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Assignment of Benefits Bills Draw Criticism

    A pair of unrelated bills that would affect assignment of benefits (AOB) processes for when property owners have to file a claim with their insurance company is receiving opposition from a Florida association. The group believes that SB 122 and HB 7065 do not adequately meet the needs of homeowners or contractors. Both…Continued

Ease Insurance Claims Headaches with a Home Inventory

      Hopefully, there will never come a time when a major disaster strikes your home. Yet as we all know, life and Mother Nature are unpredictable and disaster can strike at any moment. Besides having enough homeowners insurance coverage for your home, it’s also important to have a home inventory. If you haven’t…Continued

Understanding Assignment of Benefits

We’ve talked a lot about assignment of benefits (AOB), and today we’re telling you more about what it is. AOB is a legal tool where a third party can be paid for the services performed for a homeowner with who is insured. When the homeowner signs an AOB contract, they give up the right to…Continued

Homeowners Still Dealing with Hurricane Irma Insurance Woes

Water damage and mold, leaky roofs, these are just a few examples of the issues homeowners are still dealing with nearly three months into 2018 as they wait for their Hurricane Irma insurance claims to be processed. According to an article featured on the website WINK News, homeowners are grappling with a situation where their…Continued

Florida Aims to Get Rid of Insurance Policy Surprises

One of the worst things that can happen to a homeowner after their home has suffered storm damage is realizing their insurance policy does not cover a certain amount of damage. A recent article published in Florida Politics discusses something that’s being done to address this situation. It’s often stressed the importance of actually reading…Continued

The Return of Expedited H1-B Visa Applications

There is some good news to report for foreign high-tech workers seeking a visa: federal immigration authorities are once again fast processing some visa requests according to a recent Miami Herald article, H-1B applications to be precise. These applications come with a guaranteed decision within a fifteen day period in exchange for a processing fee…Continued

Student Loans and Bankruptcy

For individuals considering filing for bankruptcy, having student loans can make the process significantly trickier. Failing to pay back federal student loans could result in wage garnishment or the seizing of bank accounts without the typical court proceedings. Thankfully, there are repayment programs available to help manage the debt. Unlike credit card debt, discharging student…Continued

South Florida’s Immigrant Detainment Situation

  South Florida is once again gaining national attention, this time for allegedly detaining immigrants without having an arrest warrant. The detainment is to comply with the immigration policy instituted by the Trump Administration. A federal lawsuit has since been filed by The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), deeming it unconstitutional. The detainment involves an…Continued

Your Debt Collector May Soon Be a Computer

  When negotiating with a debt collector, you’re usually talking to another human being. That may not be the case next time, and you may actually like it that way.   Experian recently announced a self-service platform called eResolve aimed at allowing consumers to resolve their debt obligations without ever having to speak to another…Continued

New Rules for Visa Applicants Go into Effect Tomorrow

Tomorrow, a revised version of Donald Trump’s travel ban will go into effect after receiving strong criticism for the stringent criteria visa applicants must adhere to if they are coming from certain countries where Muslims are the majority. These countries are Yemen, Syria, Libya, Sudan, Iran, and Somalia. New visa applicants from the aforementioned countries…Continued

Healthcare Coverage Leads to Fewer Bankruptcies

While the discussion on changes to health care continues, there is some good news to report. Over the past six years, personal bankruptcy filings have dropped by about fifty percent, and it may be due to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). A bankruptcy court won’t ask the reason why someone decides to file for bankruptcy,…Continued

The Influx of Venezuelan Asylum Seekers

As the turmoil in Venezuela continues, the number of Venezuelans seeking asylum has skyrocketed, and most of them are seeking asylum right here in the United States. Last year, over 30,000 people sought asylum, an increase of more than fifty percent when compared to 2015. This surge is particularly interesting considering that Venezuela was once…Continued

Bankruptcy and Your Taxes

Over half a million people file for bankruptcy each year. Though it’s a common thing to do, many people who file do not understand the ramifications, particularly when it comes to their tax refund. Bankruptcy rules surrounding tax returns are highly complex and there are tiny details involved that must be considered. Let’s take a…Continued

