Collection Agencies

Massachusetts Bankruptcy Lawyers Anthony Bucacci and Robert Simonian (508)673-9500


Can a debt collector try to collect on a debt that was discharged in bankruptcy?

Debt collectors cannot try to collect on debts that were discharged in bankruptcy. Also, if you file for bankruptcy, debt collectors are not allowed to continue collection activities while the bankruptcy case is pending in court.

If a debt collector calls and you have filed for bankruptcy, tell the debt collector. You should also be sure the debt is in your list of debts and creditors filed with the bankruptcy court. If you are represented by an attorney for your bankruptcy, you should let the debt collector know this. Then the debt collector must contact the attorney instead of you while the bankruptcy is pending. You should also let your attorney know that you have been contacted by a debt collector. Once the debt is discharged by the bankruptcy court, the discharge permanently bars the creditor or debt collector from collection of the debt. Filing for bankruptcy can have long-term consequences so consult a bankruptcy attorney to learn more.

It is important to recognize that lenders often have a right to repossess the collateral. For example, auto loan lenders generally have a right to repossess the vehicle after default. If so, then the lender may still have that right after the bankruptcy discharge, if that debt is unpaid. If you have a bankruptcy lawyer, you might want to get advice from your lawyer about repossession.

We have prepared sample letters that a consumer could use to respond to a debt collector who is trying to collect a debt that you no longer owe due to a bankruptcy discharge. Additionally, the sample letters may help you to get information, stop or limit any further communication, or protect some of your rights.

Source : consumerfinance.gov


WHAT BILL COLLECTORS CAN AND CANNOT DO

Bill collectors can be very persistent while trying to collect money, as many may know. However, people may not know that The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act extends substantial protection to people from collectors by making certain practices illegal in Massachusetts and the rest of the United States.

Many people do not know their rights under the law, but having an understanding of your rights can protect you from harassment and intimidation. Below is a list of many things that bill collectors cannot do while trying to get money for a bill, and what you can do if you believe that your rights have been violated. Also listed below is what bill collectors cannot do while trying to collect money.

What Collectors Cannot Do

  • Collectors cannot call after 9 p.m. or before 8 a.m.
  • Collectors cannot call many times a day about the same bill.
  • Collectors cannot contact a person if the person sends the collectors a letter that says the person does not want to be contacted again regarding the bill.
  • Collectors cannot call the person’s job if the person asks the collectors to stop.
  • Collectors cannot show up at a person’s job.
  • Collectors cannot harass people who owe money.
  • Collectors cannot threaten the people who owe money. This includes: using inappropriate language, threatening violence, threatening to take property away illegally, or threatening to have someone arrested.
  • Collectors cannot threaten to sue without meaning it.
  • Collectors cannot lie about which company the collector works for. Collectors cannot pretend to be attorneys, the government, or to work for a credit bureau.
  • Collectors cannot lie about the amount of money that is owed.
  • Collectors cannot say a form that was sent was a legal document if it wasn’t.
  • Collectors cannot publicize the fact someone owes money. Collectors cannot tell anyone besides the person who owes the money, the person’s spouse, and the person’s attorney about the money owed.
  • Collectors cannot publish the bill’s existence somewhere that someone else may see it, including on a post card.

If a collector does anything which violates the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act, the person may contact the state’s attorney general, the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, or an attorney for help.

However, there are many things that a collector can do to try to get the money owed.

What Collectors Can Do

  • Collectors can call daily, in between the hours of 8 am and 9 pm.
  • Collectors can send frequent letters.
  • Collectors can try to find out a person’s current contact information by calling family and friends.
  • Collectors can sue for the money.
  • Collectors can call a person’s workplace until the person asks the collector to stop.
  • Collectors can try to get the money owed even if too much time has passed for the collector to sue the person.
  • Collectors can sell the money owed, and another collection company may take over.

Being pressured by collectors can be extremely stressful and you may want to consider filing for bankruptcy. Even if the collectors are acting lawfully, their contact can still be annoying and disruptive. It can also be hard to tell when a collector crosses the line from legal to illegal territory. Contacting a bankruptcy attorney can take care of a lot of the stress from the collector, and the person who owes the money can be certain that their rights are being protected and advocated for. If you are being contacted by a collection agency and looking to erase your bills by filing for personal bankruptcy, please contact the Law Office of Bucacci and Simonian at 508-673-9500 for your free and confidential bankruptcy attorney consultation.

Debt is Threatening Retirement Dreams

Many Americans are bringing more than just their bucket lists with them into retirement. According to a recent analysis by MagnifyMoney, a growing number of Americans are carrying burdensome debt into their 50s and beyond.

The biennial MRRC study surveys more than 20,000 Americans 50 and older on a range of financial topics. MagnifyMoney found the latest results revealed a number of debt trends that threaten to undermine the retirement goals of many older Americans.

