June 2007

30 Jun If I’m Sued, Should I Wait Until After The Case Is Heard To File Bankruptcy?

A bankruptcy will discharge unsecured debts or judgments based on them. Therefore, whether you file bankruptcy after you've been sued but before you go to court, or after there's a judgment against you, the debt will go away. The big difference is, of course, that lawsuits can be expensive and emotionally draining. If you're going to file bankruptcy anyway, and there's no other reason to wait, it's often better to just do it before you have to appear in the courtroom. That saves the worry about the lawsuit, the expense of filing a response or hiring an attorney to do so, and the indignities of putting up with the legal system.
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29 Jun How Do I Pay My Bankruptcy Attorney?

Bankrate.com offers five tips to help debtors find affordable attorneys to help them file bankruptcy. The post quotes a range of fees, and then goes on to note that many attorneys offer payment plans, or that some or all of those fees may be paid through a Chapter 13 plan. I had the reaction I always do when quoting a fee to a client--I'm always afraid that if I start with the total, the prospective client will hear that number, stop listening, and never hear the part about how to pay it. Many people are so convinced that they can't afford a bankruptcy lawyer that they never seek one out. I recently sat in a courtroom listening to a hearing in a Chapter 13 case. The debtor did not have an attorney, and the trustee had a laundry list of problems with her case.
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