• Dodging the repo man? Here’s what you need to know if you’ve missed a car payment.
    When you buy a car from a dealer, unless you paid for the car in full, you likely signed a Finance Agreement or what is sometimes called a Retail Installment Contract. In addition to providing disclosures as required by law, this document is important for you to understand because it ... read more
  • From Caviar to Ramen: A Financial Diet Revisited (Part I: Avoid the Target Trap)
    Last week I wrote about the benefits of having an emergency savings fund.  For most people, the biggest obstacle to saving is having money left at the end of the month to put into their savings account.  This is why I devote such a large part of my practice to ... read more
  • Savings: Private Funding
    Saving is one, crucial way that you can stay out of debt and it’s easier than you think.  Although you might be saving to reach a specific goal (to buy a new car, a home or take a vacation) everyone can benefit from having an emergency savings fund, too. What ... read more
  • Are you headed for a financial crisis? Review these common warning signs to find out if you should seek help now. Answer YES or NO: Are you making only minimum payments on your credit cards? Are you uncertain about how much you owe? Are you skipping some bills to pay ... read more
  • Bankruptcy Myth # 4
    “Only deadbeats file for bankruptcy.” FALSE. Although the bankruptcy reform act of 2005 revamped the rules to prevent bankruptcy abuse, statistics would likely demonstrate that most debtors file bankruptcy after a major life event that had devastated their financial wellness such as illness, divorce or job loss.  Particularly in this ... read more
  • U.S. Extends Temporary Protected Status for Haitians until 2013
    Haitian Nationals who previously qualified and registered for Temporary Protected Status (TPS)  may now extend TPS  through January 22, 2013.  Through TPS, eligible undocumented and unlawful immigrants that register with the Department of Homeland Security are protected from deportation and confinement; TPS individuals may also receive employment authorization to accept ... read more
  • Bankruptcy Myth #3
    “If I file bankruptcy, I’ll never get credit again!” FALSE. On the contrary, my loyal readers, on the contrary.  I would bet $100 that the mailman stuffs just as many credit card offers in your mailbox after the bankruptcy as he did before. Credit card companies loooove customers with seemingly ... read more
  • Bankruptcy Myth #2
    “If I file for bankruptcy, the government will take everything I own.” FALSE. Bankruptcy in the United States dates back to the 1800’s when archaic concepts permitted debtors to retain only their horse and their bible in order to be relieved of financial obligations.  Since then, bankruptcy has undergone various modes of reform. Modern bankruptcy ... read more
  • Bankruptcy Myth #1
    Bankruptcy Myth # 1:  If I file for bankruptcy, everyone will know. While it’s true that bankruptcy is a public proceeding, unless you’re as big as GM or otherwise very popular with the paparazzi, your bankruptcy filing probably won’t make the first page of the paper.  In fact, the likelihood that ... read more