Lasting Effect of Denial of Bankruptcy Discharge

Jon Alper Bankruptcy

Here is an example of the importance of being truthful on your bankruptcy petition if you file bankruptcy. A man consulted with us about filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Florida after he had previously filed in another state five years ago. In the previous filing, the court denied the client his Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge because he had fraudulently misrepresented …

Can Same Person Be Beneficiary And Sole Trustee of Irrevocable Trust?

Jon Alper Estate Planning

Our client wanted to serve as trustee of an irrevocable trust created for his benefit. The client’s general attorney cautioned him that he could not serve simultaneously as a beneficiary and as a trustee, and that if he did occupy both positions the trust would automatically dissolve because of the legal “doctrine of merger.” The client’s wife proposed to create …

Trust Amendment Can Be Fraudulent Transfer

Jon Alper Fraudulent Transfers

An attorney called for help collecting a debt. The debtor had owned a piece of commercial property in a revocable living trust that had been established as part of an estate plan. The trust provided that the property would pass to the debtor’s children after her death. This attorney on behalf of her client filed a lawsuit against the debtor. …

Update On Location of Your Banks and Brokerage Accounts

Jon Alper Writ Of Garnishment

Last month, April 2018, I wrote a post about the location of debtor’s financial accounts for legal purposes such as garnishment. I stated then that I thought most accounts with national firms would be deemed to be located where the debtor resided. I had received confirmation from one such firm by email. I think the first place you should look …

Should I Transfer My Florida Homestead To My Living Trust?

Jon Alper Estate Planning

Clients who prepare living trusts for estate planning frequently will ask me whether they should transfer the legal title of their Florida homestead property to the name of their living trust. If the property is transferred to the trust the successor trustee will transfer or dispose of the property after the death of the trustmaker as directed by terms of …

New Florida Law Curtails Mortgage Foreclosure Defense By Bankruptcy Debtors

Jon Alper Bankruptcy, Mortgage Foreclosure

During the mortgage crises of 2008 through 2010 many of my clients were desparate to hold on to their homes that were under water and facing foreclosure. Some attorneys began to specialize in the area of foreclosure defense. These attorneys were skilled and delaying bank foreclosure actions during which time the homeowner occupied their home without making mortgage payments. People …

In What State Is My Financial Account Located?

Jon Alper Florida Asset Protection Planning

Many Florida residents have securities accounts at national financial firms such as Fidelity, Schwab etc. These national firms have home offices in states outside of Florida. Some do not have retail offices in Florida. One of my clients had established a tenants by entireties account at a national financial firm with no retail Florida offices He asked whether his account …

Is Debtor’s Separate Money In To An Entireties Bank A Fraudulent Transfer?

Jon Alper Fraudulent Transfers

A debtor’s transfer of non-exempt cash to avoid collection of a judgment can be reversed as a fraudulent transfer. The fraudulent transfer issue often arises when a debtor deposits money in to a bank account owned tenants by entireties. In many cases, a married debtor maintains all his financial accounts jointly with his non-debtor spouse. Is the debtor making a …

Garnishment of Florida Debtor’s Entireties Bank Account in Another State

Jon Alper Tenants By Entireties

Tenants by entireties bank accounts are exempt under Florida law and cannot be garnished by a creditor of either spouse. However, entireties accounts of Florida residents are more difficult to enforce in courts outside of Florida. A creditor of one of our clients is attempted a creative way to garnish the client’s entireties account. The client resides in Florida and …