Heirlooms & Bankruptcy in Mankato, Minnesota

You might think all you need is more money. Then you would never have to worry about bankruptcy. You could buy all sorts of expensive items and live in luxury. Certainly, it’s possible to live luxuriously without declaring bankruptcy. It’s possible to live modestly without declaring bankruptcy, too. Either way, you’re likely to have some family heirlooms that have been passed down through the generations. If you declare bankruptcy, can you keep those heirlooms? Or, would you have to give them up to pay creditors? The bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group, Ltd. declare that it depends. Whether you live in Mankato, Faribault, Albert Lea, or Owatonna, MN, circumstances can differ between cases

If you ever find yourself in a financial bind, creditors will be looking at your assets and nipping at your heels for any way they can collect on their money. They have to follow rules in this process, however.

If you are contemplating bankruptcy now or in the future, please seek legal advice first. Behm Law Group, Ltd. specializes in bankruptcy and can help you work with creditors. We can inform you of your rights under bankruptcy law and what you can and cannot do. We can clarify future expectations. We can help you in southeastern Minnesota with a professional and courteous manner.

Whenever someone experiences a loss on TV due to a natural disaster of some sort, he or she inevitably expresses thankfulness for surviving and a will to re-build, but regret at having lost items of sentimental value. Family heirlooms have sentimental value.

It can take many years to acquire them. The memories remain priceless. Before you even consider relinquishing those treasures during a bankruptcy, let us review your options with you at Behm Law Group, Ltd.

It’s possible to re-build and to start over. It’s possible to buy new things. In a disaster it’s not always possible to keep remnants of family history. Let the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group, Ltd. work with you in Mankato to make sure any bankruptcy you encounter doesn’t become a disaster. Contact us today.

Can Intentional Sabotage Cause Bankruptcy Around Mankato, Minnesota?

Over the past few weeks we have been bombarded with news stories regarding the Germanwings co-pilot who deliberately crashed a plane directly into the French Alps. An unimaginable, unspeakable act–yes. Yet, we need to talk about it. Certainly, the parent company of Germanwings, Lufthansa, never dreamed this could happen. There is speculation Lufthansa may not be able to survive the anticipated lawsuits of the 150 passengers who perished.

Can intentional sabotage of your business or home cause bankruptcy? The short answer is yes, it could. However, there are many factors to consider. What does your insurance cover? How carefully do you screen your employees? How carefully do you screen your visitors? What is the wording in your business contracts? These reflect some of the considerations.

We aren’t advocating paranoia in southern Minnesota. Far from it. We only want you to take a closer look at your situation. If you employ some common-sense strategies, it’s likely you could minimize your exposure to risk.

For instance, given the current craziness in the world today, how likely is it that you could be subjected to sabotage? People wanting to make a horrific statement seem to choose some businesses more frequently. Is your business one of those?

Do you have a thorough vetting process for your employees, or do you sacrifice safety because you choose not to spend the time? What about your conflict resolution skills? Do employees harbor resentment because they don’t believe they’ve been heard? How difficult is it for you to incorporate needed change?

Do you have a procedure to handle visitors? Or do they roam around unattended with everyone assuming they have a right to be there?

The answers to these questions will be different depending on your business and your locale. While the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group, Ltd. don’t pretend to know your business better than you do, we could certainly help you in determining what your risk of bankruptcy would be in the event of intentional sabotage.

Behm Law Group, Ltd. specializes specifically in bankruptcy and can answer all of your bankruptcy questions in St. Peter, New Ulm, Mankato, Fairmont, Albert Lea, RedwoodFalls, Worthington, Marshall, Waseca and Owatonna, MN.

Bankruptcy During Tax Season

While bankruptcies occur year round, timing is everything. Once you have determined you need to file for bankruptcy, consult with local attorneys, especially those whose practice focuses exclusively on bankruptcy. Factors such as assets, upcoming life changes (like marital status), and pending judgments you might have affect when you should file.

As you can see in the table below, people tend to file for bankruptcy predominantly around tax season. These statistics represent the 2014 bankruptcy filings according to the U. S. Courts:

Month in 2014 U.S. Total Filings Business Filings Non-Business Filings
January

70,491

2,233

68,258

February

74,508

2,228

72,208

March

70,491

2,233

68,258

April

90,670

2,563

88,107

May

87,966

2,467

85,499

June

76,223

2,253

73,970

July

79,239

2,218

77,021

August

77,190

2,098

75,092

September

75,312

2,039

73,273

October

81,179

2,295

78,884

November

64,250

1,830

62,420

December

65,161

2,094

63,067

Total

936,795

26,983

909,812

The highest number of total bankruptcy filings in the U. S. for 2014 was in April. In fact, according to Bob Lawless, bankruptcy filings consistently top out in the beginning part of the calendar year. Typically, January and February tend to accumulate at least 15% of the total filings, as is the case here.