Understanding the EB-5 Visa

The EB-5 visa is for immigrants and is based on employment. It allows foreign nationals to potentially qualify for green cards based on job creation and investment in the United States. The program was launched back in 1990 as a means of stimulating the economy via capital investment and employment creation by foreign investors. With…Continued

Is Bankruptcy the Right Decision? Consider These Signs

Are you considering filing for a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy? It’s a lofty decision that requires a tremendous amount of forethought. If you’re not sure if it’s the right thing to do, these signs may make it a little easier to decide. You’re only making the minimum payments. If your budget doesn’t allow…Continued

Learn More About the “Startup” Visa Rule

Unless the Trump administration decides otherwise, foreign entrepreneurs will soon have another method of fulfilling the American dream. The International Entrepreneur Rule allows these entrepreneurs a certain amount of time to remain within the United States to build a company they recently launched. The rule was approved towards the end of President Barack Obama’s time…Continued

Bankruptcy Is Not an Easy Way Out

Previously we discussed the reason why most people end up filing for bankruptcy. Now you may be thinking that bankruptcy is an easy way out of your debts. While it does provide a way to begin making better financial decisions, it’s not going to be a simple process. For starters, a bankruptcy will linger on…Continued

Are You Familiar with the F4 Visa?

There is a multitude of reasons why people decide to immigrate, reuniting with family and financial reasons are just two of many examples. However, immigration laws vary based on cases and situations, most of which are regulated by visas. Today we’re taking a closer look at the Family Fourth Preference or “F4” Visa. An F4…Continued

The Primary Reason People File for Bankruptcy May Surprise You

When someone files for bankruptcy, the finger is often pointed towards the person’s spending habits. However, the primary reason why so many Americans end up in debt has very little to do with their temptation to spend money. The major culprit in bankruptcy filings? Medical debt. Over a quarter of Americans have difficulty paying their…Continued

What Can Affect Your E2 Visa Eligibility?

There are three requirements necessary to obtain an E2 visa, which is intended for treaty investors. To receive one, the investor must be an E2 treaty country national, must make a considerable investment, and he or she needs to develop a bona fide enterprise. If you’re an investor running a small business, fulfilling that third…Continued

Bankruptcy Tips for Millennials

Filing for bankruptcy in your twenties can be painful and a bit intimidating. With the exorbitant costs of higher education and expensive housing, even millennials may have to consider a new beginning. Taking the right steps can help you towards building a positive financial future as you make better decisions. Hire the right attorney. Your…Continued

Spouses of H-1B Visa Holders May Be in Trouble

Numerous people that are currently working legally in the country based on rules implemented during the Obama administration may find themselves out of work, whether they like it or not. The H-1B visa currently allows skilled workers to temporarily visit the United States. If they have applied for lawful permanent residence, their spouses are allowed…Continued

What to Know Before Applying for an Investor Visa

Are you considering an investor visa? You may want to hurry. Congress is currently evaluating the possibility of raising the minimum required to obtain a U.S. immigrant investor visa (EB-5) from its current price of $500,000 to $1.35 million. If you’re interested in such a visa, there are important things to know. For starters, there…Continued

What Will Affect Your Credit Score?

We all know how important it is to maintain a good credit score. Having a good score will allow you to get better rates for a loan, as well as make it easier to own a car, for example. But then there’s the mystery behind what affects your score. In other words, what counts and…Continued

Don’t Risk Losing Your Green Card

As a legal permanent resident of the United States, the time you decide to spend abroad could cause you to run into trouble if you decide to leave the country for more than six months or only stay for short periods of time. Although you may be doing something as innocent as visiting family, this…Continued

Apartment Hunting After Bankruptcy

Recovering from bankruptcy is a challenge, especially if you’re trying to find an apartment to rent. However, it’s not impossible. A little honesty and perseverance go a long way. Here a few tips. Be honest with your landlord. The majority of landlords will run a credit check on you, which will reveal that you filed…Continued

Tips for a Successful Green Card Interview

The green card allows an individual to obtain lawful permanent residence in the United States, but the majority of applicants will be required to attend an interview before receiving it. As you obviously want to present yourself in the best light and obtain the card, doing a little homework can help with the interview process.…Continued

