Crushing Debt Podcast

The Crushing Debt Podcast is for people who want to eliminate the financial bullies in their lives. It is for listeners who want more money at the end of the month, rather than more month at the end of the money. The podcast provides answers around such topics as real estate litigation, partition, quiet title, chapter 7 liquidation, chapter 13 reorganization, and Chapter 11 business bankruptcies, short sales, loan modifications, creditor harassment and other related topics.
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Now displaying: 2020
Jul 16, 2020

You can use bank products to pay down debt and increase your credit score!

Do you want to learn:

  • What term length loan should you sign when buying a house or a car?
  • How much interest rate REALLY matters?
  • How to structure your finances during this global pandemic?
  • Budgeting when you make a ton of money in one month and not as much the next (variable income)?

This week’s Crushing Debt Podcast episode is my interview with Christine Peters of

Christine’s mission is to help people manage their personal finances and achieve their financial goals without the stress and frustration.

Christine uses goal setting, budgeting, monitoring and accountability to help her clients.

One thing that we discuss, that impressed me is that Christine paid off SIX FIGURES OF DEBT in THREE YEARS!

You can contact Christine at

If you are a title company or attorney, please contact our sponsor - Sam Cohen at Attorneys First Insurance for a free, non-salesey quote. or

I would appreciate if you comment on one thing that you learned, or what you enjoyed about this podcast episode! If you want to contact me directly - or 


Jul 9, 2020

For those who think Home Title Theft cannot happen, or will not happen to them, listen to this week's episode!

Jennie Restrepo, the Director of Implementation for Fraudshine State discusses the case of Linda Cleland, who was evicted from her free and clear childhood home in 2014.

Ms. Cleland was homeless for seven months and, after a three-year battle finally unwound the theft of her home and got back the title to her house.

The person who committed this crime served an eight-year prison sentence and then will serve fifteen years probation, but the hardship on Ms. Cleland was immeasurable.

Title insurance did not help her, the clerk of the court did not help her, and even the police were powerless to help Ms. Cleland.

Ultimately, the County prosecuting attorney was able to successfully record a document in the County public records to unwind all of the damage (including deeds and mortgage documents for many other people and properties, including Ms. Cleland).

Visit for your free title evaluation.  You can then sign up for Fraudshine State's monthly monitoring service, or their firewall protection. 

Fraudshine might have prevented the loss of Ms. Cleland's house, had it existed back in 2014.

If you think something has happened to the title to your house, contact my office for a free consultation or a connection to a local attorney who may be able to help you - or

If you are an attorney or title agency, please also visit our sponsor Sam Cohen at Attorneys First Insurance. or 

Jul 2, 2020

Is your home protected from being stolen?

Did you know that someone can forge documents, record them in the County public records, then evict you from your home, and that is NOT covered by your title insurance policy!

Your home owner's insurance policy won't protect you from your house being stolen!

The Clerk of Court will allow the criminals to record fraudulent documents (although unintentionally as the Clerks do not check the documents for fraud)!

Even the police won't protect you from the criminal(s) that want to steal your house!

How do you protect yourself and your family?

Listen to this week's episode of The Crushing Debt Podcast with our friend, Kevin Overstreet, of Insured Title Agency, Synergy Title,  Become a Better Agent, and Fraudshine State.

Kevin is a 22-year veteran of the title insurance industry, starting his career in the Midwest before moving to Florida 15 years ago.

Kevin is the founder of Fraudshine State, an initiative to rid Florida of the criminals that use title fraud to steal your home. Visit to get your free report, and from there you can sign up for monthly monitoring of all public records related to your home. You can also order Fraudshine's firewall protection.  Learn more at Fraudshine State! 

You can also email Kevin at

Also visit our sponsor, Sam Cohen at Attorneys First Insurance at or

If you find you have been the victim of title fraud or title theft, email me at or visit our website We can help victims of this crime to help them get their house back.

Jun 25, 2020

Are you tired of living paycheck to paycheck?

This episode of the Crushing Debt Podcast will show you how to pay off your home mortgage in less than 10 years!

