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Ralph Thompson’s Answers

38 total

  • I own 3 homes...One of which the rate is about to adjust, I cannot to subsidize the extra in payment. I tried to refi and mod.

    I have been unsuccessful with both the r refi and the modification. I am now attempting to do a shortsale, but no bites yet. How do I protect the rest of my assets and 401k if the house is foreclosed upon?

    Ralph’s Answer

    I agree with attorney Kosyln. You should also keep in mind that if this is not your primary residence you are like to face taxable "Cancellation of Debt Income" (COD). To eliminate both the possibility of the lender seeking a deficiency judgment against you, and the IRS and FTB seeking taxes you may want to consider filing bankruptcy. Talk to a local bankruptcy attorney for further guidance.

    This information is for educational purposes and is not intended to provide any legal advice whatsoever.

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  • Is it legal for me to rent out a room after just filing for a Chapter 7?

    I just went from a Chapter 13 to a Chapter 7. Until recently I have rented out rooms as a Sober Living Home. Is it illegal for me to rent out a room after just entering the Chapter 7? I filed for the Chapter 7 the day before my house was to go up ...

    Ralph’s Answer

    The 90 day notice period is for a "qualified" renter. That is generally someone who is not a family member or friend. The rent agreement between you and the rent must be at "arms-length" meaning its truly negotiated as to rent and other terms. This may not apply to you, but if you suddenly "find" a renter just before of after eviction, its likely that the renter will not qualify for 90 day notice. You can read more about the protections for tenants in foreclosed properties at http://www.forecloseddreams.com/eviction-after-foreclosure-trustee-sale.

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  • Can I be considered for chapter7 Bankruptcy, foreclosure+heloc+CC debt?CA atty help!

    I'm in foreclosure and my latest sale date will be end of Nov. I have moved out and rented. My total liabilites are following: 1st loan - $640k(+arrearages of ~$35k) heloc - $120k(+lates of ~$8k) credit cards - $48k auto - $20k My gross incom...

    Ralph’s Answer

    You are presumed not to qualify for Chapter 7 if your income is above California's median family income. However, this presumption can be overcome (rebutted) if you can show special circumstances (bankruptcy code section 707(b)(2)(B)(i)). Special circumstances include a serious medical condition or a call to active duty in the military. If you recently lost your job, your income as computed for the means test may still be too high (its the average of your last six months earnings) but the job loss could be a special circumstance qualifying you for Chapter 7.

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  • Can you ask a tenant to vacate, in order to use the property for family to reside in?

    The current tenant does not pay her rent on time, she pays only portions of the rent and has verbally said if she is asked to leave that she can stay there 6 months rent free. Recently, the tenant rented out a room in her home, yet she still doe...

    Ralph’s Answer

    You can not only ask your tenant to vacate, you can have her evicted using an unlawful detainer action. Nolo Press has a great book for landlords (and tenants) that will tell you exactly how to do it. If she's subletting make sure you serve the subtenant with eviction papers as well. If the property is in a rent control area, different rules may apply than with a normal eviction.

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  • Do I need to pay the property management company rent for a house in foreclosure?

    The owner of our rental house has stopped paying her mortgage, and it will soon be in foreclosure. We deal with a property management company, however. So do we still have to pay our full rent when the owner isn't even paying a mortgage. Any detai...

    Ralph’s Answer

    If you look at your lease, you'll probably find the lease agreement is between you and the property management company. If you don't pay the rent, they'll probably come after you--not the owner. In any case, until the house is foreclosed you have an obligation to pay the rent. The owner's issues with a third party (i.e. the bank foreclosing on the property) is really irrelevant to you.

    Mr. Thompson is licensed to practice law in CA and is located in Salinas. His response here does not constitute legal advice and does not create an attorney/ client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter in question. Many times the questioner may leave out details which would make the reply unsuitable. Mr. Thompson strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in their own state to acquire more information about the specifics of their case.

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  • As a landlord, can I show the property to new tenants if I give the old tenants a 48 hour notice?

