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Test your Bankruptcy Acumen: Part One

In the course of my 35 years of bankruptcy practice, I find that there are certain questions or issues that seem to be common concerns of those considering a bankruptcy filing. I also find that  prospective clients arrive with preconceived notions about the answers to these questions, or have received bad information from unreliable sources. Frighteningly, this bad information often comes from inexperienced bankruptcy practitioners.

In this first of a multi-part series, I will present those common questions. I will also provide multiple-choice answers. Somewhere down the road, I will revisit these questions and discuss the correct answers. For now, I present them to you to test your acumen or to prod your curiosity .  If you are chomping at the bit to learn  the answers and are unwilling to  wait for future enlightenment, then I invite you to call our office for a free consultation. We will answer these and any other questions that you might have regarding the bankruptcy process

Question 1: I am told that if there is equity in my car, I might lose my car in a bankruptcy filing. What can I do to get around this?

1) Grant a lien interest to your father

2) Use the excess of any exemption available to you, even if it doesn’t directly apply to an automobile

3) Either of the above

4) None of the above

Question 2: I have a valuable diamond ring. I’m told that I might lose this in a bankruptcy proceeding. Can I just give it to my daughter before I file?

1) Yes, but you must disclose the gift to avoid a denial of your discharge

2) Yes, but you should not disclose the ring on your schedules

3) Yes, but you must seek a different lawyer and not disclose the existence of the ring to that lawyer

4) None of the above

Question 3: I owe  back taxes. Can they be discharged in a bankruptcy?

1) Never

2) It solely  depends on the timing of the filing of your case

3) It  depends on the timing of the filing of your case and the type of taxes involved

4) None of the above

Question 4: I am expecting a tax refund. I am also planning to file  a bankruptcy. Which of the following can I do?

1) Spend it after I file as long as  it is used for ordinary expenses

2) Spend it only before I file and then only in a limited fashion

3) Spend it as long as I plan to declare it as exempt on my bankruptcy schedules

4) None of the above

Question 5: I run a small business. If I file personal bankruptcy, which of the following is most true:

1) The business will not be involved

2) The business will not be involved if I list it as having no value

3) My  interest in the business is property of the bankruptcy estate

4) My  business will be immediately closed



There will be more questions down the road. And as good an internet researcher as you think you are, you  probably will not be able to Google good answers to these questions. For a list of Board Certified Bankruptcy practitioners in your area, go to abiworld.org.   That is where you will find true enlightenment.

Markarian & Hayes
Markarian & Hayes is located in Palm Beach, Wellington & Vero Beach, Florida and serves clients across Florida from Vero Beach to the Florida Keys, including those in and around Palm Beach, West Palm Beach, Pahokee, Delray Beach, Loxahatchee, Coral Springs, Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Lake Worth, Deerfield Beach, South Bay, Pompano Beach, Hobe Sound, Stuart, Port St. Lucie, Sebastian, Fort Pierce, Hollywood, Tampa, Tallahassee, Orlando, Martin County, Broward County, Hillsborough County, Leon County, Palm Beach County, Fort Lauderdale, Miami-Dade County and Sebastian. The firm’s lawyers also have a long history representing clients’ interests throughout the Caribbean.
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