J. Thomas Black graduated from South Texas College of Law in Houston in 1982, and started his own firm in 1986. Mr. Black has always specialized in consumer and small business bankruptcy law, tax collection defense, debt negotiation and related matters.
Mr. Black's firm currently consists of Mr. Black, an associate attorney, three full time paralegals, and other support staff. Mr. Black was Board Certified in Consumer Bankruptcy Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in 1989, and he was re-certified in 1994, 1999, 2004, and 2009. Mr. Black served as President of the Houston Association of Debtor Attorneys from 1999 until 2002.
Mr. Black is licensed to practice in the U.S. District Courts for the Southern, Eastern, and Western Districts of Texas, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the U.S. Tax Court. He is a Fellow of the College of the State Bar of Texas, and a member of the Pro Bono College of the State Bar of Texas.
Mr. Black is a Fellow of the Houston Bar Foundation. Mr. Black is a member of the State Bar of Texas, the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys, the National Association of Consumer Advocates, and he currently serves as Secretary-Treasurer of the Houston Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys.
- Consumer Law
- Free Consultation
- Rates, Retainers and Additional Information
Most Bankruptcy Matters Handled on Fixed Fee Basis; Hourly Fees and/or Contingent Fees Typically Charged On Other Matters
- Spanish: Spoken
- Law Office of J. Thomas Black, P.C.
- - Current
- Consumer bankruptcy law practice. Mr. Black also represents consumers in adversary proceedings and civil actions against banks, mortgage servicers, and debt collectors in U.S. Bankruptcy Court and U.S. District Court for violations of bankruptcy automatic stay and discharge violations, and violations of state and federal consumer protection laws.
- South Texas College of Law
- J.D. / Law
- Indiana University - Indiana University-Bloomington
- B.A. / Liberal Arts
- Houston Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
- Secretary Treasurer
- - Current
- National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
- - Current
- The Pro Bono College of the State Bar of Texas
- Houston Volunteer Lawyer's Program
- Reasons for Debtors To File Chapter 13 vs. Chapter 7
- Houston Bar Association
- Pro Bono LegalLine Volunteer
- State Bar of Texas
- Currently licensed as Texas Attorney
- Military Heros Radio Show
- Veterans and Bankruptcy
- HVLP Monthly CLE Seminar
- The Nuts & Bolts of Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
- 2nd Annual Bankruptcy Paralegal Seminar
- The Intersection of Bankruptcy and the IRS
- HVLP Monthly CLE Seminar
- ABC's of Bankruptcy
- Accounting Firm Lunch and Learn
- Discharging IRS Taxes Through Bankruptcy
- AIDS Unit Volunteer Attorney Seminar
- NACBA 11th Annual Convention
- Attorney Fees In Chapter 13
- How To Deal With Texas Debt Collection Lawsuits
- Law Office of J. Thomas Black, P.C.
- What You Need To Stop Your Texas Foreclosure Now!
- Law Office of J. Thomas Black, P.C.
- Veterans and Bankruptcy, Military Heroes Radio Show, Houston TX
- KKHT 100.7 FM
- Tips for Chapter 13 Success, Consumer Bankruptcy Seminar, Galveston TX
- University of Texas
- Reasons to File Chapter 13 vs. Chapter 7, Consumer Pro Bono Under the Bankruptcy Code, Houston, TX
- Houston Volunteer Lawyer Program
- Preparing Bankruptcy Schedules to Keep Your Client Out of Jail, NACBA 22nd Annual Convention, New York City, NY
- National Assoc. of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
- Board Certified- Consumer Bankruptcy
- Texas Board Of Legal Specialization
- Houston Bankruptcy Lawyer
- Harris County jury slams Houston debt buyer Joseph Onwuteaka with $25 million judgment for violations of Texas consumer protection laws.
8 June 2017
- U.S. Supreme Court rules that it is not an FDCPA violation for debt buyers or creditors to file claims for time-barred debts in bankruptcy cases. Midland Funding v. Johnson, U.S. 2017.
23 May 2017
- If you need to file bankruptcy, waiting to file can be a bad idea for many reasons
27 April 2017
- Military reenlistment bonuses are not dischargeable in bankruptcy for five years after the ter of the contract or the term of service ends.
4 March 2017
- If you are common-law married in Texas, you can save a lot of money by paying for just one joint bankruptcy case
15 February 2017
- I.R.S. Increases user fees for filing Installment Agreements to pay them back
30 January 2017
- Thinking of transferring property to friend or relative before filing bankruptcy? You may get your friend or relative sued by a bankruptcy trustee, for up to 10 years after in some cases
13 December 2016
- Texas bankruptcy court rules that mortgage lenders must file notices of post-petition fees within 180 days of when legal obligation to pay the debt arises, not when the mortgage lender is invoiced. In re Raygoza (Bankr. S.D. Texas 2016).
