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TJ, Esq.
TJ, Esq., Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 11781
Experience:  JD, MBA
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I'm a Investor and in a Business and I helped it get

Customer Question

I'm a Investor and in a Business and I helped it get started by being a co-signer on the lease. The business isnt doing so well and they are making as much of a payment they can, Now the landlord has contacted me saying he wants me to sign a cognitive
note and wants me to take out second mortgage on my home to pay him back. Hes asking for 500k that includes late fees and 8 % interest then 16% on that. He has also refused to do any of the mantances work required on him, the cams are 5K a month. Up to now
he refused to restructure our lease and said if I dont sign the note he will seek a judgment against me. I looked at filing bankruptcy but I'm above the 389K limit, Can I still get protection or will they and can they take everything. 401K IRA, my home. I'm
married with 3 children. Will the interest , late fees, and Cams be reduced in judgement?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thank you for the opportunity to assist you. My name is ***** ***** I will do my very best to answer your legal questions.

Unfortunately, if the landlord gets a judgment against you, it won't be reduced at all. A judge would award the landlord the full amount that he's owed. Moreover, interest would continue to accrue on the judgment, it would be a lien on your real estate, and the landlord could go after other assets (e.g., garnish bank accounts).

You can still file for bankruptcy, however. It's not quite as easy, but a Chapter 11 is suitable for people whose income and assets are too high for a Chapter 7 or 13. Accordingly, my suggestion is that you retain a local bankruptcy attorney who can not only review your situation in detail and counsel you as to bankruptcy, but who can also contact the landlord and try to settle this without the need for a lawsuit or a bankruptcy.

As an aside, in a bankruptcy you can protect your 401k in its entirety.

Does that answer your question? Please let me know if you need clarification, as I am happy to continue helping you until you are satisfied.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If we were able to pay down the debt below the 398K limit for chapter 13 then can we file for it? We were thinking of asking family to enough money to get it below the limit. Also can the landlord take the house which is under my name and my mothers and she is not on the lease. I'm also going thru a divorce right now if I lose the home to my wife can they still go after the home.
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hi again.

Please keep in mind that there is also a limit with regard to secured debt. If your secured debt is more than 1.1 million dollars, then you would not qualify for chapter 13.

But you are correct that if your debts are below the threshold, then you can indeed qualify for a chapter 13.

With regard to the house, you can exempt approximately $133,000 of equity. That means if your house has less than $133,000 in equity, then you can protect it. However, if your house is worth enough such that selling it would pay you your entire $133,000, and something to the creditor, then the house can be sold. Since your mother is a co-owner, then she is also entitled to half of the equity. Accordingly, your share of the equity would have to be more than $133,000 in order for the creditor to force a sale.

Please let me know if you need more clarification, and please remember to provide positive feedback. Thank you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
what if I was to quit my job or lose my job or worked less to get below the 86K mininum requirement per year earnings , do I qualifiy for chapter 7 or will the judge say I need to work more ?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If I quit my job to get chapter 7 protection, how long before I can start working again?
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hello again.

The judge will look at your last six months of earnings. The judge will not tell you that you need to work more. The only thing the judge will be concerned about is whether or not you meet the income requirements.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
thank you for all your help you've been so great helping us thru this difficult timewhen the judge looks at the earnings for the last 6 months, does he only look at my earnings since i'm the only person on the lease, or will he look at my wifes too? my brother and my brother also live with me , will there earnings be added on?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
also how quickly after the debt is discharged can we go back working full time
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hello again.

Unfortunately, the judge will look at your entire household's income. However, that also means that your entire household's expenses can also be factored in. As for when you can go back to work, you can do so almost immediately after filing for the bankruptcy. The only thing that matters is how your income looks at the time that you file for bankruptcy, and the six months prior. The day after you file for bankruptcy will not be considered.