Archives for 2016

Dealing With Debt Collectors

If you are being harassed by debt collectors, it’s important to know your rights and understand your situation.

The following video is the first in a series on Debt Defense created by the National Association of Consumer Advocates. It explains consumer rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), and reviews common defenses against debt collectors.

 

 

NH Consumer Protection

Along with the protections offered under the FDCPA, New Hampshire offers additional protections for consumers/debtors under the NH Consumer Protection Act.  Visit the website of the Consumer Protection and Antitrust Bureau, at the NH Attorney General’s Office for more information or to file a consumer complaint.

The NH Lawyer Referral Service (LRS) can refer you to competent and insured consumer law attorneys in your area. Call 603-229-0002 or request a referral online. LRS is a non-profit public service of the NH Bar Association.

 

 

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Missed Mortgage Payments – Avoiding Foreclosure

Mary Stewart, a contract attorney for the Foreclosure Relief Project at the NH Bar Association, explains what to do when you fall behind on your mortgage payments.
 
 

 

First off, New Hampshire is a non-judicial foreclosure state.  This means that if you fall behind on your payments, your mortgage company can foreclose without having to go to court, and it can happen quickly! If you fall behind on your monthly payments or even if you anticipate that you may fall behind, it is important to seek out help sooner rather than later.  Ignoring the problem most definitely will not make it go away.  The sooner you act, the more options will be available to you.

Second, don’t go it alone.  In New Hampshire, there are free Home Ownership Counselors available throughout the state.   Home Ownership Counselors are familiar with all the options that may be available to you, including modification and forbearance. They will help you assemble the vast amounts of paperwork needed when working with your lender and take care of transmitting the paperwork to the right person at your mortgage company for review.  Best of all, this service is completely free.

Home Ownership Counselors work all day, every day with people who are in the same situation that you are facing.

Third, if you already have a foreclosure scheduled, it is not too late to get help. However, it is important to act before the foreclosure auction.  The first step is to stop the foreclosure from happening.  This can be done by either filing a complaint in the NH Superior Court or by filing for personal bankruptcy protection.  There are private attorneys throughout the state as part of the Foreclosure Relief Project who will help you with this process. You can meet with an attorney FOR FREE at a Home Retention Clinic, and you may qualify for additional free or reduced fee legal services, depending on your income.

Lastly, no matter what, please don’t be afraid to get help.   Everyone has financial ups and downs.  You are not alone!  For information and guidance on the next step for you, please call the NH Bar Association Foreclosure Relief Project at 603-715-3255.

The NH Bar Association’s Foreclosure Relief Project is supported by funding from the National Mortgage Foreclosure Settlement.

The Lawyer Referral Service of the NH Bar Association partners with the Foreclosure Relief Project by providing referrals for distressed homeowners to attorneys who are specifically trained in foreclosure-related legal matters.  Call 603-229-0002 or request a referral online.

NH Bans Campaign Apparel Inside Polling Places

campaign-buttons_russwalker_fccNH state law prohibits people from wearing campaign paraphernalia such as buttons, stickers or clothing supporting specific candidates inside polling places. Violators could face fines of up to $1000.

According to Allie Morris, State House reporter for the Concord Monitor, Deputy Secretary of State David Scanlan is advising moderators to have ponchos on hand for voters wearing campaign shirts at the polls to cover up with.

“Electioneering in the polling place is not permitted generally,” Scanlan said. “If you have the same design on a campaign sign as you do on a sweatshirt, it’s effectively the same thing.”

Some people feel this is a violation of the freedom of speech.  Republican Rep. Dennis Fields, who filed the legislation at the secretary of state’s request, says the law’s intent is to prevent people from wearing items that might sway or intimidate voters.

Read the entire story.

For information about the 2016 changes to election laws and the voter ID law, go to the NH Secretary of State’s Office website.

If you have an election law issue or any other legal matter, the Lawyer Referral Service of the NH Bar Association can provide you with referrals to competent and insured attorneys to assist you.  Call 603-229-0002 or request a referral online.

Photo by Russ Walker – Flickr Creative Commons

New Parenting Plan Modification Law

On May 31, 2016, Governor Hassan signed HB1280 into law.  This bill expands the reasons and criteria for modifying a Parenting Plan within our Family Court system.

The bill, which goes into effect on January 1, 2017, adds three new categories for allowing modification of a parenting schedule.  Attorney Elizabeth LaRochelle, one of many competent and insured panel members of the NH Lawyer Referral Service (LRS), explains the new law in greater detail on her firm’s blog.

Call LRS today at 603-229-0002 for a referral to the right attorney for your specific legal matter, or request a referral online.

 

Parenting Plan Schedule Book