Creditor's Right Attorney in Denver
Representing Creditor's Rights in Bankruptcy Cases
As a creditor attorney in Denver, we understand that receiving a notice of bankruptcy as a creditor is almost never good news. If you are owed money, the last thing you want to hear is the debtor has , possibly, hired a bankruptcy lawyer in Denver and is attempting to discharge his obligations in bankruptcy and leave you high and dry. However, skilled and experienced counsel can help you come out on the other side of a Chapter 7, Chapter 13, or Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the best shape possible. The bankruptcy attorneys at Skeen & Skeen, P.C. are ready to help.
The first step is to evaluate your position. Are you a secured creditor, and if so, is your security interest properly perfected and safe from the trustee’s avoidance powers? Are you an unsecured creditor with a judgment lien? Do you have a priority claim? Is the debt non-dischargeable? Different types of creditors and debts are treated differently in the bankruptcy process and Skeen & Skeen offers an initial one-hour consultation to discuss your position and the relative strengths and vulnerabilities that are associated with that position.
The next step may be filing a proof of claim. Bankruptcy proceedings are subject to strict deadlines and it is important to meet them. If the trustee does end up making a distribution to creditors, you don’t want to miss out on your share because of a missed filing deadline. Skeen and Skeen can file your claim and enter an appearance in the case to keep you apprised of all deadlines and other developments. We can also make an appearance at the debtor’s meeting of creditors to question the debtor under oath and gather as much information as possible to secure your position going forward.
After the initial consultation and appearance in the case, the third step is to decide what actions can be taken in light of the bankruptcy. Whether secured or unsecured, all creditors are subject to bankruptcy’s automatic stay. Once a case is filed, all attempts to collect on a debt are put on hold, giving the debtor a period of time in which to initiate the bankruptcy process without the pressure of creditors seeking to collect. Before a creditor can resume efforts to get paid or to recover collateral, the creditor must ask the bankruptcy court to grant relief from stay. This is accomplished by motion and notice to all parties of interest, and may require a preliminary hearing or evidentiary hearing to show that relief is merited. The court can hand out serious sanctions for violating the automatic stay; it is important to figure out whether the stay applies to you and seek relief from stay when required. Skeen & Skeen has extensive experience in this area, securing relief from stay for our clients to pursue a wide range of actions, including foreclosure, eviction, and repossession.
If there are no concrete actions that can be taken to collect, the next step for a creditor is to prevent the debt from being discharged if possible. There are many types of debts which are non-dischargeable. If the debt arose as a result of fraud, intentional harm, divorce, criminal restitution, or other specific categories of debt, the debt may survive the bankruptcy. If a creditor suspects the debt is non-dischargeable, it might make sense to have the court rule on its non-dischargeability rather than waiting until the debtor attempts to raise the bankruptcy as a defense to enforcement of the debt and having to litigate the issue again down the road. If a debtor behaves badly, for example, is deceptive with the trustee, lies under oath, conceals assets, or files the bankruptcy in bad faith, it is possible for the case to be converted, dismissed, or even for a court to revoke a debtor’s discharge. Skeen & Skeen can help you getting a debt ruled non-dischargeable or objecting to a debtor’s discharge.
In the end, there may not be many good options. But with the help of Skeen & Skeen, at least you know that someone with an expert knowledge of bankruptcy law in Denver CO has looked at the situation from all angles and evaluated any possible strategies to get you your money.
Whatever your situation, as a creditor, your most important asset is knowledge of the law. Bankruptcy is not well understood by generalists, it has its own code, rules, and courts. It is in your interest to find a bankruptcy specialist early in the case who understands your options going forward. Skeen & Skeen are exactly the kind of bankruptcy lawyers in Denver you are looking for.