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Coronavirus on Cruise Ships

Coronavirus on Cruise Ships

Coronavirus on Cruise Ships

by King Law Firm | Easy Listen Option

Coronavirus on Cruise Ships

According to CBS NEWS and other news outlets, cruise lines face a legal backlash for their initial response to the COVID-19 pandemic that began sweeping the world earlier this year. The plaintiffs, all former passengers, contend that the three major cruise lines (which make up about 70 percent of the total cruise ship market) knowingly exposed them to the novel coronavirus, known to be exceptionally contagious and dangerous. If you’ve contracted coronavirus from a cruise ship, you need a seasoned North Carolina personal injury attorney with extensive experience on your side.

The Cruise Ship Experience

Cruise ships are a luxury destination for which many people plan and save years ahead of time. On a cruise, you can leave your troubles behind for a little while, indulge in the fantastic buffets, and enjoy quality live entertainment, while attentive and professional staff work to make you as comfortable as possible. While the major cruise lines have become very popular and earned a devoted following over the years, their handling of the coronavirus may be changing people’s opinion.

One Couple’s Tragedy

A current suit brought against Princess Cruise Lines claims that a married couple contracted COVID-19 while onboard a Princess Cruise ship and that the husband later died due to complications from the virus. Their lawyer alleges all of the following regarding the COVID-19 outbreak on the Japan-bound cruise ship:

  • The cruise line discharged passengers who’d been infected by the coronavirus.
  • The cruise line then took on new passengers that commingled with exposed passengers already on board.
  • The cruise line had been given official notice of the dangers inherent to their action but failed to warn the passengers, including the married couple.

Inadequate Safeguards in Place

Former passengers currently suing the major cruise lines assert that ships’ staff crew did very little to protect or warn onboarding passengers of the presence of coronavirus, even though the vessel had prior knowledge and experience with the virus from an outbreak several weeks earlier. Sometimes the only step taken was asking passengers to fill out a form stating the current condition of their health.  

Cruise Ships and Liability Waivers

Most cruise lines require passengers to sign liability waivers before boarding. These waivers release the cruise line of liability in certain situations, including the death of a passenger. While these contractual waivers may frighten some potential litigants away, it’s important to note that courts in the United States frequently refuse to uphold them. In other words, if you or your loved one has contracted coronavirus from a cruise ship, it’s time to consult with a dedicated North Carolina personal injury attorney.

An Experienced North Carolina Personal Injury Attorney Can Help

The COVID-19 pandemic that’s sweeping our nation and the larger world has changed our way of life in significant ways, including the perception of cruise lines. If a cruise line’s negligence led to your illness, the dedicated personal injury attorneys at King Law Firm in North Carolina are committed to skillfully advocating on your behalf for a favorable outcome of your case. For more information, please don’t hesitate to contact or call us at (800) 635-1683 today.

Coronavirus Bankruptcy Options

Coronavirus Bankruptcy Options

Coronavirus Bankruptcy Options

by King Law Firm | Easy Listen Option

Coronavirus Bankruptcy Options

The COVID-19 outbreak has brought with it unprecedented economic and employment strains. With very few viable long-term options for dealing with bills that cannot be paid, many Americans are considering their options for bankruptcy at no fault of their own. In fact, many North Carolina bankruptcy attorneys are predicting a tsunami of bankruptcy filings directly related to the coronavirus pandemic. If you are struggling to pay your debts as a result of the coronavirus spread or anticipate that you will be soon, do not delay in researching and pursuing your options for bankruptcy.

Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Due to COVID-19

Chapter 7 bankruptcy will be the ideal option for many accruing debts due to the coronavirus. Depending on your financial eligibility and your assets, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy could erase your obligation for paying many types of debts including:

  • Medical bills
  • Credit card balances
  • Mortgage or rent arrears
  • Utility bills
  • Vehicle loans
  • Unsecured personal loans

Keep in mind that while a Chapter 7 bankruptcy will eliminate your personal debt obligations, it does not secure your home, vehicle, or other property. If you want to keep secured property, talk to your North Carolina bankruptcy lawyer about your options for doing so when filing for Chapter 7.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy and Coronavirus

Some individuals who are experiencing the negative financial impacts of COVID-19 will find Chapter 13 bankruptcy to be a better option. In contrast, Chapter 13 bankruptcy can allow debtors to keep their secured property in some circumstances. It is a reorganization of debts for those who make too much to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, have substantial assets, or who want to keep unsecured property. In this type of bankruptcy, you make monthly payments to a trustee over a three- or five-year period. The trustee then pays your creditors what they are owed under bankruptcy laws out of your payments.

If you do not anticipate having a steady income that can pay for your bills and a Chapter 13 payment plan at the same time, filing Chapter 7 might be a better option. Meeting with a North Carolina bankruptcy attorney can help you decide which type of bankruptcy will be the most beneficial for your financial circumstances.

Should You Wait to Pursue Bankruptcy Options Until the Pandemic Subsides?