You can buy real estate, a second home, or a vacation home with no background in real estate investing!

Learn how 30-year mortgages are akin to "financial prisons."

This week's guest is Robert Feol, who wrote the book "The Short Term Retirement Program: Break Out of Your Financial Prison." The tactics Robert writes about in his book show you how to accomplish anything you want financially through investment in real estate. This is not a book about flipping properties. It is a textbook on accumulating wealth.

You can reach Robert at or visit his websites: or

You can pick up the book here:

The book has picked up multiple accolades, including:

  • #1 in Personal Money Management (USA)
  • #1 in Real Estate Investments (USA)
  • #1 in Budgeting & Money Management (USA)
  • #1 in Personal Finance (USA)
  • #1 in Business & Investing (USA)
  • #1 in Real Estate (USA)
  • #2 in Investing (UK)
  • #1 in Private Wealth Management (Germany)
  • #4 in foreign language about economy (Germany)
  • #1 in investing (Germany)
  • #1 in Investing (France)
  • #1 in Budgeting & Money Management (France)
  • #1 in Budgeting & Money Management (Canada)
  • #1 in Investing (Canada)
  • #3 in Investments (Books) (Mexico)
  • #7 in Personal Money Management (Books) (Mexico)
  • #1 in Real Estate Investments (Books) (Mexico)
  • #1 in Real Estate Investments (AUS)
  • #2 in Personal Money Management (AUS)

You can also reach me with any legal questions related to real estate acquisition at or

If you are an attorney or title company, also visit our sponsor, Sam Cohen at Attorneys First Insurance for any malpractice insurance coverage questions: or

Jun 18, 2020

Do you have old jewelry laying around?

Maybe a ring from your ex that you want to put to good use?

Maybe a piece from your childhood that no longer fits?

Do you have debt that you want to eliminate?

This week’s episode is my interview with Julie O’Brien, a GIA Graduate Gemologist with Les Olson Jewelers. You can reach her at or

How can you use Julie to value jewelry for a bankruptcy, probate or divorce?

What types of jewelry will Jewelry value (gold, silver, diamonds,  gems, stones)?

Can Les Olson buy your high-end watches?

How can Julie help convert your jewelry to cash so you can pay expenses, pay creditors, or pay emergencies?

You don’t need to visit Julie in person. She can convert your jewelry to cash using a secure system that doesn’t require you to go into the store!

Please also visit our friend and sponsor Sam Cohen with Attorneys First Insurance - or - if you need malpractice coverage for your law firm or title company.

If you have questions about bankruptcy or want to make your creditors go away, please contact me at or If you want to value jewelry for probate or divorce purposes, please reach out. We can connect you to Julie, and to probate or divorce attorneys who can help!


Jun 11, 2020

In this week's episode of The Crushing Debt Podcast, we talk about professional liability insurance, malpractice insurance, errors & omissions insurance, and E&O insurance with our friend, show sponsor, and referral partner, Sam Cohen of Attorneys First Insurance Agency.

Sam and I talk about a variety of topics including:

  • The differences between professional liability, malpractice, errors & ommissions and E&O insurance;
  • Should a lawyer buy malpractice insurance;
  • Should an attorney in Florida forgo coverage;
  • What makes Attorneys First different than other insurance agents;
  • Whether having E&O makes the firm a target;
  • Why the cost of insurance increases each year;
  • Whether Board Certification increases or decreases insurance rates;
  • What is the FUND Assembly and Attorneys Title Fund; 
  • and other topics.

If you are an attorney or title company and you want an honest and competitive quote, please contact Sam at Attorneys First Insurance.

If you know someone who would make a great guest on the show, please have them contact me by email or through the Yesner Law website.

Jun 9, 2020

I have remained silent about the racial issues in our Country. The reason for my silence is that: (1) I didn't know what to say, and (2) I didn't know how to say it in a manner that gives respect to what our Country is going through right now.