Financial Tips from a Successful Investor

Have you ever watched the ABC network show Shark Tank? The show presents aspiring entrepreneurs as they present their unique business to a group of highly successful investors known as the “sharks”. These investors include names like Kevin O’Leary, who also goes by the name of “Mr. Wonderful”. O’Leary has several tips when it comes…Continued

A 5K for a Great Cause

Our very own Dalyla Santos and her husband recently spent their weekend participating in a 5K. Unlike other 5K events, this one was in support of a great cause: the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network was founded in 1999 and remains a global leader in the ongoing fight against pancreatic cancer,…Continued

Negotiating with Your Creditors

If you’re struggling to pay your bills on time, chances are you’ve received calls from creditors and debt collectors. It may cause you stress to talk with them, but you may be surprised to learn that many of them would prefer to work with you rather than not receive any money at all. They may…Continued

Don’t Do This When Filing for Bankruptcy

Despite being financially responsible, a certain life situation could cause a difficult financial situation. A visit to the emergency room resulting in expensive medical bills, job loss, divorce, all of these could mean that the best route is to file for bankruptcy. If you’ve weighed your options and determined that bankruptcy is the best way…Continued

Debt Harassment and Communication Consent

Last month, a Florida resident filed a complaint with the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida against her bank, alleging that her privacy was invaded and she was harassed. According to her, the bank did not stop calling her. While the woman was a bank customer, she signed a consent form allowing…Continued

Start Your Debt Free Journey Without the Credit Cards

Now that 2017 is here, you have a blank canvas to start making better financial decisions and start building the foundations towards living debt free. One of the first steps you can take to begin this journey is to ditch your credit cards and keep them somewhere where you’re not tempted to use them unless…Continued

Be Careful with Scam Phone Calls

Even with today’s modern technology that makes it much easier to identify callers and determine whether or not they are legitimate, phone call scams are still a major issue. Here at our law firm, we’ve received several calls from our clients complaining about a scam phone call coming from the phone number 786-408-7945, which many…Continued

Three Financial Tips for the New Year

Every day, credit counselors and bankruptcy lawyers meet with people that are struggling to make ends meet. Let’s take at some of their tips and advice to help you get a grip on your finances. Take control of your expenses. If you throw away your receipts, start keeping them and make a record of where…Continued

Gift Giving During the Holidays

With the holidays here, it can be a tough time, especially if you’re struggling financially and you don’t want to spend a lot of money on gifts. Holiday shopping can mean going over your budget, which is why it’s critical to carefully plan your gift giving and keep it simple. Here are some tips to…Continued

Bankruptcy and Divorce

When people file for bankruptcy, the reasons behind the filing are sometimes more than just money issues. A marriage that isn’t working out or a breakup caused by a tough financial situation may also be reasons. Bankruptcy cases that also involve divorce need to be closely evaluated by a bankruptcy attorney, and this usually means…Continued

Will Filing for Bankruptcy Affect Your Employment Eligibility?

Filing for bankruptcy is stressful as it is, and worrying about the potential ramifications can cause further worry. For example, will an employer refuse to hire you if you’ve filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy? There are certain laws in the United States Bankruptcy Code that place limits on employers and how they can use your…Continued

Join Us at the 13th Annual Diamond Angels Fairy Tale Ball

The countdown is on for the 13th Annual Diamond Angels Fairy Tale Ball, presented by the Diamond Angels of Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation. We’re very proud of Dalyla Santos’ efforts as one of the volunteers for this year’s Fairy Tale Ball. The Diamond Angels of Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation consists of a team…Continued

Will You Lose Your Car or Home in a Bankruptcy?

It’s never an easy decision to file for bankruptcy. For a number of people however, the major concern is whether or not they will be able to keep the items that are most valuable to them, generally their car and their home. In South Florida, a car is practically a necessity, and not having one…Continued

Financial Apps for Your Smartphone

Today’s smartphones can make our lives incredibly productive, allowing us to easily track and keep a close eye on finances. If you’re looking to save money (especially with the holiday season quickly approaching), there are a couple of financial apps you can use to help you stay on track. Mint has been around for several…Continued

What Does the ITT Closure Mean for Former Students?

