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Chapter 7 Bankruptcy:

If you qualify for Chapter 7, you can discharge all credit card debt and other unsecured debt. You can also stop foreclosure, keep your home and your car

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy:

By restructuring your debt into payment plans you can afford, you can go through the bankruptcy process without losing your most important assets

Do you feel like you are drowning in debt?

Are bill collectors calling you non-stop?

Are you facing foreclosure?

If you are experiencing great financial difficulty, Bankruptcy may be an option for you. 
At Rudikh & Associates, LLC, we are able to assist you in obtaining a fresh start! 

Together, we will find the best solution to help you get a fresh start, debt free. 

Put an end to those sleepless nights and start your life over, debt free. 

Bankruptcy is not the end but a new beginning. 

Call (732) 659-6961 and schedule your free consultation today.

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Division of Debt in New Jersey Divorce

Debt is an unavoidable part of being an adult, unless you were born with the financial acumen of a hedge fund investor, which is rarely the case. Your personal debt is then added to your student debt, and when you get married you’ll need a house, at least one car, and all the other trappings of a modern life…which results in even more debt.

Managing your debt as a couple is something every married person takes as part of the deal. But what happens if your marriage isn’t working out, and divorce is the only realistic option?

During a divorce you need to be able to not only divide up your familial assets, but also any debts that have been incurred during the term of your marriage. After all, it wouldn’t be fair for either party to shoulder 100% of the debt, especially because it’s unlikely that they’re solely responsible for its accumulation.

Divorcing couples living in New Jersey are fortunate because it’s a state where “equitable distribution” is part of any divorce proceeding. Equitable division is often mistaken to mean that the total assets and financial liabilities of both parties are divided equally, but what it actually means is that they’re divided in a fair manner.

In an ideal world both parties in a divorce case would agree on the best way to divide their assets and debts, but that’s extremely rare, especially in a contested divorce. One of the most contentious areas of any divorce case is who actually “owns” specific debts, which usually leads to a lot of finger pointing. So, it usually falls to the court to decide how they should be divided, predicated on the fact a marriage in New Jersey is viewed as being an “economic partnership”.

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The Top 3 Reasons Not To Reaffirm a Mortgage Debt in Bankruptcy

If you’re not familiar with the phrase “reaffirming your mortgage” it basically means that you’re agreeing to repay all, or a specified amount, of your mortgage debt. This is a legal agreement between you and the lender which when signed makes you legally liable for your mortgage debt all over again, even if that debt had been fully or partially discharged as part of your bankruptcy filing.

Why would anyone voluntarily agree to repay a debt that was discharged? In the case of a mortgage, property owners agree to this because they don’t want their home to go into the foreclosure process.

This goes against the purpose of declaring bankruptcy in the first place, because it’s there to help you dig yourself out of whatever financial hole you’ve created for yourself.

Here are 3 really good reasons for you to not reaffirm your mortgage.


#1 You Need Financial Education

The fact that you were forced to declare bankruptcy usually indicates that you lack basic money management skills. If this is the case then reaffirming your mortgage in the hope that you’ll be able to make all future payments doesn’t make any sense because you’ve already proven that you were unable to make repayments in the past.

It would be far more sensible for you to attend a money management or financial advice course, so that you understand how to correctly manage your finances. Until you can demonstrate to yourself that you’ve learned from your mistakes, it makes absolutely no sense to agree to repay a sizeable debt such as a mortgage.


#2 You’re Increasing Your Debt to Income Ratio

When your debts are discharged during a bankruptcy filing this has the effect of reducing your debt-to-income ratio. What this means is that your credit score will start improving as a result because, on paper, you don’t owe as much as you did before declaring bankruptcy.

Having a reduced outstanding burden of debt improves your credit score, so by voluntarily agreeing to carry debt you no longer have to you’re actually decreasing your credit score.

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What to Do if You Have Medical Debt

The amount of medical debt per capita in the United States has dropped over the last few years, but 30% of the population still have unpaid medical bills.

