We are a San Jose Bankruptcy Law Firm representing individual consumer debtors and small businesses. We help our clients free themselves from debt while helping to restore their dignity. We represent clients in Chapter 7, Chapter 11, and Chapter 13 bankruptcy throughout the Bay Area.
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- Spanish: Spoken, Written
- Chair (2014)
- San Jose Chapter 13 Committee
- Law Offices of Jon G. Brooks
- - Current
- Mr. Brooks founded his practice in 2004 in order to provide exceptional advocacy for consumer debtors and small businesses. Since then our firm has earned the superlative reviews from our clients and the respect of the San Francisco Bay Area legal community. We file hundreds of Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 cases, form dozens of new business entities, and create solid, comprehensive estate plans for scores of families every year.
- Univ of Colorado Boulder
- B.A. | Spanish
- Honors: Phi Beta Kappa
- Santa Clara Univ School of Law
- Law Degree
- National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
- California State Bar # 217930
- - Current
- Abogado de Bancarrota en San Jose
- Bay Area Bankruptcy Lawyer Blog
- US Supreme Court Decision in In re Law Limits Courts’ Discretion to Paint Debtors with the “Bad Faith” Brush
18 January 2015
- 2014 Enhancements of California’s Anti-Deficiency Statutes Give Added Protections to Foreclosed Homeowners
3 February 2014
- In re Flores: Bad for Chapter 13 debtors, Bad for Chapter 13 Creditors Too
31 December 2013
- Federal Consumer Protection Agency Cracks Down on Debt Settlement Scam
8 May 2013
- Can I Keep My Luxury Car, RV, and Boat, in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in California?
17 April 2013
- Reverse Mortgages and California Bankruptcy
26 March 2013
- Why a Strategic Short Sale Should Never Be Characterized as “Mortgage Fraud”
5 March 2013
- Can The Bankruptcy Trustee Take Money That I Win In a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
14 February 2013
- Exception for 1099-C Tax Liability for Debts Discharged in Bankruptcy
31 January 2013
- Q. Can I file a reaffirmation after a chtp. 7 discharge 2 yrs ago?
- A: When you say that you are attempting to "modify" your loan, I assume that you are talking about a loan secured by a home, not a car, since auto loans are never "modified." If I am correct that you are referring to a home mortgage, then there is absolutely no reason to reaffirm a mortgage debt in a California bankruptcy. Because California is a "non-recourse" state at least with respect to first mortgages and purchase-money seconds, meaning that if there were a (non-judicial) foreclosure then the lender could not sue you for any deficiency, or the difference between what the home were worth and the amount owed on the loan. This would be true whether you filed bankruptcy or not. In other states with fewer protections for homeowners in foreclosure, the lender would just love for you to have reaffirmed your mortgage in your bankruptcy, but doing so would in most situations be a very bad idea. Reaffirming a debt that would otherwise be discharged in bankruptcy is waiving a portion of your bankruptcy discharge. By doing so, you are voluntarily agreeing to be personally liable for that debt despite your bankruptcy discharge. Reaffirmation is something most debtors in most contexts should never take lightly. Reaffirming a home equity line of credit (a recourse loan in California) where there is no equity in the home to secure the debt, would in my opinion be an incredibly bad idea, for example. By doing so, if you later lost the home to foreclosure, then the reaffirmation would operate to allow the home equity lender to sue you because you reaffirmed the debt despite the fact that they would not have been able to sue had you not waived your discharge by reaffirming. It sounds like your mortgage lender is simply creating an absurd obstacle to loan modification.
- Q. When filling bankruptcy does that eliminate all of the debt excluding student loans?
- A: Not necessarily. Apart from student loan debt, there are a number of other debts which may be non-dischargeable. These are listed in Bankruptcy Code section 523(a) "Exceptions to Discharge." Among other types of debt listed in that section are recent tax debts, debts incurred by fraud, domestic support obligations, restitutionary damages arising from drunk driving, and so on.
- Q. I am about to file ch 7 and on there I put a civil lawsuit that is in process wanting to know if I have to show in court
- A: Once you file your Chapter 7 petition with the Bankruptcy Court, the Automatic Stay goes into effect. That means the underlying civil case is stayed for the duration of your bankruptcy case unless the Bankruptcy Court orders the Stay lifted. However, practically speaking, it takes a few days for the plaintiff in your civil suit to receive the Bankruptcy Court's official notice of your bankruptcy filing. So, if your hearing in the civil case is coming up very shortly after your bankruptcy filing, it would be good practice to let the civil court and the plaintiff in that case know that you have filed bankruptcy. In California, you do this by filing a Notice of Stay of Proceeding in the civil court and serving this filing on the plaintiff. California's superior courts accept the California Judicial Council form of the same name, which you can find online as a PDF form.