5 Best Ways To Get Out Of Your Bankruptcy Rut

If you have made the decision to file for Bankruptcy, you can start making an effort to repair your credit and get back on track.

The financial decisions you make after you file will impact how fast your credit can improve.

  1. Check your credit. Within a few months of your finalization of bankruptcy, check to make sure your credit reports have discharged your debts and closed accounts are properly reported. You can request one free report per year from each of the three major credit-reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion).
  2. Start a budget. You need to get your spending on track and under control. Check out our article on setting up a budget. If money is tight you may want to get an extra part time job and use that paycheck to jump start an emergency savings fund for any unexpected financial hardships. Another smart move is an emergency savings fund to help you weather unexpected financial hardship. You can set up Automatic Transfers from your checking account to a savings account. If money is tight, take a part-time job and use that paycheck to jumpstart your emergency savings fund.
  3. Pay bills on time. Bill paying habits make a huge impact on your credit score. Making on time bill payments will improve your credit score over time. Meeting payment dates is a huge step in recovering from bankruptcy.
  4. Acquire new credit but do it wisely. There are different products and services you can take advantage of to rebuild your credit. If you receive a secured credit card make sure they send reports of your payment history to the credit bureaus. Use your credit card wisely in order to build up credit only on items you can afford to show you are in control of your spending.
  5. Apply for a loan. If you want to rebuild your credit score, two years after your bankruptcy you will be eligible for an FHA loan assuming you meet qualification rules. Some lenders can even qualify you for a car loan sooner than that however it will probably be at a high interest rate.

While the formal record of a bankruptcy remains on your credit report for 7 to 10 years, its impact recedes over time. Your bankruptcy is a reflection of the past. The future is completely within your control, and how you handle your finances going forward will tell your creditors whether you in fact are a good “risk” to do business with. By following these steps to recover from bankruptcy, you improve your chances of increasing your credit score over time, and having a better financial future.

Do you have questions about filing for bankruptcy?  Please call us, The Law Offices of Page, Lobo, Costales & Preston, at (951) 461-2500.

What You Need To Know When Starting A C Corporation

One of the most common types of corporations is a C Corp.

A C Corp creates a separate legal structure that helps shield business owners’ personal assets from judgments against the company.

 

C Corporations have specific structures that include shareholders, directors and officers. There are many advantages to forming a C Corp:

  • A business owner protects his or her personal assets from the business.
  • Your business will be able to exist even if the owner leaves the company.
  • A C Corp has no limit on the number of shareholders.
  • You have unlimited growth potential through the sale of stock.
  • You get to take advantage of certain tax advantages such as tax deductible business expenses.

However, a C Corp’s profits are taxed when they are earned and taxed again when distributed as shareholders’ dividends – also known as “double taxation”. Shareholders in a C Corp cannot deduct corporate losses, which is possible to do with an S Corp.

If you are interested in forming a C Corporation for your business, call The Law Offices of Page, Lobo, Costales and Preston. We have helped many businesses form C Corporations and S Corporations and can help you too!

Facing Bankruptcy? Don’t Do It Alone!

Hiring a bankruptcy lawyer is one of the best moves you can make if you are filing for bankruptcy.

A bankruptcy lawyer knows the ins and outs of the bankruptcy process, have done plenty of research on the topic, and have dealt with the court system for years.

 

Give Jonathon Preston from the Law Offices of Page, Lobo, Costales and Preston a call.

When looking for a bankruptcy lawyer, it is important to keep the following in mind:

  • Make sure you hire an expert – It is important to find a lawyer who specializes in bankruptcy. You should find out what percentage of a lawyer’s practice is comprised of bankruptcy and how many cases he has filed. It is best to avoid a “jack of all trades” type of lawyer.
  • You’ll get what you pay for – Of course you are already tight on money if you are filing for bankruptcy however it is important to keep the saying in mind: “You get what you pay for”. Don’t go with the least expensive lawyer because you may end up having to pay more money in the long run.
  • Make sure you will get detailed attention – Many law firms will run their clients through a bankruptcy mill resulting in lousy legal work, unhappy clients and wary judges and trustees. In order to spot a mill, check with your local bar association for recommendations on attorneys who specialize in bankruptcy. Most mills will not be on top of the networking which is a normal characteristic of a local bar association.
  • Last but not least, make sure you have a comfortable relationship with your lawyer – Picking a lawyer you are comfortable with is most important. If you don’t have a good feel about the attorney, find another one. Filing bankruptcy is an emotional roller coaster and you want to feel right about what your lawyer is doing for you.

Looking for a lawyer? Call The Law Offices of Page, Lobo, Costales and Preston.

How To Set Up A New Small Business

Setting up your own business?

Congratulations! Owning your own business is exciting and rewarding. Page, Lobo, Costales and Preston APC would like to share some tips for starting up your own business.

 

Page, Lobo, Costales and Preston APC helps small businesses get setup legally and would like to share some questions and answers for all you entrepreneurs out there. If you are setting up a new business, call The Law Offices of Page, Lobo, Costales and Preston.

