ANNUITY AND RETIREMENT EXEMPTIONS UNDER SOUTH CAROLINA AND BANKRUPTCY LAW

There are numerous annuity and pension exemptions under South Carolina law that can also be used to protect your pension or annuity if you file a bankruptcy case.  What this means is that you are allowed to keep the money received from a pension or annuity even if you owe a creditor.

The following are some of the pensions or annuities that are covered.

The right to receive an annuity or a retirement allowance or the return of contributions, any optional benefit or any right accrued or accruing from the South Carolina Retirement System, the Retirement System for Judges and Solicitors, the Retirement System for the General Assembly, the Police Officers Retirement System or any private retirement system operated by a municipality.

What this means to you is that a creditor cannot force you to give any part of this money.  If you voluntarily give it to the creditor, the situation is different.  You need to understand that a creditor or debt collector is not going to tell you that you do not have to pay money.

A creditor or debt collector job is to collect the maximum amount of money that can be taken out of the funds of a debtor.  Most creditors use collectors who are paid at least in part on the amount money collected.  The job of collector, whether working for a creditor directly, or working for a debt collector is never a fun job.

If a someone calls you trying to collect money and becomes rude, nasty, demeaning or claims that you will go to jail if you do not pay at once, know that you need to hang up and immediately contact an attorney.

Remember, that you need to obtain certain information when the call comes in.

The information needed is as follows:

  • NAME OF THE PERSON CALLING:

No creditor or debt collector can actually make a phone call.  They all have people call.  Get the name of the person calling.  If the caller will not give you a name, then you need to hang up the phone.

  • NAME OF THE COMPANY CALLING

There are lots of companies that may try to contact you.   If you receive a call, make sure that you have the exact name of the company calling.  Many collectors use similar names so that confusion may occur as to what company was actually calling you.

  • DATE AND TIME CALL RECEIVED BY YOU

Creditors record most of the calls that are made when they are trying to collect a debt.  Having the date and time the call was made allows your attorney to obtain a copy of the telephone call made to you.  The same system that does protect the collectors from frivolous claims will also cause them to prove that the offending call occurred.  Not having to go though days of messages saves you money on finding the actual recording.

  • TELEPHONE NUMBER

Although collectors will use many different phone numbers, always request a number to call back to the collector.  Remember, however, that the number you are to call back to the collector may not be the same as the number the creditor used to call you.

If you have questions about your rights, contact an attorney such as D. Nathan Davis who will be happy to discuss matter with you.

 

About Nathan Davis, Esquire

Born in Charleston, South Carolina, Nathan Davis has been practicing law for many years. Mr. Davis has a wide variety of experiences having practiced domestic relations, criminal law, social security law having also practiced collection law in the past. This knowledge is helpful when someone needs to restart their financial life. The practice is now primarily bankruptcy and debtor representation work, but, Mr. Davis continues to also practice real estate law, trusts and estates and a general litigation practice. I believe that the most important part of representation is trying to leave you better off when the case is finished than when you started. Although I will do as my client directs, I will always tell you if I think that you are making a mistake. Bankruptcy is about a "fresh start". If you do not make changes in what you are doing, you will be doing what you are doing now in the future. There is no shame in bankruptcy or other steps that you may take to start your life over. Too often, people worry more about things than about themselves, their family or their future.
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