Get Your License Back with a Chapter 13 – August 2016 Interview

Home/General/Get Your License Back with a Chapter 13 – August 2016 Interview

Get Your License Back with a Chapter 13 – August 2016 Interview

Katherine:

Today, our friend, Tom McAvity, has joined us again and he’s going to share with us something that I had no idea about, that Chapter 13 could do, and I bet it will surprise you, too. Tom, thank you so much for joining us again on This Needs To Be Said. How are you?

Tom:

Good morning. How are you doing?

Katherine:

I’m wonderful. See, I got your name right. I did it.

Tom:

You did. You nailed it.

Katherine:

Yay! All right. We’re going to talk about Chapter 13 today and, there’s something surprising that you’re going to share with us as well, but I’m going to go ahead and turn the conversation over to you about how Chapter 13 can turn things around for individuals who need to get back on track. You said something about them getting their driver’s license back, so I need to hear more about this.

Tom:

Oh, yeah. Chapter 13 can be a misunderstood element of Chapter 13 is that it can be an incredibly effective tool for getting a driver’s license back. Obviously, most of our clients are more interested in Chapter 7 bankruptcy, often because they think that Chapter 13 bankruptcy means that they’re going to have to pay all of their creditors back. Of course, far from it, most of our clients who do file Chapter 13 end up paying back maybe pennies or dimes on the dollar, rather than what they actually owe.

One of the nicer elements of Chapter 13, that Chapter 7 does not offer, is for standard … It’s an over simplification, but it’s basically true. For your standard, run-of-the-mill tickets, your parking tickets, your minor infraction tickets, non-criminal stuff, not a DUI or anything like that, but just your run-of-the-mill tickets that most of us incur. I’m embarrassed to say, I myself have gotten a few of them over the years. What Chapter 13 will enable you to do, is where your license has been suspended for failure to pay those tickets, and that happens to a lot of our clients, those tickets rack up interest and penalties and many people, as much as they would like to pay those tickets back, can’t and they end up getting their licenses suspended. Chapter 13 will almost always enable the Chapter 13 filer to go back to the DMV and get their license back shortly after filing, even though they haven’t really paid anything back yet to those tickets, if at all, and maybe they’re not going to end up paying much of anything back at all.

The Chapter 13 filing enables them to get that license back. The hindrance to getting their license, which is the non-payment, is removed as an issues and that enables them to get the license back. For a lot of our clients, having a driver’s license is the difference between working and not working, and eating and not eating for their families, so it’s a … Not many people know about it and unfortunately, a lot of people will just sit there with no licenses for months, if not years, on end and end up getting other driving while suspended, or driving without a license, because they don’t know that they can simply get this Chapter 13 filed and get that license back.

It’s something I wish more people knew about. It’s certainly something that’s not available in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. It’s often an advantage to filing Chapter 13.

Schedule an appointment

Katherine:

That is awesome to know. Our conversations with you are to help people understand that bankruptcy is not a bad word. The more I talk with you, the more we learn that there’s so much else in here, other than wiping the slate clean. I think of wiping the slate clean is just like, “Okay, we’re just getting rid of those bills,” but I would not have ever thought about being able to do anything other than start at zero. I didn’t think about getting a license back or restoring myself.

It just never automatically came up as a good thing and it’s like it would be a whisper if somebody had to file bankruptcy. If you found out about it, you may find out by accident, and something had to happen like they went to apply for something and they didn’t get it and they say, “It was because I had a bankruptcy on there.” “When did you get a bankruptcy?” It may not have been for the bankruptcy, what I’m learning, that they did not get approved for but that is what we believe. You have shown us a lot there.

Filing Chapter 13 has lots of benefits for someone needing to get situated again. What better way of being able to restore your life than … Granted, what we’ve said here is there are particular things that it will allow you to restore your license from. If you have unpaid tickets that you just didn’t have the money for, now with restructuring things, you will have the money to get your license back, so now you’re driving and you’re really able to get back on your feet with a fresh start.

Tom:

Exactly.

Katherine:

That is a huge, huge, “Wow,” and, “Ah-ha,” moment for me. I’m saying this jokingly, but it almost makes me want to go out and file bankruptcy. I’m not in trouble, but I might have to call you, “How do you get in trouble?”

Tom:

It makes me want to file, too. Yeah, I know what you mean.

Katherine:

Wow. I want you to tell people, how can they get in touch with you outside of This Needs To Be Said?

Tom:

I think the best way to do that is call one of our offices. They can call our Portland office at 503-232-5303, the Seattle office at 674-4559, and our Vancouver office at 360-828-0110. Our appointment setters there are super. There’s Shane and Chantal and either one of them would be more than willing to set either an in-person appointment, a phone appointment, and now we’re even doing video appointments where …

You know, people get so busy these days. It can be hard to find the time to go to a lawyer’s office, especially for married people. Two jobs, maybe childcare as well, trying to coordinate visiting a lawyer on your off hours, it can get complex in a hurry. I have to admit, getting my wife and I to any one place with two jobs and a kid is not easy. Who wants to think that much about getting to a lawyer’s office, so we started offering our video appointments where I can virtually meet with people. They can sit at their home, look at their computer, and over the internet we can do a video appointment that’s every bit as valuable, I think, as someone coming in.

We like to offer both. Some people like to just come in and that’s great. We’re happy to do it that way, but for those who are little more challenged, in terms of their ability and resources, to come in, we offer the video appointments, which I think can be super helpful. From what I understand, we’re the only firm that offers those.

Katherine:

That’s the first I’ve heard of it. I’ve heard of some doctor’s offices starting to offer that, but especially for someone who shouldn’t be driving because they don’t have their license, excellent, excellent, excellent.

Tom:

Right. You know, I hadn’t even thought of that, but exactly right. We’re trying to get someone’s license back, in some cases, and we’re asking them to drive to our office, which isn’t super. Yeah, that video appointment can be real helpful in that case.

Katherine:

Right on time. Right on time. Awesome. I want to say thank you so much for being here with us on Today and, until next time, have a wonderful day.

Tom:

Thank you, you too. It was nice talking to you this morning.

Schedule an appointment
2016-08-28T11:25:14+00:00
Call Now
Book Appointment