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Surprise Legal Issues Blog

Take steps online to protect your privacy

Online exposure is one of the biggest risks individuals face to their privacy these days. It's also the one many are least prepared to manage. In order to protect yourself, follow these tips:

1. Put an antivirus program on your computer.

The top 3 reasons Americans file for bankruptcy

A report, recently released by the federal government, shows that during the final half of 2016 on into the first six months of 2017, there was a 3 percent decline in bankruptcy filings among Americans. While that may sound good, as many as 772,594 people filed for bankruptcy during that same time frame. Three key reasons seems to dominate in terms of why they chose this option as a way of addressing their debt.

One reason Americans tend to turn to bankruptcy is because of mounting credit card debt. As if paying off your principal was not difficult enough, the speed with which interest rates increase if balances are not fully paid off every month can be alarming.

Moving with a child after divorce isn't always easy

Almost all adults are free to move about as they want. They can pick up and relocate at the drop of a hat if they so choose. That is, unless they have a child custody order governing their children. In that case, the adult is free to move, but the child might not be able to. This puts the parent in a precarious decision.

There are several things that come into the picture when a parent wants to move with the child. There are a few points we think you need to consider before accepting a new job or buying a house.

Does your student loan debt feel like too much?

If you are drowning in student loan payments, you may be looking to bankruptcy as a way out. While it can help, be aware that most forms of student loan debt do not get discharged.

That sounds discouraging, so take a look at how bankruptcy might be able to help anyway.

Millennials, relationships, debt and finances

Millennials are often being touted and lauded for their financial acumen, their lack of reliance on credit cards and also their wise relationship decisions about marriage. However, one area that has certain financial analysts concerned is that millennials don't appear concerned about their partners' existing debt levels. Eighty-eight percent of Americans 65 years of age and up believe that debt levels are an area of concern to be looked at when choosing a romantic partner, whereas only 67 percent of millennials think so.

Experts argue, however, that debt should be a concern -- especially the type of debt. For example, is the debt the result of poor financial decisions regarding credit cards? Or, is the debt a mortgage on a home or an education loan, which may be an indicator of financial stability and good decisions more than anything else?

Defamation lawsuit filed by Georgia Tech basketball coach

Georgia Tech's basketball coach, Josh Pastner, has filed a defamation lawsuit. It is in response to claims that he sexually assaulted a friend's girlfriend and that he helped commit recruiting violations as far away as Arizona.

The coach denied all of those allegations, saying that they are completely contrived. His lawsuit is based on the fact that the accusations alone could harm his name in the public eye, something that is very important in the college coaching profession -- where a coach's reputation is strongly linked to the school at which he or she coaches.

You put a ring on it then broke up. Where does the ring go now?

Getting down on one knee to propose marriage is a big step in a person's life. In many cases, this comes along with a nice ring to put on the woman's finger. Many people just assume that the wedding will go off without a hitch after the proposal, but this isn't always the case.

For some people, the wedding is called off before it happens. The big question that comes up in those cases, as well as in some divorces, involves the engagement ring. The person who purchased the wedding ring might want to have it returned to them. From a legal standpoint, there is a chance that this will happen, but there is a greater chance that it won't.

Your social media activity may impact your case

With the widespread prevalence of social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, sharing your daily activities and pictures can be second nature. However, the things you post on social media can have a detrimental impact on the outcome of a bankruptcy or divorce case. It is important that you and other Arizona residents understand how social media may backfire when you are in the middle of a legal matter.

Whether you like to share your day-to-day activities with close friends and family or show the world that you live a fun and interesting life, another party in a legal case may easily use posts against you. Here, we will discuss how this can happen.

A legally incompetent person can't sign a power of attorney

A power of attorney may be used when a person is legally incompetent, but it can't be signed after that happens. It must be drafted and signed while the person is still competent. Otherwise, that person can't sign legal documents that will hold up in court.

If this sounds fairly straightforward, you should know that it's a very common problem. Often, people just don't start thinking about these things ahead of time and then try to do things in the wrong order.

Does Chapter 7 bankruptcy forgive all debts?

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a liquidation program. Some assets are sold off, and the money is then used to pay down the debt of the person filing. Any remaining debt will be forgiven.

This does mean losing assets, though there are plenty of protections in place so that people can retain a lot of the assets that they need. Extras like jewelry or a very expensive vehicle could be liquidated by the courts.

  • MCBA | Maricopa County Bar Association
  • State Bar of Arizona
  • ABA | American bar Association | Defending Liberty Pursuing Justice
  • Oregon State bar
  • NACBA | National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
  • NACA | National Association of Consumer Advocates
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The Dodds Law Firm, PLC, is located in Surprise and serves clients throughout the West Valley area. To schedule a consultation with a lawyer, call 623-208-6098 or toll free at 877-827-9906. You can also contact us online.

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