29 November 2016
- Fifth Circuit decides that Texas contractor has affirmative defense to Construction Trust Fund Act (CTFA)
17 October 2016
We have many people from all over the Houston, Texas and surrounding areas come to our law office with student loan debt that is out of control. Student loan debt is crushing the dreams of many Americans. There are several repayment options with federal student loans including deferment and forebearance, rehabilitation and income-based or income-contingent repayment plans. You may not be aware that there are also public service and teacher forgiveness programs, and ways to discharge your federal student loans if you are disabled, and certain other reasons. Student loans are not generally dischargeable in bankruptcy, unless you can show "undue hardship." But it is possible to file chapter 13 bankruptcy, and stop the collection activities of the student loans lenders or debt collectors, for 3-5 years. For some people, this gives them the "breathing spell" that they need to get rid of their other debts, and then be ready to deal with the student loans when the plan is completed. Private student loans can be especially problematic, because they do not have all of the repayment options that federal loans have. If you have private student loans that are in default, or you will be defaulting soon, you may have an especial need for an attorney as they often file lawsuits to try to collect their debts. We represent people in such lawsuits, and we would be happy to review all of your options with you concerning your student loans at one of our offices. If you live in the Houston, Texas metropolitan area or surrounding counties, just call our main telephone number at 713-772-8037 or visit our website at http://jthomasblack.com.IRS Taking Your Paycheck or Bank Account? File Bankruptcy & Stop It & Possibly Cancel It
If you have I.R.S. problems and owe the I.R.S. a lot of money, filing bankruptcy may be an option for you to consider. As soon as a bankruptcy is filed, an "automatic stay" or federal court order goes into effect, that tells your creditors including the I.R.S. that they cannot continue to collect their debts, at least for the time being. If you owe income taxes that qualify, you may be able to discharge or cancel them completely in chapter 7 bankruptcy. If you owe income taxes or payroll taxes, you may be able to reorganize and pay them out over time, as long as 60 months, through a chapter 13 plan. If you come in to see us, we will also review your "non-bankruptcy" IRS options with you, including installment agreement, innocent spouse, and offer in compromise. Some people even qualify for "currently not collectible" status, where the IRS just "puts your file on a shelf" so to speak, possibly so long that the statute of limitations runs and the tax is no longer legally owed. Don't wait. People with problems with the Internal Revenue Service often procrastinate or put off dealing with it. Come in and see us; we don't bite. And more than likely, we will be able to give you a plan and show you the way to solve your IRS problems. It's up to you take the first step. Call us at 713-772-8037. If you live in the Houston, Texas area or Katy, Spring, Cypress, Sugar Land, Stafford, or Pearland, or the surrounding counties including Fort Bend, Montgomery County, Galveston, Brazoria, and Austin Counties, call our office today at 713-772-8037 and tell us that you need an appointment. There is no charge for your first consultation with one of our attorneys. Visit http://jthomasblack.com for more information. We are a debt relief agency and we help people file bankruptcy.Served with a credit card lawsuit in Houston? Filing Bankruptcy May Get Rid of It for Good
If you've been "served" with a lawsuit for debt, come see us right away to discuss your options. If filing bankruptcy is your choice, as soon as either chapter 7 or chapter 13 is filed, an "automatic stay" or federal court injunction goes into effect as soon as a bankruptcy is filed, preventing the lawsuit from going forward, at least without permission from the Bankruptcy Court. Don't wait, if you have been served with a lawsuit. Go see an attorney right away. If you delay, a "default judgment" may be entered against you. With a judgment, a creditor can seize your bank accounts and other non-exempt property. If you have other options, we will discuss them with you when you come in. Some people have valid defenses to lawsuits, so it may be worthwhile to fight them. Others want to and are able to settle with the plaintiffs. But if you don't have any other choice, bankruptcy may be the best option; it just depends on your circumstances. Even if you already have a judgment against you, it can likely still be stayed and the debt discharged in bankruptcy. If you live in the Houston, Texas area or the surrounding counties including Fort Bend, Montgomery County, Galveston, Brazoria, and Austin Counties, call our office today at 713-772-8037 and tell us that you need an appointment. There is no charge for your first consultation with one of our attorneys. Visit http://jthomasblack.com for more information.Is your car or truck up for repossession in Houston? Chapter 13 may allow you to stop it!
