News

Do You Need To Return Property Taken Prior To A Bankruptcy Filing? U.S. Supreme Court Decides the Issue in City of Chicago v. Fulton

by Tom Canary Tom Canary

In a much anticipated ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that the mere retention of estate property after the filing of a bankruptcy petition does not violate the automatic stay imposed by 11 U.S.C. §362(d)(3). Newly appointed Justice Barrett did not take part in the consideration of the case, nor the decision. Of the remaining eight Justices, seven joined the majority opinion authored by Justice Alito, while Justice Sotomayor filed a concurring opinion.  In essence, this is a unanimous decision on the issue.  City of Chicago. v. Fulton, Sup.Ct. No. 19-357, 592 U.S. ____, 2021 U.S. LEXIS 496 (Jan. 14, 2021). Read more

KWA Expands Bankruptcy and Replevin Practice Adding Two Top Attorneys

by KWA KWA

By: Keith D. Weiner, Owner/Attorney Keith D. Weiner and Associates
Cleveland, Ohio

Keith Weiner & Assoc. Co. L.P.A. (KWA) is excited to announce that Cynthia A. Jeffrey and Thomas L. Canary Jr., two highly respected and experienced bankruptcy attorneys in the creditor’s rights industry have joined our Firm as of November 2nd. Cindy, who has been licensed in Ohio since 1994, will join KWA as its Director of Bankruptcy and will be practicing in KWA’s Cleveland Office. Tom, who has been licensed in Kentucky since 1984, (and also holds law licenses in Ohio, Indiana and West Virginia), will join KWA as its Senior Bankruptcy Attorney, practicing in KWA’s Kentucky office. In addition to his bankruptcy and replevin experience, Tom is also very well versed in debt collection law and is the author of Thompson Reuters Kentucky Collection Manual. Read more

Our Recent Move

by KWA KWA

We are excited to announce our Firm’s Hub recently moved to a new office location in downtown Cleveland! Our new location has allowed us to rethink our office layout.  We started from scratch, knocking down walls creating a better fit for our growing needs.  No longer limited by the compartmentalized layout of our last office, we are now all on the same floor in a more open and modern workspace.  We are well situated for future growth.  Bring your mask and come visit or wait until the pandemic ends.  Either way, we are proud to show off the new place and have attached a few pictures to give you a glimpse.

The new location for our Cleveland office is 1100 Superior Avenue East, Suite 1100, Cleveland, OH 44114. Read more

Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions Releases Emergency Guidance on Prohibited Debt Collection Practices

by James Gollnick James Gollnick

On April 13, 2020, The Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions (“WI DFI”) released a guide titled “Emergency Guidance on Prohibited Debt Collection Practices,” along with a cautionary, interpretive letter issued from the WI DFI to a debt collector meant to serve as an example of impermissible practices.  The perceived intent of the guide is to encourage debt collectors to act reasonably during the current pandemic, and also to warn of the debt collection practices that are prohibited by the Wisconsin Consumer Act. Read more

The CARES Act and Changes to the Bankruptcy Code

by Lindsey Hall Lindsey Hall

On March 27, 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) was signed into law.  The CARES Act is aimed at providing relief to small businesses and consumers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.  The CARES Act contains several provisions that are related to bankruptcy and will be discussed below. Read more

Debt Collection Law Firms Essential?

by KWA KWA

By: Keith D. Weiner, Owner/Attorney Keith D. Weiner and Associates
Cleveland, Ohio

Yes we are.  I am sure some may like to debate the point and I would welcome that opportunity.  Other than needing food, water and shelter, nothing is truly essential.  So, for those who have doubts that we are essential keep an open mind and read on to find out why.  Read more

Statements Made About Unsettled Issue of State Law Not Actionable Under the FDCPA

by Michael Lewis Michael Lewis

The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a District Court’s decision and issued a significant opinion in Van Hoven v. Buckles & Buckles, P.L.C., __ F.3d __, 2020 WL 239290 (6th Cir. Jan. 16, 2020). In Van Hoven, the court held that due to the unsettled interpretation of the law it was not improper to add court cost to the balance of a wage garnishment filed with the court and that the inclusion of previous court costs associated with previous garnishments, although not permissible, may be subject to the bonafide error defense which must be further reviewed by the lower court. To quote the Court, “Just as a lawyer does not ‘misrepresent’ the facts by making a factual contention later proved wrong, a lawyer does not ‘misrepresent’ the law by advancing a reasonable legal position later proved wrong.” Id., at p. 9. The Court went on to say “Legal contentions must be objectively baseless, not just later proved wrong, to be actionable under the [FDCPA].” Id. The Van Hoven holding is consistent with precedent from other Circuits and encourages creditors’ counsel to advance reasonable interpretations of unsettled law. The National Creditors Bar Association (which KWA is a proud member of) filed an amicus brief in support of reversal and has published a more in-depth article. To review their article, please visit: NCBA Member Bulletin, “Court Rules in Favor of NCBA Member Firm.”

KWA Honored With National Award

by KWA KWA

We are grateful and excited to share that Keith D. Weiner & Associates, Co. L.P.A. has been awarded the 2019 Community Service Award by the National Creditors Bar Association (NCBA) for its commitment to giving back to the communities in which its offices are located.  KWA Charity Committee members work tirelessly throughout each year to plan and execute charity events.  Likewise, firm employees continuously demonstrate their dedication to improving their communities with more than 85 per cent of employees participating in firm-sponsored charity efforts. Read more

Disabled Veterans Get Automatic Discharge of Federal Student Loans

by Stacie Hackel Snow Stacie Hackel Snow

After more than a year of urging by Democrats and Attorneys General from over 51 states and territories[1] (including Ohio Attorney General David Yost)[2], and more than a month after the introduction of a bi-partisan bill called the Federally Requiring Earned Education-Debt Discharges for Veterans Act, 100% disabled veterans will have their federal student loans fully discharged.[3]   Due to the combined efforts, on August 21, 2019, President Trump issued an Executive Memorandum directing the Secretaries of Education and Veteran Affairs to create a more streamlined process for Totally and Permanently Disabled Veterans to obtain forgiveness of their student loans.[4] Read more