Sunday, June 24, 2012

Linear Title and Amerisave Ripoff Report

It is important to be extra careful when dealing with title companies and mortgage companies these days. There is little regulation protecting consumers, and there are many companies that provide questionable services.

Just recently Linear Title and Amerisave received a ripoff report for an incident. The report documents the trials of a couple using these two companies in the purchase of a new home.

This couple had save up for a home and when the time was right, they applied for a loan through Amerisave. It took two months to approve the loan after all the appropriate documents were submitted.

Once the loan was approved, a notary was sent by the company to sign off on the final paperwork. The wife describes how the notary showed up in an intoxicated state. While notaries might be contracted out, it is a sign of quality control as far as the procedure and screening process of the companies. Nonetheless, the couple proceeded with signing off on the loan documents and waiting on final approval for their home purchase.

However, at this point, they were informed that the paperwork was filled out incorrectly, but Amerisave indicated to them that Linear Title, the title company made the error. When the couple attempted to discuss the issue with Linear Title, they were informed that Amerisave was at fault.

In the end, Linear Title offered to cut their fee in half although they claim they were not at fault.

While this is a compromise that ultimately saved the couple some money in the end, it's still a bad experience. It was important to know where the issue arose. Even though they were able to resolve their errors, no one ever admitted responsibility for the mistake.

This is the type of experience many consumers may want to avoid in the future. Make sure you carefully screen your mortgage and title companies before you contract with them. It may save you some incoveniences and even some money.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Considering personal bankrupcty: Is Chapter 13 Right for You?

There are two ways that a person can file for personal bankruptcy:  Chapter 7 and Chapter 13.  Most people have heard of Chapter 7 bankruptcy, but Chapter 13 is often more rare.  However there are situations when Chapter 13 is appropriate.

There are many differences between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13, but the main difference between Chapter 13 and Chapter 7 is Chapter 13 often allows the person filing for bankruptcy to keep certain assets that would otherwise be lost under the Chapter 7 rules. You can often keep your home and your car under either plan as long as your equity does not exceed certain limits. However, many of the discretionary items are treated differently.  For example, you may be allowed to retain rental properties, antique collections and other discretionary assets under Chapter 13 which you might otherwise lose under Chapter 7.

Generally, Chapter 13 is commonly used when one has significant equity in a home or other property they want to keep.  It's best for individuals with regular income and can pay their living expenses, but have some trouble with keeping up with payments on other debts.  Chapter 13 protects individuals from the collection efforts of creditors and permits those who are filing to retain their real estate and personal property. It also provides means so that the person can pay his or her debts through reduced payments.

A trustee works for both parties and will usually come up with a three to five year payment plan which offers to pay off all or part of the debts owed. The trustee will also calculate how much the debtor can afford to pay each month which is that amount above necessary living expenses. Debtors must have a regular income and have at least some disposable income in order to make this work. It is the disposable income that is used to pay back the debts.

Two major problems with Chapter 13 is that the person filing must have a steady income and some disposable cash. For many people, they simply do not have that. If they had it, they might not be in bankruptcy in the first place. The second issue is that the person filing Chapter 13 will have to pay back more of the debt owed than those seeking protection under Chapter 7.

But there are also major advantages to Chapter 13 as well.  A person filing under Chapter 13 can keep most of their property while spreading out past due payments over time.  Generally one will have an extra 3-5 years to catch up with their debt according to the schedule you've worked out with your trustee.  During that time, you will only be working with your bankruptcy trustee and never have to have direct contact with the creditors.

Chapter 13 will go on your credit report but it usually stays on for less time than a Chapter 7.

Filing for bankruptcy is a serious move and should not be done without first exploring every other option. In the old days people often believed that filing for bankruptcy was not that big a deal. Much of that has changed now, and it can be a very big deal in terms of you getting future credit or loans.

The bankruptcy laws have changed recently and anyone considering filing should first seek out the advice of a competent and qualified bankruptcy attorney. These specialized attorneys will be able to best guide you toward the correct option that will best suit your needs.

Always research the law and the specialized attorneys in your area to ensure that you are getting the best assistance.  For instance, you can research about filing bankruptcy in Nebraska by visiting their local state bar page to look specifically for a Nebraska bankruptcy attorney.

One note of caution when using a qualified bankruptcy attorney, remember to ask for previous cases that the attorney has worked on and ensure you have a clear indication on their fees before proceeding

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Time for Estate Planning

It's not common for most people to go out of their way to avoid discussing planning for the elderly.  The reality is that as people get older, it's time to think about the future and prepare to lay the groundwork for passing on your estate.  With the proper planning and a good estate lawyer barrie, you can avoid many headaches and frustration for your loved ones.

