Category: Bankruptcy News

Sworn in President Hale Antico

Attorney Hale Andrew Andrew Named President

Attorney Hale Andrew Andrew Named President

Los Angeles bankruptcy attorney Hale Andrew Antico was named president of one of the nation’s largest groups of bankruptcy lawyers in late 2019. The CDCBAA, a group of Southern California bankruptcy attorneys, elevated and swore in Attorney Antico to lead the group at its annual Calvin Ashland Awards Dinner. It’s an honor to be chosen to lead such a talented and dedicated collection of bankruptcy professionals.

Below is Hale Antico’s first president’s message for the CDCBAA‘s January 2020 newsletter.


Happy new year, and allow me the word play of wishing you great “2020 vision.” As incoming President of the CDCBAA, it’s easy to see an organization that is vibrant, successful, and thriving.

This success is due, in large part, to past presidents, including my immediate predecessor, Roksana Moradi-Brovia. As her Vice-President the past two years, I was privileged to see up-close how much Roksana cares about the CDCBAA as evidenced by her contagious passion, enthusiasm, and tireless efforts on behalf of the organization. Roksana will remain on the CDCBAA board of directors, and continue helping provide the excellent programs to which we’ve grown accustomed.

With some recent hindsight, I look back at the success in November of the Calvin Ashland Award Dinner. The CDCBAA Trustee of the Year in 2019 was Howard Ehrenberg. Howard was introduced by a wonderful speech from Peter Anderson, the United States Trustee for Region 16. Howard himself gave an amusing but insightful address, where he highlighted the time-consuming, but often-fruitless search for assets in many offbeat types of cases which Chapter 7 trustees have the duty to perform. Our bankruptcy system relies on a balance of judges, trustees, and attorneys, each important for its smooth operation. Howard’s sense of professional courtesy, compassion, and fairness make him a key member of our community.

Looking around at the present, we see a bankruptcy landscape where filings remain down overall (28,861 new chapter 7 cases filed in 2019, just above the year prior), continuing a decade-long trend since the Great Recession. The CDCBAA is a valuable community of information-sharing, knowledge, and learning. Members can stay informed with important case decisions, news that affects consumer lawyers (both nationally and locally), and dive deeper in lesser-known areas of our specialty. The slowdown in filings creates an opportunity to invest time in the CDCBAA and to share knowledge with and learn from the community.  

Peering ahead into the future, 2020 is sure to be an exciting year. We are about to kick off the year with the always-popular Ninth Circuit Review of the prior year’s bankruptcy cases, and the James T. King Symposium coming up this summer, with other valuable programs in between. Later this year, we’ll honor a Judge of the Year, and I’m excited to see who this will be. But mostly, I look forward to the CDCBAA keeping a sharp focus on strengthening the bonds between the debtor bar and the judges and trustees, in elevating the practice of bankruptcy law, and keeping our goal of benefiting the consumer debtor who needs our help, truth, and compassion.

Hale Andrew Antico is President of the CDCBAA, and has practiced bankruptcy law in Palmdale and Santa Clarita for over 15 years.

Woman Facing Jail

Disclose, Disclose, Disclose: Woman Facing Jail for Bankruptcy Fraud

When you file bankruptcy, you’re signing a stack of papers under oath, and then you’ll be asked, under penalty of perjury, whether they list all your assets, income, and about any recent transfers. The wrong answer could land you in jail for bankruptcy fraud.

A woman in Michigan recently pled guilty to bankruptcy fraud. Wait, jail? Bankruptcy is just forms, right? Just before filing bankruptcy, she had received a $12,000 workers’ compensation award, then made it disappear, then lied about the whole thing. Now she faces five years in prison, $250,000 fine, or both.

The sad kicker is this: in California, this likely could’ve been avoided. Had everything been disclosed, and then properly exempted, she’d be free today, enjoying her discharge and money. Had she just told the truth to her bankruptcy lawyer, and then in the bankruptcy papers, a good Los Angeles bankruptcy attorney could have exempted the award, and she’d have it to spend when the bankruptcy is over.

By trying to save a few bucks on maybe the best bankruptcy lawyer, she’ll not only lose $12,000, but maybe twenty times that, and her freedom. Contact me today for a consultation, and let’s guide you to a honest fresh start.

 

Joey Lawrence bankruptcy

Joey Lawrence Bankruptcy Ends

Joey Lawrence Bankruptcy Ends

Some actors from the 1990s show “Blossom” have gone on to fame and fortune. Mayim Bialik has struck gold on “Big Bang Theory.” Others like Joey Lawrence, not so much. Despite earning over $500,000 in 2015, he took home just $60,000 the next year. Joey didn’t cut back enough on spending, couldn’t keep up. In 2017 a Joey Lawrence bankruptcy was filed, claiming over $355,000 in debts.

Joey Lawrence bankruptcy
Joey Lawrence from Blossom

With all that half-million-dollars income in 2015, Joey Lawrence still qualified for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. How can that be, you ask? Apparently he could barely cover his 2017 overhead, and passed the bankruptcy means test for Chapter 7. Now, in 2018, the Joey Lawrence bankruptcy has ended.

The Chapter 7 trustee was able to liquidate over $75,000 in assets for the benefit of Joey Lawrence’s creditors. Often, taxes are priority debts and get paid first, before the other, nonpriority unsecured debts. In the Joey Lawrence bankruptcy, the IRS didn’t even get half its debt. The same goes for the Franchise Tax Board.

Chapter 7 Can Be Tough

Chapter 7 involves losing stuff, and while Joey apparently didn’t have income to repay his debts, he had things the Chapter 7 trustee could take. So that’s what happened, and after almost a year, his case is now over and he can move on with his life.

People think that Chapter 7 is always better, and sometimes it is. But each situation is different and there are times someone is better off in another of the types of bankruptcies.

Finally, we’re often shocked when a famous celebrity we assume is rolling in cash falls on hard times. But acting is a profession just like being an engineer, sheriff deputy, or registered nurse. It’s human nature to spend what we earn. However, when the overtime is gone or next acting gig doesn’t come, not everyone adjusts their spending. The Joey Lawrence bankruptcy is a example that could be any one of us.

iheartmedia bankruptcy

IHeartMedia Bankruptcy About to Happen

IHeartMedia Bankruptcy

This weekend, IHeartMedia bankruptcy is about to finally happen. What is IHeart Radio? It’s the largest radio broadcaster in the United States. What is radio? That’s a different question. Ask your grandparents.

There’s speculation the broadcaster will file Chapter 11 this weekend. It won’t necessary end all the radio stations. It’ll just give the business a chance to restructure, kind of like a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, but a lot bigger.

With Sirius XM satellite, iTunes downloads, Spotify and Pandora streaming, music is delivered very differently — and more fragmented — than the old days of Radio Gaga. Think of it: music delivery has gone from CDs to mp3s to streaming apps on our phone. And that’s just the last 10 years. Radio is what you listen to for updates there’s a weather disaster or can’t get iTunes to load.

It’s a new world, and businesses need to adapt. The IHeartmedia bankruptcy shows that very lesson.