If you are considering bankruptcy in Florida, it is always a good idea to use the services of a bankruptcy lawyer. Although you’re not required to utilize a lawyer, doing so will help to ensure that you are following all procedures properly. A qualified attorney will be able to counsel you on any issues with which you may be dealing, including the proper manner by which you may protect your assets.
However, when attempting to protect assets often people engage in activities that are not permitted, such as fraudulent transfers or conversions (which taken together are known as “fraudulent conveyance”), and that can cause their bankruptcy to be denied by the court and may result in legal action being taken against them. The difficulty for many debtors is being able to determine if a transfer or conversion is actually fraudulent, as all such actions do not constitute fraud.
Fraudulent Transfers or Conversions
One usually engages in transfers or conversions of real or personal property in order to protect it. Under Florida law, which is defined and regulated by Chapter 726 of the Florida Statutes, a fraudulent transfer occurs when a debtor, with the intention of hindering, defrauding, or delaying a present or future creditor, transfers legal title to his real or personal property to a third party. In the case of fraudulent conversions, the action involves a debtor converting real or personal property that is non-exempt under bankruptcy and is subject to creditor attack. The property is converted to a different type of property that is exempt, and it is still owned by the debtor.
Creditors Have Recourse
In situations where fraudulent conveyance may have occurred, and if it is proven, the creditor may seek remedy for the situation. Courts in Florida are allowed to undue transfers and conversions that are deemed to be fraudulent, allowing the creditor the opportunity to collect what is owed to them. A creditor who alleges fraudulent transfer or conversion may sue the transferee as well as the debtor. That means that any individual directly involved in such an action, such as a family member or friend, may become a defendant in a lawsuit and might be found to be liable for his/her actions.
Utilizing A Professional
If you are in the State of Florida and involved in a bankruptcy filing or feel that you may become involved in one, and you own property about which you may be concerned, it is a good idea to use the services of an experienced and knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney. A qualified attorney will be able to advise you as to any questions involving the law and bankruptcy in Florida, including those related to fraudulent transfer or conversion.
If you have questions or concerns regarding fraudulent conveyance, it’s important to consult with someone who is experienced in the field of personal bankruptcy and the legal protection of assets. Please call bankruptcy attorney at the Law Office of Kelley & Fulton, P.L. at 561-491-1200. We will be able to offer you information regarding all aspects of bankruptcy and will ably guide you through the process. We have over 25 years of experience helping people just like you in the West Palm Beach area.