Make-sure-your-kids-are-well-cared-for-Hire-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyers-video

A divorce is undoubtedly more gut wrenching when children are involved. While every person wants to do the right thing for their kids, not everyone knows how to do that during a divorce. A part of custody battles include determining where a child will live, how often each parent gets to see the children, who pays for what, and appoints the decision maker. It is easy to be overwhelmed by the immense and difficult decisions that accompany a divorce case. But undoubtedly, there are none so important as how your children’s lives will change.

Making the right decisions for your kids is hard no matter who you are or what you are going through. After a divorce everyone wants their children to have everything they need emotionally and otherwise. Determining what will do that is not simple. It’s important to have a Kansas City divorce lawyer who can educate you regarding custody laws, and guide you in doing what is best for your children during and after the divorce process is finalized.

Custody can not be summed up in one definition. Courts in Missouri define several different aspects of custody for parents following a divorce. The court helps determine the best living situation for children with the help of lawyers, mediators, and of course the parents. Specifics of custody are divided into two categories. There is legal custody physical custody. Legal custody determines the decision maker in relation to education, welfare, and health. The second part covered in custody decisions is physical custody, which determines where a child lives and how contact is divided between parents. A parent can also be granted sole custody. That means the children live with them and they make all the decisions. When sole custody is granted, the other parent typically gets visitation rights or temporary custody.

Joint custody is the most ideal situation, with equally shared decisions made by both parents working together, as well as meaningful interaction with each parent and the children. Not every couple should have this type of custody situation. Depending on the specifics of the situation, custody will be determined in such a way that protects and benefits children the most. Not every divorced parent can make decisions jointly with another parent. Sometimes parents aren’t financially ready to have their kids live with them. The court seeks to find solutions in custody assigning that help children live happy and healthy lives, seeing both parents, and getting the best living situation possible. Because of this, there is a combination of custody rights granted.

Do what’s best for your kids and find a great lawyer. It’s vital to have your case properly presented. Custody battles can become incredibly emotional, and it can be difficult to reverse a court decision once the divorce is finalized. Talk with a Kansas City divorce lawyer to find out how you can best get your children what they need, both during and after a divorce. Make-sure-your-kids-are-well-cared-for-hire-kansas-city-divorce-lawyers-video.

 

Video-navigating-the-difficult-waters-of-child-custody-With-kansas-city-divorce-lawyers


A divorce is undoubtedly more gut wrenching when children are involved. Every parent wants what is best for their child, but sometimes the lines and decisions regarding exactly what that is are more complex. A part of custody battles include determining where a child will live, how often each parent gets to see the children, who pays for what, and appoints the decision maker. It is easy to be overwhelmed by the immense and difficult decisions that accompany a divorce case. But undoubtedly, there are none so important as how your children’s lives will change.

These issues are difficult enough to make as a parent. After a divorce everyone wants their children to have everything they need emotionally and otherwise. Determining what will do that is not simple. With the legal complications involved in custody cases, it’s vital to have a Kansas City divorce lawyer help you sort out the implications of each decision made, and the impact it will have on you and your children after.

State law determines custody specifics, and in Missouri, the court establishes custody rights on a number of levels. At the center of the law is the goal to give children the best possible living situation, taking into account the state of each parent and their ability to care for their children respectively. The most important legal divisions involve physical custody and legal custody. Legal custody rights involve decisions regarding the children’s welfare, health and education. Physical custody decides where a child lives, and how much contact each parent has with their kids. Sole custody describes a situation where one parent makes all the decisions regarding the children, and the children reside with that parent. The other parent may have what’s known as visitation or temporary custody.

Joint custody is the most ideal situation, with equally shared decisions made by both parents working together, as well as meaningful interaction with each parent and the children. Not every couple should have this type of custody situation. The welfare of children is at the center of custody cases. This means that each parent is determined to either be eligible to meet certain needs or not. Although preferred, it is not always possible for divorced parents to make decisions together. There are cases where parents aren’t in a financial or living position to have kids live with them. The specific combination of custody rights is determined based on each parent and their ability to provide for their children.

Do what’s best for your kids and find a great lawyer. It’s vital to have your case properly presented. Once courts have made their decisions regarding custody rights, it is time consuming and expensive to undo those decisions. Talk with a Kansas City divorce lawyer to find out how you can best get your children what they need, both during and after a divorce. Video-navigating-the-difficult-waters-of-child-custody-with-kansas-city-divorce-lawyers.