You may be holding out on learning more about bankruptcy or talking with a North Carolina bankruptcy lawyer because you want to see if job opportunities increase and your financial situation improves. You might be holding out assuming that bankruptcy courts are either closed or overburdened. You could even be waiting because you do not want to go out and put yourself at risk for contracting COVID-19. These reasons may seem logical, but in reality, they are not practical.

Waiting too long to act while you are not managing your debts can make your situation worse and decrease your options. You don’t know what will happen with your financial situation, but you do know it is less than ideal right now. Bankruptcy courts are opening back up or finding alternative ways of proceeding with bankruptcy filings. Bankruptcy attorneys can meet with you via video or phone.

Review Your Coronavirus Bankruptcy Options with a North Carolina Bankruptcy Attorney Today

Times of financial crisis are extremely difficult and concerning. You may feel like you have no control over your circumstances, especially when the coronavirus outbreak caused them. You can take back some of your control by learning about your options for bankruptcy and what you can do to improve your finances. The first step is to schedule a free no-obligation meeting with an attorney at King Law Firm by calling (800) 635-1683 or use our convenient online contact form.

COVID-19 Debt Relief Options

COVID-19 Debt Relief Options

COVID-19 Debt Relief Options

Nearly every American has been impacted in some way by the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of them have experienced financial struggles. Whether they were already working hard to make ends meet or living comfortably, the economic devastation is widespread. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, approximately 39 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits since the pandemic began. America is now experiencing its highest jobless rate since the Great Depression at 14.7 percent, and it is not expected to subside for at least a year. If you are among the individuals who are experiencing the financial impacts of the coronavirus outbreak, you might be wondering what options you have available to you.  A North Carolina bankruptcy attorney can review these options with you and help you determine which ones might benefit you the most.

Government Programs to Help Ease Financial Devastation

The federal government has since enacted numerous programs to help Americans get through these difficult financial times. Depending on their situation, some people may be able to take advantage of several of these options, which include:

For some Americans, these options will make a substantial difference in their financial picture. For others, they will barely skim the surface. If you are part of the latter group, you should explore additional options with a competent North Carolina bankruptcy lawyer.

Bankruptcy: A COVID-19 Debt Relief Option

If the above programs do not apply to your situation or don’t do very much to improve your finances, you may want to consider meeting with a North Carolina bankruptcy attorney and filing for bankruptcy. Depending on the types of debt you have, how much money you make, and other factors in your situation, filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy might be your best opportunity for financial recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. With either option, the following types of debts could be wiped away or reorganized into a manageable repayment plan:

  • Mortgage arrears
  • Utility bills
  • Car loan payments
  • Medical bills
  • Credit card debt
  • Unsecured personal loan debt
  • Back rent

Since bankruptcy can cover a multitude of debts, it will be the most beneficial option for some debtors. Its impacts are widespread across debt, as opposed to government programs that only address a handful of financial concerns, and some only temporarily.

Did COVID-19 Put You in a Financial Bind? Find Out How a North Carolina Bankruptcy Attorney Can Help

If you are falling behind on payments, without a job, wondering how you will continue to make ends meet, or at risk of losing your vehicle or home, now is the time to contact a well-versed North Carolina bankruptcy lawyer. The longer you wait to pursue your options, the less they may benefit you or even be available to you. You can receive a free bankruptcy consultation at King Law Firm by calling (800) 635-1683 or use our convenient online contact form.

Can Chapter 13 Stop an Eviction?

Can Chapter 13 Stop an Eviction?

Can Chapter 13 Stop an Eviction?

Among all of your monthly expenses, rent is likely the most substantial. Falling on hard times can cause you not to be able to pay your rent. If you stop paying your rent, it will not be long until your landlord begins the formal process of removing you from your home or apartment known as eviction. If you have no other place to live, this is incredibly worrisome. You may not have many options, but Chapter 13 bankruptcy might be a viable one to stop the eviction process. Meeting with an experienced North Carolina bankruptcy attorney can significantly improve your situation if you decide to take steps to stop an eviction. 

Will Filing Chapter 13 Stop an Eviction?

In many cases, filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition will stop eviction proceedings temporarily. However, it is not a long-term solution in itself. Stopping this process might allow you to save money to pay your landlord any past due rent that you owe or to negotiate a mutually workable agreement. Since your bankruptcy can eliminate some of your other debts, this might allow you the finances you need to pay for your housing expenses.

Bankruptcy has the potential to temporarily stop the eviction process only if:

  • The eviction process has not reached a certain point
  • State laws allow you to catch up on your rent
  • Your landlord is not alleging drug use on your part or any dangerous conditions leading up to the eviction process

When you receive a consultation with a North Carolina bankruptcy lawyer, you can learn more about how bankruptcy can potentially stop your eviction and if filing for bankruptcy is a solution in your situation.

The Automatic Stay and Eviction

When your North Carolina bankruptcy attorney files your bankruptcy petition with the court, the automatic stay immediately goes into effect. The automatic stay prevents your creditors, including your landlord, from proceeding with any collection actions. Since eviction is a collection action, your landlord must stop their efforts to have you evicted. If they have already received an eviction judgment from the court, your attorney can advise you of the next steps to take. It is also possible that your landlord will file a motion to have the automatic stay lifted for them due to the fact that their interests are not protected. Considering this, bankruptcy itself is only a temporary solution to stop an eviction.

