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January 2017 Archives

Filing a restraining order

People in Virginia who feel that another person is endangering their safety might want to file a protective or restraining order. There are three types of orders, and they have different durations. To protect himself or herself temporarily, a person can get an emergency restraining order that is good for three days or until court is back in session. A preliminary protective order lasts for 15 days or until a hearing occurs, and a final protective order may last as long as two years.

Debt collectors often pursue time-barred debts

The bankruptcy laws are designed to give consumers in Virginia and across the country the opportunity for a fresh start. During a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, outstanding bills are consolidated and debtors make payments over three to five years. However, debt collection agencies sometimes submit claims that do not qualify for payment because the debts concerned are time-barred under the applicable stature of limitations, and this practice has been widely criticized by federal agencies, legal organizations and consumer advocacy groups.

Government report paints grim picture of debt collection

Debt collection around the country has grown into a $13.7 billion per year industry, but a report from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau reveals that many of the nation's debt collectors routinely ignore regulations that have been put in place to protect consumers in Virginia and elsewhere from harassment and abuse. The findings contained in the CFPB report, which was released on Jan. 12, are based on more than 2,000 surveys returned to the agency by American consumers.

Is crowdfunding a good option for paying off medical debt?

Despite the fact that more people in Virginia and around the country have access to medical insurance since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, financial issues because of medical debt are a problem for a lot of them. Some patients turn to crowdfunding sites, including GoFundMe, Red Basket, PlumFund, GiveForward and FundRazr, to help with their medical bills. A study demonstrates that these types of campaigns may not completely ease the pain of high debt levels.

Tactics for addressing overwhelming debts

Many people in Virginia are vulnerable to financial hardships after a job loss or medical crisis. Although mounting debts and missed payments could cause paralyzing stress, options for taking control and relieving financial pressure exist. By taking a proactive approach with creditors, one could properly manage debt.

Regular filer unable to discharge debt in future case

Residents in Virginia who have substantial debts and are considering undergoing bankruptcy to resolve them should be aware that it is a legal process that should not be abused. This was demonstrated in a December 9, 2016, ruling in which a bankruptcy court ordered that a Chapter 13 debtor would not be able to have her debts dismissed if she decided to petition for another bankruptcy in the future.

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