Low Income Bankruptcies Lawyers: Unfortunately, one of the things that can really affect the quality of life of most people is not having enough earnings or savings to support their families. This could be due to a variety of reasons such as poor health, disability, or getting laid off a job – but one thing that is undeniable is that it leads to tremendous difficulty for not just the person involved, but also their loved ones too. In such a scenario, to tide over the bad times, one is certain to borrow money to gain some sort of financial stability. However, if you are unable to pay these creditors back, the only option that you may find yourself having is to file for bankruptcy. Filing for bankruptcy is a fairly expensive process, and for those who do not have money to pay their creditors back, it is certainly difficult to be able to afford a lawyer. However, there is no reason to be daunted – there are ways that a person can file for bankruptcy even if they cannot afford a lawyer or filing costs.
The need for low income bankruptcies lawyers
Filing for bankruptcy is a fairly tedious process and involves a lot of legal intricacies. Furthermore, doing it incorrectly may actually mean that the costs of filing increase. Therefore, having someone who is qualified to help you with the process to ensure that it goes smoothly and regain financial stability is important. This is something that bankruptcy lawyers can help significantly with.
If you believe that you need to file for bankruptcy, one of the first and most important things that you can do is to schedule a free consultation to gain a better perspective on your situation. The free consultation can also help educate you on your legal standing, as well as the options that you can exercise after examining the facts of your particular case. Low-income bankruptcy lawyers are preferable since they specifically deal with individuals and households who are aware of the financial predicament of their clients. On the other hand, if you choose to pick a lawyer that does not deal with low-income individuals or households, you may find that their fees or retainer amounts are unaffordable.
Filing the fee waiver
Filing the fee waiver is one of the most important things when it comes to managing a bankruptcy filing since filing costs can add up and become pretty high really soon. The job of the lawyer in this case is to approach the court with the required evidence and documentation on behalf of their client to make a representation. If the court finds the documents and the evidence produced adequate, you are certain to get a fee waiver.
When it comes to choosing a lawyer, the most important thing to ensure is that their fees are within your budget. However, with low income bankruptcy lawyers, the payout plans are flexible to ensure that their clients can afford their services and pay for them. Not only are the costs lower, but the payment schedules are usually much more flexible as well. This is ideal for those who cannot make large lump sum payments at one go.
Any time appointments
Getting the appointment of a lawyer can also be quite a task. With bankruptcy looming large combined with a busy schedule and a stressful life, scheduling your work around the convenience of your lawyer can be quite a task. It is for this reason that a low income bankruptcy lawyer is preferred by most, since it can be easy to schedule an appointment to meet them depending on your schedule. This means that your life is less likely to be disrupted or adversely affected.
How Much Does it Cost to File Bankruptcy?
There are two ways to file bankruptcy – either, you can file bankruptcy by yourself, or with the help of a lawyer or an attorney. The cost of both varies depending on a variety of factors such as which jurisdiction you are in, which lawyer you hire, etc. One of the first things to remember is that the initial filing process itself costs money – you will be required to pay a filing fee to even make a representation in front of the Bankruptcy Court. This is usually in the form of cash checks from acceptable financial institutions, money orders, or other formal systems of payment.
A chapter 7 bankruptcy filing usually costs 335$. For a Chapter 13 bankruptcy filing, the cost is usually $310. Apart from the flat fees that the court charges, the trustees may also charge additional costs of about 15$ – 20$ depending on the circumstances. If you find yourself unable to pay the entire amount in one sitting, there are other alternatives that you can exercise. For instance, you can pay fees on an instalment basis if you cannot pay the filing costs as a lump sum payment. It is important to remember that the filing costs vary from chapter to chapter. You can also convert your bankruptcy filing from chapter 7 to chapter 13 or vice-versa. While the former is free, to convert your bankruptcy proceedings from a chapter 13 filing to a chapter 7, you will have to pay an additional 25$.
Prior to filing your bankruptcy claims, you will most likely also have to undergo credit counselling. There are several agencies that you can choose from, and the cost of credit counselling depends on which agency that you opt for. Usually, the costs of credit counselling range from about $20 to about $100.
Ways to Find Low income bankruptcies Lawyers
Filing for bankruptcy can be difficult not only because it is expensive, but also because it can be a significantly distressing moment in someone’s life. Ensuring savings by cutting costs can improve the quality of life of the individual and his or her family. Therefore, it certainly helps to try and secure legal representation at a lower cost and eliminate fees as much as possible.
Legal Aid Services
There are plenty of legal aid clinics and services across most cities that are willing to take on bankruptcy cases for low income individuals and their families. Approaching a legal aid clinic in your vicinity can help you get perspective on your case as well as the options that you have. However, it is important to remember that some of these clinics may have certain specific criteria for you to be eligible for legal representation. One of the most significant criteria is to check was to whether you fall below the federal poverty guideline based on the percentage of income. A family income score of less than 125% and not more than 200% usually means that you are eligible.
Legal clinics are similar to legal aid services, but slightly different. While you can get representation in legal service cells, legal clinics help you educate yourself on your options, and get clarification on what your situation entails and how you can deal with it effectively. Therefore, legal clinics are basically avenues that you can approach for a plan of action on how you can deal with your bankruptcy filing effectively. While they will not take on the task of representing you themselves, you can seek answers to any questions that you may have about the process at a legal clinic.