Q: What type of business entity should I setup my business as?
A: You can begin as a “sole proprietor” to start doing business. It is easy and inexpensive to start as a sole proprietor however there is no legal protection for your personal assets. This means you have no limit to your personal liability for business failures or mistakes. If you want to limit your liability, set your business up as a corporation instead.

Q: Do I need a Federal Tax ID number?
A: If your business is a corporation, an LLC or has employees you need a Federal Tax Identification Number. Even if you are a sole proprietor you might want to get an EIN. If you do not have one as a sole proprietor, you can use your social security number however an EIN is more professional and less risky than giving out your SSN.

Q: What is a resale license?
A: A resale license will enable your company to purchase goods or materials for manufacture or resale without paying sales tax.

Q: Do I need to file a fictitious business name?
A: If you use any name other than your own, you will need to file a “doing business as” name. This will enable the public to know who is actually operating the company.
Have questions about setting up your business? Call us to get answers: 951-461-2500.

 

How To Be Water Wise This Summer

Save money on your water bill this summer.

Usually during the summer we like to enjoy the warm weather but it is important to be mindful of how much water we are using.

water saving

Check out our helpful water saving tips we can all use around the house:

Check for any leaks – Small leaks from a faucet can waste more water (and money) than you think! Also a leaky toilet can waste a lot of water without you knowing. Most parts are inexpensive to fix and easy to install.

Use your water meter – You can check for leaks by reading the meter before and after a two hour period when no water is being used. If it doesn’t read exactly the same there is a leak.

Install water saving appliances – Low flow shower heads and low flow faucet aerators are easy to install and will save you a lot of money. Limit your long hot shower (which uses five to ten gallons ever minute!) and use a low flow showerhead as well.

Turn off water while brushing your teeth – Most of us run the water while we brush are teeth but there is no need. Wet your toothbrush and fill a glass for mouth rinsing.

Wait to use your clothes washer and dishwasher until you have a full load – This will help with optimum water conservation. Most dishwashers don’t need to be pre-rinsed, which saves on water usage.

Don’t let your kitchen sink run – Fill one side of the basin with soapy water and the other with rinse water. This will avoid running the water while rinsing your dishes.

Store drinking water in the fridge – Don’t run the tap water letting it cool off. Store your drinking water in the fridge so it is nice and cool and ready to drink. You can also get a water filter for your sink or most refrigerators have a water dispenser in them with ice cold water.

Surviving College With Money To Spare

College tips for spending money wisely.

College is a fun time for any student but students should be aware of some money saving and spending tips. Check out The Law Offices Of Page, Lobo, Costales & Preston’s college money tips:

  • Setup your online banking and automate your finances. If you have bills, set them up to automatically be paid through your online banking. It isn’t a bad idea to also automatically have a little go into a savings account each month as well.
  • Open a credit card BUT only one with a small limit. We know this can be dangerous but you need to only do this if you are going to pay off the balance each month and set the limit as low as possible. Credit cards are a great way to build your credit rating.
  • Apply for scholarships – it’s free money so why not! If you are already in college, don’t worry you can still apply for a scholarship. You may be surprised at how much you can get.
  • Work while you are in college or start a side business. There are most likely plenty of job openings on campus or you can start your own business like a landscaping service or tutoring business.
  • Limit your entertainment money. Of course you will go out in college but pick your nights wisely so they stay within your budget. Or stay in and enjoy a homemade meal and drinks with your buddies.
  • Use local transportation to get around instead of a car. Most college towns offer great public transportation. Not having a car will cut down on gas bills, parking fees and regular upkeep costs.

What To Look For In A Bankruptcy Lawyer

Rule Number One: Don’t go into bankruptcy alone!

Hiring a bankruptcy lawyer is one of the best moves you can make if you are filing for bankruptcy. A bankruptcy lawyer knows the ins and outs of the bankruptcy process, have done plenty of research on the topic, and have dealt with the court system for years.

 

Give Jonathon Preston from the Law Offices of Page, Lobo, Costales and Preston a call.

When looking for a bankruptcy lawyer, it is important to keep the following in mind:

Make sure you hire an expert – It is important to find a lawyer who specializes in bankruptcy. You should find out what percentage of a lawyer’s practice is comprised of bankruptcy and how many cases he has filed. It is best to avoid a “jack of all trades” type of lawyer.

You’ll get what you pay for – Of course you are already tight on money if you are filing for bankruptcy however it is important to keep the saying in mind: “You get what you pay for”. Don’t go with the least expensive lawyer because you may end up having to pay more money in the long run.

Make sure you will get detailed attention – Many law firms will run their clients through a bankruptcy mill resulting in lousy legal work, unhappy clients and wary judges and trustees. In order to spot a mill, check with your local bar association for recommendations on attorneys who specialize in bankruptcy. Most mills will not be on top of the networking which is a normal characteristic of a local bar association.

Last but not least, make sure you have a comfortable relationship with your lawyer – Picking a lawyer you are comfortable with is most important. If you don’t have a good feel about the attorney, find another one. Filing bankruptcy is an emotional roller coaster and you want to feel right about what your lawyer is doing for you.

Looking for a lawyer? Call The Law Offices of Page, Lobo, Costales and Preston.