an extreme toll on your mental health, seeking out counseling services is a good idea. These trained professionals can listen to your problems, and give you advice and coping mechanisms that will help you make it through bankruptcy.

Volunteer

For some, keeping their mind busy will help clear their head and stop thinking about bankruptcy for a moment. Going out and volunteering is an excellent way to do this. Volunteering is a way to lift your spirits by doing something good for someone else.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Three Tips to Stop Stressing About Money

Although it may seem like the answer to many of your problems, having more money will not magically solve your financial woes. Sure, earning more money can certainly help your situation, but it is not the be all end all. Ultimately, you will experience a degree of stress regardless of how much money you make. While stress may never be eliminated entirely, you can take steps to reduce it as much as possible. Bankruptcy lawyers in Scottsdale recommend using the following three tips to quit stressing.

Find a side gig

Living paycheck-to-paycheck is never easy and the inability to save money can lead to worry and financial stress. In order to avoid this, think about ways to earn extra dollars, such as finding a higher paying job or an awesome side gig. Sustaining multiple sources of income is essentially like an insurance policy; it helps you not only pay the bills but also have reliable income if you lose another job.

Be in the know

Understanding the nature of your finances is critical. Failure to stay up-to-date with your money will exacerbate your financial distress. Thus, opening and addressing mail immediately is important. Not only that, you should maintain a calendar so you know and understand when things are due. If you are having a difficult time paying your bills, find a financial advisor or creditor to help you.

Cut your expenses

There is no doubt that overspending will lead to a diminished savings account and an increased balance on your debts. Not to mention, this all has a significant impact on your level of anxiety. You should take some time to eliminate unnecessary expenses. Consider your mortgage, for example. Ultimately, you should keep your mortgage or rent payment to less than 25% of your gross income.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Rebuilding Credit After Bankruptcy

Your life doesn’t end when you file for bankruptcy. There are many positives to this, such as having unsecured credit card debt discharged. There are also some negatives, mainly a major blow to your credit score. It’s not impossible to improve a bad credit score once your bankruptcy lawsuit is final.

Here is the good news.  Once your bankruptcy case concludes, you should take a hard look at the current state of your finances. Even if the court discharged some debt, you may have to still repay secured loans under a new payment plan. There may be tax issues to discuss with your bankruptcy lawyer in Scottsdale. More importantly, you should focus on your current credit score. Here are several tips for bringing it back up to what it once was:

Don’t Make the Mistake of Avoiding Credit Cards

Once you have undergone one bankruptcy, it’s easy to think that you will never use another credit card again. But this is usually noted feasible. You will likely need a credit card to improve your credit score. Not having a credit card is similar to having bad credit. A credit score reflects your reliability as a borrower. You can earn it back by proving that you are a responsible borrower to the bank. Therefore, you should keep your credit card or open a new account. However, do make payments on time. Once you keep making payments over time, your credit score would naturally improve.

Focus on Your Credit Utilization Ratio

Credit utilization ratio (CUR) is sometimes called the balance-to-limit ratio. It refers to how much credit you use as opposed to how much is left unused at the end of the month. This little number plays a major role in how fast and effectively your credit score improves. If you have a high utilization rate, this would negatively affect your credit score. If you have a $1,000 limit on your credit card, and if you use all $1,000 to buy things each month, then your CUR would be extremely high, reflected in a bad credit score. Ideally, you should keep your CRU in the 50 to 60 percent range. For the aforementioned credit card, if you were to spend only $500 or $600 a month, you would have a roughly balanced ratio that would work to your advantage.

Pay Off Majority of Credit Card Balances Each Month

Pay at least 75 percent of credit card balances each month. Ideally, you should repay it all back. Maintain your CUR with payments on time. Keep in mind to never max out the credit limit.

Use a Secured Credit Card

A secured credit card is similar to a regular credit card, but there’s a cash collateral required to obtain one. You will receive one of these after making a security deposit. These cards are designed to help those with bad credit gain positive credit scores. Unlike with regular credit cards, banks typically make payment information about secured credit cards available to credit agencies without delay. Therefore, you can rebuild your credit faster with a secured credit card.