Make-sure-your-kids-are-well-cared-for-Hire-Kansas-City-divorce-lawyers.

It’s never easy to get a divorce. But when children are part of your divorce, it’s even more difficult. No parent wants their child to suffer from their choices, but that wish can become more complex during a divorce. The court assists parents in making decisions regarding who children will live with, visitation rights, child support, and who gets to make decisions about the children’s welfare and lives. A lot of legal decisions have to be made before a divorce is finalized. Some of the most important ones will determine each individual parent’s custody rights.

Making the right decisions for your kids is hard no matter who you are or what you are going through. After a divorce everyone wants their children to have everything they need emotionally and otherwise. Determining what will do that is not simple. It’s important to have a Kansas City divorce lawyer who can educate you regarding custody laws, and guide you in doing what is best for your children during and after the divorce process is finalized.

In Missouri, there are several forms of custody that parents get through a divorce. The court helps determine the best living situation for children with the help of lawyers, mediators, and of course the parents. Specifics of custody are divided into two categories. There is legal custody physical custody. Legal custody rights involve decisions regarding the children’s welfare, health and education. Physical custody decides where a child lives, and how much contact each parent has with their kids. A parent can also be granted sole custody. That means the children live with them and they make all the decisions. The other parent may have what’s known as visitation or temporary custody.

Joint custody is the most ideal situation, with equally shared decisions made by both parents working together, as well as meaningful interaction with each parent and the children. It’s important that the particulars of each custody case are taken into consideration. This allows for a workable and realistic custody solution for both parents. A court will examine the various needs of the children, and assess which parent can provide for the children the way they need. People can’t always collaborate in decision making regarding their children. Sometimes parents aren’t financially ready to have their kids live with them. The goal is to find the right combination of custody rights based on each situation, the parents, and what will benefit the children both now and in years to come.

It’s vital that you have the representation you need when you are going through a divorce, but especially to ensure your children get the absolute best from both parents. Once courts have made their decisions regarding custody rights, it is time consuming and expensive to undo those decisions. Kansas City divorce lawyers understand custody laws, and can help you do what’s best for your kids now and in the year to come. Make-sure-your-kids-are-well-cared-for-Hire-kansas-city-divorce-lawyers.

Do-Not-Go-To-Court-for-custody-without-a-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyer

Divorce is complicated as it is, but when kids are involved, it is that much harder. Every parent wants what is best for their child, but sometimes the lines and decisions regarding exactly what that is are more complex. The court assists parents in making decisions regarding who children will live with, visitation rights, child support, and who gets to make decisions about the children’s welfare and lives. It’s a difficult part of divorce to face, but one that is necessary to ensure children get what they need after parents are no longer together.

These issues are difficult enough to make as a parent. When people are trying to ensure their children receive everything they need to grow up as healthy and happy individuals after a divorce, it is that much harder. It’s important to have a Kansas City divorce lawyer who can educate you regarding custody laws, and guide you in doing what is best for your children during and after the divorce process is finalized.

Custody can not be summed up in one definition. Courts in Missouri define several different aspects of custody for parents following a divorce. Each custody case is different, but the goal of the court is the same; to give children the best in regards to their living situation and emotional needs. To determine the specific rights of each parent, the court determines legal custody and physical custody of the children. Legal custody determines the decision maker in relation to education, welfare, and health. Physical custody decides where a child lives, and how much contact each parent has with their kids. The court grants sole custody at times, which means one parent has all the decision making rights and the children live with them. The other parent may have what’s known as visitation or temporary custody.

Joint custody is the most ideal situation, with equally shared decisions made by both parents working together, as well as meaningful interaction with each parent and the children. As much as this usually benefits children, it is not always the right situation. Depending on the specifics of the situation, custody will be determined in such a way that protects and benefits children the most. Not every divorced parent can make decisions jointly with another parent. Sometimes parents aren’t financially ready to have their kids live with them. In each case, a combination of custody rights are determined based on what is in the best interests of the children in the long term.

The last thing you want is to go into a custody case without representation. You need a legal professional to present your case to the court. Not only is custody emotional and difficult to determine. It’s also hard and expensive to undo what was first determined at a later time. Kansas City divorce lawyers can help you understand and make decisions so that your children can get everything they need during and after a divorce. Do-not-go-to-court-for-custody-without-a-kansas-city-divorce-lawyer.

