[COLUMN] Credit Card Debt Problems? How bankruptcy can help –

What is the difference between a divorce and an annulment? Many people think that these concepts are the same and interchangeable. There are many differences between the two concepts. Divorce ends a valid existing marriage. In a nullity, a determination is made on the validity of the marriage itself. When a marriage is called off, it has the same effect as if it had never existed. A nullity entails a nullity.

In California, any spouse can get a divorce for any reason. A common basis used is a catch-all phrase “irreconcilable differences”. However, anyone who wants to end a marriage can end the marriage and there is nothing the other spouse can do to stop this. However, in a nullity request, the court will not automatically grant you nullity. There must be a legal basis for requesting invalidity as indicated in the family code. Some of the basics are 1) the conclusion of a bigamous marriage 2) the incestuous marriage 3) the fraud in obtaining the consent of the other spouse to the marriage 4) the incurable physical incapacity 5) the weak mind among others . The applicant will have to prove one of these grounds in court in order to be able to obtain the nullity.

In a nullity, there is a limitation period. This means that you have to file your invalidity within a certain period depending on the basis of the invalidity request. Each reason has a different limitation period. For example, if you file the invalidity for fraud, you must file within 4 years of discovering the fraud. If you go over the statute of limitations, it can be used as a defense to dismiss your case. On the other hand, there is no statute of limitations in divorce matters. You can file for divorce at any time, no matter how long you’ve been separated from your spouse.

In the event of divorce, the husband and wife are presumed to be the parents of children born during the marriage. In the event of nullity, the marriage has no validity and will therefore affect the presumption of filiation of the children. The court will have to rule on the children’s parentage on a different basis before it can make custody, visitation and support orders.

The treatment of spousal support (alimony) is different between the two. In the event of divorce, the spouse who has less earning capacity and access to resources may request the granting of spousal support. This is not available in the event of nullity since the marriage is invalid and therefore there is no spouse.

The division of property is also different. In the event of divorce, the common goods are shared equally between the spouses. In a nullity, since there is no valid marriage, there is no community of created goods and the goods are not shared between the spouses. Likewise, neither party can receive survivor benefits and inheritance rights from the other party in the event of nullity.

Finally, there are different consequences in immigration matters between a divorce and a nullity in the case of an immigrant spouse. In the event of divorce, an immigrant spouse who obtains a greencard from a U.S. citizen spouse is more likely to keep their greencard and ultimately become a U.S. citizen. In the event of nullity, the immigrant spouse may lose their green card status when the marriage is declared invalid because it is the basis of the green card. This can jeopardize the immigration status of the legal permanent resident spouse.

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Please note that this article is not legal advice and is not intended as legal advice. The article is intended to provide general and non-specific legal information only. This article is not intended to cover all issues related to the topic being discussed. The specific facts that apply to your case may make the outcome different from what you would expect. This article creates an attorney-client relationship between you and the law firms of Kenneth U. Reyes, APLC This article is not a solicitation.

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Lawyer Kenneth Ursua Reyes is a licensed specialist in family law. He was president of the Philippine American Bar Association. He is a member of the Family Law Section and the Immigration Law Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association. He is a graduate of Southwestern University Law School in Los Angeles and California State University, San Bernardino School of Business Administration. He has extensive CPA experience before practicing law. LAW FIRM OF KENNETH REYES, APLC. is located at 3699 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 747, Los Angeles, CA, 90010. Tel. (213) 388-1611 or email kenneth@kenreyeslaw.com or visit our website at Kenreyeslaw.com.

(Advertising supplement) Do you have sleepless nights worrying about your credit card debt? Do you feel hopelessly trapped with no way out?

If you’re living up to your credit card debt and have no way to pay off what you’ve borrowed, a lot of things can be going through your mind right now. You may feel ashamed, helpless, confused, or even angry.

You may have heard of bankruptcy and how it can help you get a new financial start, but you think this option may be too drastic for you. Or maybe the mere thought of going to a lawyer to discuss the possibility of filing for bankruptcy is enough to set your back. I feel your pain.

Listen to me! You can relax and overcome your fear. I’m serious.

First of all, it’s not the end of the world. At one time or another, we all face financial difficulties in life, so you are not alone. But it’s important that you at least explore all of the available options instead of making a rash decision. In some cases, bankruptcy may be your only solution. In other cases, it may be the worst thing you can do.

Where applicable, bankruptcy is a legal remedy that allows you to either pay (clear) debts that you can no longer pay, or at least restructure (consolidate) other problematic debts. Sometimes all people need is time to catch up after falling behind on payments. For example, if you are at risk of losing your house or your car (How will you work if you lose your vehicle?), Bankruptcy can help you prevent the creditor from taking legal action.

The reason I write about credit cards in this week’s article is that this type of debt seems to be the most common. In many cases, people have simply charged more on their credit cards than they are able to pay off, which could have serious consequences.

Creditors can sue and get a judgment. They then enforce the judgment by placing a lien on your property or garnishing your wages. Many people feel embarrassed to be called to work by debt collectors and fear it will cause them to lose their jobs. Bill collectors are often rude, obnoxious and abusive and their only job is to make your life miserable so that you can shell out the money to pay them.

Filing for bankruptcy immediately puts an end to the harassment of creditors and for once you are able to breathe again and clear your mind. Being in debt is very stressful. It can destroy marriages, family and business relationships. Stress can affect your health and your peace of mind. People in debt often feel lonely, helpless and because they are embarrassed by their situation, they don’t even tell others about their problems or seek legal help until it is too late.

But again, the question remains: is this the right solution for you? I don’t know – until I know more about your situation. And only then can I give you my best and honest recommendation. If bankruptcy can be avoided, I will point out other alternatives that may be available.

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NOTE: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I am offering free PHONE consultations to anyone who needs help dealing with their debt issues.

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None of the information in this document is intended to provide legal advice for a specific situation. Atty. Ray Bulaon has successfully helped over 5,000 clients get out of debt. For a free legal assessment of your situation, please call RJB Law Offices at Toll Free 1-866-477-7772

(Advertising supplement)

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