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Jeffrey C Ankrom

Jeffrey Ankrom’s Answers

4 total

  • Can a chapter 13 attorney help me?

    I live in Middletown, Rhode Island. I have been trying to get my mortage company (ASC/Wells Fargo) and investor (GMAC) to do a loan modification for three years. I was told this week that the investor will only do one loan modification for the l...

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    There may be ways to convince the investor to do the loan modification without filing bankruptcy. ASC often says that the investor will only do one loan modification, but that may be their policy not the investor's. Plus that policy may violate the terms of the investor's agreement with the US Treasury to implement the Making Home Affordable program. Escalating the loan modification application to the MHA help center, or a written correspondence identifying the dispute and requesting a resolution can be effective ways of getting the investor's attention and holding them to the terms of the MHA program. Also, a lawsuit in federal court in Rhode Island to prevent foreclosure while the loan modification is a viable possibility may be another option.

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  • In Rhode Island, who is responsible for marital debt - e.g., credit card bills in each spouse's name?


    Jeffrey’s Answer

    I think an important facet to your question is to whom is each spouse responsible.

    If one spouse's name is on the credit card account, then that person is the one responsible to pay the account -- in the eyes of the credit card company. (I'll refer to the person named on the account as the debtor consistently through this answer. The other spouse, whose name is not on the account, I will call the non-debtor spouse.)

    In Rhode Island Family Court, a judge may order that the non-debtor spouse pay the account. This order may enter before judgment or in the judgment. If the judge enters an order like this, the non-debtor spouse is responsible to pay the debt.

    However, that responsibility is only to the Family Court, not to the credit card company. The Family Court does not have jurisdiction over the credit card company, which is not typically a party to a divorce or separation proceeding. The Family Court cannot affect the credit card company's right to receive payments from the debtor.

    So what happens when the non-debtor spouse refuses to pay the credit card bill that he or she was ordered by Family Court to pay? First, the credit card company, which was not affected by the Family Court order, will pursue action against the debtor. The credit card company can place negative marks on the debtor's credit, call the debtor to collect the outstanding balance, and even file a lawsuit against the debtor. The Family Court order is not a defense to the credit card company's rights against the debtor.

    The non-debtor spouse does not get away free though. The debtor can often pursue an action against the non-debtor spouse in Family Court to enforce the court's order. The Family Court has jurisdiction to reimburse the debtor for money paid to the credit card company and issue fines against the non-debtor spouse for failing to pay for the debt as ordered.

    I touched on a similar issue in my recent blog post, linked below. Hopefully you find it helpful too.

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  • My husband co-signed a sallie mae loan for our daughter in 2008. They just called and demanded my checking account number?

    Unfortunately my husband is on ssdi due to a head injury and gave them the checking account numbers. Will they take money out of our accounts. Our daughter is still in school = finishing this 9/2012. But is not listed on the website they view. ...

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    Money from SSDI, even if it is in your checking account, should be protected from any creditor trying to take it, even student loans. However, it is probably easier to close your checking account and transfer to a new bank than it is to stop the creditor from taking it.

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  • What happens if i default on a stipulation and recieve a motion to issue an execution

    i have already been to court in November and defaulted on the agreement but need more time to pay it

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    You should begin by filing an objection to the motion to issue the execution. Ask the judge for more time to pay. Explain in detail your reasons why you missed the payment. Depending on the judge and the reasons you present, you may get more time. The collection attorney knows this is a possibility too, so he or she may even offer you more time when you get to court, though it may be under less favorable conditions than the first stipulation. The worst that can happen is the execution issues; filing the objection and trying to stop it will never hurt. Always try to work out an agreement, but don't be afraid to discuss the matter with the judge, too. And remember that you may qualify for bankruptcy protection, which will eliminate the wage garnishment and even get back the money that was taken very recently. This is what the collection attorney fears.

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