Dove law firm Houston and chapter 7 top tricks: Discovery is a formal request for information and documents during the lawsuit process. If the case is pending in a justice of the peace court, court approval must be given prior to either side beginning the discovery process. If the case is pending in a county court or a district court, court approval is not needed. Typically, but not always, discovery must be concluded thirty days before the case is set for trial. If the ‘Plaintiff’ (the person or company doing the suing) believes that they have all the proof they need to win the lawsuit (and there are no disputed facts), they can file a writing with the court asking for a judgment to be entered. This writing is called a motion for summary judgment. If the ‘Defendant’ (person being sued) believes that the Plaintiff is absolutely lacking some of the proof required to win the lawsuit, the defendant can file a writing asking that the case be dismissed. This writing is called a no-evidence motion for summary judgment.
Your creditor could also object and keep certain debts from getting discharged. For example, a credit card company could object to the debt from recent luxury goods purchases or cash advances, and the court may decide you still need to repay this portion of the credit card’s balance. Additionally, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy may discharge the debt you owe on secured loans. Secured loans are those backed by collateral, such as your home for a mortgage, or when a creditor has a lien on your property. However, even if the debt is discharged, the creditor may still have the right to foreclose on or repossess your property.
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Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit: A tax credit is so much better than a tax deduction—it reduces your tax bill dollar for dollar. So missing one is even more painful than missing a deduction that simply reduces the amount of income that’s subject to tax. But it’s easy to overlook the child and dependent care credit if you pay your child care bills through a reimbursement account at work. The law allows you to run up to $5,000 of such expenses through a tax-favored reimbursement account at work. Up to $6,000 in care expenses can qualify for the credit, but the $5,000 from a tax favored account can’t be used. So if you run the maximum $5,000 through a plan at work but spend more for work-related child care, you can claim the credit on up to an extra $1,000. That would cut your tax bill by at least $200 using the minimum 20 percent of the expenses. The credit percentage goes up for lower income households.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is like Chapter 11, which applies to businesses. In both cases, the petitioner submits a reorganization plan that safeguards assets against repossession or foreclosure and typically requests forgiveness of other debts. They both differ from the more extreme Chapter 7 filing, which liquidates all assets except those specifically protected. No bankruptcy filing eliminates all debts. Child support and alimony payments aren’t dischargeable, nor are student loans and unpaid taxes. But bankruptcy can clear away many other debts, though it will likely make it harder for the debtor to borrow in the future. See extra info at additional info.
Pick Up Capital Gains if You’re in a Low Tax Bracket: The end of the year is also a good time for some people to sell stocks that have appreciated significantly in value. This can be a particularly good strategy for those who are in the 10% and 12% tax brackets since their capital gains tax may be zero. The stocks can then be repurchased, which resets the basis and minimizes the amount of tax to be paid on future gains. Even if you’re not in the lowest tax brackets, you may want to sell winning stocks to reset the basis if you’re also harvesting losses. “What you want to do is balance (gains) with stocks that have losses,” Barlin says.