how much is a bankrupcy lawyer

by Axel Jacobs 4 min read

The nationwide average cost for a bankruptcy attorney is between $1000 and $1050. Several factors affect the total cost of hiring a bankruptcy attorney, including the complexity of the case, the type of bankruptcy, filing fees, and more.

In general, attorney fees for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy range from $1,000 to $3,500 depending on the complexity of the case. Larger firms with more advertising and overhead costs sometimes charge more than a solo practitioner, but not always. Some larger operations offer low fees and count on a higher volume of cases.

Full Answer

What is the average cost of a bankruptcy attorney?

Bankruptcy lawyers who charge by the hour usually break the hour into 15-minute or 6-minute increments. That may seem like little difference, but it does add up. Say, for example, you talk to your bankruptcy attorney for 5 minutes by phone. If the attorney charges $200 an hour in 15-minute increments, that conversation just cost you $50.

Where is the cheapest bankruptcy lawyer?

However in some circumstances bankruptcy lawyers still work off a traditional hourly rate. Hourly rates are subject to change, depending on the locale and relative experience of the lawyer. You should expect to pay anywhere around $100-$400 an hour for a lawyer’s time depending on the factors already listed above.

How does a bankruptcy lawyer get paid and how m?

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How can I pay for a bankruptcy lawyer?

Bankruptcy Attorney Fees Vary by Location What is average in your area might not be so average in another area. Attorneys' fees vary by district and can even vary widely from state to state. Even so, fees ranging from $1200 to $2500 are considered ordinary. But don't be surprised if you find a lawyer to represent you for as low as $700.


Hiring a Bankruptcy Attorney by the Hour

If you decide to hire a bankruptcy attorney who charges by the hour, you will probably be asked to pay a retainer fee, which is similar to a down payment. You'll then receive monthly bills that must be paid promptly.

Hiring a Bankruptcy Lawyer for a Flat Fee

Lawyers who handle fairly routine matters, such as writing a will or filing bankruptcies, may offer their services for a flat fee. The flat fee may not be all-inclusive, meaning you may still have to pay court fees and other related costs.

The Cost of Hiring a Bankruptcy Attorney

There are several questions you may have to ask to determine exactly how much it will cost to hire the bankruptcy attorney. Here are some questions that should help:

What is the purpose of bankruptcy?

The goal of bankruptcy is to allow debtors to restructure their debt agreements, reduce the amount they are owed, or in some cases, eliminate part or all their debt altogether.

What is the means test for bankruptcy?

Under the means test, filers who have the ability to repay creditors cannot file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The means test determines how much the debtor can repay the creditors based on their income and other assets.

What is the difference between Chapter 13 and Chapter 7?

This is in contrast to Chapter 13 Bankruptcy where the courts limit the permissible fees, the cost for Chapter 7 is left up to the lawyer preparing the case. Chapter 13: Under Chapter 13, bankruptcy courts will limit how much an attorney can charge for their services, and if an attorney must justify why their rate should be increased.

What is a payment plan in bankruptcy?

A payment plan means the debtor will pay off a certain amount of debt each month depending on how much the assets are worth and what the court decides.

What is Chapter 13 bankruptcy?

Below is a more detailed explanation of chapter 13 bankruptcy. Chapter 13- Chapter 13 bankruptcy is the restructured or reorganization form of bankruptcy. This option is typically for people who have higher incomes, or are not eligible for chapter 7 bankruptcy. In most cases, chapter 13 bankruptcy is for those that have certain assets they want ...

Is bankruptcy a clean slate?

However, while bankruptcy can represent a clean slate to someone struggling to meet their debt obligations, bankruptcy can be an expensive and long process with many different payment variables. Below is a detailed explanation of this process and the fees and costs associated with it.

Do urban law firms charge more for bankruptcy?

Some larger urban law firms may charge more based on the average rate for other bankruptcy cases in that same area. Because of the difference in application and subject matter whether a client files for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy may affect the fee structure.

What do bankruptcy lawyers do?

You can expect that a bankruptcy lawyer will evaluate your financial situation and assess whether filing for bankruptcy makes sense for you. Specifically, bankruptcy attorneys determine whether you'll be in a better financial position after your filing and if so, help you get through the process smoothly.

How much does an attorney cost?

Attorneys' fees vary by district and can even vary widely from state to state. Even so, fees ranging from $1200 to $2500 are considered ordinary. But don't be surprised if you find a lawyer to represent you for as low as $700.

What is the right to review fees in bankruptcy?

The bankruptcy law gives judges the right to examine the fees charged by attorneys and order them refunded to the trustee if they are unreasonable. To avoid being flooded with cases requiring a review of fees, some courts have enacted local rules or guidelines setting "presumptively reasonable" or "no-look" fee amounts. These are more common in Chapter 13 cases, but some courts have set amounts that apply to Chapter 7 cases. Different courts use different terms, but the effect is the same. If attorneys charge an amount equal to or less than the presumptively reasonable or no-look fee, the court usually won't initiate a review.

How long can you pay off debt in Chapter 13?

An attorney will explain that you can spread out your overdue bills over three to five years in Chapter 13 bankruptcy and that your creditors won't be able to harass you during that time.

What is your marital status?

your marital status. the number of dependent children living in your home. your income (and the income of your spouse, if you're married) where you work. where you've lived for the past two years. whether you've filed taxes for the previous four years (this isn't necessary in every case), and.

What to do if you see a lawyer's advertisement?

If you see advertisements that promise unusually low attorneys' fees for your area, be on alert. The advertisements might be deceptive. The attorney might use an a la carte system to increase the quoted fee depending on the services you need. For example, the attorney might charge you more because you have more than a threshold number of creditors, your debt is over some predetermined limit, or you are filing jointly with your spouse.

Do attorneys charge a fee for initial consultation?

Many attorneys provide a free initial consultation or charge a small fee for the consultation which can be applied to the overall attorney fee if you do file. In addition to getting some free or low-cost legal advice, this is an opportunity to size up your prospective attorney. Initial consultation.