Matthew Scott Berkus’s Answers

Matthew Scott Berkus

Denver Bankruptcy Attorney.

Contributor Level 20
  1. My lien holder filed bankruptcy on my house, what do i do?

    Answered 12 months ago.

    1. Matthew Scott Berkus
    2. James P. Frederick
    3. Donald F. Hawbaker
    3 lawyer answers

    I hate to say it, but the question doesn't make sense. Let's try to clarify. (1) Mom passed away, presumably she owned the house and you are stating that the house passed to you upon her death? (2) A lien holder is the person/entity holding the security interest in the house. Most commonly this would be the mortgage lender/servicer. Here is where the question goes off the cliff...if the lien holder (the bank) filed bankruptcy, that doesn't necessarily equate to you losing the house....

    11 lawyers agreed with this answer

  2. Vehicle after Chpt. 7 has been filed

    Answered 11 months ago.

    1. Matthew Scott Berkus
    2. Dorothy G Bunce
    3. James Portman Webster
    3 lawyer answers

    You would know if you reaffirmed the debt (the process is obvious). Nothing can happen while the BK is still open. If you don't want the car you have the two options you already laid out. (1) do nothing, stop making the payments and let nature run its course, or (2) contact the bank and try to arrange a voluntary repo. If the car is sitting at a repair shop or tow yard, you should get it out of there so as not to incur storage fees. Those fees would not be discharged in your bankruptcy...

    9 lawyers agreed with this answer

  3. If i streamline a loan aft bankruptcy closed does it affect my ability to walk away from loan if I encounter financial hardship?

    Answered 11 months ago.

    1. Matthew Scott Berkus
    2. Deborah F Bowinski
    3. Derek R. Caldwell
    4. Dorothy G Bunce
    4 lawyer answers

    Streamline is a term of art in the mortgage industry...assuming you are using the word correctly, you are talking about an FHA Streamline Refinance. If that is what you are talking about, the answer is easy. A refinance creates a NEW loan. A refi pays off the old loan. A refi, in reality, is you selling your house to yourself. It is an all new transaction. So, if you do a streamline refinance, you will lose the benefit of your bankruptcy discharge because you paid off the loan that was...

    9 lawyers agreed with this answer

  4. How do I get my mortgage company to report my payments to the credit agencies after filing Chapter 7?

    Answered about 1 month ago.

    1. Matthew Scott Berkus
    2. Deborah F Bowinski
    3. Nathan D McKinney
    4. Dorothy G Bunce
    5. Blake Owen Brewer
    6. ···
    7 lawyer answers

    Your question is almost a daily occurrence on this website. Short answer, you can't get them to report payment history. Here is my article that answers it. http://www.mattberkus.com/blog/reaffirm-a-mortgage-refinance/ You will establish new credit. See my AVVO guide below about rebuilding credit after bankruptcy.

    Selected as best answer

  5. Will cashing out a retirement plan affect converting a chapter 13 bankruptcy to a chapter 7? Can they garnish it?

    Answered 12 months ago.

    1. Stephen Clark Harkess
    2. Matthew Scott Berkus
    3. Deborah F Bowinski
    4. Gary D. Bollinger
    5. Eric S Reed
    5 lawyer answers

    Get with an attorney before you do anything. Retirement accounts are 100% protected in Colorado. However, once you cash it out, the money becomes fair game for the bankruptcy trustee.

    8 lawyers agreed with this answer

    1 person marked this answer as helpful

  6. Is it a violation of 11 U.S.C. sect. 524 to pursue a new cause of action against a discharged debtor for fraud in the petition?

    Answered 8 months ago.

    1. Matthew Scott Berkus
    2. Herbert Weinberg
    3. Michael Avanesian
    4. Dorothy G Bunce
    4 lawyer answers

    Frankly, doesn't sound like much of case, so whether it would be a violation of 524 is not the issue. I don't think you will get very far with a suit for this alleged "deceit." You ultimately have the responsibility to protect your rights. The debtor and debtor's attorney are not responsible to you for protecting your claim. So, that case is extremely thin (read, there is nothing to it based on what you described). As for the home. The fact that the home is in wife's name, but mortgage is...

    Selected as best answer

  7. If I file a Proof of Claim in a BK case, am I in Privity with the bankruptcy trustee that is appointed?

    Answered about 2 months ago.

    1. Robert Lewis Firth
    2. Matthew Scott Berkus
    3. Richard D. Granvold
    4. Gerard William O'Brien
    5. David Luther Woodward
    5 lawyer answers

    No on all questions. Keep in mind, in chapter 11's, there normally is NOT a trustee. The Office of the U.S. Trustee supervises the case, but there is not an "appointed" trustee (although the debtor could request one). The debtor acts as their own trustee (i.e. debtor in possession). Once, and if, the case is converted to a chapter 7, then a panel trustee will be appointed to liquidate the business. All you do is file a proof of claim, the claim gets prioritized and it may get paid and may...

    10 lawyers agreed with this answer

  8. IRS Fresh Start Program: Question about Lien Withdrawal

    Answered 7 months ago.

    1. Matthew Scott Berkus
    2. Myron Wayne Tucker
    3. Barbara Lee Franklin
    4. Terrence Jay Moore
    5. Richard Gordon Stack
    5 lawyer answers

    No harm in applying http://www.irs.gov/Businesses/Small-Businesses-%26-Self-Employed/Fresh-Start-Notice-of-Federal-Tax-Liens

    10 lawyers agreed with this answer

  9. Should I file for Ch 7 or 13 BK?

    Answered 8 months ago.

    1. Matthew Scott Berkus
    2. Jonathan Stone
    3. Michael Patrick Hanrahan
    4. Brad Francis Weil
    5. Dorothy G Bunce
    6. ···
    6 lawyer answers

    No way to answer that question here. We would need to ask you many more questions to clarify the situation. That is why attorneys do consultations. You need to seek out a local attorney and consult, and eventually hire an attorney to represent you if you want any viable shot at saving your restaurant. As stated by others, all things being equal, if the goal is to protect certain assets, then chapter 13 is the first choice. The only issue is whether you have sufficient income to fund a...

    10 lawyers agreed with this answer

  10. How hard is it to remove the home from a chapter13 and let it go? Or terminate and file a new case?

    Answered 8 months ago.

    1. Matthew Scott Berkus
    2. Lynnmarie A. Johnson
    3. Robert J Adams Jr.
    4. Dorothy G Bunce
    4 lawyer answers

    Keep the big picture goal in mind. Your goal is the obtain a bankruptcy discharge. So, you probably don't need to (and probably shouldn't) dismiss and refile. As others have stated, you simply amend your bankruptcy schedules and modify the plan to surrender the house. It is relatively easy to do if your circumstances haven't changed too much. If your circumstances have changed (income has increased or decreased, new debts, etc), then it becomes a bigger hassle. But modifying the chapter 13 plan...

    10 lawyers agreed with this answer