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Executory Contracts in Business Bankruptcy

Business Bankruptcy Business bankruptcy, typically filed under Chapter 11 of the bankruptcy code, present a host of unique issues.   One of those issues is what happens to executory contracts.  What is an executory contract? Even though it has a large statutory section dedicated to them, the Bankruptcy Code does not explicitly define what an executory contract is.  However, courts routinely define such contracts in the same way.  Essentially, an executory contract is one where both parties [...]

Mortgage Relief Act Extension

There have always been legal and practical options for those having difficulty making their mortgage payments.  However, during the housing crisis, legislators and agencies added additional options and programs designed to help struggling homeowners.  As the housing market and economy continue to recover, some of the relief programs and options are beginning to reach their deadlines. Two of the largest such programs, Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) and the Home Affordable Refina[...]

Florida Tenant Rights in Foreclosure

The news can be tough to follow, from the violence in Maryland to the earthquake in Nepal. The good news unfortunately seems to get buried in small articles and clips.  However, it is there fore those who look.  The past few weeks have yielded good news for homeowners and tenants alike, in different forms. As discussed in earlier blogs, the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009 (PTFA) expired at the start of this year.  The PTFA protected tenants from being immediately evicted if the [...]

Social Media Property Rights in Bankruptcy

Modern technology, particularly the internet and smartphones, has brought with it many new types of property, property that is largely intangible.  Intangible property does not have a physical existence and cannot be touched or moved like a car, painting, or other type of tangible property.  Much of the law has evolved to deal with tangible property so courts are still adapting to how to deal with intangible property in all areas of the law. Earlier this month, one bankruptcy court began to ta[...]

Homeowner with Mortgage Insurance Foreclosed Unnecessarily

Laura Coleman Biggs is a former nurse whose husband died in 2003.  After his death, she struggled to make payments on their home for years.  Upon the advice of her attorney, she filed for bankruptcy but didn’t pursue the case to completion.  The filing alone was enough to scare creditors and she lost the ability to use her credit cards.  Foreclosure proceedings were commenced against Biggs on behalf of the lender, a Bank of America subsidiary and by December of 2013, Biggs was on the verge[...]

Lenders Lose Where Default Notice is Lacking

In an earlier Florida Foreclosure Blog, we discussed how Paragraph 22 of many standard mortgage agreements can be the basis for a foreclosure defense.  To quickly recap, a mortgage is a contract under which the lender and the borrower each agree to undertake certain obligations.  Paragraph 22 of standard mortgage agreements contains a number of obligations that the lender must undertake before filing a foreclosure action.  These requirements deal with giving the borrower a default notice and [...]

Debtors Win Against Creditor Harassment

Though bankruptcy is often thought of as a negative, it is better thought of as an opportunity to stop creditor harassment.  An opportunity provided by the law because of a belief that sometimes debt can reach a point where it is nearly debilitating and that individuals and businesses can benefit from a fresh start. Perhaps the most stress relieving privilege that bankruptcy grants is the automatic stay.  As discussed in earlier blogs, the automatic stay is an automatic court order preventi[...]

Florida’s Bankruptcy Wildcard Exemption

Most bankruptcy laws are federal and thus, bankruptcy proceedings are relatively uniform throughout the country.  However, one area where states vary is bankruptcy exemptions, property that is excluded or put differently, safe from forced sale during bankruptcy.  Florida’s exemptions include an exemption for “homestead” properties, which was discussed in earlier bankruptcy blogs. Those who do not “claim or receive the benefits of” a homestead exemption, have one unique advantage in [...]

New Case Polarizes Foreclosure Statute of Limitations in Florida

Foreclosure Statute of Limitations in Florida NEW CASE PRESENTS HOPE FOR HOMEOWNERS FACING SECOND FORECLOSURE ACTION In an earlier bankruptcy and foreclosure blog, we discussed a case, US Bank v. Bartram,  that was troubling for homeowners.  The case, which was decided by Florida’s Fifth District Court of Appeal, allowed a lender’s second foreclosure action against the same homeowner to move forward despite the homeowner’s argument that the statute of limitations (i.e. time limit for fi[...]

Blake Trueblood Interviewed on Marijuana Legality in Indian Country

Blake Trueblood, was interviewed by KFI Radio on the topic of marijuana legality and economic development in Indian Country. The conversation centered around a recent Department of Justice memo stating that the Department would not stand in the way if Native American sovereign nations decided to grow marijuana on Tribal lands. In the interview, Mr. Trueblood stated that Tribes need to evaluate for themselves whether growing marijuana on their land is in their best economic and social interest. [...]