Crime

Payday Lenders

Here is a very amusing and outraged report on “payday lenders” from John Oliver, the British reporter who apprenticed with Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert. He’s accurate in presenting the problem: desperate and unthinking people can get money easily, but they will pay astronomical interest and the lenders are unscrupulous when it’s time to collect. […]

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Can you be penalized for failing to file a fraudulent return?

When a Tax Court case opens with “petitioner is a fugitive from justice, living abroad, perhaps in Khartoum, Sudan,” I wonder whether the taxpayer can win against the government. When I further read about a state sales-tax audit leading to a law enforcement sting netting nine people in custody, but that the “petitioner avoided arrest […]

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Get rid of traffic tickets in bankruptcy (it’s imperfect)

You file bankruptcy to get rid of debts you can’t afford to pay and to get the fresh financial start in life that you so desperately need. But remember … not all debts can be wiped out in your bankruptcy. The Bankruptcy Code lists several types of debts that can’t be discharged in bankruptcy. These […]

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Can an Arsonist Discharge Fire Fighting Costs in Bankruptcy? (Yes, Seriously)

Living in semi-arid California, I’ve gotten used to seeing large columns of smoke on hot, windy days.  Most recently, I could see the Springs Fire burning between Camarillo and Malibu from a distance; happily, it did little damage to structures, and no one died from it.  This one was not caused by arson, but it […]

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Lenny Dykstra sentenced for bankruptcy fraud

He had a great mansion in Lake Sherwood, near Thousand Oaks, but when his financial-services firm fell apart, so did his life.  Lenny Dykstra thought he could pocket the money from selling his memorabilia, but the bankruptcy court thought differently. Lesson here: it makes no sense to try to hide any assets from the bankruptcy […]

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