Debt On the Rise

Both the percentage of older Americans carrying debt and the amount of debt they’re carrying are on the rise. As recently as 1998, roughly 37 percent of Americans age 56 to 61 carried debt, with an average debt load of $3,634 in 2012 dollars, according to MRRC research. By comparison, today, 42 percent of Americans that age carry debt and with an average debt load of $17, 623.00.

The trend isn’t explained away by higher mortgage costs, either.

According to MagnifyMoney’s analysis, almost one-third (32 percent) of older Americans carry non-mortgage debt on a month-to-month basis, with an average of $12,490. Of that, $4,786.00, on average, is credit card debt, represents its own significant challenge for Americans as they near retirement.

Credit Card Debt Weighs Heavily

Some 40 percent of older Americans have at least $5,000 in credit card debt,; 22 percent owe more than $10,000 — an amount exceeding what most of them have in their checking accounts.

Saving For Retirement

When you are caught in the trap of using your paycheck to pay credit card or debt minimum payment and they find yourself using the available credit to buy essentials like food, gas and medicine you start to get on an endless treadmill and accumulate no saving for your retirement. Many American stop contributing to their 401(K) plans and retirement plans so they can have extra money in their pay check and make minimum payments on debts that never seem to go down.

Consider Filing for Bankruptcy

If you are approaching retirement within 15 to 20 years and find yourself on the endless treadmill of paying minimum payments and not saving for your retirement you may want to consider filing bankruptcy. You can get a fresh financial start in life, get you feet on the ground and your head above water. Call us today for a free, confidential, no obligation bankruptcy consultation today.

Medical Bills Massachusetts Bankruptcy


Medical bills & Massachusetts bankruptcy. The cost of healthcare in the United States has increased in recent years.  As a result, Americans have taken on large amounts of medical debts and bills that they cannot afford.  This affects Massachusetts residents.

This problem is bad.  Charities use donations to pay peoples medical debts. This means, charities buy the debts from medical providers so that the patients no longer owe money to the provider.

Medical bills and debt are a very big cause of bankruptcy for Americans

People need relief from these debts.  If charitable relief is not available then people often have to resort to filing bankruptcy. Medical providers often resort to hiring collection agencies.  For patients that are unable to pay medical debts are sued in court. Unfortunately for many, medical bills & Massachusetts bankruptcy go hand in hand.

Experts feel that this is an indication that our health care system is broken.  The cost of healthcare is very high.  The cost of medical insurance is very high.  The deductibles that people must pay are often very expensive.  Bankruptcy may be the only option for many patients that cannot pay their bills.

Approximately 21 million Americans have $46 billion of medical debt as of April 2021.  They face collections or lawsuits for the money owed.  If they cannot afford to pay then Americans and Massachusetts residents have to file bankruptcy due to medical debts.

Americans spend far more on health insurance than other countries compared to Germany and the Netherlands.  Healthcare is not affordable to many Americans.  As result of rising cost, people do not have medical insurance that meets their needs.  Some people have health insurance plans that they cannot afford.  The insurance premiums and deductibles exceed what their incomes allow them to pay.  Americans are pushed into bankruptcy because medical debts are overwhelming.  This can cause a lot of stress and concern. Many people do not have medical insurance.  A medical emergency will cause Massachusetts residents to file bankruptcy.

Quality health care is not affordable for an estimated 46 million Americans

Medical debts cause Massachusetts citizens to file for bankruptcy.  Emergency room visits account for a lot of medical debt.  Doctor visits and medical specialists account for a large portion of medical debt in America.  Childbirth and related medical expenses drive people into bankruptcy if they cannot afford the medical bills.  Dental care and related medical expenses cause people to file bankruptcy for the bills they cannot afford to pay.

There are many reasons that people file for bankruptcy. Medical expenses do have an effect on people’s financial situations.   Some financially responsible people have to file for bankruptcy. For others, the expenses are the final push over the financial cliff and into bankruptcy.

The debate over medical expense bankruptcy will continue for the foreseeable future.  Politicians spin the numbers to work for the votes they need.  Medical expenses influence people to file for bankruptcy in America.  Bankruptcy petitions include medical bills.  Bankruptcy discharges medical bills.  If you have questions about bankruptcy and medical bills that you can’t afford please visit our website.

Researchers disagree on the evidence for medical bills causing bankruptcies

The reasons for filing do not have to be stated when a debtor files for bankruptcy. As a result, estimates are based on surveys.  The answer will depend on how researchers phrase their questions, and how the survey respondents define the cause of their bankruptcy filing.

A variety of factors cause bankruptcies. Many people with medical debt have other debts like credit cards debts and personal loans. The low income, those without savings and loss of a job now trigger a bankruptcy filing. Medical bills & Massachusetts bankruptcy filings are related.

Medical debts are often unexpected and many Americans live paycheck to paycheck for a number of reasons including the economy in Massachusetts.  Unexpected or sudden medical bill causes problems in the financial lives of people.  This often leads to bankruptcy.  Many people are not aware that a particular hospital or medical provider was not part of their insurance plan.  As insurance companies deny insurance claims people file for bankruptcy.

