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Baltimore, Maryland Legal Blog

Student loans: Bankruptcy ruling gives glimmer of hope

Many people think that you can't get student loan debt discharged in bankruptcy, but this isn't always the case. The truth here is that it is difficult to get them discharged, but it isn't impossible. A recent case involving a Chapter 7 bankruptcy ruling shows that it is possible.

A United States Navy Veteran opted to use student loans to fund his law school education from 1993 and 2004. He amassed $116,500 in student loans. Thanks to interest, those have ballooned to $221,400. Recently, a bankruptcy court judge ruled that the full balance of the loans could be discharged as part of his case.

Overwhelming emotions make it hard to make divorce decisions

Going through a divorce can bring up many feelings that you don't expect. This shocks some people because they don't expect to feel sad or upset that the marriage is over especially if they are the person who filed. They think they have come to terms with the split before the petition was filed. We know that it is hard to think clearly when these emotions flood over you.

You can't let your emotions control what you do when you are working through the divorce. Instead, you need to be able to keep a clear head so that you can make decisions that are in your best interests. This often means that you need to take a step back and look at things from a practical standpoint.

Accommodations that might help you cope with a brain injury

Living with a brain injury is difficult, but some people don't realize how even the simplest of tasks can become a lot to handle. One of the more common symptoms of a brain injury is trouble with memory. In order to address this, the victims have to figure out what types of methods they can use to combat these changes.

For some individuals, trying to keep their daily schedule is a challenge, but they can use things like electronic calendars and scheduling apps to make it easier. Sometimes, multiple options can ensure they don't miss anything that they are supposed to do.

Prenuptial agreement terms must be set according to law

Prenuptial agreements serve an important purpose in marriage. The agreement enables you to have an idea of what will happen if the marriage doesn't work out.

There are many things that you signal that a premarital agreement might be a good option for you, but there are also some that show that it isn't a good idea. If you are considering a prenup, make sure that you get started as early as possible. You and your future spouse both need to be able to consider the terms before signing the agreement.

Stop creditor harassment in its tracks

People who are past due on their bills often don't like to answer the phone or check the mail because of collection attempts by debt collectors. While it is understandable that they will try to collect what's due to them, there are limitations to what they are allowed to do. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) sets certain standards and limitations for this.

The FDCPA strictly forbids creditor harassment and abuse. They can't call you repetitiously just for the purpose of annoying you. They can't threaten to harm you or do anything violent to you. They can't use profane language or refuse to tell you who they are. They are also forbidden from publishing lists of individuals who refuse to pay them.

Keep your cool when your spouse asks for a divorce

Some people know that the end of their marriage is nearing, but when you hear your spouse ask for a divorce, you might become desperate to work things out. While this might be your focus, you should remember that you can't force it if the other person doesn't want to remain with you.

It is imperative that you keep your cool when you are told that you are facing a divorce. Becoming angry is understandable, but it might work against you. Instead, remember that there is time before the divorce will become finalized. You can address many of the issues you have during that time.

Understand how the automatic stay works in bankruptcy

When you are struggling to pay your bills, there is a good chance that some will fall by the wayside. This can initiate collection calls that become bothersome after a bit. Sometimes, creditors will outright harass people, but this isn't acceptable. You probably just want the constant contact to stop. One option that you have to take care of the past due bills and the creditor calls is to file for bankruptcy.

When you file, the court issues an automatic stay. This is an order that prohibits creditors who are included in the bankruptcy from contacting you. They can't call you, send you mail, email you or stop by your home.

4 effective ways to de-escalate road rage

Driving in the Baltimore area can be stressful. After all, you must contend with road construction, other motorists, heavy traffic and changing weather conditions. Unfortunately, though, you may also encounter an irate driver during your morning or evening commute. 

Alarmingly, more than 80% of drivers in a recent survey reported that they had experienced anger or frustration when driving. While gathering reliable statistics on road rage is challenging, many experts believe that aggressive driving is on the rise. If you come across an angry motorist, how you handle the situation matters. Here are four ways to de-escalate road rage effectively: 

Drowsy driving is deadly driving

As the seasons change, people sometimes suffer from sleepiness. This can be a huge problem for drivers because drowsy driving is often deadly. There are many things that can lead to fatigue, so drivers must ensure they don't let any of these impact them.

Around one out of every 25 drivers who are at least 18 years old admits that they have fallen asleep in the past 30 days while they were driving. These aren't all drivers who are in regular personal vehicles. Commercial drivers, including truckers, can also suffer from fatigue when they drive.

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