It’s also advisable not to borrow money, such as for a loan, until your credit score is at an ideal level. And don’t rush to increase your credit score either, as it can bac-kfire. Develop an actionable strategy that works best for you to gradually improve your credit score after bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy is a bridge to your new future.  Let Canterbury Law Group take you there and create your future!

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Advantages and Disadvantages of Filing for Chapter 7 or 13 Bankruptcy in Arizona

If you have decided to file for bankruptcy, you may be wondering whether you should file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is not suitable for all situations. Also, Chapter 13 bankruptcy is usually the more common option for petitioners who are behind on mortgage payments but still want to keep their property. Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows the borrower to agree to pay back overdue charges and settle back on the original mortgage contract. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is the most commonly used option for those who are severely indebted and simply wish to start over.  

You can always consult with a local bankruptcy attorney in Scottsdale or your area to decide which option is best for you. Otherwise, take a look at advantages and disadvantages of both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 forms of bankruptcy to decide which option is the best for you:

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Arizona

Most Arizonans who are in heavy debt choose this option to solve their financial situation. Under Chapter 7 filings, a court will most likely discharge unsecured debts like credit card debt or personal loans. The petitioners will only have to pay back debts secured with assets once the parties have agreed on a “Reaffirmed Agreement.”

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is particularly attractive to many because it offers protection against debt collection efforts like constant calls and holding back wages. If you earn any wages on a property you have bought, the money will belong to you, not the creditor, following the Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing date.

There is also no minimum debt amount needed to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. You can expect the proceedings to end within 3 to 6 months from the filing date.

As attractive as it may be, Chapter 7 bankruptcy is not without its setbacks. Mainly, the law does not cover assets given up as collateral for a loan, such as a property or a vehicle. The petitioners could lose non-exempt property, which would later be sold by a court-appointed Trustee. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is not typically suitable if your home is undergoing foreclosure. Filing for bankruptcy will only temporarily halt the proceedings. Co-signers will also be contractually bound unless they separately file for bankruptcy.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in Arizona

This option allows petitioners to keep all property, whether exempt or nonexempt, under a court-approved payment plan. If you have many secured loans, then Chapter 13 bankruptcy is the best option for you. Some debts will not be canceled under Chapter 7, but a judge can reduce them. Like with Chapter 7, Chapter 13 filings afford protections against collection calls and similar efforts by the creditor.   When pursuing Chapter 13, you’re most likely going to need experienced legal counsel by your side.  

If you agree on a full payment, co-signers will be protected from creditor’s collection efforts. You can also obtain protection against foreclosure of your home if you completely follow the new payment agreement. You can also get more time to pay off debts under this proceeding, especially ones that are not discharged, like child support or taxes. You can also repeatedly file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

The disadvantage is that the payment plan you agree to will be based on your income earned after the filing date. You will have to be frugal until the debts are paid back as per the agreement. These plans can last from 3 to 5 years. As a result, the proceedings can last up to 5 years. Attorney fees for Chapter 13 bankruptcy also tend to be higher.  Some professions, like stockbrokers, cannot file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Arizona.

Carefully consider the advantages and disadvantages given above before discussing your bankruptcy with an attorney.  For more email the firm at [email protected] or call 480-240-0040.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Tips to Avoid Losing Money in the New Year

The Scottsdale lawyers at Canterbury Law Group are authorities in bankruptcy matters.   As we enter the New Year, we realize that many Scottsdale residents are trying to improve their financial affairs. Unfortunately the world is full of opportunities for you to give up your hard-earned money unwisely. Becoming an informed consumer is a big step toward avoiding these minefields—and developing the financial power that will keep you out of debt troubles.

Here are some tips for today on how to avoid money traps.