Although the reasons could be numerous, let’s take a look at a few possibilities for why the beginning of the year and, in particular, the tax season may garner so much attention:

  • With taxes due April 15, people focus more on their finances and are apt to make significant changes then.
  • People think bankruptcy will lessen their tax burden.
  • Folks feel they can’t be audited if they file for bankruptcy.
  • Some think they can go on a spending spree before April 15, file for bankruptcy, and then owe nothing.
  • They expect a large tax refund and believe they can simply use that to pay toward a bankruptcy.

Wouldn’t it be nice if bankruptcy were that simple? It’s not. That’s why you should contact the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group, Ltd. Here’s why:

  1. In a bankruptcy, certain debt called priority debt cannot be discharged. Priority debt includes child support, DWI charges, some penalties, plus more.
  2. A bankruptcy does not stop an audit. The IRS gets priority here.
  3. If you go on a spending spree before declaring bankruptcy, that could be construed as intentional fraud.
  4. If you have filed for bankruptcy, you may or may not be able to spend your tax refund.

These are just a few examples where legalities can get tricky. You need to understand there are enough nuances within bankruptcy law that could really cause you problems if you don’t know what you are doing.

When to file tax returns regarding bankruptcy has its own issues. One thing that is certain is you cannot discharge taxes that haven’t been filed in the first place. For specific advice, contact the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group, Ltd. We serve mankato, MN and the surrounding areas, including Marshall, Worthington, Owatonna, New Ulm, St. Peter, Redwood Falls, Waseca, and Fairmont.

One good thing to keep in mind is that discharged debt doesn’t really affect taxes because it isn’t considered to be taxable income.

This April 15, if you are considering filing for bankruptcy, make sure you have the facts. It may not be in your best interest to file now. Any important financial change deserves careful thought. For further advice, contact your local bankruptcy attorney.

The Importance of Having Support When Filing Bankruptcy

Support is underrated. Without any support, our minds may wander. We may be continually distracted from doing what we need to do. But, if we’re supported by someone who has our best interests at heart, we gain focus. Our supporters many times have the perspective we need to bring clarity to our situation. If ever you were to need support, it’s during bankruptcy. The bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group will support you, but we can’t be with you at all hours.

It’s nice to have the support of someone who knows you even better. Few people succeed without having support of some type. We suggest you cherish your support network before, during, and after bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy in can be a very emotional experience. With so much uncertainty about your future, your emotions could interfere and possibly cause you to do something irrational. Temper your impulsiveness.

Talk with a trusted family member or friend. Share your fears and plans. Really listen. Just considering alternatives will allow your subconscious to work on your problem for you. Eventually, you’ll get to where you know which path is right for you.

One consolation is that the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group have worked with hundreds of bankruptcy cases. We may not know you as well as your friends, but we do understand bankruptcy very well. We understand its ramifications. We know what’s typical and what’s not. So, please include us in your support system.

Yes, things will be different. You’ll need to look at money a little differently than you did before. Surrounding yourself with people who share your vision is extremely important regardless of where you want to go in life. There’s nothing like getting the feedback you need while you venture forward on a new path.

Life brings us challenges all the time. Normally, they are ones we can learn to master and to overcome.

If you’re a Mankato-area resident contemplating bankruptcy and you don’t know who would help you, then turn to the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group. As professionals, we’ll deal with you frankly and compassionately. We know how the law can work for you.

4 Post-Bankruptcy Planning Tips for Mankato Residents

So you survived bankruptcy. Now what? Maybe you think it was just a passing phase. Some other guy caused your pain. You can just go back to operating as before, right? Actually, you should take a closer look at your future vision.

While there are many steps you could take, we want you to nail down the following four:

1) Count your blessings: Hey, you survived. Good for you! It could have been worse. But, you made it. Accept that you have another chance. Do something good with it.

2) Promise yourself you’ll do better this time: If you think you can’t, you can’t, and you won’t. If you think you can, then you can. This means you have to have a positive mindset after bankruptcy so you won’t repeat the same scenario. Try something conservatively new and different to re-charge your batteries. Make a promise to yourself. Write it down. Look at it often to remind you to carry on.

