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Minneapolis Bankruptcy Law Blog

Clothing retailer Coldwater Creek files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

Even though the economy is showing more signs of improvement, there is no question that the nation is still feeling the effects of the recent recession. Indeed recent studies have shown that consumers are continuing to rein in their spending habits, meaning fewer dollars are being spent online and in shopping malls.

This, of course, has proven to be incredibly detrimental to multiple U.S. retailers, even forcing some household names -- Sbarro LLC, Dots LLC, Ashley Stewart Holdings Inc. -- to seek bankruptcy protection.

Unfortunately, this list became even longer last Friday after the popular women's clothing retailer Coldwater Creek officially filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, indicating that it was currently in the process of taking steps to close its doors forever.

Why co-signing a loan is a very important decision

For those people facing what seemed like insurmountable debt and an uncertain financial future, there is perhaps no better feeling than securing a fresh start via personal bankruptcy. Finally, they are free to start a new chapter of their lives, free from creditor harassment, crippling anxiety and constant uncertainty.

While there is no disputing the benefits of bankruptcy, it's nevertheless important to understand that, like anything else, it can present certain consequences. For instance, a person may have to spend some time slowly but surely rebuilding their credit post-bankruptcy.

In addition, it's also important to understand that the discharge of certain debts can sometimes even end up having a negative impact on third parties, particularly those who may have co-signed a loan on your behalf.

Patients advised to be on the lookout for errors in hospital bills

As we recently discussed on our blog, massive medical debt is a very real problem for thousands of people, surpassing even credit card debt as the number one cause of bankruptcy filings here in the U.S.

In light of this reality, those who have incurred medical debt of any size will likely want to take any steps they can to help reduce the amount of money owed to providers or prevent their balance from becoming unmanageable.

Interestingly, financial experts indicate that one way people can do this is by taking a closer look at their hospital bills. That's because some estimates have found that upwards of eight out of every ten hospital bills contain some type of billing error.

Why exactly do so many hospital billing errors occur?

Should inherited IRA funds be protected from bankruptcy trustee?

Statistics from the highly influential Investment Company Institute reveal that over 45 million households here in the U.S. had some manner of retirement account in the second quarter of 2013, and that the cumulative value of these accounts was over $5 trillion.

In light of numbers like these and the fact that a substantial percentage of these retirement funds are owned by aging baby boomers, the question naturally arises as to just how much of this retirement wealth stands to be inherited over the next several decades.

Interestingly enough, the Supreme Court of the United States recently heard oral arguments in a case in this very area with the issue being whether funds inherited from a deceased family member's individual retirement account are protected from a trustee under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.

People from all backgrounds may benefit from bankruptcy filing

There are many situations that individuals who reside in Minneapolis, Minnesota, may face that lead to financial hardship. While most are likely aware that bankruptcy could provide a solution for those hardships some may be reticent to take that step for fear of a stigma being attached. The reality however is that people from all socioeconomic backgrounds might find that they are in a position where filing for bankruptcy could improve their financial situation. The Chapter 7 filing, a reality show personality, Todd Chrisley filed illustrates that.

U.S. sees $38.2 billion rise in credit card debt in 2013

Last week, we discussed some statistics regarding how much credit card debt American consumers hold in comparison to the amount of savings they have. Today's conversation will again be focused on credit card debt statistics. The statistics we will be talking about today were recently released by CardHub and they regard how much credit card debt increased here in the U.S. last year.

According to the statistics, in 2013, America experienced a $38.2 billion increase in credit card debt. This is 8 percent larger than the increase the nation saw in 2012.

Survey makes alarming findings concerning credit card debt, savings

When you go to the mall, grocery store, gas station or any other shopping establishment, you are inevitably confronted with the same dilemma: Do I pay with cash, check, or credit card?

While more people are opting to carry cash due to cyber security concerns and others are still opting to take the time to fill out a check, the overwhelming majority of people are choosing to make a seemingly painless payment with their credit card, confident in the knowledge that they can pay off their balance at the end of the month.

Interestingly enough, however, a recently released survey from the website Bankrate.com reveals that some of this confidence concerning credit card balances may be misplaced.

Why medical debt is the number one cause of bankruptcy filings

Everyone knows that admission to the hospital for emergency treatment or long-term care provided by a team of professionals for a debilitating condition is going to be an expensive proposition. What they may not know, however, is that it can be so expensive that it leaves people with otherwise insurmountable debt.

If you don't believe that the accumulation of medical debt can become quite that financially crippling, consider a 2013 study from the website NerdWallet Health. Here, researchers predicted that unpaid medical debt will rank as the number one cause of bankruptcy filings this year, ahead of both mortgage debt and credit card debt.

"Medical expenses have been growing at a rate well above inflation," said one attorney. "Starting in about 2007/2008, medical expenses went from being a primary component of a lot of [bankruptcy] cases to becoming the dominant factor ..."

A home healthcare service in Minnesota to file for Chapter 7

Even when most Chapter 7 bankruptcies involve individual filers, there are circumstances where small businesses find themselves in financial binds and need to file bankruptcy in this manner as well.  Though such businesses often go the route of Chapter 11 bankruptcy, Chapter 7 may turn out to be the most viable option.

Crystal Care Home Healthcare Services once was listed in the Business Journal as one of Minnesota's fastest growing private companies.  Although little is known about their circumstances, there is now concern that the employees for this business will not get paid and that there are many other vendors with claims against the company.

Study examines impact of divorce on credit score

When it comes to studying the effect of divorce, researchers have covered a gamut of topics over the years, including everything from its impact on family and friends to its impact on employment and wellness. In fact, one area in particular that researchers have long been fascinated by is the effect of divorce on spouses' finances both before and after the split.

As it turns out, the website Credit.com recently released the results of its own study examining how divorce can affect a person's credit score, gathering answers from 526 divorced adults of varying backgrounds (age, income, education, location, etc.).

Somewhat surprisingly, they found that nearly 30 percent of survey participants indicated that their credit score had improved significantly after their divorce while 16 percent indicated that their credit score had improved slightly after their divorce.

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Huffman, Usem, Crawford & Greenberg, P.A., is just 10 minutes from the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and represents clients throughout the United States, Canada and Minnesota, including the cities of St. Paul, Golden Valley, Plymouth, St. Louis Park, Hopkins, Minnetonka, Wayzata, Edina, Brooklyn Park, Brooklyn Center, Anoka and Maple Grove, as well as Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Anoka County and Scott County.

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