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Massachusetts man accused of filing false bankruptcy forms

A Massachusetts man who formerly coached high school hockey and, more recently, worked as a financial advisor now faces serious financial problems of his own-and may not be able to keep the protection a federal bankruptcy court extended to him earlier this year.

The man now faces criminal allegations that he defrauded two family friends; he had offered to help them manage their finances but now is accused of using $1 million of their funds for his personal gain. Furthermore, the federal bankruptcy trustees, who help safeguard the integrity of the bankruptcy system, are now asking the court to revoke the discharge the man received after filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy in March.

The trustee accuses the man of omitting critical financial information from the bankruptcy forms that he filed with his Chapter 7 petition. Specifically, the man allegedly secreted over $600,000 in his employment income and other funds to two bank accounts that he did not mention in his paperwork.

The bankruptcy court will hear evidence regarding these accusations this coming February; if the court grants the trustee's request, several people who have sued this man in civil court will be free to continue their cases against him free from any interference from the bankruptcy court.

While this may seem to some of our readers to be an extreme case bordering on outright bankruptcy fraud, it still serves as a useful reminder that anyone struggling with debt must accurately and completely fill out their bankruptcy paperwork. If one wants the benefit of the fresh financial start that bankruptcy offers, he or she must list everything he or she owns and owes and must also truthfully and thoroughly describe his or her income, expenses and financial history.

Source: Seacoast Online, "Financial advisor accused of fraud may lose bankruptcy protection," Aaron Sanborn, Dec. 7, 2012

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