On this Bonus Episode of the Crushing Debt Podcast, I talk with my friend and referral partner, Bridgette Domingos, owner and founder of Domingos Law, a criminal defense law firm, to better education myself about the racial issue confronting our country, our society today. I thank Bridgette for helping with this difficult but important conversation.

If you want to make a difference, you can do so by: (1) treating everyone with respect and love, (2) stopping hateful speech, (3) and educating yourself and your family.

Please tune in to Bridgette as well as other community leaders at the "Where Do We Go From Here" panel discussion, Tuesday, July 9, 2020, from 6 - 8 PM (Eastern).  You can attend at the Florida You Judge website.

Bridgette and I discuss a few uncomfortable topics like: 

  • The Purpose of the Protests
  • Why People are Frustrated
  • The Outpouring Internationally
  • Rioting and Looting
  • The Wave of Law Enforcement Resigning
  • Drew Brees, Colin Kaepernick and other sport stars, 
  • and other topics.

To reach Bridgette, you can email her, or visit her website.

Love each other, stay safe and wash your hands!

Jun 4, 2020

Last week, I spoke with Richard Ficca of Florida Coastal Insurance Agency about business interruption insurance.  This week, we get the perspective of my friend and referral partner, Jim Jenkins, on the same issue, from a legal perspective.

Jim is the founding attorney of Jenkins Law PL, a lawfirm that handles business interruption claims, first party insurance claims, and personal injury claims throughout the State of Florida.

In this week’s episode, we cover:

  • What is business interruption insurance?
  • How does it impact other types of insurance?
  • How COVID and other pandemics likely will be excluded from future policies.
  • Legal opinions and cases from different areas of the Country, and how those opinions help determine whether to sue, or wait to get additional precedent; and
  • Hurricane Claims (as a bonus, now that we’re into Hurricane Season).

Also listen to Episode 112, my interview with Jim about first party insurance claims generally.

You can email Jim here, or visit Jenkins Law on the internet.

Please visit our friend and sponsor Attorneys First Insurance and Sam Cohen, if you are an attorney or title company looking for malpractice insurance.

If you have suffered a loss due to business interruption, and you have questions about the viability and sustainability of your business, you can contact me too by email or on the Yesner Law Website.

Be safe, love each other, and wash your hands! 

May 28, 2020

In this week’s episode of The Crushing Debt Podcast, I interview my friend, referral partner, and property & casualty agent, Rich Ficca, owner of Florida Coastal Insurance Agency.

With many businesses feeling the sting of COVID-19 and the resulting loss in business, Rich and I discuss Business Interruption Insurance claims, specifically:

  • What is Business Interruption Insurance?
  • The impact of Business Interruption Insurance on Hurricane Claims and other types of insurance claims.
  • The impact of Business Interruption Insurance on landlord / tenant law.

You can contact Rich by email here, and you can visit his website here. You can also listen to Episode 69, where we discuss Hurricane preparedness here.

Please also visit our sponsor, Attorneys First Insurance, although Sam Cohen provides a different type of coverage (E&O Insurance for title companies and attorneys). Rich and Sam often refer clients to each other as they write different types of policies.

If you have questions about business interruption insurance, please: (a) subscribe to the podcast (for free) to automatically download next week’s episode (Part 2) where I interview attorney Jim Jenkins on this same topic, and (b) contact me by email, or visit my website, for additional information.

May 21, 2020

On this week’s episode of The Crushing Debt Podcast, we’re happy to have Brian Morris back on the show to talk about his new book - How to Wipe Your Dad’s Ass and Other Things his Doctor won’t tell you about Alzheimer’s.

Brian is NOT a doctor, nor is he a licensed caregiver for people suffering from dementia. Brian IS a son who watched and cared for his father who eventually did die from Alzheimer’s. Brian captures the end of his father’s life with raw, unfiltered reality and emotion. Brian also tells stories and gives practical advice to family members dealing with a loved one fighting this disease. I read this book and although I have no family members currently fighting dementia, I thought it was a fantastic book!

Brian and I discuss: (1) the financial impact of Alzheimer’s, (2) his purpose for writing the book, (3) the signs of dementia, (4) some “how to” and (5) other topics.

