Protections against mortgage fraud could cost New Yorkers

New York may be one of the best states for homeowners facing foreclosure because of legal protections against mortgage fraud. However, those protections are costly to lenders and may end up costing New York borrowers more money, too. The foreclosure process in New York is the longest in the nation, taking on average 1,089 days to complete. A backlog of foreclosures has stalled the state’s housing recovery and has kept housing prices low. Now, the Federal Housing Finance Authority is considering fee increases for New York borrowers to compensate Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for costly foreclosure delays. The good news is that the state’s lengthy foreclosure process means New Yorkers in default of their mortgages have multiple opportunities to try to save their homes from foreclosure. These options include filing for Chapter 13 or other forms of bankruptcy, a mortgage loan modification or a short sale. Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows a homeowner to reorganize debts into a court-supervised repayment plan and make manageable payments over time. For individuals with a steady source of income, Chapter 13 can be an excellent option for eliminating some debt, reducing interest payments and making a fresh financial start. By sticking to the Chapter 13 repayment… Continue reading

Total number of bankruptcy filings have decreased since last year

New York residents may be interested to hear that the total number of bankruptcy filings in May have decreased by 12 percent from last year. Commercial Chapter 11filings decreased by 25 percent, from 716 filings in May 2012 to 537 filings in May 2013. Total filings have also decreased four percent from April 2013, totaling 96,430 filings versus 100,732 from the previous month. Chapter 11 filings decreased from 704 filings in April 2013 to 537 filings in May 2013, a decline of eight percent. The average total bankruptcy filing dates have also declined from 3,534 filings in May 2012 to 3,111 filings in May 2013, a 12 percent decrease. New York is not listed among the top five states with the highest per capita bankruptcy filing rates. The Executive Director of ABI, a company that helps to provide up-to-date bankruptcy filing data, believes that the numbers will only continue to decline. Lower interest rates, decreased consumer spending and tighter lending standards have allowed both consumers and businesses to keep their finances in check. Many small business owners may be facing pressures from increasing debt. They have the option to file Chapter 11 bankruptcy, which protects them from creditors. An experienced… Continue reading

Kodak to emerge from bankruptcy significantly slimmed down

Businesses in New York can pursue bankruptcies when they lose their financial moorings and lack the ability to carry on without protection. Companies of different types seek bankruptcy protection in New York and elsewhere in any given year. On Aug. 20, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court approved Kodak’s plan to emerge from bankruptcy proceedings and the judicial oversight of its company’s operations. The approval of the plan paves the pathway for Kodak to operate as a significantly smaller company that focuses on commercial and packaging printing. The company hopes to exit bankruptcy on Sept. 3. Gone after the bankruptcy process is the company’s once iconic camera-making business, which made the Kodak name famous more than 100 years ago. Founded in 1880 by George Eastman, Kodak popularized photography in the United States and across the world. In addition, Kodak has terminated employees, closed offices and plants and downsized its operations dramatically. Kodak was forced to file bankruptcy in 2012 because of the company’s growing debt, increased competition and the continuing growing in the use of digital cameras. Approval of the plan by the bankruptcy judge will result in the loss of retirement and health benefits for many former Kodak employees. At the… Continue reading

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