If your car or truck is about to be repossessed in Houston, Texas or surrounding counties by the finance company or by a title loan lender, it is not too late to stop it. If you qualify, filing chapter 13 bankruptcy causes an "automatic stay" to go into effect, which immediately stops all pending repossessions, foreclosures, and other collection actions against you and your property. Then we set up an affordable plan that combines all of your bills into one monthly payment (which is usually payroll-deducted). Even if your vehicle has already been repossessed, it is possible to have it returned, so long as it has not been sold. If you live in the Houston, Texas area or the surrounding counties, call our office today at 713-772-8037 and tell us that you need an urgent appointment. There is no charge for your first consultation with one of our attorneys. Visit http://jthomasblack.com for more information. We are a debt relief agency and we help people file bankruptcy.My Houston Texas home Is posted for foreclosure! Can I stop foreclosure by filing bankruptcy?
If your home is up for foreclosure by your mortgage company, your home equity lender, or if you are about to be foreclosed on for property taxes or homeowner association dues, don't delay. Filing chapter 13 bankruptcy in Houston Texas can help you stop the foreclosure, and catch up the delinquent payments, taxes, or HOA dues over up to a 5 year period of time, if you qualify. We are a debt relief agency and we help people file bankruptcy. Visit our website at http://jthomasblack.com to make an appointment and for free publications.Can Payday Loans Be Discharged If I File Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?
Payday loans are a big problem for many of our clients. Many people come into our Houston law office and have payday loans. For some, it is just out of control. If you cannot pay your payday loans, it is possible to discharge or cancel the loans in a bankruptcy case. For more information, visit our website at http://jthomasblack.com. We are a debt relief agency and we help people file bankruptcy.Can My Wages be garnished in Texas if I have a lawsuit or judgment against me?
Generally speaking, if you live in Texas, your wages cannot be garnished for credit card or most other unsecured debts, with certain exceptions. This video will give you a general understanding of that. But if you are in debt trouble, you should come see us in our Houston law office and discuss your alternatives. Once the money goes in the bank however, it is not safe and can be garnished. We are a debt relief agency and we help people file bankruptcy. Visit our website at http://jthomasblack.com.Welcome to our Houston Texas Bankruptcy Law Office!
Welcome to our Houston Texas Bankruptcy Law Office
- Q. Can i file chapter 7 again it has been over six years
- A: You can file again, but you would not be eligible for a discharge in a case filed now. Under Section 727(a)(8) of the Bankruptcy Code, you cannot receive a discharge in chapter 7 if the case was filed within 8 years of the filing of a prior case under chapter 7. However, under Section 1328(f)(1) of the Code, you are eligible to file a chapter 13 case and receive a discharge, so long as it has been 4 or more years after the filing of a chapter 7 case in which you received a discharge. You may be able to accomplish a similar result with a chapter 13 filing. Consult an experienced bankruptcy attorney in your area.
- Q. Joint bankruptcy with someone other than spouse?
- A: Under Sec. 302 of the Bankruptcy Code, joint bankruptcy cases can only be filed for spouses. Unfortunately, if the two of you have to file bankruptcy, you would have to file two individual cases.
- Q. When in the process of converting a variable home loan to a fixed rate do we have the legal right to know end investor
- A: Yes. The federal Truth In Lending Act (TILA) was amended in the recent past to provide that borrowers can request the name of the investor on their loan from their mortgage servicer, and the servicer must provide it. Otherwise, the borrower can recover any actual damages, statutory damages, costs and fees. For a good article about this subject go to http://www.creditslips.org/creditslips/2010/04/how-to-find-the-owner.html.
- Q. After filing chapter 13 we have a balance on hand. what is a balance on hand mean?
- A: I'm not 100% what you are referring to, but if you are referring to your chapter 13 trustee having a balance on hand, that is not unusual. Your chapter 13 trustee cannot make distributions to your creditors, unless and until the Bankruptcy Court approves the plan, or the Trustee is required by local rule to make "adequate protection" payments. If you complete your plan, and the trustee has additional funds on hand that are not necessary to fund the plan, that money will be refunded to you. That is one reason why it is very important for you to keep your correct address on file with your trustee's office.
- Q. How much does it cost to file for chapter 7 bankruptcy?
- A: There is a $306 filing fee currently charged by the U.S. District Clerk to file a Chapter 7 case. If you are very low income and have no assets, it's possible to ask the court to waive that amount or let you pay it in installments. There may also be a small fee for the required credit briefing and debtor education. Your attorney may also need to be reimbursed for the cost of a detailed credit report on you, to be sure that all your creditors and collection accounts are listed, to the greatest extent possible. As to attorney fees, it varies due to the complexity of your case, what lawyer you hire, whether you are in a small town or a big city, and other factors. My firm currently charges around $1500 plus costs for a simple consumer Chapter 7 case, and we offer payment plans. It's fine to check around with different attorneys as to what they charge, but be forewarned that it can be a mistake to "shop" for an attorney based only on price. To avoid potential problems, be prepared to pay a reasonable fee and hire an experienced lawyer. Ideally, hire one that is Board-Certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, as I have been in Consumer Bankruptcy Law since 1989.