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What does the future hold for Texas payday lenders?

Readers of this blog will appreciate that we are not great fans of payday lending operations. As we noted in one recent article, there are aspects of the service that can make it attractive. The borrower of such a loan doesn't usually have to put up collateral, though some consumers do go so far as to risk losing their vehicles by tying loans to their car titles.

Borrowers also don't have to worry too much about what their credit score is. These lenders don't usually care if you're a good risk or not. In fact, high-risk borrowers are their bread and butter.

Aggressive debt collectors: special nemesis for many seniors

“Older Americans deserve to be treated with the respect they have earned.”

Although most people would readily agree with that statement recently offered by Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Director Richard Cordray, the reality for many American seniors is that their contacts with one select group of people are sadly lacking in conferred respect

Rather, they are centrally marked by seniors’ frustrations and fears engendered by third-party demands and threats.

Post-foreclosure deficiency judgments: What is the Texas take?

Home foreclosure across the country -- and certainly in Texas -- has been a hot-button topic for several years now, with foreclosure-related stories beginning to surface prominently following the housing collapse and so-called Great Recession that first began picking up steam a handful-plus of years ago.

Fallout from the economic hard times of recent years has been adverse and widespread, with millions of homeowners nationally facing lofty -- and, in many instances, flatly insuperable -- financial challenges.

Those challenges have often left residential property owners in dire straits, unable to make timely payments on their homes and falling deeper into debt as their mortgage exactions increase.

Credit card debt statistics: What exactly do they mean?

Purveyors of competing viewpoints sometimes make reference to statistical data to support their assertions.

Often, the application of those numbers to a certain situation or context results in as many new questions being raised as it does in the definitive settlement of a debate or dispute.

In other words: We’ve got numbers, but what exactly do they mean?

Rebounding from bankruptcy: pushing that credit score higher

Perhaps you took the plunge and filed for bankruptcy after realizing that the stark financial challenges you were facing were insurmountable and simply couldn’t be dealt with any other way.

Many people come to that realization after a candid and comprehensive discussion with an experienced debt relief attorney, learning that the process -- long sanctioned under federal and state laws and designed to enable debtors to regain their financial footing -- is not simply an adverse and depressing exercise.

In fact, there is a clear and strong upside for hard-pressed persons in Texas and nationally who smartly and proactively engage the bankruptcy process in order to gain a fresh financial start.

A novel approach to the nation's massive student debt problem

It is flatly hard to overestimate the broad-based impact that spiraling student loan exactions are having in the United States, with scores of millions of people being saddled with long-term debt that can affect their spending and consumption decisions for decades.

Here is a telling piece of information supplied courtesy of a national media story on student debt that puts the matter into focus.

Reportedly, student debt has spiked by more than 350 percent since 2003. One major investment management company contrasts that to mortgage debt, which it states has risen by about 50 percent over the same period.

Wyly's case: Tycoons, too, can invoke bankruptcy protections

Although not a lot of hard-working Texas residents facing stark financial challenges and doing their best to work through them might be able to identify -- even remotely -- with Samuel Wyly personally, his bankruptcy-related case nonetheless commands real-world interest. We pass along its central details for our readers, believing that Wyly’s story is relevant for its strong focus on debt relief and bankruptcy protection.

Wyly’s name is perhaps familiar to some readers, given the status accorded him by Forbes as one of the richest people in the United States. According to that magazine, Wyly commanded a net worth of approximately $1 billion in 2010.

That’s a lot of coin, obviously, but Wyly says that such an impressive amount of wealth simply no longer exists. His legal advisers contend that the oft-described business tycoon lacks the funds necessary to pay civil damages for his role in an alleged fraudulent scheme that defrauded the U.S. government of scores of millions of dollars.

Garnishment: What it is, and what you can do about it

Here’s a hypothetical that’s just about assured to induce cold sweat for any Texas resident considering it.

You’re relaxing at home, attending to some personal budget matters. In perusing your bank statement online, you suddenly notice with due alarm that its entries seem strongly out of whack. Checks aren’t clearing. Your account seems frozen.

And then the mail arrives, with one official document informing you that, indeed, the bank has frozen your account pursuant to a garnishment order from a state court.

Do you think a scenario that plays out like that might be just a bit frightening?

So, what's a better option for me, Chapter 7 or 13 bankruptcy?

There has to be a clear and easy answer to that headline-posed question above, right? After all, Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 are clearly distinct bankruptcy options with altogether different parameters. Shouldn’t there be a relatively quick and simple process for determining the road to take in seeking the financial relief provided by bankruptcy?

Well, there is undeniably a process, but few people would deem it so slam-dunk simple that a debtor can arrive at a sound conclusion over a cup of coffee.

You see, there are formulas and so-called “means testing” involved that help a consumer determine the optimal path to take. A debtor might indeed qualify for one, but not the other, form of bankruptcy. In some instances, a party might be able to file for either Chapter 7 or Chapter, necessitating a well-considered choice.

Ignoring your creditors will not help you

Imagine for a moment that life throws you a curveball, and as a result your finances are thrown into turmoil. In response, you seek out new lines of credit or you start relying on your credit card far more than you ever have. As a couple of months go by, the life event that was causing you problems resolves and you're ready to get back to the way things were.

But you look at your credit card debt and it's far higher than you would have thought. It's so high you don't know how you'll pay it off. So you decide, like many people do, to ignore the problem and just hope it goes away.

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