Thursday, July 21, 2005

Definitions, Disclosures and Double Talk

The new reform act has changed the language of bankruptcy, or at least is attempting to. A person who seeks an attorney to file a bankruptcy is now an "assisted person" (sec 101(3)), unless that person has more than $150,000 in "non-exempt" assets. Attorney's now provide "bankruptcy assistance" (101(4a)). Income is not what one would think it is either, "current monthly income as defined in section 101(10a) is the average monthly income from all sources for the six months prior to the filing of a case under bankruptcy. This calculation could have a major impact on the timing of filing cases if an assisted person has recently lost a good paying job and otherwise would have qualified for a chapter 7. Assisted persons no longer seek help from law firms, now they will go to "debt relief agencies" (101(12A)). This is terrible, this makes law firms sound like some government agency, or at the least makes the difference between a credit counseling or debt assistance company even less clear. To add to the confusion, any organization that helps people file bankruptcy state in any advertisement "We are a debt relief agency..." 528(a)(4) Section 527 has a lengthy section of required disclosures that must be present to potential clients which, for one must include that it is not necessary to hire an attorney to file for relief. Great, I'm sure that every trustee who has seen this is cringing. What could be better than changing the code into an even more archane and complicated system, and then encouraging the public to file cases without assistance.
In sum, there are dozens of "magic" words, phrases, and notices that must be made to potential clients. Many of our clients are not the most sophisticated, and some are barely litterate, yet we now have to provide them with even more information that they will either not read or not understand. It is painfully obvious that thoes who wrote this law have never spent a day in a small consumer bankruptcy office to see what it's all about. We aren't representing Jeffery Skilling, we are representing good people to whom bad things have happened. Most of these people are not sophisticated enough to read and understand a tax form, or a truth in lending form but we will now make them read similarly convoluted forms in order to comply.

5 Comments:

At 10:03 PM, Anonymous bankruptcy law said...

Hi there Mark W...Googled for chapter 11 bankruptcy and here is where I landed. No regrets...good entertaining read on Definitions, Disclosures and Double Talk, although not exactly what I was originally searching for.
How I also wish I can get the time to write interesting blogs like this. This is what makes the net so amazingly diverse. Anyways..on with my search for chapter 11 bankruptcy. All the best Mark W.
You've got something good going, keep it up...cheers.

 
At 10:59 AM, Anonymous bankruptcy alternatives said...

Hello Mark W,

Hmmm...fancy that a search for bankruptcy law brought me to your blog. Hah! Maybe our stars are aligned tonight :)

May not be the exact infomation on bankruptcy law ...but am glad to have dropped by. Your post on Definitions, Disclosures and Double Talk makes an intersting read.
Mark W, keep up the nice work on the blogs. Cheers and all the best!!

 
At 1:31 AM, Anonymous avoid bankruptcy said...

Hi Mark W,

Great read on "Definitions, Disclosures and Double Talk". Hope you dont mind me dropping a few comments although I was actually looking for file bankruptcy info on the net.
Am glad I didnt immediately click away...you do have some good stuff and I enjoyed reading them. You know ...I need your kind of inspiration to write all those blogs...and maybe one day I would find some.
Meanwhile got to get back searching for stuff on file bankruptcy... and Mark W, keep doing what youre doing. Hmm must remember to bookmark your page.. Cheers :))

 
At 8:40 PM, Anonymous avoid bankruptcy said...

Hi there Mark W... Look where I landed searching for info on bankruptcy lawyer. But since Im here... I thought I'd just stop by and read... I found your post "Definitions, Disclosures and Double Talk" kinda interesting.
Do you always write that way?
I guess I'd better be on my way as I still need stuff on bankruptcy lawyer for my project.
Thanks for a good read Mark W ...and keep doing all the great blogs. Cheers.

 
At 8:49 AM, Anonymous types of bankruptcy said...

Hello Mark W,

Hmmm...fancy that a search for avoid bankruptcy brought me to your blog. Hah! Maybe our stars are aligned tonight :)

May not be the exact infomation on avoid bankruptcy ...but am glad to have dropped by. Your post on Definitions, Disclosures and Double Talk makes an intersting read.
Mark W, keep up the nice work on the blogs. Cheers and all the best!!

 

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