The higher education industry was rocked last month when the for-profit ITT Technical Institute chose to close its doors permanently and cease operations after the U.S. Department of Education decided to ban the vocational college from enrolling students who receive federal aid. The news was particularly surprising considering ITT had been in business since 1969,…Continued

Financial Tips for Business Startups

For every successful startup, there are plenty of businesses that ended up failing despite being founded on brilliant business ideas. You may be curious as to why this happens, and it’s often because budding entrepreneurs fail to understand that there are significant differences between having a business idea and actually running a business. A lack…Continued

Rebuilding After Bankruptcy

Choosing to file for bankruptcy is a major life decision, and once you’ve filed you may feel like there is no hope in terms of recovering from your financial situation. It may be tough, but it’s not impossible if you set your mind to it and make some small adjustments to your lifestyle. You can…Continued

Money Saving Back to School Tips

Many students in Miami-Dade County will be returning to school next week, if they haven’t already. As a parent, you know that back to school time means having to factor in clothing, materials, and possible extracurricular activities into your budget. This can be difficult if your budget is already tight to begin with, but there…Continued

Why Is Credit Counseling Necessary?

Are you living paycheck to paycheck struggling to pay your debts to the point that it’s affecting your health? If so, declaring bankruptcy and starting with a clean slate may be a necessity. Because it’s perhaps the most serious decision you’ll make regarding your finances, you’ll be required to receive pre-bankruptcy credit counseling whether you…Continued

Why Should You Hire a Bankruptcy Attorney?

Consumers that are planning on filing for bankruptcy may think it’s wise to go through the process alone without seeking the help of a bankruptcy attorney, but this can prove to be incredibly risky, especially if it’s a Chapter 7 bankruptcy which involves full elimination of the debt upon a discharge being issued. When someone…Continued

Combat Rate Hikes by Reviewing Your Insurance Policy

When you check your mailbox later this year, you may end up finding an unwelcome surprise: a letter stating your insurance premium will be increasing. If that’s the case, the next logical step would be to find ways to reduce your bill. If you are looking for ways to reduce your insurance bill, experts suggest…Continued

Heritage Forced to Withdraw its Petition on Rate Increases

Florida-based Heritage Property & Casualty Company recently withdrew its petition to raise homeowners insurance rates after heavy criticism and a review by the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR). The company originally planned to raise rates by just over fourteen percent, despite recording a 7.4 million dollar profit for the year’s first quarter. Heritage is…Continued

What Not to Do During Your Bankruptcy Filing

Rapper 50 Cent filed for bankruptcy last year after a Florida woman won a $7 million judgment against him in an attempt to wipe out the debt as well as other business losses. Despite allegedly having no money, the rapper was caught on social media posting pictures of himself near wads of cash, an action…Continued

Will You Lose Your Home in a Bankruptcy?

Among the many questions a person may have when filing for bankruptcy is what will become of their home. Generally speaking, your home will be protected during a bankruptcy as long as your equity in the home is fully exempt. Even if your home’s equity is not fully exempt you could keep it if you…Continued

Citizens Seeks to Raise Its Rates

Florida has thankfully remained free of any major hurricanes for several years now, allowing major insurance provider Citizens Property Insurance to become financially stronger and leaner. And yet despite the fact that it’s been over a decade since there’s been a major storm, Citizens continues to force rate hikes upon its customers. Last month, Citizens…Continued

Insurers Are Restricting New Business and Renewals

Some Florida homeowners are finding themselves in quite the predicament: a lack of property insurance companies refusing to take on new business in South Florida ZIP codes with high claims rates. In some cases, these insurance companies are going as far as canceling or choosing not to renew policies in areas considered high risk. Increasing…Continued

Hurricane Preparedness

Hurricane season began on June 1st and as most people know, Florida is notorious for being one of the states most at risk for hurricanes or tropical storms due to its location. Being prepared is essential and could literally save your life. Regardless of how many or how hurricanes are predicted, you should always be…Continued

The Importance of Rule Enforcement

Let’s say you purchased a unit in a condominium when it was brand new. As with any other condominium, you likely received documents stating the rules and regulations imposed by the association which could restrict the level of customization you’re allowed to do such as restricting decorating or changing the landscaping around your front doors.…Continued