The average medical debt is $1,800, but that amount is owed by roughly 50 million American citizens. What this means is that right now there’s $90 billion in medical debt which healthcare facilities and hospitals are actively pursuing repayment for.

Medical debt is rarely deliberate, because nobody knows when they’re going to become ill. An unexpected medical bill might only cost $1500, but when 57% of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings a minor medical emergency can quickly become a major financial issue.

So, what can you do if you find yourself facing a small mountain of medical debt?

Does Your Insurance Cover It?

These types of mistakes happen all the time, so it’s quite possible that some or all of your medical bill is actually covered by your health insurance, if you have any. Call your insurance provider to check what your coverage is, explaining your situation to them. They might not be able to reduce the bill to zero, but they’re trained to spot issues with medical billing.

If you don’t have any health insurance then your next step is to examine your bill in more detail.

Is the Bill Correct?

Medical billing systems are computerized, so it only takes one incorrect billing code to artificially inflate the final total on your medical bill. You should ask for an itemized bill if the amount seems excessive in relation to whatever medical assistance you required. Sometimes it can be as simple as being charged for your room when you’d already been discharged.

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Can a Sender of a Text Message be Liable for Causing a Car Accident

It’s plain old common sense that you shouldn’t use your cell phone while driving your car or truck. You might think that you can multitask, talking or texting from your phone while driving down a motorway, but the statistics don’t back you up. The reality is that you’re 23 times more likely to have an accident if you’re distracted by your cell phone, even if that’s just for a few seconds.

The law is quite clear about cell phone misuse while driving, and courts come down heavily against any defendant who causes accidental injury or death because they were distracted by a phone call or text message. Recent changes to state laws now allow prison sentences for anyone found guilty of causing a car accident due to cell phone misuse.

But, where does the law stand on the liability of the person sending texts to the driver of a car or truck? Are you aiding and abetting criminal negligence by knowingly sending a text to the driver of a vehicle who is then involved in an accident?

The ‘Kubert’s vs. Best’ Case

This debate arose from a lawsuit arising out of an accident in 2009 caused by Kyle Best. While driving his vehicle, Best became distracted by a text sent to him by his girlfriend, Sharon Colonna. Klye’s momentary lapse of concentration caused him to drive into traffic, striking a motorcycle driven by David and Linda Kubert. This resulted in horrific, but not life-threatening, injuries to the couple.

In addition to their lawsuit against Best, the Kubert’s also sued his girlfriend for sending him a text when she knew he was driving a vehicle on a busy road.

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What Is the Cost of Divorce in New Jersey

Finally coming to the realization that your marriage has broken down is stressful enough without ever having to worry about the financial costs involved in the divorce process. As painful as it might be to acknowledge that your relationship with your spouse is at an end, it’s also important to acknowledge how much the divorce might cost you if not managed properly.

What An NJ Divorce Costs

A married couple, with no children, can expect to pay an average of $15,000 to get divorced. Roughly $12,000 of that total cost is made up of legal fees. If you’re married, but with several dependent children, then the average cost of divorce in New Jersey is in excess of $22,000.

Generally speaking, the more dependent children (those under the age of 18) you have, the more your divorce will cost. Part of this is because you have to pay a Parent Education fee of $25 for each child, but you might also need to pay for psychological evaluations for your kids as part of the divorce proceeding.

The fees above include things like court filing, serving documents, and the mandatory fee of $250 which must be paid to bring a Complaint of Divorce case forward. The overall cost of a successful divorce case in New Jersey is 20% higher than the national average.

Please also bear in mind that the above costs are not a maximum value in either case, simply because there are so many variables to consider in any divorce.

Different Types of Divorce


Not all divorces are created equal, and some are far more expensive than others. A mediated divorce for example, is where neither party is contesting the divorce, they’ve agreed to distribute their assets in an equitable manner, and the terms of child custody have been agreed upon. In situations like this a divorce mediator can handle the case for you, but engaging a mediator will still cost you several thousand dollars, so don’t make the mistake of thinking you can hire a mediator for several hundred dollars, or on a pro bono basis.