Avoid the “Free” Trial Offer – Ever wonder why businesses are willing to offer that free trial? Sure, it may build customer loyalty and maybe you’ll happily become a repeat buyer. But companies know that many of us will never read the fine print and the vendors typically make no attempt to remind us when the free period is over. Instead your “free” subscription or service converts to a paid one. You are left with an unwanted monthly expense and now they have a steady revenue stream.  It is often challenging, if not impossible, to terminate these subscriptions.

Skip upgrades and add-ons – Upgrades at fast food, electronics, retailers and car dealerships make for huge profits so companies really push them. To avoid this trap, do your homework. Know ahead of time what you really want. For example, quiz your insurance agent about how much your own insurance covers you in a rental car. If you later decide an extended warranty or other add-on is appropriate, fine. If not, just say NO. And stick to it.

Don’t co-sign for others – Remember,  your best friend or family member can lose their job, and when they do that car will be repossessed and the bank will be coming after you—for the entire unpaid balance.

Filing bankruptcy can seem overwhelming.  However, at Canterbury Law Group, we will represent you through the entire process and fight diligently to secure your fresh financial start. Call us today to schedule your consultation. We can put you on the path to reach financial success!

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Simple Tips to Help Avoid Post – Holiday Bankruptcy

The annual gift-giving season is swiftly approaching and the Phoenix and Scottsdale bankruptcy attorneys at Canterbury Law Group know that this can sometimes lead to serious repercussions after the holiday cheer wears off.

To combat any decisions that may lead you to bankruptcy, the law team at Canterbury suggests treating your holiday spending like a business. Below are suggestions to help you stay on track during the most expensive season of the year.

1. Strategize. Begin by creating a holiday spending plan. Decide how much you can afford to spend this season, including gifts, travel, parties, decorations, and any other holiday expenses. Make a shopping list for whom you want to purchase gifts for. Determine how much you’ll earn between now and the holidays and decide how much you’ll need to set aside each paycheck to save the amount you will need. Also, consider your charitable gift intentions and budget.

2. Track your spending. If you realize you do not need to spend as much as you planned in some categories, move the extra funds to other categories. Or, save the money for your debt stockpile when the bills start to arrive in the New Year.

3. Shop without your credit cards. Yes, leave them at home unless you know you need them for a specific purchase and you already have a specific plan to repay the debt. Use cash.

4. Shop smart. Shop online first so you can price compare multiple retail locations. It’s also wise to ignore most of those “big” sales. In reality, deals such as “Buy 2, Get 1 Free” often leave you spending more and acquiring items that aren’t needed. Stores will often mark up items before “cutting” the price and you end up paying the same-or more.

5. Avoid purchasing on impulse. Instead, make a note of the product, where you saw it and how much it was. Consult your spending plan, and, if there’s room, return for the purchase. If you are married, consult your spouse. Do not hide your spending; you are a family and a team.

If your credit card debt truly gets to the point of seeming to reach the point of no return, no matter how much you save or earn—you might consider bankruptcy to flush out all the debt and start fresh and new.

It is no surprise that filing bankruptcy can seem like an extreme option but it does offer a way out. At Canterbury Law Group, we will represent you through the entire process and fight diligently to secure your fresh financial start. Call us today to schedule your consultation. [email protected] or 480-240-0040 or www.canterburylawgroup.com

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Scottsdale Family Attorneys at Canterbury Law Group

The Scottsdale family attorneys at Canterbury Law Group handle all types of Phoenix and Scottsdale family law matters including divorce, child custody, paternity, prenuptial agreements, postnuptial agreements, spousal maintenance, Decree enforcement, child relocation, father’s rights, mother’s rights and grandparents’ rights.