Brian was also a guest on Episode 57 (discussing AFLAC) and Episode 138 (the Profit Prophet).

You can find the book on Amazon here.

You can contact Brian here.

You can visit Brian’s website here.

Please also visit out sponsor, Attorneys First Insurance, if you are an attorney or title company seeking malpractice insurance.

If you have questions for me, or are caring for a senior with significant debt, please contact me here by email or at the Yesner Law website.

May 14, 2020

What can you do to protect your home from foreclosure if you’ve lost income or your job during the COVID-19 shutdown? As we re-emerge and re-open the economy in Phase 1, what should you do if you fell behind in your mortgage payments over the last few months?

A few weeks ago, I was interviewed on Tampa Bay Today with Shriner on Money Talk 1010 AM.

I thank Money Talk 1010AM and Tampa Bay Today with Shriner for allowing me to use that interview to turn into today’s podcast episode.

The main point to understand is that the forbearance does NOT save your home; it merely gives you some breathing room in your budget. You still need to catch up your mortgage payments when the forbearance is over, like loan modifications and repayment plans, and why a refinance after a forbearance is a bad idea.

Please remember to visit our sponsor, Attorneys First Insurance, if you are an attorney or title company and need a quote for malpractice insurance. If Sam Cohen doesn’t answer on the first ring, you are eligible for a substantial cash prize, or at least a sincere apology.

If you want to know how to use a forbearance correctly, to help you in a effort to save your home, please contact our office for a free consultation, or

May 7, 2020

In this week’s episode, I take some time to answer some great listener questions. Thank you all for keeping the questions coming in!  I hope all of you are staying safe during the pandemic. Here in Tampa, FL (and in many other areas) starts Phase 1 to “reopen” the Country.  We hope that everyone continues to stay safe and wash your hands!

Today, we cover:

  • Are payments to my chapter 13 trustee refundable if I dismiss my case?
  • I received notice from my homeowner or condominium association to pay rent. Do I follow that notice or pay the landlord?
  • Is it possible to sell my house while I have a lawsuit filed against me?
  • Can a prospective employer turn me down for having a low credit score.

This week’s episode, also references Episode 72 and Episode 74 with Bryan Levine.

Please also visit our sponsor, Sam Cohen, with Attorneys First Insurance, if you are an attorney or title company looking for an honest price on malpractice insurance.

Please continue to keep these great questions coming in, for us to answer on future episodes. Thank you for being a listener and please connect with me by email at, if there’s anything I can do to help as we hopefully emerge from this worldwide pandemic.

Apr 30, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic caused Congress to pass the Coronavirus Aid, Relief & Economic Security Act - the CARES Act. While most people talk about the SBA Lending, Payroll Protection Plan (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL), many people don't know or understand the rest of the Act and its impact on your ability to make and save money.

In this week's episode of The Crushing Debt Podcast, we talk about:

  • Stimulus Money from the US Treasury (IRS) and how it is treated in bankruptcy court;
  • Forbearance Plans;
  • Student Loan provisions in the CARES Act;
  • Other bankruptcy law changes in the CARES Act;
  • FL Governor DeSantis's Executive Order 20-94 (tolling foreclosures and evictions for 45 days); and
  • Small Business Reorganization Act (SBRA), which was not a part of COVID-19 or CARES Act, but was signed into law and implemented just before the pandemic spread.

If you have questions about how you can save money during the Coronavirus Pandemic, please contact my office or

Please also visit our sponsor, Attorneys First Insurance and talk to Sam Cohen about E&O Insurance for your law firm or title company.

Apr 23, 2020

We're happy to have Sarry Ibrahim on today's episode of The Crushing Debt Podcast to talk about how to Bank on Yourself for Asset Protection.

You may recall Sarry's associate, Mark Willis on Episode 191, who first introduced us to the Bank on Yourself concept.  Sarry takes it a step further to discuss asset protection!

Sarry and I discuss:

  1. What is the Bank on Yourself policy?
  2. How can Bank on Yourself be used as an asset protection plan?
  3. Why is Bank on Yourself the best method for asset protection (six reasons)?