3) Create a plan: Just focusing on active steps will help you to develop a positive mindset. Certainly, part of your plan should include the obvious. Live within your means. If you want more, then figure out a way to earn more money. Differentiate between wants and needs.

Yet, a plan doesn’t have to always be about work and drudgery. You already went through that with bankruptcy. Incorporate rewards into your plan. A reward doesn’t have to cost money. Instead, spend more fun time with your family. Allow yourself time to read a book, hike outside, or meet a friend. Each time you accomplish a have-to, reward yourself with a want-to item.

4) Implement your plan: Decide on a time frame for when you want to accomplish each goal. Stick to it. So long as you reward your efforts regularly, it should be easier to follow your plan.

In time, your new way of thinking will become a good habit. The bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group hope that your good habits will be tough to break!

Located in Mankato, Behm Law Group serves the bankruptcy needs of Marshall, Worthington, Owatonna, New Ulm, St. Peter, Redwood Falls, Waseca, and Fairmont, MN.

Learning New Habits After Filing for Bankruptcy

Whenever you think of bankruptcy, you probably conjure up something negative. You might worry if it will happen again. First, realize you aren’t a pawn of your circumstances. You can take active steps to determine a brighter future for yourself. One of those steps involves learning new habits. The bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group recommend starting sooner rather than later.

Remember when you were in school? Did your teacher expect you to change immediately? Or did they teach small steps which progressed toward the ultimate goal? We suggest preparing yourself to learn new habits by using the latter approach.

1) Understand the future will be different.
Different doesn’t automatically equate to something bad. It just means your normal routine may be somewhat disrupted. Expect it, and it won’t become such a shock when it happens.

2) Adopt a can-do attitude.
If you think you can’t, then no one else will be able to change your mind. You have to believe in yourself first.

3) Realize it takes at least 21 days of repetition to create a new habit.
Mark your progress on your calendar. If you think you “can” for at least 21 days, no one will be able to stop your momentum. If you think your future will be brighter for at least 21 days, then your mind will think of shiny moments to come.

4) Look at your predicament as a puzzle.
What got you to this place? Don’t berate yourself. Instead, look for possible solutions. Unleash your creativity. Your subconscious may surprise you with ideas you had never considered before.

5) Take time to relax.
This might seem surprising to you. After all, bankruptcy is serious business. The bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group don’t want to detract you from reality. But, taking a series of mental steps which eventually lead you to taking progressive and positive active steps will help you to stay out of bankruptcy in the future. Isn’t that really what you want?

During bankruptcy in Mankato, MN, prepare yourself mentally. Take small steps to achieve a positive forward momentum. Concentrate on your progress. Before you know it, you will have survived bankruptcy. You will have also created a new path for yourself.

Seek the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group in Mankato, Minnesota. You will find a professional, can-do attitude along with helpful, positive advice.

Proper Business Planning Can Help You Avoid Bankruptcy

With more user-friendly technology emerging, the number of new entrepreneurs continues to increase. While entrepreneurship is important, most start-ups fizzle before they pop. With bankruptcy being a possibility, we suggest considering all possibilities when you create your business plan.

Bankruptcy law as it pertains to business differs according to the state in which the business was created. For one, the cost of a business bankruptcy is not equal for every state. The speed at which you will be able to reorganize after bankruptcy proceedings can differ as well. Now that we’ve mentioned bankruptcy proceedings, did you know the length of time for those bankruptcy proceedings isn’t the same for every state either?

It is true that in some cases, a bankruptcy filing can allow you to reorganize your business to a more profitable status. If you can avoid it, you wouldn’t want to place your business in jeopardy by filing for bankruptcy.

Even if your business is doing well, you might have a customer who files for bankruptcy. If that customer figures prominently in your accounts receivable, that may be enough of a strain to force your business into bankruptcy. It’s far better for you to have a diverse customer base.

Before you find yourself without a safety net, focus on finishing a solid business plan. It will force you to think about all the important factors as well as to discover some factors you hadn’t even considered. Never lose sight of your marketing. It’s best to be vigilant in seeking new prospects. You never know when the situations of your customers will change.

As Benjamin Franklin stated, “Although you don’t plan to fail, you shouldn’t fail to plan.” Bankruptcy is comprised of several factors. Would you rather study the nuances yourself or enlist the help of professionals? If you chose professionals, then the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group have your answers. All you have to do is ask.