If you are not sure whether or not you need a family law attorney in Scottsdale, here is an outline of what our lawyers can likely help you with:

  • Divorce – Whether you are considering filing for divorce or you’ve already been served with a divorce petition, it is critical to speak with an attorney immediately to assess your legal rights and take the necessary steps to protect them. Every situation is unique and our attorneys are well equipped to provide you with the tools to make the best decision that suits your particular situation.
  • Prenups/Postnups – Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements can be smart financial planning tools for all marriages but are especially common in second and third marriages, for business owners and/or when one partner has a large inheritance (received or expected in the future
  • Father’s Rights – Our attorneys are experienced in helping Fathers get fair and equitable treatment by the courts in Phoenix, Scottsdale and Arizona.
  • Child Custody – Typically when parents cannot mutually agree on a child-rearing plan, the court will often establish a plan that both parents must follow concerning the children’s health and welfare. Arizona law requires that the best interest of the child be the lead consideration above any other.
  • Alimony – Spousal maintenance is where one spouse pays the other spouse monthly support payments for a defined term of months or years after the divorce is final to help the less wealthy spouse transition to the next phase of their life and ideally for them to be come self-sufficient.
  • Paternity – When a couple has children without being married, they should still legally establish who the lawful father of the child is, as well as determine what rights and obligations exist toward the child. Get your court orders now, while the child is young—do not wait until later.
  • Relocation – Out of state relocation by parents and children has become a common issue in family law and is taken extremely seriously as it often has a profound impact on all involved. As a result, Arizona has very detailed laws which outline specific requirements and guidelines for cases involving a parent who wishes to relocate the child or to prevent child relocation out of state.
  • Grandparents – Once a grandparents’ rights petition is filed, the court will consider several specific statutory factors to determine whether a court-ordered grandparent visitation is in the best interest of the child. These rights cannot be pursued unless at least one parent is dead or the parents are divorced.

Ultimately, we realize that hiring a Scottsdale family attorney can be a challenging task. Call the lawyers at Canterbury Law Group today to schedule you consultation. 480-240-0040

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Gawker – Popular Media Site – Files Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

Media site, Gawker, has recently filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy, motivated by the company’s agonizing and all-consuming legal fight with Hulk Hogan. A judge has ordered Gawker to pay Hulk Hoag $140 million in damages.

Gawker has agreed to sell all seven of its brands and other assets to the tech publisher Ziff Davis. The Ziff Davis bid — worth $90 million to $100 million, according to sources — sets the floor for the bankruptcy auction process.

The asset purchase agreement to Ziff Davis, the owner of PC Magazine, marks the start of the bankruptcy auction process. Bidding is expected to continue next week. The sale agreement to Ziff Davis will need to be approved by the bankruptcy court, which will conduct an auction to see if there is a higher offer available. Ziff Davis will be what is known as a “stalking horse bidder,” whose offer for the company can be topped by other bidders.

Gawker is pushing ahead with an appeal of the judgment with Hulk Hogan and has maintained confidence that it will ultimately be vindicated, but the company has been openly entertaining a sale.

Canterbury Law Group helps businesses and individuals, usually with a high net worth, file Chapter 11 to solve their bankruptcy needs. The bankruptcy attorneys at Canterbury Law Group have significant experience with Chapter 11 filings, which tend to be very complex, and are capable of filing an individual case or a corporate entity case under Chapter 11 as mandated by the facts of each individual case.

Filing for bankruptcy can be an intimidating process and people are often ashamed of doing it. However, a real challenge when filing for bankruptcy is not securing the services of trusted legal representation like the bankruptcy lawyers at Canterbury Law Group. The legal process can be very demanding and tedious. Without the help of an experienced lawyer it is common to miss important deadlines, make mistakes on required forms and to misunderstand certain rules or terms which can be highly detrimental to your case. The bankruptcy lawyers at Canterbury law Group work diligently with bankruptcy clients to secure their fresh financial freedom.

The bankruptcy attorneys at Canterbury Law Group are experienced experts in all areas of bankruptcy cases in the Phoenix and Scottsdale area. Please call us today to schedule your consultation.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

3 Steps When Filing Bankruptcy

At Canterbury Law Group, our Scottsdale bankruptcy attorneys are renowned industry experts. We represent clients through the entire bankruptcy process and, although all cases are unique, the end goal of bankruptcy is always a new beginning and fresh financial start.

Here are three tips for those considering bankruptcy:

1. Gather financial documents. Start collecting financial documents that your attorney can use. Obtain a record of debt including credit card bills, unpaid medical bills, loan statements, etc. Also locate any documentation on assets you currently hold as well as your monthly income statements.

