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Recent Blog Posts

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Can the Paycheck Protection Program Help My Florida Business During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

By Julia Kefalinos |

In response to the massive economic shutdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Congress established the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to “provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll.” Congress initially appropriated $349 billion to the PPP, which was quickly exhausted. On April 24, the President signed additional legislation… Read More »

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Should I File for Bankruptcy If I Lost My Job Due to COVID-19?

By Julia Kefalinos |

The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged our economy in ways not seen since the Great Depression. As of April 16, 2020, approximately 22 million people in the U.S. have filed for unemployment insurance. Even with additional benefits provided for under recent congressional legislation, thousands of Floridians now find themselves unable to pay rent and other… Read More »

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How Could an Accidental Omission from My Bankruptcy Petition Affect My Ability to Obtain a Discharge?

By Julia Kefalinos |

A Chapter 7 bankruptcy can give you a fresh start free of your current debts. But when seeking bankruptcy protection, it is critical that you are open and transparent with the court about your finances. If you attempt to hide income or assets, the judge can deny you a discharge of your debts–meaning you… Read More »

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How the Covid-19 Response May Affect Your Student Loan Obligations

By Julia Kefalinos |

Even under normal circumstances, many Florida residents struggle to repay their student loan debt. And as we all know, we are not living in normal circumstances. The rapid spread of the Covid-19 disease throughout the United States–and the accompanying economic shutdown designed to mitigate its impact–has already devastated the livelihoods of millions of workers… Read More »

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How Does Florida’s Homestead Exemption Protect Me in Bankruptcy?

By Julia Kefalinos |

The purpose of bankruptcy is two-fold. First, it enables you to discharge–i.e., eliminate your legal obligation to pay–many if not all of your outstanding debts. Second, it ensures you retain enough property to make a “fresh start.” On this second point, federal and state law allows you to keep or “exempt” certain property. If… Read More »

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When Can You Discharge an Unpaid Tax Bill in Bankruptcy?

By Julia Kefalinos |

A question we often get is, “Can I file for bankruptcy to wipe out an unpaid tax bill?” The answer to this question is complicated. While many individual debts can be easily discharged in bankruptcy, there are special rules applicable to taxes. To explain things as simply as possible, you may be able to… Read More »

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When Does “Creepy” Conduct Rise to the Level of “Stalking” Under Florida law?

By Julia Kefalinos |

Stalking is a first-degree misdemeanor offense under Florida law. The legal definition of stalking is to “willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly” follow, harass, or cyberstalk another person. If the stalking involves making a “credible threat” against the target, the criminal charge becomes a third-degree felony. Individual victims of stalking may also seek an injunction against… Read More »

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When Can “Newly Discovered Evidence” Affect a Criminal Conviction?

By Julia Kefalinos |

The purpose of a criminal trial is for a jury to weigh the available evidence and deliver a verdict. But there are situations where new evidence may come to light after the verdict is entered. When this happens, is it possible for the defendant to seek a new trial based on newly discovered evidence?… Read More »

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Can Police Officers Give Opinions About Your Statements in a Criminal Trial?

By Julia Kefalinos |

In any criminal trial, the jury is the “trier of fact.” This means it is up to the jury to listen to all of the testimony and decide if the prosecution has met its burden to prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. To help protect the jury’s role, there are a number… Read More »

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Federal Court Orders New Sentencing Hearing for “Polite” Bank Robber

By Julia Kefalinos |

When a person is convicted of a federal crime, the amount of prison time they face is determined in part by a complex set of sentencing guidelines. The guidelines are not mandatory, but they are commonly used by judges when sentencing defendants convicted of felonies or Class A misdemeanors under the United States Code…. Read More »

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