Blogs by William Manchee
Don't Throw Away The Evidence
1/15/2010 7:25:07 PM
Bankruptcy filers often throw away valuable evidence they will need to successfully prosecute creditors who flagrantly violate the law.
One of the big problems consumer attorneys face when they try to make creditors obey the bankruptcy discharge or properly report a consumerís credit after bankruptcy, is that much of the evidence has disappeared. Unfortunately, to prevail in a lawsuit you have to produce credible evidence to the court or jury and without it a remedy that should be available is not. This is tragic as creditors often get away with flagrant violations of the law!
Persons who have filed bankruptcy should be aware that creditors are not allowed to contact them once the case is filed. If contact does occur it should documented carefully and reported to your bankruptcy attorney. We often are called upon to file adversary proceedings to stop creditors from violating the automatic stay or the discharge injunction. In order to prevail in these actions we must prove the creditor contacted the debtor in an effort to collect the debt. So, itís important that letters received are kept, telephone calls recorded or, at least the pertinent information about the call written down. So, often when a client calls about a violation they canít tell me who they talked to, the date and time of the call, or what exactly was said.
Itís even worse in credit reporting cases. To prove damages here we need specific information about damages such as credit denials, increased interest rates charged, as well as documentation of mental distress suffered on account of the creditorís illegal behavior. So often we have to settle a case for far less than itís worth simply because a consumer has thrown away critical evidence or neglected to keep track of all the damages that has been suffered on account of the creditorís malicious conduct.
Here are some simple things that every consumer who files bankruptcy should do once their case is filed:
Keep all correspondence from creditors received after bankruptcy
Record all telephone calls from creditors after the case is filed. Simple recording equipment can be purchased at Radio Shack.
If creditors call after the case is filed get their name, name of their company, the identity of the creditor they represent, how much they say is due, and the reason for the call. Note the date and time of the call. Donít argue with them or hang up on them until you have this information. Once you have this information tell them youíve filed bankruptcy and give them your attorneyís name.
If a creditor calls a second time get all this information again so you can testify with confidence if the need arises. Also, note anything they say that is untrue, argumentative, slanderous, threatening, rude, or profane.
If you apply for credit and are denied, keep the denial letters that come in the mail. Also, try to get the creditor to tell you specifically what caused them to deny you credit. Often it will be the erroneous information on your credit report. Ask them what would have to be removed from your credit report for them to extend you the credit you requested.
If you receive offers of credit upon favorable terms but when you apply they want to charge you more interest or give you less favorable terms, keep the documentation of the original offer so you can prove what you lost when the original deal was lost.
Often consumers suffer extreme mental anguish, embarrassment, fear and humiliation when credit is denied. This can result in insomnia, headache, muscle ache, high blood pressure and a wide variety of other ailments. To get mental anguish damages, however, requires proof. Documentary evidence from doctors, medical providers, and pharmacist is needed if the consumer seeks medical attention. Even more critical, however, is a daily diary of all of the emotions, anxieties and physical symptoms suffered each day from the date the creditor's misconduct occurs. If a consumer has this information at his fingertips it will provide him much confidence and add credibility when he tries to explain how he has been damaged by the creditors violation of the law.
Creditors are often angry when they have to write off a debt and often try to take advantage of debtors who may not understand the law. Understand your rights and make your ex-creditors obey the law. If you need help contact us.
Post a Comment new!
More Blogs by William Manchee
Why Many Intelligent and Talented People Fail in Business - Monday, May 07, 2012
Getting the Mail Can Be Risky Business - Friday, May 04, 2012
Consumers Suffer Grievous Injury When Creditors Improperly Report Their Credit after Bankruptcy - Thursday, May 03, 2012
The Effect of Print on Demand to the Small Press Author - Monday, July 04, 2011
Nine-Eleven's Impact on the Small Press Author - Sunday, July 03, 2011
Has Your Mortgage Company Ripped You Off? - Saturday, August 07, 2010
Wrongful Foreclosure - Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Don't Throw Away The Evidence - Friday, January 15, 2010
Brandy - Saturday, October 17, 2009
Why I Write in Different Genres - Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Cash for Clunkers Bad Idea for Many Consumers - Monday, August 03, 2009
Beware of Debt Negotiators - Tuesday, May 05, 2009
Top Ten Reviewers - Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Debt Collector Put Out of Business In Texas - Sunday, April 26, 2009
Defending the Small Business - Part 23 - Changing Your Ways - Tuesday, April 07, 2009
What Every Bankruptcy Filer Should Know - Part 3 - Will Filing Bankruptcy Ruin Your Credit? - Thursday, March 19, 2009
Defending the Small Business - Part 22 - Bookkeeping and Accounting - Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Chill, It's No Big Deal - Sunday, March 01, 2009
What All Bankruptcy Filers Should Know - Part 2 - Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Defending the Small Business - Part 21 Form of Business - Thursday, February 19, 2009
What Every Bankruptcy Filer Should Know - Saturday, January 31, 2009
Defending the Small Business - Part 20, Getting an Attorney - Sunday, January 25, 2009
Defending the Small Business - Part 19 - Employees, Double Trouble - Sunday, January 11, 2009
Defending the Small Business Under Siege - Part 18, Loan Consolidations & Workouts - Sunday, January 04, 2009
Defending the Small Business: Part 17 - Bankruptcy: Friend or Foe? - Monday, December 29, 2008
Tarizon: The Liberator Launch Update - Friday, December 26, 2008
Defending the Small Business - Part 16 - When the Constable Knocks - Friday, December 05, 2008
Defending the Small Business - Part 15 - State & Local Taxes - Saturday, November 22, 2008
Defending the Small Business - Part 14 - Dealing With IRS Collections - Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Defending the Small Business - Part 13 - Uncle Sam, The Sleeping Giant - Thursday, November 06, 2008
Defending the Small Business - Part 12 It's Not As Bad As It Looks - Monday, November 03, 2008
Defending the Small Business - Part 11. Misfortune - Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Defending the Small Business: Part 10. Competition - Thursday, October 23, 2008
Defending the Small Business. Part 9. Theft & Embezzlement - Monday, October 20, 2008
Defending the Small Business - Part 8. Greedy Lenders - Sunday, October 19, 2008
7 - Defending The Small Business: The Credit Conspiracy - Saturday, October 18, 2008
6 - Defending the Small Business - Giving it away. - Thursday, October 16, 2008
5. Defending the Small Business: Starting on A Shoe String - Wednesday, October 15, 2008
4. Defending the Small Business: Suffocation - Tuesday, October 14, 2008
3 - Defending the Small Business: Looting - Monday, October 13, 2008
Understanding the Current Economic Meltdown - Saturday, October 11, 2008
2 - Defending the Small Business - Doomed From Day One - Saturday, October 11, 2008
1 - Defending the Small Business: Introduction - Friday, October 10, 2008
The Stan Turner Mysteries - Sunday, March 25, 2007