What to Do with a Debt Collector

There are many reasons why you may receive a call from a debt collector. Perhaps you fell behind on your bills due to a lack of employment, or maybe you forgot about an old debt. Now you’re receiving phone calls and letters, which can be frightening if you’ve never been in such a situation. By…Continued

What You Should Know About Post Bankruptcy

If you’ve been living in debt for numerous years, the feeling of finally being free of it after filing for bankruptcy can be incredibly liberating. You now have a clean slate to start rebuilding your life and start making better financial decisions as well as attain those things that once seemed out of your reach,…Continued

Condo Associations Are Charging Excessive Fees

Per Florida law, a condominium association is not allowed to charge applicants any more than $100 when they are applying to purchase or rent a unit yet condo associations are doing just that: violating the law. When a person applies for a unit, the application fee—which is nonrefundable—is meant to cover the costs involved in…Continued

Filing for Bankruptcy with Your Spouse

If you’re married and are planning on filing for bankruptcy, you may be debating whether to file a single or joint bankruptcy petition. Should you choose to file jointly, you and your spouse’s combined debts and property will be included in the bankruptcy. In most cases a joint bankruptcy petition is the best way to…Continued

The Problem with Overdraft Fees

For the many Americans that live paycheck to paycheck, it’s not easy to keep a close eye on a bank account among other responsibilities, and there may be a time when a person ends up unintentionally overdrafting, resulting in significant fees. These overdraft fees are big moneymakers for banks, earning them more than $15 billion…Continued

Understanding Re-Setting or Re-Aging Debts

If your debt ends up going into collections, there is a possibility it may change hands a couple of times due to a creditor selling the debt or contracting another agency in attempt to collect it, all of which can happen more than once depending on the amount of time that’s passed since the debt…Continued

Post Bankruptcy Tips

Are you ready to wipe the slate clean and embark on a road to a brighter financial future? Upon receiving a discharge of bankruptcy debts, there are a couple of things you’ll need to take care and be aware of to ensure long term success in your financial journey. You can begin by ensuring that…Continued

Do You Need to Have HO-6 Insurance?

A topic that may emerge during a condominium board/association meeting is insurance. If a board states that unit owners are not required to carry insurance, is that correct? If you were to examine Florida’s existing condominium laws, it does state that all owners must carry insurance for their units, doesn’t it? The Florida Condominium Act…Continued

Google Says No to Payday Loan Ads

Have you ever had to deal with a company offering payday loans? You may have come across them if you happened to be doing any related searches on Google. The search giant is now making sweeping changes and recently announced that it is banning all payday loan ads, citing concerns about the questionable lending practices.…Continued

The Costs of Filing for Bankruptcy

Perhaps the greatest cost of filing for bankruptcy is the emotional one. Unfortunately, there are also financial costs and fees that are involved when you choose to file, and it’s important to take these into account as you may be in a situation where you’re already low on funds. Let’s begin with the court fees. …Continued

Getting Started with a Business Plan

So you’ve decided to start your own business, congratulations!  Starting a business can be an exciting and highly opportune experience, but there are steps that need to be taken prior to your grand opening.  For starters, you’ll need to develop a business plan which can seem intimidating as you’re essentially putting all of your business…Continued

Understanding Student Loans

Student loans are the largest source of debt for American households. An average student graduates with a $25,000.00 loan balance and for many people, one of the several factors that lead to a bankruptcy filing is being unable to pay for student loans. Student loans are often a necessity for someone seeking to obtain his…Continued

Understanding Debt Settlement

If you’re struggling with credit card debt, there are options available to get out of it, but unfortunately these options are not as simple as you might like.  You may for example choose to apply for a loan to consolidate your loan at a lower interest rate, but this requires having a good credit score. …Continued

Taxes and Your Bankruptcy

Besides weighing the pros and cons of filing for bankruptcy, one thing many people fail to take into account are the tax-related consequences.  With the tax season deadline right around the corner, it’s worth taking a look at the subject and what you can expect. If you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy there will be…Continued

Filing for Bankruptcy

Are you planning to file for bankruptcy?  This process can be emotionally painful, overwhelming, and stressful.  As with any process, the more you educate yourself and do your homework, the easier it will be to navigate the bankruptcy filing process, allowing you to start fresh with a clean slate and practice better financial decisions. Before…Continued