    I have tenants moving out and I would like to show the property to possible new tenants. What is the law in regards to showing the property?

    Ralph’s Answer

    California law (Civil Code section 1954) allows a landlord to enter a rental property to show it to prospective or actual purchasers. You can only enter the premises only during "normal business hours" for showing purposes. The statutes and the courts have not defined "normal business hours" nor have they defined the length of time a house can be held open. Twenty-four hours is considered sufficient notice. Here's what the statute states: the landlord shall give the tenant reasonable notice in writing of his or her intent to enter and enter only during normal business hours. The notice shall include the date, approximate time, and purpose of the entry. The notice may be personally delivered to the tenant, left with someone of a suitable age and discretion at the premises, or, left on, near, or under the usual entry door of the premises in a manner in which a reasonable person would discover the notice. Twenty-four hours shall be presumed to be reasonable notice in absence of evidence to the contrary. The notice may be mailed to the tenant. Mailing of the notice at least six days prior to an intended entry is presumed reasonable notice in the absence of evidence to the contrary.

    The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. For instance, the above answer, might be different if a lawyer had a opportunity to read the lease between the landlord and the tenant.

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  • My landlord is close to foreclosure and listed the house as a short sale. Do I have to show the house to prospective buyers?

    My landlord is close to foreclosure and has listed the home for sale as a foreclosure. She wants to hold several open houses over the next couple weeks. Each open house is 4-6 hours long. Do I have to show the house for the open houses? It wil...

    Ralph’s Answer

    California law (Civil Code section 1954) allows a landlord to enter your home to show the house to prospective or actual purchasers. Unless you consent otherwise, your landlord can only enter the premises only during "normal business hours" for showing purposes. The statutes and the courts have not defined "normal business hours" nor have they defined the length of time a house can be held open.

    The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. For instance, the above answer, might be different if a lawyer had a opportunity to read the lease between the landlord and the tenant.

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  • Private student loan debt

    I owe $16,000 in private alternative student loans that have defaulted. I was laid off and didn't work for almost a year. Within this year my student loans went into default. I am being contacted by a collection agency (NES) and they are threaten...

    Ralph’s Answer

    You may want to consider bankruptcy. In general student loans are not dischargeable in bankruptcy. However, there is an exception if you can demonstrate that continued repayment of the student loan creates an "undue hardship." The criteria for getting a hardship exemption are: (1) you cannot maintain, based on your current income and expenses, a minimal standard of living if you are required to continue with the student loan, (2) evidence that you will be facing a minimal standard of living for the significant portion of the repayment period of the student loan, and (3) you have made a good faith effort to repay the loan.

    An undue hardship must be demonstrated to the Bankruptcy Court by filing a complaint. You can't just allege an undue hardship on the BK petition. Also, relief from student loan obligations, even with a hardship is frowned upon by the BK courts. You may want to talk with a BK lawyer for help on this.

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  • What are my obligations to my tenants as a landlord in CA to disclose a pending/possible foreclosure?

    Do I need to fully disclose to my tenants pending foreclosure details? What recourse do they have under California Tenant-Landlord law?

    Ralph’s Answer

    You are under no obligation. If you do tell them they may stop paying rent.

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  • How can I get my car out of the impound?

    my friend barrowed my car with out my permission while I was asleep. He got pulled over and he did not have his license. My car got impounded for 30 days. I wrote a review explaining I was not at fault and what had happened and how much i need my ...

    Ralph’s Answer

    Vehicle impounds are controlled by Vehicle Code Section 14607.6. Its a long statute but basically it says that the police have the right, as you know, to impound a vehicle driven by certain unlicensed drivers. Section 14607.6(c)(4) states that a registered or legal owner of record at the time of impoundment may request a hearing to determine the validity of the impoundment. The request for hearing must not be later than 10 days after the vehicle was impounded (which it appears that you did.) The hearing must be held not later than 2 days after the date it was requested. You can either talk to a lawyer about why this law was not applied in your situation, or go back to the police and ask them to explain why they didn't follow the requirements of VC 14607.6.

    The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change.

    See question