Twenty Years And Counting!

Posted on March 24th, 2017 by Ed Woods

Normally, I blog about current events or about how we can help consumers can get real relief from financial pressures under the law. In today’s post, I digress to recognize one of our own. Recently, we celebrated the twenty year anniversary of our friend and trusted employee, Leann Wilkinson. Where has the time gone? Her official title is Office Manager. But that doesn’t even begin to tell the story of what she does on a daily basis. We could realistically change her official title to something like Office Manager Paralegal Executive Assistant Go To Get Things Done Person. But, that…Read   More

I tend to be a nostalgic person.  I recall stories in my childhood told by my parents and grandparents about going downtown to the big department stores to shop at Christmas.  Everyone’s stories always included a visit to the candy counter.  I am not old enough to remember any of the downtown establishments they reminisce about except I remember Sears.  I remember it because of one thing, the candy counter.  The downtown location closed when I was still in elementary school and moved to the new local mall that opened.  What a great place!  The mall was “the” place to…Read   More

Not too many would be shocked to hear that topping the nation’s list of consumer complaints during the year 2016 would be. And the Winner IS………. Illegal Debt Collection Practices Debt collection efforts by creditors and collection agencies. I’m not sure about the general public, but I can tell you from experience in representing consumers as well as receiving calls made to me for someone else’s debt…..These collectors are relentless! It has been our experience over the years that the greatest relief clients seem to experience when they come in for a consultation is hearing the words: “You may tell…Read   More

At Bond & Botes, P.C., we work with a variety of people who have fallen on financial hard times and, in some cases, need to file for bankruptcy. Of all the financial problems we encounter, few compare to being caught in the trap of payday lending. We believe that the state of Alabama is not doing enough to protect our citizens from the predatory payday loan industry, and we are working to make our voices heard. We’ve created a petition to demand that our state legislators take concrete action to reform payday loans in our state. What Is a Payday…Read   More

The second bankruptcy in two years involving RadioShack has been filed by its parent company, General Wireless Operations. Approximately 1500 stores are at risk of being closed with the latest update stating 552 stores will be closed (two in Alabama are on the closure list and those locations are in Madison and Mobile). The fate of more than 1000 stores is still up in the air. One bright note is that 400 independently owned dealers will remain open. As an aside and being an avid cyclist, I remember RadioShack sponsoring the professional cycling team which featured Lance Armstrong when he…Read   More

Want free groceries?  If so, on April 5th Winn Dixie is replacing its Fuel Perks program with Winn-Dixie Reward + Plenti.  Customers will be able to earn points buying groceries at Winn-Dixie or spending money at any Plenti reward partner.  You can earn points by: Switching to AT&T Buying gasoline at any Exxon or Mobile station Buying goods at Macy’s and many other online retailers Dining out at participating local restaurants The Plenti reward program was launched by American Express.  For every 1,000 points your earn you receive $10 or more.  There are two ways to earn points:  1) shopping…Read   More

In the private, civilian non-government related world, doing stupid thing can have consequences but, when someone is in the military and/or has a security clearance, the consequences of bad judgment and behavior can be exponential.  I am prompted to write this blog post based upon the disturbing news reports out of the Marine Corps. The military is always concerned about behavior that can affect troop readiness and morale.  The problem now for all of these Marines, especially current active-duty and reservists, is that they fall under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). Sexual Harassment in the Military With the heightened…Read   More

According to a recent article by the Montgomery Advertiser, 45 Alabama legislators are pushing a bill that would give the power to the people of Alabama to vote on whether payday loan interest rates in Alabama should be capped at 36% Interest Rates Out of Control A bi-partisan group of legislators and payday reform advocacy groups gathered at the Alabama State House last Tuesday to introduce the bill that would allow Alabamians to vote on a constitutional amendment that would cap payday loan interest rates at 36%. Currently, the average rate for payday loans is 300%, with a maximum possible rate…Read   More

How Fast is a Bankruptcy Case?

Posted on March 15th, 2017 by Nick Gajewski

This topic is another of the questions I answer on an almost daily basis.  Everyone wants to know how quickly a bankruptcy case takes effect and how quickly it will be done.  As far as court procedures go, bankruptcy is relatively speedy. Bankruptcy Provides Quick Relief The first thing to know is that starting a bankruptcy case is very fast.  From the moment the case is filed, you are placed under the protection of the Bankruptcy Court.  This protection, called the “automatic stay” prevents creditors from taking any debt collection actions against you.  That means no more phone calls, no…Read   More

There are many people in our communities who cannot afford legal representation.  Here in Madison County, we are so fortunate to have the Madison County Volunteer Lawyers Program to meet the needs of that population. The MCVLP has a two-pronged mission: Promote equal justice through the delivery of pro bono legal services and Promote volunteerism among attorneys. The MCVLP strives to meet the first prong of its mission by offering a variety of services to clients who meet certain criteria.  The MCVLP accepts clients who have cases pending in Madison County Court, or who are residents of Madison County.  The…Read   More