Rebuilding Your Credit After Bankruptcy

REBUILDING YOUR CREDIT AFTER BANKRUPTCY

Rebuilding Your Credit After BankruptcyThe most frequently ask question from our clients is “rebuilding my credit after bankruptcy?”

Chances are, that if you have made the decision to file a bankruptcy, you are at a point where some or all of your debts are behind, you receive collection notices or even law suits. At that point you probably have been making ends meet somehow without using your cards.

When you can’t obtain new credit with high debts you have to do something.  This will prevent a creditor from granting you a new card or a loan unless you take action.  Rebuilding your credit becomes necessary in order to move forward in life.

You have now made the decision to obtain debt relief by hiring an attorney to file a bankruptcy.  After you can begin rebuilding your credit with a bankruptcy discharge in hand.

Your attorney takes you through the process of filing bankruptcy and then, afterwards, the weight of those collection letters, collection call and law suits is gone.

After bankruptcy, there are many avenues to obtain new credit. First and foremost, when a bankruptcy is filed the person that filed can decide to keep a car with automobile loan or a house and a mortgage.  Secondly, reaffirmation of those debts allows a bankruptcy filer to get on track immediately. Thirdly, the banks will record your mortgage payments to the credit bureaus. Once the attorney discusses reaffirmation of debts advice can be given accordingly.  Attorneys will explain the process.

What if you do not have a car loan or mortgage to reestablish yourself?

Without any debt many credit card companies are willing to grant you a fresh start. Credit card companies offer decent credit limits.  Favorable credit reporting usually increases credit limits and credit offers.  Offers of new credit from credit card companies listed in the bankruptcy often surprise clients and then clients receive new credit.

Open a secured credit card.  As a result, this will help to improve your credit. Deposit money in a bank account that issues you a secured card based upon the amount of your deposit. Lenders report timely payments and payment history to the credit bureaus.

In a short amount of time credit scores will improve.  Lenders and credit card companies will extend credit.

It is not unusual for clients to obtain automobile loan months after bankruptcy.  A mortgage is the most difficult type of credit to obtain after bankruptcy.  Usually one to two years after a bankruptcy you can obtain a mortgage.

These are some techniques to obtain the fresh start you deserve and there are many resources available.

Considering Bankruptcy Undecided or Unsure What To Do ?

Talk To Us About Your Options When Considering Bankruptcy :

Are You Considering Bankruptcy Undecided or Unsure What To Do ? We always tell potential clients to talk to us first to see if bankruptcy is in their best interest. The consultation is always free. Talk with Attorney Robert Simonian or Attorney Anthony Bucacci in private and in total confidentiality for expert bankruptcy advice and to see if filing bankruptcy in Massachusetts is right for you.

We can almost always come up with a solution to your financial problem. We have filed over 10,000 cases in the past 26 years and there are very few scenarios that we have not seen. The law firm Bucacci & Simonian is well known for their hard work, diligence, creativity and problem solving abilities. The law firm Bucacci & Simonian are the bankruptcy attorneys other attorneys come to with difficult cases. Call today to see what we can do for you and what options are available. Many are embarrassed about their financial problems and the situation regarding  bankruptcy. This is simply not true and many famous people have had to file for bankruptcy to get a fresh start.

Why Call Bucacci & Simonian When Considering Bankruptcy Filing :

We are known as one of the best bankruptcy attorneys in Southeastern Massachusetts serving the Bristol County and Plymouth County areas. Please inquire with anyone as to our reputation. Reputation is everything and we are very proud of ours. We have received numerous awards from various agencies and courts including the Bankruptcy Court in Boston, Massachusetts.

Using our knowledge and skill we have had several clients complete their five year Chapter 13 bankruptcy plans where they own their home FREE & CLEAR OF MORTGAGES. We understand how important it is to save clients’ homes from foreclosure, keep their cars from being repossessed and stop creditors from suing them and attaching their wages or attempting to seize their assets. This can be stopped almost instantly and we make every effort to be very available to your clients and can accommodate emergency situations. One of our important cases involved saving a client’s multi-family home.

What to Avoid When Filing Bankruptcy :

Do not attempt to file for bankruptcy on your own. You can make your situation much, much worse. If the bankruptcy petition is not correct you could lose your home, your car or possessions or you could be asked to file a different kind of bankruptcy where you have to make monthly payments when it could have been avoided. If you are not properly represented a bankruptcy trustee may foreclose on your house, allow your car to be repossessed, seize a tax refund or other assets. You could file under the wrong chapter, apply the wrong exemptions, fail to file all of the necessary forms or not understand the significance of important forms.

Protect Yourself:

Considering Bankruptcy Undecided or Unsure What To Do ? Call us today for a free and complete bankruptcy consultation. We can protect you from your creditors and protect your home, cars, jewelry and other assets. Creditors and collection lawyers have a job to do and it may seem that they are heartless and will take anything they can from you. They are represented and you should be too. Call us today. The Federal Bankruptcy Court suggests that seeking the advice of a qualified bankruptcy attorney is strongly recommended.