If you want to contact Sarry, you can find him at, where he offers a free 15-minute consultation.

Please visit our sponsor, Sam Cohen at Attorneys First Insurance if you are an attorney or title company in need of malpractice insurance.

If you enjoy the content, please share with your network. If there's something I can do better, please let me know! or


Apr 16, 2020

Bill Reiman had me on his podcast, The Real Build. We had such a great time and talked about so much great information, that I had to return the favor and have him on The Crushing Debt Podcast.

Bill is a Real Estate Broker and Custom Home Builder in the Marco Island - Naples area of Florida. RK Reiman Construction started in 1986 with Bill’s father and the company now includes his brother and sister.

We talk about working with family and how Bill got started in the business, how to select the right contractor, construction contracts and builder contracts, how to keep client expectations reasonable, and whether certain builder contracts can be negotiated.

You can find Bill at:

Normally, I’d ask you send me any questions, but this week, I’d like to know how you’re holding up during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Please send me a message, email or comment and let me know how you’re doing.  If you need to talk, or need anything, please let me know -

Please also visit our sponsor - Attorneys First Insurance - if you are an attorney or title agency that wants a quote on malpractice insurance (also called Errors & Ommissions or E&O).

Apr 15, 2020

On this special Bonus episode of The Crushing Debt Podcast, we talk about Governor DeSantis's Executive Order, No. 20-94 regarding a stay on mortgage foreclosures and evictions in Florida based on COVID-19.

You can find the Executive Order here.

We also interview our friend, Bill Mantooth the Area Manager for Loan Depot, the largest purchase mortgage lender in the Country, about mortgage forbearances, refinances and modifications. If used correctly, a forbearance can give you some additional room in your budget over the next 3 - 12 months.  Used improperly, a forbearance may lead to foreclosure.  Learn the differences in this bonus episode.

You can contact Bill at

If you have questions for me,, or We would appreciate if you would share this content with someone you know who has questions about foreclosure, forbearance, evictions, refinances, and modifications.

Apr 9, 2020

In this week’s episode of The Crushing Debt Podcast, we interview attorney Jeff Love of Gibbs Giden law firm.

Jeff’s practice focuses on real estate transactions, multi-family investing and syndications. In this week’s episode, Jeff and I talk about:

  • What is the real estate market going to do?
  • Are we facing another Great Recession, or merely a market correction?
  • What is the current local market in Jeff’s area (California)?
  • What is the impact of COVID-19 on the residential market?
  • What is the impact of the Corona Virus on the commercial market?
  • What is Jeff’s Real Estate Investment Strategy?

You can reach Jeff at or his firm’s website

If you are an attorney and you want to review your Errors & Omission (or E&O, or Malpractice) policy, please visit our sponsor, Attorneys First Insurance at

We would appreciate a positive review if you enjoy the show content. You can leave a review wherever you listen to the show. Or, to contact me directly, or

Apr 2, 2020

This week’s episode of The Crushing Debt Podcast is for our real estate investor listeners. I interview bankruptcy lawyer, asset protection lawyer, and CPA Mark Pierce about asset protection.

Mark is a Wyoming attorney who uses Wyoming LLC laws, and asset protection trusts to help his clients avoid liability.  Specifically, we talk about:

  • Advantages and disadvantages to form your LLC in your home state or Wyoming;
  • Wyoming Asset Protection Trust v. Land Trust;
  • Lending and Insurance aspects of the Wyoming Asset Protection Trust;
  • Series LLC; and more.

Please contact Mark at or

Please also contact our sponsor, Attorneys First Insurance, if you are an attorney or title company interested in malpractice insurance.

If you have investment questions for me, you can reach me at or 

Mar 26, 2020

In this week's episode of the Crushing Debt Podcast, I interview bankruptcy lawyer, consumer advocate, and founder of Collateral Bankruptcy Services, Ian Leavengood.