Get-Whats-Rightfully-Yours-With-a-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyer

It’s impossible to see whether or not our choices will pan out in the end. No one can know what obstacles they will face. As we get older, get married, and have children, the stresses and unexpected situations seem to increase. Although nearly half of the population goes through divorce, it stands out as one of the most intensely stressful parts of a person’s life. The legal implications, difficult division of assets and emotional turmoil are incredibly overwhelming for the majority of people facing separation and divorce. In addition to the personal loss and pain, there is so much to know regarding legal proceedings and your rights.

Most of the time, a divorce means that nothing will be the same. At least one person has to move out during a separation, you can lose out on things that you own, and you face taking on debt and losing property that once belonged to you. Sometimes couples can agree on how to divide their property and money, and make a decision on what should happen to their home. If you’re like the majority, its incredibly difficult to agree on what is fair during a divorce. Missouri divorce law gets very specific regarding how property and assets are divided, but the specifics of each situation require an attorney’s expertise to sort out. Leaving it to the courts to decide may result in you losing valuable property or belongings.

Individuals can lose everything in a divorce, an already emotionally hard time. You need legal protection during a divorce, which is why Kansas City divorce lawyers are a must. Their experience in court, knowledge regarding the law, and expertise in getting a fair division of assets is invaluable to you. Forget trying to understand the law on your own. Find an attorney with a good reputation to work you case and help you get what is rightfully yours.

States are divided in how divorce is handled. That means that your specific rights will vary depending on where you live. Only ten states divide a 50-50 split of all property obtained during a marriage, and Missouri is not one of them. Equitable Distribution is what is done in Missouri as opposed to Community Property. In Equitable Distribution, everything obtained during the course of a marriage is considered marital property unless proved otherwise. A Kansas City divorce lawyer can help you keep assets and property that are rightfully yours and yours alone, despite the fact that they were acquired during marriage.

There are many complexities involved in each divorce. These are individual relationships with distinctive roles and parts played by each partner. Part of the legal involvement in divorce is to ensure that couples who can not agree on how to fairly divide everything up get the mediation they need. In Missouri, the court process will not leave you with an equal half of the assets. It might seem easier to just let it go. But doing so may mean you end up losing assets you worked hard for, your pension, your home equity, and even deeply personal or sentimental belongings. It’s incredibly smart to get the legal support you need. Hire a Kansas City divorce lawyer to help you get what is rightfully yours and gain peace of mind throughout the process. Get-whats-rightfully-yours-with-a-kansas-city-divorce-lawyer.

Infomation-Video-Our-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyers-Put-Together


Infomation-Video-Our-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyers-Put-Together

Great Video On Equitable-Distribution

How will the state do equitable-distribution watch the  video

Video On Equitable-Distribution

Getting-your-fair-share-with-a-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyer-Equitable-Distribution-in-Missouri equitable distribution by kansas city divorce lawyers

Getting-your-fair-share-with-a-kansas-city-divorce-lawyer-equitable-distribution-in-missouri

Getting-your-fair-share-with-a-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyer-Equitable-Distribution-in-Missouri  equitable distribution by kansas city divorce lawyers.

 

Making Cents of the Bankruptcy Code Part II

Making Cents of the Bankruptcy Code, Part I

Part II: A More in-Depth Look

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: Liquidation

 Filing Fee $335

Chapter 7 is designed for debtors in financial difficulty who do not have the ability to pay their existing debts. Debtors whose debts are primarily consumer debts are subject to an income test designed to determine whether the case should be permitted to proceed under chapter 7. To determine whether or not you will qualify under Chapter 7, you should contact an experienced Kansas City bankruptcy attorney at Reneau & Shernaman for a free consultation.

Under chapter 7, a debtor may claim certain property as exempt under governing law. A trustee may have the right to take possession of and sell the remaining property that is not exempt and use the sale proceeds to pay some of the creditors.

