Question: I owe homeowner's association fees and now they're suing me. I didn't pay the fees because I was having enough trouble paying for my car, mortgage and credit cards. But I just got a lawsuit from the HOA and they want over $8,000. I didn't realize that we owed so much money but it makes sense because our financial issues started several years ago.
The HOA is filled with some pretty obnoxious people and the president of the HOA is out to get me because he thinks that I owe him money for a car repair that he did at his shop.
I really need to handle this lawsuit because my friend was sued by her HOA and they won the lawsuit and started garnishing her wages. Now she takes home far less money from work than what she used to before the garnishment.
I'm not saying I don't owe the money, because I'm sure that I do. But I just can't pay it now and I can't have a garnishment of my salary. Because if I get garnished I don't know what I'll do to pay my bills.
P.N. in Alpahretta, GA
Answer: Many people are suffering from homeowners' association debt. Georgia is a state that is very friendly to HOA's. The law is very much on the side of the HOA. Most judges don't want to hear the complaints of the homeowner.
But there is hope, because under bankruptcy law, HOA fees, dues and other obligations are dischargeable. So you can get rid of HOA debt by filing bankruptcy. This is important because HOA charges can escalate quickly and many HOAs are very aggressive. They won't hesitate to file a lawsuit and to initiate a wage garnishment.
HOA dues can be eliminated either through a chapter 7 or a chapter 13. But keep in mind that since bankruptcy is retroactive, the HOA debt that is eliminated are the fees that accrued up to the bankruptcy filing date. HOA debt that accrues after a filing will not be eliminated by bankruptcy.
As Alpharetta bankruptcy attorneys, we have helped many people eliminate HOA debt. If you are in need of serious debt help, call us now at (678) 712-8561.
Let attorneys Valerie Sherman and Bill Sherman and the talented team at the Sherman Law Group will help you navigate the entire bankruptcy process. We do all of the paperwork for you, complete all the forms and we do everything necessary with the court and the trustee's office.
We proudly serve the entire Atlanta metro area and North Georgia.