How to Limit Bankruptcy Risk When Starting a Business

Budding entrepreneurs fill the news pages daily. Everyone wants to create that next product or service others will want. The idea of starting your own business brings thoughts of glamour and excitement. And it should! Don’t forget that business skills are needed, too. If you haven’t carefully considered all aspects of your fledgling enterprise, bankruptcy may be a distinct possibility. Many famous entrepreneurs have declared bankruptcy along the way, including Walt Disney.\

According to an October 2014 report by CB Insights, the top five reasons start-ups failed are:

  1. There was no market need for the product or service.
  2. The entrepreneur ran out of money.
  3. The business didn’t have the right team in place.
  4. The competition won.
  5. There were issues with pricing and/or cost.

With so many possibilities for failure, you have to be very careful about developing your business strategy and marketing  plan.  It is essential that you study the possible competition and how they are pricing their products and how they are marketing themselves.

Do a little market research to determine the viability of your product. Or, like Walt Disney, you could create a demand for it. Perhaps you noticed three of the top five reasons involved marketing. That means entrepreneurship involves selling. It means you have to be visible to your potential prospects, assuming you have prospects for what you’re selling.

Mankato entrepreneurs: if you find yourself battling to stay afloat, you might want to contact the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group, Ltd., to consider your options.  If Walt Disney could pull through his setbacks, so can you.

How to Support Your Adult Children Without Going Bankrupt

Are your adult children “moochers”? At Behm Law Group, we find this term offensive, especially in light of today’s very challenging employment landscape. Do any of your children live at home, expense free? At Behm Law Group,  we call this “reality” because, due to very difficult economic times, it is very common that many adult children have moved back in with their parents just to get by. The bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group, don’t want to interfere with your philosophy of family. However, irrespective of the very difficult present day economic realities, it could be time for you to make some changes, especially if you’re retired, so that you are not forced into bankruptcy yourself.

If you’re retired, you likely have a fixed income. You had planned to support yourself and perhaps a spouse in later years. But now, if the kids have moved to your house, why are you paying all of the bills? Shouldn’t parental obligations have limits? If by paying for the bulk of their expenses puts you on precarious slopes financially, you should make some changes. It would be reasonable for you to demand some sort of remuneration from your children in exchange for your kindness in allowing them to reside with you.

Mankato, the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group know you love your children. You want the best for them. We only ask that you seriously consider the financial landscape here. Fixed incomes are finite, and you know you’ll likely have health concerns in your later years. You need your money. If you don’t require money in return for what you’re providing at this stage in your life, you might be the one declaring bankruptcy.

You have a right to enjoy your life, too. When your children were young you were there as much as you possibly could be. But now, it’s your time to try and do what you want to do.

We advise you to put your agreement in writing. Don’t just rely on a verbal arrangement when it comes to money. Memories are unreliable. A written agreement should define the terms clearly.  A well-thought plan will protect you from slippery financial situations.

Make sure you work toward not having to file for bankruptcy relief, Mankato residents. If you find yourself in that situation anyway, call us at Behm Law Group. We would be happy to help you.

What to Do When You Lose Your Job in Mankato

Here you are, the image of success. You have a job that pays the bills, a house you own, a car, a spouse who works, and loving children. Everything’s great, right? Then one day, either you or your spouse gets that dreaded notice…you know, the message that states “We hate to do this, but you’re fired.” You didn’t even see any signs that would indicate all was not well.

You can get another job, because you’re talented. However, when weeks turn into months and more months, your family has to dip into savings just to stay afloat. One income, instead of the required two, takes its toll on you and your family. You can only tighten expenses so much.

Bankruptcy is the only practice area for the attorneys at Behm Law Group.

Behm Law Group will help you navigate the nuances of bankruptcy law. Our bankruptcy attorneys in Mankato not only limit their practice to bankruptcy but also care about people, people like you.

Bankruptcy occurs to people of all economic levels. The bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group assure you we can help you to your satisfaction and chart a course to reclaim your solvency in the Mankato area.

In the span of a lifetime, bankruptcy doesn’t have to play a major part. Think positively. Once you become solvent again, bankruptcy will become a distant memory in no time.

You’re talented. You have support at home. You have what it takes to succeed. Otherwise, you couldn’t have done it before. And now you have the expertise and support of the bankruptcy attorneys at Behm Law Group. Let us help you to gain momentum in finding success once again.