Bankruptcy Law office of Bill Rubendall | William M. Rubendall
If you don't have any money to file bankruptcy there are few options. One, you can apply to the Court to waive the filing fees. You might want to check with the local bar associations to see in they have a pro bono program. You can file your own bankruptcy. If you are going to file yourself, buy a copy of the Chapter 7 bankruptcy published by Nolo Press; their office is in Berkeley, California. Once you have prepared your bankruptcy make an appointment with an attorney to review the papers. Many attorneys offer a free consultation. Keep trying until you find someone to help.
Answer Applies to: California
A Fresh Start | Dorothy G Bunce
Filing bankruptcy isn't going to get you any money. In fact, filing bankruptcy may cut off the lifelines of credit you may need and be completely unnecessary. The court system does has a program to allow someone who is impoverished to file without paying filing fees or fees for the pre-bankruptcy creditor counseling. The application for this program is usually on the website of the court.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Indianapolis Bankruptcy Law Office of Eric C. Lewis | Eric Lewis
Save money over time to hire a lawyer and get it done right.
Answer Applies to: Indiana
J. Norman Stark, