Coolidge Wall Attorneys Help Cities, Counties Facing Debt Collection Issues
What do Ohio’s cities and counties do when their residents can’t or won’t pay for local government services? Three Coolidge Wall attorneys discussed ways that local governments can improve debt collection efforts at the Ohio City/County Management Association (OCMA) 2016 Winter Conference in Columbus on February 25th.
“Cost effective debt collection is a challenge for any local government,” said Christopher Conard, Chair of Coolidge Wall’s Municipal Law Department. “Municipalities all across Ohio are looking for ways to collect overdue payments, ranging from income taxes and traffic fines to water and sewer charges and permit fees.” Conard and fellow Coolidge Wall attorneys Patricia Friesinger and Stephen McHugh were presenters at the OCMA debt collection session.
The attorneys provided practical guidance about methods that local governments may use to collect different types of debt. Attendees also learned how bankruptcy filings can present additional challenges to managers and finance directors tasked with collecting delinquent payments. Friesinger explained the bankruptcy process and provided a decision tree for understanding how priority debts are treated in bankruptcy.
In addition to municipal law, Conard practices litigation and administrative law. Friesinger focuses on creditor/debtor rights in her practice, helping local government and business clients find legal solutions to financial challenges. McHugh serves local governments in a variety of areas, such as real estate, zoning, municipal litigation, and state and federal employment law and compliance.