• The Underwhelming Results of Foreclosure Outreach

    The video above features then-Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley discussing outreach and legislative initiatives aimed at providing foreclosure assistance to thousands of struggling residents in the city. On July 12, 2012, the Chicago Tribune reported that two reports out of Washington, DC, indicated that national foreclosure outreach programs were only helping a few of the many homeowners in need.

    The Government Accountability Office (GAO) “specifically looked at the outreach to borrowers who were eligible for a free, independent review of their 2009 or 2010 foreclosure actions to see if they suffered financial hardship and were due remediation,” the Tribune reported. While 95 percent of the 4.3 million letters mailed directly to borrowers nationally were successfully delivered, only 5.3 percent had responded as of June.

    Reuters reported that New York City Department of Education family liaison worker Keturah Miller was one of the millions receiving a letter, but said it “still made no sense to her” despite her having read it over four times. “I can read the words, but the meaning of what they’re saying? That’s the confusing part for me,” Miller told Reuters.

    According to the Tribune, another report by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency found that as of May 31, only 7,607 of the 197,836 borrowers who received letters in Illinois had requested a review of their case. That translates to a response rate of 3.8 percent.

    On Friday, we will discuss the latest proposal in Chicago regarding foreclosure help , but you should know that there are options available right now that can help you and your family delay or even avoid foreclosure. Our firm can help you better understand the benefits of filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy when you contact us at (866) 930-7482.

    Benjamin Brand Services – Chicago bankruptcy lawyer

  • Famous Bankruptcies: Ulysses S. Grant

    As millions of Americans consider which candidate they think is the best man to be president, this week’s famous bankruptcy will look back on one of the former presidents that numerous polls rank as one of the worst. The administration of Ulysses S. Grant was marred by numerous scandals such as Black Friday in 1869 and the Whiskey Ring in 1875. “My failures have been errors of judgment, not of intent,” Grant wrote to Congress at the conclusion of his second term.

    The two years Grant spent traveling the world with his wife and dining with foreign dignitaries at the end of his second term depleted most of his savings. At the suggestion of his son, Buck, Grant placed nearly all of his financial assets into a partnership with Ferdinand Ward. However, Ward mismanaged and embezzled the money, bankrupting the company and leaving Grant’s family deep in debt.

    Suffering from throat cancer, Grant struck a publishing deal with Mark Twain to use the memoirs to repay his debts and provide for his family after his death. The terminally ill former president worked tirelessly on the project in the final year of his life and finished his autobiography just days before his death. The book received widespread praise upon publication with Twain calling the book “a great, unique and unapproachable literary masterpiece.” “There is no higher literature than these modest, simple Memoirs,” Twain said. “Their style is at least flawless, and no man can improve upon it.”

    The corruption that occurred on Grant’s watch during his time in office was unprecedented at the time and has certainly contributed to his low placement in historical rankings. However, the memoirs as well as his advocacy for civil and human rights-most notably toward American Indians and African Americans-during Reconstruction have helped his reputation improve over time.

    Despite the scandals that plagued his time in office, Grant’s efforts and the methods employed to pay off his debt before his death can be an inspiration to anybody about to file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy . If you are looking for a fresh start financially, contact my firm to schedule a consultation to see how I can help.

    Benjamin Brand Services – Chicago bankruptcy lawyer