What Documents do you need for Estate Planning

There are a couple of important documents you'll want to review when you are planning for the future.
First off, you want to have a will.  A will can lay out important decisions about your assets.  You can describe how your estate will be managed, the custody and care of your children, as well as your property. These are important decisions that are better to put into writing rather than to leave to chance.

You may also want to investigate getting medical care documents drafter.  A document such as a living will to give your doctors instructions regarding medical and life support procedures.  It's better to make these decisions yourself than to place the responsibility on your loved ones.

How to Start Estate Planning

First off, you will need to have all your important information handy.  You want to have your financial information, medical and life insurance policies, contact information for doctors, etc...  This is information that your lawyer will need when helping draft your estate documents.  Get all of these documents together and look into getting the right professional to help you draft your estate plan.  Also, after you have your documents drafted, you want to tell your loved ones where to find the information.  Let them know your lawyer's contact information as well as any other important contacts.

Checking on Your Estate Plan

Equally important is checking on your estate plan periodically.  Your financial situation as well as your family and medical needs change over time.  You need to account for those changes in your estate plan.  If you have a new baby, you want to make sure that your new child is included in your will.

All of these factors are important to making sure that there is a smooth transition for your legacy in the future.  Plan ahead now to ease the process later.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

When Do You Need a Lawyer

Some problems in life can be simple, however there are times when you need some extra help.  The times have passed when one can complete a deal with a handshake or settle and injury with a simple conversation.  We see more and more criminal laws being passed.  Times are changing.

While something as simple as a dispute between friends might be easily resolved with a simple conversation, there are sometimes situations that need a more in depth look.

Here are some questions to ask yourself on whether you need a lawyer to assist you with some advice:

Does your situation involve money?
Even a simple monetary transaction can sometimes require the assistance of a lawyer.  This is especially true when you are talking about an exchange of money at some future time.  Memories can fade or people can change their minds.  Perhaps you need the details written down.  When you have a situation where you are discussing money, you may want to consult with an objective third party.  This not only protects you, but also the other person as well.

Does your situation involve possible criminal liability?
If you look at your situation and you have misgivings about whether it's morally or legally correct.  This is the best time to ask someone who is familiar with the legal system.  Get the answer to your question before you do something that might get you involved with the authorities.  The best thing to do is to be proactive and make sure that you are doing things right before you are in trouble.

Does your situation involve a business deal?
Business is a situation that involves not only money, but a complex relationship.  You want to hammer out all the finer points of your relationship before you complete the transaction.  This ensures that your financial interests are protected.  It also preserves the relationship between the two parties so that disputes in the future don't become personal.

Was there some kind of injury?
If you or someone else was injured, this is the time to ensure that everyone is protected in the future from legal liability.  Even if the injury appears to be minor, there could be long lasting and future consequences.  You can often speak to an attorney and get some free advice on how to make sure everyone is protected in this situation.

What should I look for in a Lawyer?
There are all kinds of specialties in the legal profession.  Much of your selection will be based on the type of problem that you are facing.  But beyond that, you want to look at the qualifications of the attorneys that you retain.  Many law firms such as Business Lawyer Barrie employs attorneys with different areas of expertise so they can assist people with a variety of problems.  You want to look at their reputation in the community.  Go to your state's bar website and look up the attorneys at the law firm.  Take a look at their experience and expertise in your issue.  You can also ask others in the profession for their opinion and recommendation.

There are a variety of resources to assist you in choosing the right lawyers for your problem.  The most important thing is to do your research, stay informed and make sure that your interests are protected.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Gay marriages Put on Hold

The 9th circuit ruled on Monday to stay the recent ruling permitting gay marriage. The stay is effective at least until December when the court will hear arguments on the issue.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Father can Sue Mother of a Stillborn Fetus for Negligence

The father of a stillborn fetus can sue for negligence on a mother's part.  This is a case out of Wisconsin involving a car accident.  The mother of the fetus was involved in an auto accident with a third party.  The father initially sued the other party, however the lawsuit was rejected on summary judgement on a finding that the other party could not be liable for the mother's negligence.

On appeal, the court ruled that there is a causal link between a recent car accident and the subsequent death of a fetus.  The court further found that the pregnant woman, at least in Wisconsin, does owe a duty to the unborn child and thus could be civilly liable for negligence.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Interesting trend

Recently, there has been some discussion about whether children of non-citizen parents should get citizenship at birth in the U.S.  This debate has been renewed with the recent court ruling in Arizona banning significant portions of the Arizona immigration law.  While it may seem like an unusual step to take to deny children born on U.S. soil the right to be citizens, this is actually not an unusual trend around the world.  Take a look at some of the other modern countries around the world that have recently changed their laws to end birthright citizenship:
*Canada repealed in 2009.
*New Zealand repealed in 2006.
*Ireland repealed in 2005
*France repealed in 1993
*India repealed in 1987
*United Kingdom repealed in 1983
*Portugal repealed in 1981