I am often amazed by how much people know about bankruptcy law. I am also amazed at how much people do not know about bankruptcy law. What happens is that well meaning people will tell you this or than will happen if you do this or do not do that. I call these people “street lawyers.” Never rely on their advice as it may be correct and it may cause you many problems if you rely on the advice of a street lawyer. The problem is that the street lawyer knows what happened in a particular case or situation. The street lawyer has no idea, in most cases, the underlying facts that may have caused the result that he or she saw. The street lawyer almost never charges for advice given as the street lawyer knows the true value of the advice given.

Remember, there is a reason that the practice of law is limited to lawyers. Lawyers have been trained in many areas and are liable if they give you bad advice. I have handled many cases for clients and understand the way that what appears to be the same situation is not the same and the results will be different.

Just as lots of people have children each year, the outcome is very different at times. Some will have a child “naturally”, others by Cesarian birth and others by a normal birth. If you do not see a professional, you may be surprised at the way a baby is born.

Street law presents the same problem as two people each own a home and want to keep it. Many street lawyers will say, you get to keep your home. In most situations, the debtors do not have enough equity in the home to allow a Trustee or other creditor to take the property. When a creditor other than a mortgage type creditor wants to take your home, the creditor must pay you what is called an exemption, pay off the mortgage and the costs of sale before the creditor can get one dime. For most persons, the home is not worth anything to a creditor. The threat to take your home is often hollow, but, the threat is one that many persons are terrified may happen. Will it happen or not?

You should always talk to an attorney about what will happen if a creditor obtains a judgment against you. Getting a judgment against you does not mean that a creditor will be able to take anything that you own. See an attorney when you are first sued, not after the judgment is granted.

Always make sure that you meet with an attorney to determine what will happen if a judgment is obtained against you. By going to an attorney when you are first sued, you may be able to stop the creditor from getting a judgment or, if one is obtained by a creditor, what is likely to happen.

Never transfer your property to someone or use your 401k to take care of a creditor before you come see an attorney.


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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