  • Advantages:
    • Relatively inexpensive and quick.
    • Discharge unsecured debts such as credit cards, personal loans, lines of credit, payday loans, car/house loan deficiencies, income taxes (if older than 3 years old and no tax lien), medical bills, utilities, etc.
    • Stops collection efforts, garnishments, repossessions and state court actions to recover money 
  • Disadvantages:
    • It is possible that you may not get to keep all of your assets. The best way to find out for sure is to contact contact an experienced Kansas City bankruptcy attorney at Reneau & Shernaman for a free consultation.
    • Also, if a creditor can prove that a debt arose from fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, or theft, or from a willful and malicious injury, the Bankruptcy Court may determine that the debt is not discharged will therefore survive the Bankruptcy 
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Reorganization

Filing fee $310

Chapter 13 is designed for individuals with regular income who find it beneficial to pay part of their debts in installments over a period of time. An individual’s ability to qualify for Chapter 13 is contingent upon many things. To determine whether or not you will qualify under Chapter 13, you should contact an experienced Kansas City bankruptcy lawyer at Reneau & Shernaman for a free consultation.

Under Chapter 13, the debtor must file with the court a plan to repay creditors all or part of the money that is owed, using the debtor’s future earnings. The period allowed by the court to repay the debts may be three years or up to five years, depending upon the debtor’s income and other factors. The court must approve the plan before it can take effect. In the vast majority of Chapter 13 cases, the debtor pays only their secured and priority debts.

  • Advantages:
    • Debtors usually get to keep their assets, with few exceptions.
    • Stops foreclosure sales, collection efforts, garnishments, repossessions and state court actions to recover money
    • Mortgage or Auto Arrearages can be cured over the life of the Chapter 13 plan
    • Car payments restructured to be paid over course of the Chapter 13 plan – for many filers, that results in smaller monthly car payments
    • Taxes can be repaid without penalties accruing and at a discounted interest rate
    • Discharge unsecured debts such as credit cards, personal loans, lines of credit, payday loans, car/house loan deficiencies, income taxes (if older than 3 years old and no tax lien), medical bills, utilities, etc.
    • Stops collection efforts, garnishments, repossessions and state court actions to recover money 
  • Disadvantages:
    •  More expensive than Chapter 7.
    • The process is far more lengthy than a Chapter 7.
    • Discharge is not entered until all plan payments are made in 3 to 5 years, depending on your plan length. This means you are not officially “done” with your obligations to repay until you make it to your final payment. 
Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Reorganization 

Filing fee $1,717

Chapter 11 is designed for the reorganization of a business but is also available to individual debtors. Chapter 11 is the only reorganization alternative if the debtor has debts above the Chapter 13 eligibility maximums. There is no legal maximum duration for a Chapter 11 plan. Creditors have the right to vote on whether to accept a debtor’s plan, and also have the right to propose their own plan. Debtors can not sell assets without the Court’s permission. Debtor’s can only keep a checking account at a bank that meets certain standards, and must identify themselves as “Debtors in Possession”, Debtors must obtain a federal tax ID number. Debtors must file monthly operating reports with the Court and they must pay a quarterly fee to the Office of the U.S. Trustee. After the Chapter 11 case is filed (usually within a week) there is an initial debtor interview with a member of the U.S. Trustee’s office where many of the rules of operation are explained to the debtor.

  • Advantages:
    • Debtors usually get to keep their assets, with few exceptions.
    • Allows for many of the same advantages as a Chapter 13. 
  • Disadvantage: Significantly more expensive than both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 because a Chapter 11 requires more time and effort from both the debtor and the attorney. 
Which Chapter of Bankruptcy to Choose 

Which Chapter to choose will depend on several factors, not the least of which is your particular goals. For instance, if you qualify for Chapter 7 and your goals do not include keeping your house; Chapter 7 may be the best choice. If, however, you want to keep your house and although you qualify for Chapter 7, a Chapter 13 may be the better option if you need help catching up on your house payment.  Or, if you want to keep your house and you do not qualify for Chapter 13 for whatever reason then Chapter 11 may be the best choice. To help determine under which Chapter of the Bankruptcy Code you should file, contact an experienced Kansas City bankruptcy attorney at Reneau & Shernaman for a free consultation.

Bankruptcy Means Testing

The following is written mostly in legalese for those who are really interested in knowing the technical parts—don’t worry this is what would be handled by your experienced attorney at Reneau & Shernaman.

Section 707(b) of the Code allows the Bankruptcy Court to dismiss a Chapter 7 case filed by a debtor whose debts are primarily consumer debts if it finds that the granting of relief would be “an abuse of the provisions of this chapter.” It then goes on to create presumption of abuse where the consumer debtor’s Current Monthly Income (CMI) minus allowed expenses exceeds the state median income for the debtor’s household size.