Pro Bono Legal Services
Most lawyers who work for money also take on pro bono work to give back to the society by helping people who cannot otherwise afford their retainer fees or costs. Usually, the local bar association has a list of lawyers that volunteer to do pro bono work. You can check this list out and see if any lawyer matches your requirements. Usually, their online contact is provided, which helps people reach out to them and see if they are a fit for those specific circumstances. You can also try and negotiate a reduced fee.
Negotiate a reduced fee amount
If you find yourself unable to afford a lawyer, but believe that you need legal representation to ensure that your bankruptcy filing process goes smoothly and without any hitches, it may be time for you to look into negotiating a reduced fee. Apart from a reduced fee, attorneys may also have flexible plans for you to pay for their services (such as in the form of instalments), keeping in mind your ability to pay. Depending on what plan of action you believe is the best for you, you can always communicate the same to your lawyer and see if you can negotiate a payment plan that works for both you and for them.
One of the most important things to keep in mind is that there are plenty of attorneys that deal with bankruptcy cases in every area. The rates of each of these lawyers are usually different. Doing your research and finding out the best lawyer at the lowest rate can significantly help your case and help you save costs as well. Try and figure out what the most basic rate is and go from there. When it comes to all this, the most important factor is collecting relevant information and doing the right kind of research before you select your attorney. Not only does picking the right lawyer have a significant bearing on your case, but also on your overall financial situation.
Low income Bankruptcy Lawyers near me
Ensuring that you find representation in your vicinity becomes important when you are dealing with a time bound matter such as a bankruptcy. However, there are plenty of bankruptcy lawyers in every area, and with a little bit of research, it is easy to find one that matches your needs and requirements.
Most lawyers or law firms start off by asking you a couple of questions to ascertain what your case entails and take it from there. You can either approach these firms or lawyers directly, or approach them online (such as in the form of an email). If you do not have the time to physically visit the premises and schedule an actual appointment with a lawyer, approaching them online is perhaps the best alternative. If you find the online interaction to be fruitful, you can thereafter take it from there and schedule a physical appointment too, if you deem it necessary.
Another avenue that someone filing bankruptcy should look into is asking their friends or family who have been through a similar process to help guide them towards an attorney that can take their case up. Ensure that you hire an attorney who is sufficiently skilled in the process and knows how bankruptcy law works.
Filing for bankruptcy without a lawyer
While most people tend to seek out legal representation when they are filing for bankruptcy, it is possible to do so yourself as well. It may seem like the process is daunting, but with the right kind of knowledge and research, it is not impossible to do. If you do not have any complicated or critical issues to handle in your bankruptcy that will necessitate the involvement of a lawyer, you could potentially do it yourself. It is advisable to do the filing without the assistance of an attorney and handle it yourself only if:
- You do not currently have a pending car loan
- You do not currently have a pending home loan
- You do not own a business
- You do not have any assets such as furniture, clothing, or jewellery
- You do not have any non-disc arable debts
While in such a scenario you could potentially deal with filing the bankruptcy yourself, it is important to keep in mind that it is necessary to be cautious and work according to the rules and regulations of the process. For instance, a chapter 13 filing is usually much more complicated than a chapter 7 filing, and if incorrectly done, one might even be at the risk of losing their existing assets. Therefore, it is important to be thorough on the process, do your research, and ensure that you are taking the right steps going forward. if you choose to file for bankruptcy yourself, you can download the requisite forms from the US Courts Bankruptcy portal directly.
How to file Chapter 7 without money
It is an unfortunate predicament to have to file for bankruptcy, but it is also something that can happen to anyone. If you find yourself in this situation, the best course of action is to think about what you can do to remedy the situation swiftly and effectively. While the fact that you have no money can feel limiting even when it comes to filing for bankruptcy itself, it is possible to file Chapter 7 without money.
Even in the situation that you lose all your assets, if you have any money from disability pay-outs, pensions, or social security payments, ensure that you save this money in a safe and secure location. This is because creditors cannot garnish money from such payments. Ensure that you communicate that these payments cannot be garnished in a legally effective manner.
Take pro-bono legal help
There are plenty of organizations and legal cells that can help you get legal help and answer your questions about the process effectively. However, you must fall below the poverty line to qualify for such help under most jurisdictions. Ensure that you approach a local legal aid group or cell and see if you are eligible, and also to get perspective on what options you have to deal with the process.
Waive Chapter 7 fees
You can approach the bankruptcy court and have your chapter 7 fees waived, if you cannot pay it. This is however not a guarantee, and the court decides on a case to case basis as to whether or not such fees can be waived.
How to file Chapter 13 with no money down
Usually, to file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, one has to pay fees amounting to 310$. However, if you are unable to afford this lump sum payment, you can always look at those attorneys that offer an installment-based payment system to help ease your burden. To be able to pay for the process in installments, it is important that you meet the required eligibility criteria. Some of the requirements may be as follows:
- Less than $1000 in the checking account of the individual
- No pending sales or salary accruals in the next two months
There may be other criterion that requires fulfilment as well, but it is a fairly simple process to file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy proceeding without paying a large amount of down payment. If you find yourself confused by the process, communicate with your attorney directly about the options that you have and what you can do to ensure maximum cost-effectiveness.
It is undoubtedly difficult to find yourself in a position where you have to file for bankruptcy. However, with the right kind of research and with the right attorney, this is certain to remain just a bad memory in your life, and not something that will affect your future going forward.