Nuclea Files For Bankruptcy


Nuclea Biotechnologies, which moved out of its Pittsfield offices earlier this year, has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, leaving a significant list of Berkshire creditors in its wake.

The local debtors include the Pittsfield Economic Development Authority, the city of Pittsfield, Berkshire Medical Center, the former North Adams Regional Hospital’s laboratory, the Berkshire Gas Co., the owner of Nuclea’s former facility on Elm Street, several private businesses and local residents, and three Berkshire County law firms, according to papers filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware.

Nuclea’s liabilities could be as high as $10 million, according to the documents.

A hearing in the case is scheduled for Nov. 9.

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By Tony Dobrowolski of The Berkshire Eagle


9 Things Wealthy People Do Every Day


Money can’t buy everything, but some things can buy money — which the rich know all too well. In fact, many wealthy people have a set of habits and behaviors that they perform every day to stay focused, energized and motivated so they can continue to grow their fortunes.

So if you want to become rich like some of most successful people in the world, copy their habits. Here’s what the wealthiest people do on a daily basis:

  1. They Keep Their Cool
  2. They Set and Stick to Goals
  3. They Maintain a Daily To-Do List
  4. They Don’t Watch TV
  5. They Network
  6. They Educate Themselves
  7. They Invest
  8. They Block Their Time
  9. They Know When to Call It a Day

To read the full article, go to

Top 10 Debt Collection Rights for Consumers


Feeling strapped for cash and falling behind on monthly bills is not a fun experience. Debt issues can be hard to manage. And a collection call from a persistent creditor can makes a challenging financial situation all the more stressful.

The good news? You’ve got rights, and lots of them — thanks to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. This federal law sets down a specific set of rules that third-party debt collectors must follow when contacting you about a debt. Debts covered under this law include auto loans, medical bills and credit card bills.

Before you do anything else, check your credit. Collection accounts can have a significant impact on your credit scores so it is important to know whether they are being reported, and how they are impacting your scores.

Here are 10 important rules that a debt collector must follow when contacting you about an unpaid bill.

  1. No Early Morning or Late Night Calls – A debt collector may not call you before 8am or after 9pm (in your time zone) unless you ask them to call you at a different time. Whatever debt you may owe, you still have the right to a quiet morning and a quiet evening.
  1. No Calls at Work, Once You Request It – Debt collectors may not contact you at work if they know your employer disapproves of such calls. So make it clear to a debt collector straight away that calls at work are unacceptable.
  1. No Repeated or Continuous Calls – Debt collectors may not harass you by calling numerous times a day about an unpaid bill.
  1. No Verbal Abuse – A debt collector may not use threatening or profane language when contacting you about a debt. A debt collector may not falsely imply that you have committed a crime by failing to pay a bill.
  1. No Informing Friends, Neighbors, Co-Workers, or Family Members About a Debt – A debt collector may contact people that know you, but only to find out your address, your phone number, and where you work. In most cases, a debt collector may not tell anyone other than you or your attorney that you owe money.
  1. No Collecting on a Debt Larger Than the Consumer Actually Owes – A debt collector may not demand more money from you than you actually owe.
  1. No Dire Threats – A debt collector may not threaten to have you arrested if you do not pay your debt. Debt collectors may not threaten to sue you, unless they actually intend to file a lawsuit.
  1. A Debt Collector Must Send Written Notice of a Debt – Within five days of contacting you, a debt collector must send you a written notice telling you the amount of money you owe and the name of the creditor. This notice also must explain what actions to take if you believe you do not owe the money.
  1. A Debt Collector Must Honor a Written Request for No Further Contact – A debt collector must cease contact with you if you send a letter requesting that the debt collector do so. If you believe you do not owe the money, you may state this in your letter. Be aware that a legitimate debt will not go away simply because the collection calls stop. You could still be sued by the debt collector or your original creditor for the amount that you owe.
  1. The Debt Collector Must Verify All Disputed Debts – Debt collectors must verify any debt that you dispute in writing prior to renewing collection calls. Once a debt collector sends you verification of the debt, collections activities may resume.

These are some of the most important consumer rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Simply informing a debt collector that you are aware of these rights may curb any errant collection behavior.

If a debt collector breaks any of these rules when contacting you about a debt, feel free to report the debt collector to your state attorney general’s office, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and/or the Federal Trade Commission. Many states have their own collection laws and a debt collector who violates the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act may be violating state collection laws as well. Your state attorney general’s office will be able to inform of your rights.