In order to complete Form B22 (the Means Test) accurately, the following documents and information should be present: sufficient pay stubs and other evidences of income to determine Current Monthly Income (“CMI”); Schedules A-J and Statement of Intention accurately completed; documentation of special circumstances that evidence justification for taking expenses that exceed the IRS standard deduction.

Section 101(10A) defines “current monthly income” (CMI). CMI includes the debtor’s total income from all sources (except social security benefits), for the six months ending in the month prior to the month of the bankruptcy filing. CMI also includes any amount paid by any other entity toward the debtor’s household expenses on a regular basis.

Code Section 101(39A) defines Median Family Income (MFI) as the median family income calculated and reported by the Bureau of the Census in the most recent year, or as most recently adjusted. The Census Bureau publishes figures for each state, for families of household sizes from one to five. Enter the Debtors’ state of residence and household size. Then, obtain the amount of the state median income for a household size of the debtors (www.usdoj.gov/ust/). The state median income in Missouri, at the time of this writing, is $41,092 for a household of one; $51,784 for two; $59,549 for three; and, $72,150 for four. Add $8,100 for each individual in excess of 4.

If your income places you below the median the Means Test calculation need not be performed. The Means Test calculation must be performed if your CMI exceeds the median income.

The remainder of the Means Test, for above median debtors, deals with deductions from your income. Some of the deductions are established by IRS standards, some are established by actual expenses, and some are a blend. A presumption of abuse arises under Section 107 if, after deducting allowable expenses from your income and multiplying the difference by 60, the result is the lesser of $10,000 or 25% of general unsecured debt, as long as that 25% is at least $6,000.

Using this calculation:

1)      There is a presumption of abuse if the resulting figure is $10,000 or more, and the debtor has more than $40,000 in general unsecured debt;

2)      There is a presumption of abuse if the resulting figure is $6,000 or more, and the debtor has more than $24,000 in general unsecured debt; and,

3)      There is a presumption of abuse if the debtor has $24,000 to $40,000 in general unsecured debt and the resulting figure is 25% of the amount of that general unsecured debt.

4)      The court may still find the filing to be abusive based on the totality of the circumstances pursuant to Section 707(b)(3)(B), where there is no presumption of abuse.

Conclusion

Ultimately, debt can be stressful and will lead to financial ruin if left unchecked.  If you or someone you know is troubled by debt, consider that you may have legal options available to you to help eliminate or handle your debt.  For a free consultation with a Kansas City bankruptcy attorney, call Reneau & Shernaman at 816-287-8080 today.

 

A commentary on the Justice Department’s recent settlements

The original article written by Tom Schoenberg can be found at: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-10-07/u-s-prosecutor-masterminded-37-billion-bank-penalty-win.html

In many ways, the settlements reached with JPMorgan, Citigroup and Bank of America are good tidings.  For a brief moment, there appears to be justice for the hundreds of thousands of families who lost their homes during the housing crisis. The banks have been held accountable for their dubious practices and must pay their comeuppance. It’s almost reassuring to the American people.

Almost.

Will these hefty penalties be enough to deter the aforementioned banks—and any other banks that dare to follow in their footsteps—from any further misdeeds?

Unfortunately, the perfect storm of events that resulted in the colossal fiasco that was the housing crisis does not seem to be able to be traced to one single domino that set off the chain reaction that brought us where we are today. Not one that can be addressed in a Court of law, anyway.

Schoenberg’s article goes on to mention the current suit against S&P which alleges that, “S&P set aside its objectivity so it could cash in on the mortgage boom.” If the allegations hold any water then the American people have a little more to be concerned about.

Further, the Justice Department didn’t seem to make a priority of holding accountable those responsible for the financial crisis. As Schoenberg stated in his article,”…the Justice Department had been pilloried for years for not having brought significant cases against banks and their executives.”

It’s almost as if the Justice Department was badgered into taking action, and didn’t do so of its own volition.  And again, while the penalties that were agreed to in the subsequent settlements appear to be a victory the reality is that no one –company or individual–has actually had their feet put to the fire and held accountable. The truth is that although the settlements sound very large and imposing, these billion dollar figures are nothing to the big banks.

To quote a common saying “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”

Are we, as a country, setting ourselves up to be fooled again?