My HOA withheld the bill from me while in Chapter 7. As soon as it discharged they sent a letter demanding fee's and the unpaid bill. I reached out several times trying to pay and resolve the matter however they wouldn't speak with me and forced me to deal directly with their attorney, When I sent over the discharge to the attorney's office they stated I never listed my association directly as a debtor and would still have to pay. I wasn't able to include them in the chapter 7 because THEY NEVER SENT ME THE BILL. Being my chapter 7 just discharged in July and it's December can I reopen the BK and add this debt to it? Will reopening the BK stop the foreclosure proceedings? Also if I file a qualifying offer will that be enough to have the BK dismissed? I cannot afford a lawyer are there any pro bono attorney's that assist disabled veterans in these situations? Please help me
HOA fees are a lien on the real estate, and a bankruptcy discharge does not get rid of liens. Although the HOA cannot come after you personally for pre-bankruptcy debts, they can still try to collect from their collateral. Also, it is not clear from this question whether the HOA fee debt arose before or after bankruptcy. If it arose after you filed, your bankruptcy wouldn't have discharged it. Although you state you can't afford a lawyer, the loss of one's home is a big deal, hopefully something worth enough to you that you might pay for advice that can help you keep it. I suggest you get a consult with a bankruptcy lawyer in your area to review all the facts and circumstances in your situation so you can learn your options.
Disclaimer: As always, you get what you pay for. Be sure to talk to a qualified attorney in your area about your specific situation before you choose to rely on any information you get from internet discussion boards such as this one. I am a Michigan attorney and I do not give advice about state law other than Michigan law. If you live outside of Michigan the information presented here is based on federal law and general legal principles, and should not be construed as advice specific to your state's law.
You can do a ch. 13 to make up the amount you are behind over time. Or you can call their lawyer and get on a payment plan to catch up.
Your best option is to contact the HOA's attorney and request a payment plan for the arrears. If the attorney refuses, contact the HOA board directly and plead your case. You are not going to get anywhere asserting that they are in the wrong for not sending you a bill because you should have been aware that there was an HOA fee pursuant to your HOA documents. You could request that your bankruptcy attorney re-open your Chapter 7 case to include the HOA fees IF 1) they accrued prior to your date of filing and 2) they are significant enough to warrant a re-opening.
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