By Lucy Lazarony

For bankruptcy information call Kasen & Kasen to schedule a FREE INITIAL CONSULTATION (856) 424-4144.  The attorneys at Kasen & Kasen have over 45 years experience representing consumer and business debtors in bankruptcy.  David Kasen is board certified as a specialist in BOTH consumer AND business bankruptcy law.  Find out more about our firm by visiting

Sports Authority to Close All Stores


Sports Authority, which originally filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy three months ago, now has plans to close all of its stores according to documents filed in the Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware this week.

Initially going into bankruptcy in March, the sporting-goods chain only intended to sell or close a third of its store, about 140 locations. Sports Authority had hopes of finding a buyer who would be interested and willing to keep the company going as a smaller retailer, but failed to do so at an auction last month. Upon losing hope that it could re-organize under bankruptcy protection, Sports Authority then opted to auction itself off and the company ultimately was bought by liquidators, Hilco Merchant Resources, Gordon Brothers Retail Partners and Tiger Capital Group, LLC. The liquidators won court permission on Monday to start putting up signs touting “store closing,” “sale on everything,” “everything must go,” “going out of business”, and “liquidation sale” at Sports Authority stores.

Close-out sales at all Sports Authority locations will be starting tomorrow, May 25, 2016, and going no later than August 31, 2016. Sports Authority currently has 20 locations in New Jersey: Brick, Cherry Hill, Clifton, East Brunswick, East Hanover, Flemington, Hazlet, Ledgewood, Manalapan, Mays Landing, Mount Laurel, Paramus, Piscataway, Ramsey, Riverdale, Secaucus, Sewell, Springfield, Wayne, and West Long Branch.

5 Easy Ways to Network If You Don’t Have Any Work Experience


You have likely heard this phrase multiple times: “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” (In other words, successful people network.) This is great advice for someone with years of experience, but what do you do if you are just entering the working world? Luckily, networking may be easier than you think:

  1. Focus your efforts—but not too narrowly

What career field do you hope to enter? Are you searching for a job, an internship, or information only?

As you build your network, think of your intentions as seeds that you are planting—if you plant enough seeds, some will surely take root and grow. One contact may not be able to help you directly, but he or she may know someone who can, or that person may mention you to his or her own network. This is the power of networking. You may only know 20 people, but if each of those people knows 20 contacts in turn, you can now reach 400 individuals.

  1. Start local

Speak with the people you know well—your family, your friends, your professors, and the individuals in your extracurricular activities. “Speak,” here, can mean in-person, but it can also mean over emails, on social media, or by telephone. Your goal is to make your circle aware that you could use a bit of help.

Focus is also important here. Do not just say that you are looking for “a job.” Be specific so that your contacts can form a clear association between you and your objective, and so that they remember your objective when speaking to their networks.

  1. Be persistent and positive

However, do not be too persistent. Pestering your contacts with requests for help, or daily reminders of your job search, can quickly encourage people to ignore you. Instead, post occasional reminders to reach those individuals who were not logged in last time, or who forgot. Once per week should be frequent enough.

You should also avoid focusing on what you do not have. Post about what you have learned, the people you have met, and the connections you have made. Send short messages to those contacts who have helped you, and include a piece of information that they might like. Notes like, “I saw this article, and I thought you might be interested,” can leave people with a positive impression of you.

  1. Ask for informational interviews

Rather than solely asking about available positions, identify those individuals who are familiar with your field. Next, ask them about their specialties. What are their keys to success? What do they love about the field, and what do they wish they had known about it? Do not share your resume unless they ask you for it. Do follow up with a thank you note, as well as a request for suggestions about who you should speak to next. Ask to add them to your social networks. Hopefully, they will now have a positive association with you when they see your future posts about open job opportunities.

  1. Join discussions

Browse those websites that are relevant to your professional interests (or more generally centered around conversation), and then join discussions on topics that are related to your field. Ensure that you have something substantive to say, or that your questions are not obvious. If you can, send personal messages to active or experienced posters to request more information or clarification on points in their posts.

Just like the informational interview, do not ask directly for a job. Do, however, include your LinkedIn profile, personal website, or blog in your signature. Should you say something that interests them, they will be able to reach you, or to pass your contact details on to their networks.

By Brian Witte of Varsity Tutors