Can any 3rd Party Take Advantage of Automatic Stay in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?

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Can any 3rd Party Take Advantage of Automatic Stay in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy is confusing and terrifying to most common people. Though there are benefits associated with it like automatic stay and discharge of unsecured debts at the end of the bankruptcy, sometimes, a bankruptcy case might be ‘hijacked’ by another debtor who wishes to take advantage of your bankruptcy case and the subsequent automatic stay. Automatic stay helps in putting arrest to all collection actions by creditors including repossession, foreclosure, threatening emails, phone calls, etc. However, Los Angeles bankruptcy lawyers inform, creditors may request a relief from the automatic stay clause. This happens in case debtor “participated in a scheme to delay, hinder, or defraud creditors.” When such a case happens, the debtor is often caught unaware and generally clueless about their options.

What is property dumping?

Many people are unaware that any such term exists. Some people piggyback a ride on others’ bankruptcy cases, availing the benefit of the automatic stay to protect their property. This happened with Dana when she filed for bankruptcy. A local bank filed for a motion alleging that she had defrauded and failed to declare her assets and hide them so that the bank couldn’t make collections on a house in Ventura County. Unfortunately for Dana, that house didn’t belong to her and neither did she have any knowledge of the occupants. But her bankruptcy case was about to be dismissed because of some property whose existence was completely unknown to her.

The original owner of the property in concern here was another California resident, Angelica who was nearly $40,000 delinquent on her mortgage. She used to check public bankruptcy records to find a person who had recently filed for bankruptcy. She would then record a property transfer deed transferring her house to a bankruptcy filer. The automatic stay benefit accorded to her victim will prevent creditors from foreclosing on her home and protect it. By the time the banks asked for lifting the automatic stay, Angelica made another phony transfer of property to some other person.

Often there is no prior connection between the victims of property dumping and the perpetrator. In the above-mentioned case, Angelica used to doctor the records in such a manner that the transfer of the house appeared to occur prior to a bankruptcy filing. The process granted her house the benefit of automatic stay till banks filed for relief and the process would be repeated. In Dana’s case, since she was not the owner of the property neither had any idea about it, she did not object for any relief from the stay. The records mentioned Angelica as the owner of the property and her property dumping or hijacking plan was highlighted. Hiring an experienced attorney worked well for Dana’s case. It always makes sense to hire experienced attorneys for bankruptcy cases as the issue is quite complex without any frauds happening. In case you are looking for a consult for your bankruptcy case, call 888-297-6023 to speak with bankruptcy lawyers.