Long-Term Solutions

In some cases, you can work with your landlord and the bankruptcy court to remain in your home. This involves including any past due rent or fees in your Chapter 13 bankruptcy payment plan as well as staying current on your monthly rent each and every month. However, your landlord is not required or obligated to accept your repayment plan or to work something out with you. If you will not be able to pay back rent in a payment plan and stay current on your rent, a Chapter 13 filing is likely not a good option when it comes to staying in your home. Even if you are evicted, bankruptcy can wipe out your personal financial obligations to your landlord. In this situation, you will need to leave the home, but you will not owe the landlord any money.

Are You Facing Eviction? Take Action by Calling a North Carolina Bankruptcy Attorney Today

If you are facing an eviction, reach out to a skilled North Carolina bankruptcy lawyer at King Law Firm by calling (800) 635-1683 or use our convenient online contact form. Schedule a free no-obligation bankruptcy case evaluation to find out if Chapter 13 bankruptcy is an option for stopping your eviction. The sooner you act, the more options that might be available to you. 

Will I Lose My Social Security Benefits if I File Chapter 7?

Will I Lose My Social Security Benefits if I File Chapter 7?

Will I Lose My Social Security Benefits if I File Chapter 7?

Millions of Americans rely on their social security benefits to pay their bills each month. Some also have financial difficulties. If you are one of these individuals, you might consider a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing to provide relief for your financial stress. You might also be concerned about how your social security benefits will be impacted if you file for bankruptcy. It is best to schedule a private consultation with a knowledgeable North Carolina bankruptcy attorney to learn about how social security payments and bankruptcy can affect each other.

Are Social Security Payments Impacted in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Losing social security payments or having them decreased because you file for bankruptcy doesn’t make much sense for most debtors. You might be relieved to find out that you will not lose or decrease your social security income by filing for bankruptcy. Your monthly benefits are protected and will remain the same. However, your benefits could actually impact your bankruptcy situation.

Social Security Benefits as Income in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Petitions

Although your benefits will not be impacted if you file for bankruptcy, your ability to file bankruptcy could be impacted by the amount of benefits you receive. Keep in mind that if you receive social security benefits because of your age or your disability, they are not labeled as income for bankruptcy purposes. This fact can help you qualify to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy under the means test. Social security payments are also not considered income that can be used to pay back creditors. However, these payments could be included by the bankruptcy court to determine if you have the ability to pay your creditors.

Social Security as an Asset

When you are owed benefits from previous months, it is common to receive a lump-sum payment.  If you are someone who received a lump-sum social security payment instead of monthly benefits at any point, the bankruptcy trustee could consider this large payment to be in excess of what you need for care and support. If this happens, the lump sum would be labeled as part of your estate. Your North Carolina bankruptcy lawyer can help you weigh your options if this applies to your bankruptcy. Some of this lump sum could be exempted under North Carolina’s allowable property exemptions.

Questions about Bankruptcy and Social Security? Meet with a North Carolina Bankruptcy Lawyer

Bankruptcy is often a necessary process, but it has many intricacies that are confusing to a layperson. When you have a seasoned North Carolina bankruptcy lawyer on your side, you can be assured that all aspects of your finances, including your social security benefits, are considered in your bankruptcy. Your attorney can discuss how your benefits might impact your bankruptcy filing and allow you to make the decisions that need to be made. Call 855-206-0052 or use our convenient online contact form to receive your free no-obligation bankruptcy consultation with a North Carolina bankruptcy attorney at King Law Firm.

Can Bankruptcy Stop Auto Repossession?

can bankruptcy stop auto repossession

Can Bankruptcy Stop Auto Repossession?

For many people, car payments are one of the most substantial expenses that they pay each month. As such, if times get rough, these payments might be skipped. Although it might make sense to do so to get other more pressing bills paid, it can lead to the repossession of your vehicle after only one to three missed payments. With many Americans relying on a vehicle to get them to and from work, a repossession can cause significant problems. If your car is in danger of repossession, bankruptcy might be the solution for you.  Reach out to a North Carolina bankruptcy attorney as soon as possible to learn about your options.

Saving Your Vehicle with a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

For car owners that are unable to get caught up on their loan or work something out with their lender, filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy might be a better option. You should discuss both options with your North Carolina bankruptcy attorney to determine the best choice in your own situation. In Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the automatic stay also applies when the petition is filed. If the judge approves your debt repayment plan, you will pay your car loan arrears within that plan. As long as you are paying your lender as agreed each month and paying your Chapter 13 repayment plan, the lender cannot repossess your vehicle. If you fall behind on either payment, the lender can once again pursue repossession.

Call a Skilled North Carolina Bankruptcy Attorney Today for Help Keeping Your Car

If you are behind in making payments against your car loan, time is of the essence. You must act as soon as possible if you want to keep your car. If you think bankruptcy might be the right solution for you, do not procrastinate. Schedule a bankruptcy consultation with an experienced North Carolina bankruptcy lawyer at King Law Firm today by calling (800) 635-1683 or use our convenient online contact form.