When you work with us, not only will you have the support of an experienced and professional team, you will also receive personal and courteous services. Read about some of our cases below.


Case Study 1

Husband and wife incur over $50,000 in credit card debt, and with a combined income of less than $50,000 annually, the prospect of paying off the debt is slim. They do not have any children, do not own real property and have not operated any business within the last 6 years.


case studiesSolution: Chapter 7 may be a good solution. Since their income is less than the Census Bureau Median Income for the State of California, which is $61,539 (as of this writing on October 2, 2012), for a family of 2 people, they could pass the means test, and the presumption does not rise for them to file a chapter 13.


Case Study 2

Husband and wife incur over $70,000 in credit card and other unsecured debt. They own a house which they reside that is worth over $500,000, secured by a mortgage in the amount of $430,000. Their mortgage payment is $3,000 a month, and they are several months behind in payments. Their combined income is just over $4,000 a month. They would like to save their house.


Solution: If they can show they have sufficient disposable income fund a chapter 13 plan, they can file a chapter 13 even though they make less than median income. They could also file a chapter 7 to wipe out their unsecured debt. Either way, they could claim an automatice homestead of up to $100,000 to protect their home equity.


Case Study 3

A single woman 57 years old. Her income is less than 15,000 a year. She owns a house she resides in that is worth $450,000 with a mortgage in the amount of $310,000.00. She also has over $40,000 in credit card and other unsecured debt. Can she save her house? 


Solution: At first glance, she may appear unable to save her house because there is a large equity on the house, and the equity is sufficient to payoff her debt. However, since she is over 55 years old with income of less than $15,000 a year, her homestead exemption is $175,000. With the exemption, she could file a chapter 7 and get rid of her unsecured debt.


Case Study 4

A man and a woman have been living together for over 10 years and have held themselves out as husband and wife, but they did not have a marriage certificate. Can they file bankruptcy jointly as husband and wife? LC


Answer: since California does not recognize common law marriage, they cannot file petition together jointly.


Case Study 5

A real estate investor owns more than 10 pieces of real estate, and has been unable to sell or refinance any of them despite repeated reductions in prices.  Several of the properties have equity, while others do not.  He is behind in mortgage payments and the lenders are threatening foreclosure on his properties.


Solution:  Chapter 7 may not be a good solution if there are non-exempt assets (equity in property). Chapter 13 will not be a good solution if secured and/or unsecured debt exceed the statutory maximum. However, Chapter 11 may be the best solution because foreclosures will halt and a plan can be proposed to pay off the past due payments. 


Case Study 6

An Abstract of Judgment has been recorded in the County Recorder’s Office where Mr. & Mrs. Smith own a real property. What is the consequence of a chapter 7 filing? Can the filing void the judgment lien?


Answer: When an Abstract of Judgment has been recorded, it operates as a judgment lien on any existing or future properties they own. A bankruptcy petition does not automatically void the judgment lien. If the judgment lien is under secured by the real property, a motion to void lien can be filed to remove some or the entire lien amount. If the property is debtor's principal residence, automatic homestead can be inserted before the judgment lien, making the lien undersecured or totally unsecured.


Case Study 7

Husband and wife’s combined annual income is more than $100,000 and they have 2 children. Their debt consists of over $90,000 in credit card debt. They own a house that has $60,000 in equity. What type of petition should they file? 


Solution: a chapter 13 may be the solution, if their disposable income shown on the Means Test is equal or more then $100.00 


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Disclaimer: Materials on this website have been prepared by Lo & Lo LLP for general informational purposes only. They are not legal advice. The transmission and receipt of information, through viewing, printing, e-mail or otherwise, is not intended to create or constitute an attorney-client relationship. Persons should not rely or act upon the information without seeking professional counsel. If these materials are not consistent with the rules governing attorney communications in a particular state, and the materials result in client contact in the state, Lo & Lo LLP will not assume the representation of clients from those states. The materials contained herein do not constitute an offer to represent you. These materials may be considered advertising not complying with State Bar requirements in your state. 

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