Friday, March 16, 2007

Lunchtime Conversation Prompts Judicial Inquiry, Pt. 3

Previous posts discussed the independent investigation initiated by Judge Marvin Isgur with regard to a credit counseling firm in the Southern District of Texas. Judge Isgur was concerned with regard to statements made at a lunchtime presentation which suggested that Money Management International refused to hire individuals who had filed bankruptcy as credit counselors.

At the hearing on March 1, 2007, MMI appeared and informed the court that "it does hire individuals notwithstanding any prior bankruptcy filing." The court was not completely satisfied and wanted to know whether they had hired former debtors in the past and whether they would in the future. As a result, the court continued the status conference to March 30, 2007.

Subsequent to the hearing, MMI submitted a new affidavit which represented that at least 24 of its current employees, including a manager and two supervisors, had filed for bankruptcy in the past. The affidavit also represented that "MMI intends to continue the practice of hiring qualified persons as credit counselors, including qualified persons who have been in bankruptcy." Thus, it would appear that the court's inquiry corrected a misunderstanding and most likely provided some job security for former bankrupts employed as credit counselors.

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