Collateral Bankruptcy Services (CBS) helps borrowers return their secured vehicles to the creditor.  In today's episode, we talk about:

  • What CBS is and how it started.
  • Who CBS helps, and when.
  • What a 521 letter is and why its relevant.
  • When does CBS help and when is it appropriate to contact them.
  • How much their services cost the consumer (spoiler - $0).
  • What CBS pays to people that refer clients to them (spoiler - again $0).
  • What happens after CBS takes possession of a vehicle.
  • What is a zombie car.
  • Changes and trends since CBS has been assisting borrowers in collection and repossession of their vehicles.

If you want to return your car, truck, RV, boat, motorcycle, jetski, 4-wheeler, etc., you can reach Ian at or their office manager Ashley at

Please also visit our sponsor Attorneys' First Insurance at

If you want to revisit our episode on Zombie Debt, click here.

In these uncertain economic times, if you know someone who wants to return their vehicle to the creditor, but their creditor is being unresponsive, please share this episode with them! Contact me at or  

Mar 19, 2020

Professional and collegiate sports have been cancelled, foreign travel is suspended, schools are closed, conferences are cancelled, the markets are in a state of shock.  While we all self-quarantine, force-quarantine, and practice "social distancing" I thought I would string together some interviews to discuss the impact of COVID-19, or the Coronavirus, on the economy.  Thank you all who provided your input, or a sound-bite, and in today's episode of the Crushing Debt Podcast, you'll hear from:

What is the impact of the economy on you? Please comment or send me an email at, and if you or your business are in trouble because of the slow-down, we can help you.

Please also visit our sponsor if you are an attorney and want to review your malpractice (or E&O or Errors & Ommissions Insurance) at

Mar 12, 2020

In this week’s episode of the Crushing Debt Podcast, I discuss bankruptcy code sections 362(b)(22) and 362(l).

Why are these sections important? They describe the landlord’s rights when a tenant files bankruptcy. The landlord’s next step after the tenant files eviction is going to be determined by: (a) whether the landlord has a judgment for possession, and (b) what the tenant represents to the Court in the bankruptcy schedules.

Plus, we need to know whether the debtor filed Chapter 7, Liquidation, or Chapter 13, Reorganization.

Plus, should the landlord file a Proof of Claim (and what is that)? Should the landlord seek a “Comfort Order” (and what is that)?

I discuss all of that in this week’s episode of the show.

Please remember to give our sponsor a look - Attorneys First Insurance at

If you have questions for me, please email me at or And it would be a great help to me if you would share this week’s show with a landlord that you know.

Mar 10, 2020

Fresh off the heals of Podfest 2020, and Episode 208 (Top 10 things to Generate Referrals from a Conference), one suggestion to grow the show was to create bonus episodes. I'm not going to do these very often, probably when I have a non-legal topic (like today).

To refresh:

  1. Goals- had two of them and accomplished both. 
  2. Tools - my shirts, stickers, books, and business cards.
  3. Never Eat Alone - I never did.
  4. Party After the Party - made some great connections outside of the conference sessions.
  5. Conference App - definitely used and engaged with this tool to increase my visibility at the conference.
  6. Tag Team Networking - thank you to my partner, Madison Thayer
  7. Visit Vendors - did this, got some cool SWAG
  8. Hobbies - created and ran in the Podfest Meetup Run Club 5k
  9. Schedule a Meeting from the Meeting - I have a ton of podcast interviews coming up in the future.
  10. Break Out of Your Comfort Zone - Podfest Jam Bank was AMAZING!
  11. Bonus - I spoke for the third year in a row, with ideas for Podfest 2021.

Bonus Content links: 

Thank all.  Please let me know if you want more bonus content. If you enjoy the episode, I would appreciate if you would ask one other person to listen.

Mar 5, 2020

Welcome to the last show of year four of content for The Crushing Debt Podcast! Like last year’s episode at around this same time, as you listen to this show (if you listen on the day of release) I’ll be on my way to Orlando for Podfest Multimedia Expo 2020. This will be my fourth year attending and my third year speaking!

