When a debtor files bankruptcy they must pay a filing fee to the bankruptcy court, paid to the Clerk of Court for the United States Bankruptcy Court. The filing fees are currently $280 for a chapter 13 bankruptcy, $306 for a chapter 7 bankruptcy. Each of these fees is broken down by the law into different components in the bankruptcy court system that each factor of the fee pays, but debtors don’t have to deal with that.
The debtor’s filing fees are charged on their attorney’s registered credit card by the clerk of court when the attorney files the case electronically. The debtor basically reimburses the attorney for the charge on their credit card.
The new bankruptcy law burdens the debtor’s attorney to investigate the debtor’s affairs to ensure the information is as complete and correct as possible when given to the attorney as well as filed with the bankruptcy court. Keep in mind that everything is filed under oath as being true and accurate and is subject to the penalties of perjury when filed with the bankruptcy court by debtors.
For this reason, an attorney may use outside assistance to verify the information of debtors, and with the court filing fees, those costs are passed on to the debtor as well. Some examples are that I may pay to have the three major credit reporting agencies checked because I have a service that charges to import credit data into my file, which I charge approximately $50. I can’t guarantee that it’s correct, but it’s better than nothing. Also for your convenience, we’ll help you at our office by using an internet service
(www.hummingbirdcreditcounseling.com or www.bankruptcyinfo.org) to do your required credit counseling, or you can do it yourself at home with the link on this website. For our help, the use of the computers and our time we charge $40.
Also you have to pay the credit counselor’s fee, which Hummingbird in NC is only $40-80 for the credit counseling class, then $19-50 per debtor for the debt management class. Mr. Hardy’s fee structure usually covers these costs.
Attorney’s fees depend on the case and they can’t determine what it costs based on what chapter it falls under. Since all cases have unlike sets of facts, a different amount of creditors, a dissimilar emergency that’s taken into account, and other variables. Attorney’s fees are usually a fixed fee, which in normal cases means that once you pay the set fees and costs there’s no other costs. Some attorneys publicize that their fees “start at” a certain low amount, but once you’re in their office they tend to charge more. It’s almost impossible to give an exact idea of how difficult a certain bankruptcy is without a consultation. The amount of creditors you have isn’t even the biggest cost determinant!
The range of attorney’s fees is usually around $1800 – $2500 or so for chapter 7 bankruptcies. However, depending on the difficulty or ease of a case the fee may be more or less than those amounts. Mr. Hardy’s fees are very reasonable for this area. Please feel free to discuss all fee arrangements with him so that it may fit within your budget. Also, the bankruptcy court shall know exactly what I charge and must approve any fee arrangements as being reasonable.
For a chapter 13, the only upfront costs paid by the client directly to the attorney are usually $500-800 total. The attorney fees are put inside the chapter 13 payment plan so that it is paid through the court over months or years. The Bankruptcy Judge determines the total attorney’s fees to be paid through your chapter 13 payment. Since almost every Chapter 13 case has the same fee from every lawyer, it is wise to hire a lawyer with plenty of experience. Mr Hardy has successfully represented thousands of debtors in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court over 25 years. Mr. Hardy has fought for his clients benefit and has had successful cases making and clarifying law reported in the Bankruptcy Reporter. Other attorneys use Mr. Hardy’s reported successful cases to influence bankruptcy judges around the nation to rule in their client’s favor.
For all attorneys’ fees our office will give you enough time to make payments on attorney’s fees and costs after a down payment. You just pay all of the initial costs before we actually set up the bankruptcy paperwork. We’ll let you refer creditors to us only after the down payment is paid. You must pay your fees with cash, money orders, certified checks or other similar methods. Our office doesn’t take debit cards or credit cards from any debtor for bankruptcy fees unless it is someone else’s, such as a relative or friend.
The court has approved a fee structure for work done, usually motions, after the filing of the bankruptcy. Most debtors never need any other work done, but sometimes during the bankruptcy issues arise in a debtor’s life that require changes while the bankruptcy is in progress (car wrecks, job loss, deaths, etc.). Mr Hardy will discuss these situations with you if anything arises. Usually, the additional fees can be paid through the Chapter 13 bankruptcies and no additional payment is required of the debtor. All moneys paid to Mr. Hardy are applied to attorney’s fees first, are considered earned when paid and are non-refundable