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Understanding Personal Injury Lawsuits – Causation

You may not be familiar with this term, but simply put causation is your being able to prove that negligence on the part of another person caused your injury, and resulted in a personal injury claim. This means being able to prove that the accident you were involved in caused your injury and nothing else. In these situations the burden of proof is on the victim to clearly demonstrate the connection between the accident and the injury they suffered.


Let’s imagine you were involved in an automotive accident where your car was struck from behind. As a result you suffered typical “whiplash” injuries, which most courts are more than familiar in dealing with. If, however, you claim that additional, and unusual, injuries were suffered then the burden of proof will be on you to prove that the accident was responsible for these other injuries. You would specifically need to prove that these injuries were not pre-existing ones.

There are two types of causation you need to be aware of: Actual and Proximate.


This is often referred to as “but for” causation. In actual causation the jury will be asked to decide if the victim would still have been injured in the absence of negligence on the part of the person who caused the injury. This type of causation is usually very easy to prove because the causal link is clear e.g. the defendant was driving while under the influence and then swerved across three lanes of traffic, striking the victim’s car in the process.

The link between the driver’s negligence and the victim’s injury is clear and easily identifiable, so this type of personal injury claim should be settled quickly.

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Was Your Injury Work Related

You’ve been injured in the workplace, and you’re lucky in that your employer actually has worker’s compensation insurance. What you’re wondering now is whether or not your injury can be classed as work related. Most work related injuries take place in the workplace itself, but they can also happen in other locations, as long as the employee was performing an activity or service related to their job. In certain circumstances a work-related injury can even extend to a company social event or outing, but only those directly sponsored by the employer.

What we’re getting at here is that clearly identifying any injury as being work-related can be quite difficult depending on when and where the accident took place.

Here are the most common categories for work-related injuries:


Certain states will classify an injury as being work-related even if the employees willfully disregarded health and safety guidelines. So, although you were involved in an activity which was clearly in breach of a safety rule, you might still be eligible for worker’s compensation. Never assume you’ll automatically be entitled to worker’s comp if you break company rules, because each case is treated differently. Cases where the injury is found to be self-inflicted are usually dismissed.

Pre-existing Injuries

Most pre-existing medical conditions or injuries are covered under worker’s compensation, especially if your current job aggravated an existing injury in some way. The key difference with this type of injury is that you will probably only receive a payment for increased impairment, and not an additional payment for a “new” injury.

Lunch Breaks

This is a contentious issue, but most injuries suffered by an employee while they’re on lunch break are not covered by worker’s compensation. The only potential exceptions here are if you were injured in a company cafeteria or canteen, or if you were performing a work-related activity during your lunch break. Another exception would be if you were injured during a company sponsored social event, such as the staff Christmas party.

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The Different Types of Benefits You Can Collect in a Worker’s Compensation Claim

Fortunately for employees worker’s compensation is a mandatory insurance coverage which caters to the vast majority of injuries which occur in the workplace. This gives you the peace of mind of knowing that your family won’t suffer because you’re currently unable to work. What you might not realize is that worker’s compensation doesn’t just cover your medical bills – there are a whole range of other benefits that might potentially be available to you. The first thing you need to check is if you’re eligible for the full range of benefits on offer – eligibility and the range of benefits available varies from state to state. Your personal injury attorney can detail what benefits you might be eligible for.

Medical Care

The range of healthcare services available to you through this benefit is very broad. It covers everything from a doctor’s visit, medical procedures, medication, through to any equipment required to help you recover from your injury, such as a wheelchair or walking frame. There are certain instances were alternative therapies such as acupuncture and counseling are also paid for, but this is case dependent. You will need to check whether or not your employer gets to choose your healthcare provider, or if that’s a choice you can make.


Once you’ve had the primary cause of your injury treated it might then require several months of physical therapy to get you back on your feet, literally. Rehabilitation benefits can also provide for any care you require to assist you in returning to work, especially if you’ve been absent from your job for several months, or even years. In situations where you are no longer capable of doing your previous job this benefit can be used to pay for training to prepare you for a new career more suited to your current physical and mental abilities.

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