When someone is approved for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the debt relief agreement is supposed to take effect and relieve the filer of the agreed upon debts. A specific change that a bankruptcy filing should enact immediately is the end of creditor calls and harassment.

So why are some people who have successfully applied and been approved for bankruptcy still being hounded by Bank of America? The Wall Street Journal reports that bankruptcy judges in the country are shaking their heads regarding the actions of the bank, actions that are causing people who hoped that their debt struggles were over to struggle longer than they should have to.

One couple in particular was approved for chapter 7. They were having a hard time meeting their mortgage payments and supposedly had them forgiven as a result of their successful bankruptcy filing. However, their lender, Bank of America, apparently didn’t get the memo and has continued to hassle the couple about home payments.

The bank reserved the right to foreclose on the home in the bankruptcy process; however, going after the couple for payments when they had been relieved of that liability is not okay. A judge recently not only saw the bank’s actions as not okay, but he assigned a cost to the wrongdoing. If the bank doesn’t stop trying to get payments from the couple, it will be fined $10,000 a month for each month its harassment continues.

This couple’s bankruptcy hardship isn’t the only of its kind. Debt relief agreements, including bankruptcy, loan modifications, etc., can be complicated. The success of the legal options is crucial to the health and security of those who need the help, which is why those people should work with a bankruptcy lawyer who can stand by them every step of the way toward a less stressful future.

The Wall Street Journal, “Bankruptcy Judge Sends a Message to Bank of America,” Peg Brickley, Oct. 4, 2013