How Much Does It Cost to File Bankruptcy


What is the cost for filing Bankruptcy with a lawyer? We can give you a price range for Chapter 7. The cost for filing Bankruptcy cases in will typically run somewhere between $1000 and $2000 for the lawyer fee for Chapter 7. (Chapter 13 fees depend on so many factors that there is no point trying to figure out the fee without seeing you in person for a consultation.) The court filing fee will be another $335, and court credit counseling should run about $15. But the exact cost for filing bankruptcy depends entirely on the facts your case. There is only one good way for you to find out. You need to see a bankruptcy lawyer for a personal consultation. Unless you do that, you are just fishing around and wasting your time.

The amount of court filing fees might be confusing. Many people thing a filing fee is an extra fee that goes to your lawyer. It isn’t. Filing fees are money collected by the court. The money for filing fees is used to pay the operating costs of the court. The filing fee for Chapter 7 bankruptcy is $335. The filing fee for Chapter 13 bankruptcy is $310. Normally, these fees are paid at the time you file your papers.

Why don’t lawyers charge everyone the same bankruptcy fee? We could do that. But it will be a bad deal for you. Most people would wind up paying more than they have to. Here’s why. The price for everything in life always depends on how much it costs to make it. The time and effort to do your neighbor’s bankruptcy case might be a lot more than it takes to do yours. That’s why your neighbor’s case will cost more. Your case is more simple. Should you pay as much as we charged your neighbor? Those differences directly affect the cost to file bankruptcy.

But some lawyers advertise a flat fee for everybody, don’t they? Yep. We see those ads just like you do. And we don’t believe them. We represent many clients who came over to us after they already went to those places. “Bait and switch” advertising has been around for a long time. (Think mortgage brokers, car dealers, jewelry stores, appliances stores, mattress stores, etc.) That’s because a new sucker is born every minute. And, bait and switch ads work on suckers. Going to a lawyer who plays “switcheroo” games on your fee is just asking for trouble later on.

We offer a completely free bankruptcy consultation.How much does it cost to file bankruptcy? Come see us and find out. You will meet with a bankruptcy expert having years of experience. You will get all your questions answered. We will explain how everything works. We will tell you if we see any troublesome problems. We will not recommend bankruptcy unless you need it. We will offer you a flat fee for any work we recommend, and we will put our fee in writing. Our fees are reasonable. Also, we consider ability to pay. We will reduce our fees for anyone with an extreme hardship.

An adequate bankruptcy evaluation will normally take anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes of office time.Without spending the time, a lawyer might not have enough information to tell you how much it will cost to file bankruptcy. Here are examples of some things a bankruptcy lawyer should know before quoting you the fee.

    Which kind of bankruptcy are you going to file:
  •         Have you been in business?
  •         Who are your creditors?
  •         What are your assets?
  •         What is your income?
  •         What are your basic living expenses?
  •         Is there an emergency, like a foreclosure sale or wage garnishment?
You may have documents which the lawyer needs to review, such as lawsuit papers, deeds, and foreclosure notices

“How do I pay you?” Once you know the cost to file bankruptcy, paying it is the #1 problem most clients have. I wish I had a dollar for every time someone asked, “How do I pay you?” Some people who need bankruptcy will never be able to pay a lawyer. However, most people will be able to afford a lawyer if they come to us. Without an experienced lawyer , you are running some big risks. Some of the problems we see in such cases are very serious where people file without a lawyer:
  1.         lost assets that might have been protected;
  2.         failed to discharge taxes that might have been dischargeable;
  3.         had their bankruptcy denied;
  4.         filed under the wrong chapter;
  5.         lost their home because the lawyer gave the wrong instructions.
What can be done to make it easier to pay the cost for filing Bankruptcy?

There are ways that make it easier to pay the cost to file bankruptcy. There are things that lawyers can do. And there are also some things that clients can do.

At my law firm, we struggle to stay affordable. There are several ways we do this. For one thing, we don’t waste client money paying for fancy offices. We don’t have oriental rugs on the floor. We don’t have fancy furniture. We keep our offices simple and functional. The biggest cost advantage that our clients benefit from is our experience . We can do most things in a fraction of the time it takes a less experienced lawyer. The cost savings is passed on to you.
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