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Letter From Trustee on Documents Needed - Please Help!

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  • Letter From Trustee on Documents Needed - Please Help!

    Hi there - I am SO glad I have found this forum.

    We filed pro se on 5/2/16, and about a week later got a 341 hearing date of 6/8/16. We got a letter from the Trustee this saturday (5/28/16) on what documents we need to show - with the stipulation that they need to get to him 5 days before the hearing or it could be adjourned. So, I'm panicking a little because the holiday Monday has made it more difficult to get hold of paperwork, and also I don't understand some of the wording.

    Oh - info! We're in NY, married filing jointly, Chapter 7.

    I'm losing my nerve on this - I was the one left to do everything for filing. I got through it without any glaring errors *I think* (at least, the clerk looked through it and it was deemed acceptable) - but the wording on the reaffirmation paperwork for the mortgage stumped me, and then this letter came on top of it. Please don;t think I'm dumb, or not prepared to do the work - I really am. But we can't afford a lawyer and I need a hand to hold.

    I tried to attach a pic of the letter, but I'm not authorised. Here are the requirements, word for word.

    1. Fair market appraisal of real property; a copy of property tax bill; or a copy of the closing statement may be substituted if the property was acquired in the last 2 years.
    Do the semi-colons mean "or" in this case? Can I produce any of these documents? Do I have to arrange for an appraiser to come out at short notice? I have the assessor's estimate of the full market value on our property tax bill ($98,395 - which is the value I cited on the BK application), as well as the zillow zestimate of $86,072 and the Bank of America estimate of $86,388. We paid $124,000 for the house and have only been here for 2.5 years and still owe about $123,000. (It was a 102% USDA loan with closing costs rolled in so we haven't made much headway). We're in NY so the homestead exemption is $150,000. Being as we're nowhere close to the exemption limit, will that be enough info?

    2. Proof of balance on mortgage.
    will the mortgage statement for this month do?

    3. Certificate of title to each vehicle in which the debtor has an interest.
    I found my husband's, but had to order mine and with the holiday the earliest it will get processed is Wednesday. Goodness knows when I'll actually receive it. Would it do any good to send the proof that it has been ordered and the DMV is sending it? The vehicle exemption for us is $4000. Husband's car is 20 years old and he paid $400 for it last September (his financed car was repo-ed), mine is 10 years old and worth about $1900 according to Blue Book value. So again, we aren't close to the limit.

    4. Proof of close out balance on secured obligations.
    What on earth does that mean?! Is it my husband's car? It was repoe-ed 7 months ago. With the $12,000 he still owed on it after 4 years, and a personal loan from the credit union it was cross-collateralised with another $13,000 owing - it was one of our main reasons for filing BK. But we don't know who repoe-ed it - they came in the middle of the night and we never heard from them again. And to my shame I didn't keep the letter from the credit union - I was in denial and throwing collection letters away left, right, and centre at this point. So what is this document and what should it say?? My car is owned outright and was paid off 2 years ago.

    I really, really don't want to have the hearing adjourned at this point - I'm worried sick as it is!

  • #2
    OK, so I just found a letter from the credit union about the car.

    It states the date the car was repossessed on 9/28/15, and the total amount due to redeem it ($12,000 for the car plus the $13,000 balance on the loan, plus fees) before 10/7/15.

    We didn't redeem the car - instead hubby bought an 20 year old car belonging to a friend of a friend for $400 cash. Obviously there will be some kind of paper trail as he had to get new plates and register the new car. But what else do we need to show as proof????


    • #3
      Ok. #1. Yes, it means OR. Whichever one you have handy will do

      #2. Yes, current mortgage statement will do if. It has the current outstanding balance on it

      #3. Send a copy of the one you have and a note concerning the requested title document. It arriving from the DMV yet..but will include it under separate cover as soon as it arrives.

      #4. Doesn't matter who reposed the car. Just, what is the current balance you owe on it. Just because it was repossessed does not mean you are free and clear of the debt. If you do not have any the creditor you owed the money to...they either have it of will tell you who they sold the debt to. This is something that should be included in the creditor matrix anyway.

      So..remember this is probably a form letter that goes to everyone. Not all of it is totally applicable to you...,and car loan paid off 2 years ago is clearly not a "current" balance on a secured loan.

