Thompson Law Group, P.C.

Warrendale, Pennsylvania, Bankruptcy Law Blog

Be cautious concerning advice to settle credit card debt

When it comes to resolving debt, there is always plenty of well-meaning advice. Unfortunately, those making the suggestions will likely never have to face the consequences of a wrong decision.

As one U.S. News article points out, the good news is that credit card debt is unsecured. That this debt is unsecured will prevent the credit card company from seizing your car or your home. However, credit card debt could still stop you from having the money available to make car or house payments.

An alternative to courtrooms

Citizens have rights and states have laws. Throughout history, we’ve looked to juries and judges to enforce them in court. However, court fees can add up and scheduling a hearing drags out the process.

Now, mediation introduces a new way to solve legal issues without going to court.

Is tax time your time to file bankruptcy?

Typically, people around the country use tax time as an opportunity to file bankruptcy. In many cases, a tax refund can be used to pay for the bankruptcy.

This year, however, due to new tax rules, many people who were planning to use their refunds to pay for a bankruptcy find that their refund is smaller than usual or even nonexistent. Worse, in some cases, they are learning they actually owe money, sometimes huge amounts.

Distracted driving causes many accidents in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania residents are undoubtedly aware of the dangers in encountering a distracted driver. A person operating a motor vehicle needs to pay strict attention to the road. The temptation of a cellphone and the multitude of uses it has is making it difficult for people to adhere to that basic safety requirement and it is leading to a spate of distracted driving car accidents. This is added to the other distractions that existed before the cellphone.

The scope of the problem is consistently referenced in research studies and by anecdotal evidence from law enforcement and emergency responders, yet it continues. The Department of Transportation in the state says that the most common reason for auto accidents in 2017 was distracted driving. Cellphones are a problem. However, such acts as adjusting the temperature settings in the vehicle and interacting with passengers is also a major risk. There were more than 15,600 accidents because of distracted drivers in 2017. This surpassed alcohol as the most common factor in accidents, which came in at more than 10,300. Next was speeding, at nearly 4,200.

How much does a surviving spouse get if there is no will?

Pennsylvania residents will often be encouraged to prepare for the future by taking part in comprehensive estate planning. This is to make certain their loved ones are cared for, there is adequate asset protection and there are no problems after their death. However, some will still avoid the issue. There are many reasons for this. Perhaps it is an unwillingness to acknowledge the inevitable end of life. Or, they might be under the impression that they do not have significant assets to make an estate plan with a will or trusts.

People are frequently stunned when their assets are calculated and its value is significantly higher than they thought. Even if it is not of great value, it is still imperative to prepare and have an estate plan. Those who do not have a will or other estate planning document will be classified as having died "intestate." Knowing how this impacts a surviving spouse is important when deciding whether to have an estate plan or not.

Eight people suffer injuries after bus-truck accident

People in Pittsburgh and the surrounding areas might choose to take public transportation to avoid the inherent problems and concerns with driving. That can include the cost of gas, the need to find parking, the inevitable traffic and more. When taking public transport, however, it is important to remember there can be auto accidents just as easily as when commuters are in their own vehicles. They can also suffer injuries in these crashes. A common concern is encountering the seemingly endless number of delivery trucks on the road, especially during the holiday season. When there is an accident of this kind, it is important that those who were injured think about a potential legal filing.

An accident between a delivery vehicle and a Port Authority bus led to eight people being hurt recently. All were passengers on the bus. According to the investigation, it is believed that the delivery driver was at fault. The accident happened in the early morning hours after 5 a.m. The driver was searching for the post office. While the vehicle was not a mail truck, mail was being delivered. The driver, looking for the post office, looked away from the road. The truck crashed into the side of the bus. The windshield was cracked. According to first responders, there was a different story and the driver said he had fallen asleep while driving. Neither driver was hurt. The passengers' injuries were said to be non-life-threatening. The case continues to be investigated.

Can you receive a hardship discharge under Chapter 13?

When Pennsylvania residents consider filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, there are several reasons why this can be preferable to a liquidation under Chapter 7, not the least of which is the oft-mentioned and accurate statement that a person can "keep your home" and "keep your motor vehicle." However, even after the plan has been approved and a person is making the payments as required, problems might arise that prevent the debtor from completing the requirements detailed in the plan. There are still options available, albeit in tightly controlled situations.

When problems arise that make it impossible for the debtor to complete the bankruptcy plan, the hardship discharge is an alternative. It is important to remember there are certain narrow requirements that make a hardship discharge possible. First, the plan must have been confirmed.

Pedestrian suffers critical injuries when hit by car on sidewalk

Pedestrians in Pittsburgh will know that they need to be vigilant. Given the number of ways in which drivers are distracted nowadays, the simple act of crossing the street can be a dangerous act, even if pedestrians are adhering to all the basic safety rules. However, what they will not expect is to be hit by a car when they are on the sidewalk. This can happen suddenly and the injuries can lead to significant medical bills and lost wages, among other financial impacts. A lawsuit is often the only strategy to receive adequate compensation for what they have lost.

According to a recent reports, a 56-year-old woman was injured when she was hit by a vehicle while on the sidewalk. The accident happened in the morning at around 8 a.m. The accident occurred near an intersection. She was hit and then the vehicle that hit her was hit by a second vehicle. She was rushed to the hospital and said to be in critical condition. The driver of the vehicle that hit her, a gray SUV, said she was trying to avoid a crash and went onto the sidewalk.

Half of teens ride with distracted drivers and other key facts

You're a parent. You worry about your kids when they're not home. You still think of them, in some ways, as the little toddlers you had to follow around the house. They may be teens now, but your desire to protect them is the same.

That's why it is important to know about the risks that teenagers face every day. One of the biggest is simply getting in the car with other teens. Car accidents take lives each day and cause many serious injuries. One of the main reasons is distracted driving.

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