• A Journey of 1000 Miles Begins with the First Step
    One of the most common concerns among my bankruptcy clients is how bankruptcy will affect their credit (score), and in particular, their ability to one day obtain a mortgage loan (to buy a home). It’s a very common misconception that bankruptcy “destroys” your credit for 10 years, but that would ... read more
  • Financing Higher Education: You’d Better Think Twice (Or Pay the Price)
    Over the past 35 years, the cost of tuition at 4-year colleges has increased 8-times faster than wages, and the number of higher-education institutions has nearly doubled.  Many economists explain that this is an unintended and undesirable consequence of federally-backed student loan legislation. I recommend further reading on this topic ... read more
  • Mo Debt, Mo Problems: Debt Collection or Harassment?
    If you borrow money and fail to pay it back, the creditor has the right to demand payment, and take all lawful actions to force payment.   However, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) applies to all consumer (non-business) debts to limit how creditors (and collection agencies) operate.  It’s important ... read more
  • New Trends in Student Loan Debt Resolution
    As of first quarter-2018, outstanding student loan debt reached a whopping $1.41 trillion, surpassing both credit card debt ($815 billion) and auto loan debt ($1.23 trillion) by billions of dollars. Sadly, the current default rate is hovering at 18%, and that number is expected to rise to 40% by 2023.  ... read more
  • Getting to the End of Your Money Before the End of the Month? Here’s Why… (And How to Fix It)
    I’ve prepared hundreds of bankruptcy petitions over the years, and one of the most common areas of discrepancy are household and personal expenses. Once I’ve calculated someone’s monthly income (using an average of the past 6 months’ pay stubs) I will compare it with their stated monthly expenses. Without fail, ... read more
  • Put Mo’ Money in that Itty Bitty Purse
    If you’re like most of the people I talk to, you get paid on Friday, pay your bills, and you’re broke by Monday.  If this sounds like you, please read on. No one wants to live paycheck-to-paycheck but it’s a reality for many hard-working Americans.  And when money is tight, ... read more
  • What is bankruptcy? …. Asking ‘for a friend’
    Bankruptcy sounds scary, but for an experienced practitioner like me, it’s a mundane occurrence.  There are so many people I meet who could benefit from bankruptcy;  I’m talking LIFE-CHANGING benefits.  Unfortunately, most people are too nervous or embarrassed to even ask.  The perceived stigma and a general lack of understanding ... read more
  • Stop Paying Overdraft Fees Now
    Over the past 8 years, I have met with hundreds of bankruptcy candidates.  While they each have a unique story, they also share many common problems.  On average, I would estimate that the average bankruptcy client spends about $3000-$4000 per year on overdraft fees, most of which could be easily ... read more
  • According to Business Insider, the average New Jersean can expect a refund of $2,943 this year.  How will you spend your tax refund this year? Here are some of the most popular ways that we Americans like to spend our refunds: Vacation You work hard all year, make it through ... read more
  • Tax Refunds Will Be Issued Despite the Shutdown (Best Ways to Spend it!)
    According to a recent Forbes article, the IRS will be accepting tax returns and issuing refunds in the normal course of business, despite the government shutdown.  Referencing a 132-page contingency plan issued by the IRS, Forbes reports that: Returns will be accepted. Refunds will be paid. The IRS website will ... read more
  • RESOLVE to Be Debt Free in 2019
      According to U.S. News, approximately 80% of New Year’s resolutions will fail by the second week of February.  So if you’re like most people, you may have resolved to a “new year, new me” attitude, but the odds (unfortunately) are against you. There are many reasons why experts believe resolutions fail ... read more
  • Do-Overs: They Aren’t Just for Kids
    When I was a kid, if something didn’t go my way I simply called a “do-over” and BOOM – second chance.  If I had been tagged out of the game, I was now bank in! Easy-peasy, right? Well I hate to admit this, but not much has changed since childhood.  ... read more
  • Bankruptcy Myths DEBUNKED
    MYTH # 1: I’ll lose everything including my home and my car. On the contrary, Federal Law provides very generous “exemptions” that permit debtors to protect their property from seizure or liquidation. Even if your property value exceeds the allowable exemption amount, you can still file for bankruptcy and benefit ... read more
  • Have a Merry (and Debt-Free) Christmas
    If history tells us anything, the average American will rack up over $1,000 in additional credit card debt this holiday season.  For those folks who already live paycheck-to-paycheck and are nearing their credit card limits, this could be the holiday to end it all (financially speaking, of course). I’m sure ... read more
  • Student Loans: Debt for Life (Or Not?)
    College students are graduating with an average of $38,000 in student loan debt after attending 4-year college.  That’s an astronomical amount of debt for someone in their early 20s especially when the average starting salary for a recent college grad is only $50,000. That means the average college graduate begins their life ... read more