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socrateaser, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 37864
Experience:  Attorney and Real Estate Broker -- Retired (mostly)
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We lost our restaurant business in California (abandoned) on

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We lost our restaurant business in California (abandoned) on 3/1/09. We owed about 8,000 to State Board of Equal. and other debts totalling about 80,000. We tried to get an attorney in California right away to file bankruptcy, but did not have enough money. In meantime, we relocated to Sparks, Nevada with money from friends and family. We asked and received a payout from my husband's 401K for approx 11,000 so that we could get an attorney immediately and for living expenses. Our bank, wells fargo, put a hold on the money, and we were only allowed to withdraw 4,000. The money was supposed to be available on Monday. However, we logged onto our account to find the money was seized leaving us with a negative balance. We can't tell who took it, but assume it was California State Board of Equalization. We have other funds that we could get such as my husband's pension, but we're afraid the same thing will happen. We are both in our sixties. We don't know what to do. Help!
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  socrateaser replied 7 years ago.

The state cannot seize pension funds that are controlled by a plan administrator. It can only reach the funds as they are withdrawn. If you have already rolled this money over into a private account, then it can be reached by the BOE. If you have any other money that you can transfer to a Nevada bank that has no California branches, then the BOE could not reach that money directly. It would have to get a judgment against you and register that judgment in Nevada in order to try to collect.


Concerning your other, non-government related debts, filing bankruptcy may wipe all of them out. Your husband's pension is exempt from your creditors in bankruptcy, so you won't have to worry about that.


For a bankruptcy lawyer referral, see:


Note: you will have to file in California, if you moved within 180 days of filing.


Hope this helps.


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