In this episode, I provide my top ten (plus one bonus) tips on how to generate referrals when you attend a trade show or conference, including:

  1. Goals - set, strategize and share
  2. Bring Your Networking Tools
  3. Never Eat Alone
  4. Party After the Party
  5. Conference App
  6. Network with Friends (Tag-Team Networking)
  7. Visit Vendors
  8. Incorporate Hobbies
  9. Schedule a Meeting from a Meeting
  10. Break Out of Your Comfort Zone

There is a bonus strategy in there, but you’ll have to listen to hear it.

What else do you do to generate referrals from a conference or tradeshow? Please share your ideas. And speaking of sharing, if you found this content useful, please share it with your friends and encourage them to subscribe to the show.

Thank you to our sponsor - Attorneys First Insurance. If you are an attorney or title company, please visit them at

Please connect with me on social media, or send me an email to or At the website and blog you can read the blog I wrote about today’s episode  content. Next week starts Year 5 of content!

Feb 27, 2020

In this week’s episode of the Crushing Debt Podcast, I cover three different topics:

1. Beneficial amendments to Florida’s Documentary Stamp Tax statutes, eliminating this particular tax for transfers of property between spouses.

2. Partition lawsuits and why it is never a good idea to gift real estate to your significant other, and expect to be repaid when for household expenses when the relationship ends.

3. The difference between in personam jurisdiction (personal) and in rem jurisdiction (property), and how that relates to the bank’s ability to get a deficiency judgment in a mortgage foreclosure lawsuit.

Please remember to visit our new sponsor - Attorneys First Insurance at

I want to do another listener-question show.  Please send me any legal questions you want me to answer in an upcoming episode(s). If I don’t know the answer, I can find an attorney in my network who will. or

Feb 20, 2020

Student Loans are not dischargeable in bankruptcy, right? Maybe they are!

This week’s Crushing Debt Podcast Episode is about the case Rosenberg v. NY State Higher Education Services Corp. For those of you who want the case cite, it is pending in the Bankruptcy Court in the United States District Court, Southern District of New York.  Case No. 18-35379, Adversary Proceeding 18-09023.

The majority of states (including Florida) use a standard for dischargeability of student loans spelled out in the Brunner case, (Brunner v. N.Y. State Higher Educ. Servs. Corp.) which interpreted Section 523(a)(8) of the Bankruptcy Code.  To discharge a student loan, the borrower must prove that paying that loan creates an “undue hardship.”  The Brunner case interpreted “undue hardship” to require that the borrower prove:

  1. That the debtor cannot maintain, based on current income and expenses, a “minimal” standard of living for herself and her dependents if forced to repay the loans;
  2. That additional circumstances exist indicating that this state of affairs is likely to persist for a significant portion of the repayment period of the student loans; and
  3. That the debtor has made good faith efforts to repay the loans.

What makes the Rosenberg case so interesting, and good for student loan borrowers, is that the Court refuses to consider the cases that restricted the Brunner decision, making student loans difficult to discharge, and rules that the Debtor’s student loans are dischargeable in bankruptcy court!

The debtor, Mr. Rosenberg, borrowed student loans during his undergraduate time at the University of Arizona between 1993 and 1996, and obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in History. After serving five years in the Navy, he attended Cardozo Law School at Yeshiva University, and borrowed again between 2001 and 2004. After graduating from law school, Mr. Rosenberg consolidated his student loan debt in the principal amount of $116,464.75. By the time he filed bankruptcy, in 2018, Mr. Rosenberg owed over $220,000!

The decision is on appeal and, regardless of how it is decided, the case would not be binding authority other than in the State of New York, but this case certainly has grabbed the attention of Judges and lawyers all over the Country.

Stay tuned to the show to hear future developments in student loan dischargeability.

Please also visit our NEW sponsor, Attorneys First Insurance, if you are an attorney or title company looking for Errors & Omissions Insurance (called E&O Insurance or Malpractice Insurance).  You can contact them at

If you have any questions or comments for me, you can reach me at or If you enjoy the content, or know someone struggling with student loan debt, please share this episode! 

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