      Put together everything you can and mail it.


      • #4
        The re-poed car will be sold at auction-if it hasn't already been, and if you had not filed CH7, you would have been sued for the difference between what you owed on the car loan and what it sold. Contrary to what the previous poster said, the debt will be wiped out. My DH had co-signed a car loan for an acquaintance who was down on his luck. When he started defaulting on payments and we started getting demand letters, DH made him surrender the vehicle. Both DH and the acquaintance were sued for the difference. By then our circumstances had become such that we had to file CH7. Our responsibility was discharged. Acquaintance never did anything, and has a $13,000 judgement on his head which is non--collectible because his only income now is a paltry SS check.

        A mortgage on a home is another matter, which I really don't understand, but member Despritfreya, a BK attorney in Arizona, has an article here advising against reaffirming any mortgage.

        Don't lose heart, BK is a process. Good wishes to you.
        "To go bravely forward is to invite a miracle."

        "Worry is the darkroom where negatives are formed."


        • #5
          AngelinaCat. That is what Isaid. The money owed on that car is still owed regardless of who repossessed the car. It should be included on the creditor matrix...meaning it is discharged along with all the rest.

          My reading of the wording I. The trustee letter is that he is just asking what the place is apparently worth. Nothing more


          • #6
            Hi Geez we just framed things differently. I have had this problem all through school, because I take things literally they way they are written. But other people seem to have to a have short-cut way of explaining it that I have a problem understanding.
            "To go bravely forward is to invite a miracle."

            "Worry is the darkroom where negatives are formed."


            • #7
              Boldilocks, please read the thread that AngelinaCat referred to about "why reaffirming a mortgage is a very very bad idea":

              Hopefully, the judge wouldn't approve a reaffirmation anyway.

              For the mortgage appraisal, tell the trustee you do not have an appraisal and give him all of the value estimates you mention.
              LadyInTheRed is in the black!
              Filed Chap 13 April 2010. Discharged May 2015.
              $143,000 in debt discharged for $36,500, including attorneys fees. Money well spent!


              • #8
                Thank you, thank you, thank you everyone for answering and helping me!

                Mailed in all the documentation bar my car title - with a note that I would fax that when it comes. The car loan and the cross-collateralised personal loan - as well as the credit union visa card, the credit union checking balance (negative) and the credit union savings account balance (negative) were all included in the creditor matrix anyway. I included the repo letter anyway - that was the outstanding balance on the car loan when we surrendered the car.

                It was just a form letter - it had some things checked to include, and others weren't checked. As well as the above I also had to send last 2 years tax returns, and last 3 months bank statements. It ended up being about 70 pages all in, LOL, so I mailed it next day rather than faxing it. He'll have it tomorrow, 5 days before the 6/8/16 hearing, just as he wanted.

                A HUGE THANK YOU for referencing the reaffirmation. I had no idea that it was such a bad idea until I came across these forums! I made the June 1st mortgage payment yesterday, and set up the automatic bi-weekly payments again going forward (they stopped due to the automatic stay). So do I just ignore the reaffirmation paperwork that Wells Fargo sent us? That would be a relief - because parts of it were incomprehensible.

                The problem is that when we filed Form 108 "Statement of Intention for Individuals Filing Under Chapter 7", it gave 4 options for the house:
                 Surrender the property.
                 Retain the property and redeem it.
                 Retain the property and enter into a Reaffirmation Agreement.
                 Retain the property and [explain]: ________________________________________________

                We checked the reaffirmation option - the software I used for the paperwork kind of encouraged that. I had no idea it would be a bad thing... Are we stuck doing it?


                • #9
                  No, you are not stuck with the intent. It was just that, an intent. You changed your mind. If the trustee asks, say you have decided to retain and pay. Ignore the paperwork and keep your mortgage payments current.
                  LadyInTheRed is in the black!
                  Filed Chap 13 April 2010. Discharged May 2015.
                  $143,000 in debt discharged for $36,500, including attorneys fees. Money well spent!


                  • #10
                    Thank you again so much for your help! 341 meeting was today and it lasted 5 minutes. Trustee asked if we intended to keep the house, I said, "We intend to retain and pay," and nothing else was asked bout it. This forum saved my bacon!


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