2. Find a qualified law team. Filing for bankruptcy is a complicated process and a simple mistake can be harmful to your case. Make sure you have a legal team that is experienced, understands your goals and can get the job done. Many law firms offer a complimentary first-time consultation. Call the Scottsdale bankruptcy lawyers at Canterbury Law Group today to schedule your appointment.

3. Improve upon your financial habits. You must improve your financial life after your file bankruptcy. Obtain a secured credit card or personal loan to start building up your credit but remember that you may have to wait some time before you can be approved for a secured credit card. Further educate yourself by reading books, reviewing financial websites and seeking out professional guidance.

As authorities in the legal industry, the bankruptcy team at Canterbury Law Group was uniquely formed to provide no-nonsense legal counsel for personal and business bankruptcy cases. The law group at Canterbury consists of a unified team of litigators and paralegals with the experience necessary to deliver high results. The team’s attention, experience and sophistication allows for innovative resolutions that have a positive client impact.

Our legal team is ready to represent you in your Scottsdale business bankruptcy case. Call us today to schedule your consultation. Our track record speaks for itself!

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Common Questions When One Spouse Files Bankruptcy

The Scottsdale bankruptcy attorneys at Canterbury Law Group represent debtors, creditors, trustees and committees in both personal and commercial bankruptcies. Bankruptcy law provides for the reduction or elimination of certain debts, and can provide a timeline for the repayment of non-dischargeable debts. It also permits individuals and organizations to repay secured debts with more favorable terms to the borrower.

The Phoenix bankruptcy lawyers at Canterbury represent many clients through personal bankruptcy cases. If you’re married and considering filing bankruptcy, here are common questions that often arise:

1. Do I Have to File Bankruptcy with My Spouse? If only one partner in a marriage owes debt, then only that partner should file for bankruptcy. Debts where spouses are jointly and severally liable for payment will remain with the spouse who has not filed for bankruptcy. However, in states that follow community property law, single spouse bankruptcy for joint debts may in some situations be advantageous.

2. Can I File for Bankruptcy without My Spouse’s Knowledge? Legally and in theory, yes, it would be possible for one spouse to file for bankruptcy without the other partner ever finding out. However, Chapter 7 bankruptcy uses income as a test for eligibility and utilizes income garnishment as a means of settling debt. The non-filing spouse will certainly notice if his or her paychecks are being collected by the bankruptcy court for debt repayment. Even outside Chapter 7 bankruptcy though, there are plenty of other ways for a spouse to discover his or her partner’s financial situation. Our Scottsdale bankruptcy lawyers suggest that hiding bankruptcy is only a temporary solution at best and is not healthy to any marriage nor recommended.

3. Will My Credit or Property Be Affected If My Spouse Files Bankruptcy? In general, one spouse filing for bankruptcy will not affect the other spouse’s financial situation, including the other spouse’s credit rating. A debt is created by contract between a debtor and a creditor – each debtor must sign the contract to be liable for payment. Therefore, the bankruptcy of one spouse does not cause the other to become bankrupt.

4. Does Single Spouse Bankruptcy Change the Nature of Joint Debts? Under Chapter 7 bankruptcy, when a spouse’s debts are wiped clean, the creditor can go after the other spouse. However, a major advantage of Chapter 13 bankruptcy, where the debtor plans to re-pay her debts, is that the creditor will leave the co-debtor alone, as long as bankruptcy plan payments are timely deposited.

5. Are There Any Exceptions? While the bankruptcy of one spouse does not generally affect the other, there are some notable exceptions. For example, the bankruptcy of one’s spouse may show up on the other’s credit report if joint debt is involved – a contentious area of the law. Also, if applying for a joint loan in the future, the bankruptcy of one spouse will affect the creditworthiness of the applying couple.

If you’re considering filing bankruptcy, the Phoenix bankruptcy attorneys can help you. Contact us today to schedule a consultation. 480-240-0040.

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