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Matthew Erik Johnson
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Matthew Johnson’s Answers

1,637 total


  • Will sallie Mae accept a lump sum(2,000) of less than amount owed ($3,400) after 15 years of low payments on student loan?

    I am 73years old and live on $888.00 a month social security.

    Matthew’s Answer

    As the other attorneys have correctly mentioned; you may qualify for student loan forgiveness or might be able to negotiate a settlement.

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  • Can Bankruptcy court override a divorce decree?

    Divorce decree says both will cooperate in ongoing chpt 13, chapter 13 attorney dismisses one spouse from the case. remaining party gets stuck with entire bill. Can the bankruptcy court override an order handed down in a divorce?

    Matthew’s Answer

    I agree with the other lawyers on this matter. Bankruptcy has authority over divorce decrees, private agreements, contracts, and most other outside influences. However, jurisdiction is narrow to the bankruptcy and the assets within the bankruptcy estate.

    However, there are some other things to think about. In a chapter 13, all of your disposable income is applied to the plan. Therefore, even if the spouse is dismissed, the same amount of monthly payments are made. The only difference is that the schedules need to be amended to no longer contain the leaving spouse's total income which should reduce payments absent the departing spouse not working - which would mean there is no change regardless.

    If the asset is a home or some other item with a lien, then after taking a look at the case it MIGHT be possible to file a non-voluntary case for the departing spouse.

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  • What will likely happen in court

    We received a 90 day notice that we were going to be sued for $7100 in debt in small claims court for money we owe a shop. The owner of the shop gave us an estimate of 7000 to fix our car we told him we couldn't afford it. He told us we could ma...

    Matthew’s Answer

    Chances are they will obtain a judgment which will then allow them to place a garnishment on your paycheck. If you can establish that you are within the original agreement with the owner and havent defaulted, you have a chance but proving this may be problematic or costly to respond.

    If things are really really tight a bankruptcy may help in this situation, depending on your other debt situation. Otherwise a quick negotiation is likely the only other legitimate option out there.

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  • Consumer protection/fraud advice and help needed for paying off a mortgage and for illegal lending practices.

    The company has done everything from harassing calls, to threatening me, to giving me all sorts of unnecessary fines. I'd like to pay off what I owe to get rid of them for good. But I'm afraid that they will come back after me. When I called for t...

    Matthew’s Answer

    First thing you should look into is filing for bankruptcy. A filing will stop the collection actions immediately and if you make enough regular income, could potentially save your home through a Chapter 13 by paying off the arrears over time. However this would take a consultation with a local attorney to see if a Chapter 13 plan is viable - as there are a lot of specifics that need to be navigated.

    Then... you should visit a consumer protection attorney and review what you believe to be illegal lending practices. What is and is not allowed will be known by a consumer protection attorney.

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  • We are a well servicing company in California. Do we have to file preliminary lien notices for our on-going work each month?

    We have been working with this CPA maintaining these 16 wells for 7 years. He has always paid us in full and on time until earlier this year when oil prices started to fall. Now he owes us over $200,000 in back invoices. He is also trying to se...

    Matthew’s Answer

    You should contact a local debt collection attorney and work out a deal to get this taken care of or negotiated out. The money or percentage you lose may help you protect or obtain the rest. Obviously obtaining a lien should be done as fast as possible, but only through an attorney who has filed liens before. Any detail missing may cost you dearly.

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  • I filed bankruptcy 2013. I filed my taxes. I never heard back. Now I received motion to move. I refiled and emailed copy 2 tru

    I thought the trustee just took my refund. But what happened was turbo tax never sent them...they have no record. So I resubmitted them. What should I do? Can they dismiss my case? Can they take my 2014 refund?

    Matthew’s Answer

    Not sure what you mean by a "motion to move". If you mean a motion to dismiss then you should contact the trustee office immediately and explain whats going on. If you have an attorney, even better since you can actually have the attorney figure out the status if you payment plan far better than we can on Avvo since there are some variables I'd need to fully answer this question. Is it a 3 year plan? 5 Year plan? Shorter (ie did your plan pay in full before the required time frame)? This is very important and you should get on this immediately.

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  • Case Dismissed without prejudice after bankruptcy

    Hi, Five years ago I was sued in a securities case and the plaintiff was awarded the amount in arbitration. I had to file Chapter 13 which is now Closed and Discharged. After this I received a letter from the court saying that the previous secur...

    Matthew’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Dismissed without prejudice does mean they could hypothetically sue you again. However, since you received a discharge, the creditor cannot sue you again on the debt you owed. If they do, you will have a lawsuit for consumer protection against the creditor.

    The "without prejudice" is therefore a misnomer in this case, since technically the bankruptcy makes it "with prejudice". But I suppose if they found some reason to overturn the discharge, for instance if it was discovered you had committed bankruptcy fraud, then they could potentially sue you again. This is just the attorneys covering their backs.

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  • Please help...What to do? I've had this Cred. Crd debt for over 10 yrs, but in 2012 contacted firm repping Cred. Cd Company.

    Credit card company (CCC) filed a judgment against me 2010 for amount owed to them. Hadn't spoken to the law firm representing company. 2012 - CCC filed a garnishment against me-I called them. At the time, was able to work out payments, so they st...

    Matthew’s Answer

    Depends on what the amount of the debt is. Chances are if you're having trouble paying the credit card, its time to file for bankruptcy.

    if you file, then you generally have to include all of your creditors. You can choose not to in some states. If you have a $0 balance you can avoid naming the "creditor" if you choose; though its not really a creditor unless you owe something.

    Beyond that you should look to either negotiate a settlement or file. To know which I would need to delve into your income levels and debt levels to make an accurate assessment.

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  • What does a preacipe to record judgment mean?

    I received a civil action suit from a credit Nov 2013 and have paid $100 monthly to them faithfully since that time to current but this week now I received a Preacipe to Record Judgment and I am not sure what that means. Can you please help?

    Matthew’s Answer

    This means they have filed a lawsuit against you and are demanding you respond to the Preacipe in order to avoid a default judgment. Essentially this is fancy legal jargon intended to confuse you. Thanks PA. This means you have to appear and show cause why a writ shouldn't be issued against you. Im assuming a writ of garnishment but I could be wrong.

    I would visit with a bankruptcy attorney or several in your area. Don't necessary file but you need to know your options as to Bankruptcy or debt negotiations.

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  • What are the next steps to take when disputing a debt collection on your credit report. I already filed something on transunion

    I have told the debt collector that I dispute the debt and the name on my credit report of the original creditor is inaccurate. I've never had any type of business dealings with that individual.

    Matthew’s Answer

    Usually the next step would be to follow up with the credit agency and to send out a letter to the agency to correct the change and document the attempt to correct the error. Make sure you keep all mailing receipts and to sent the letter by certified mail so you can verify this in the future if a lawsuit needs to be filed.

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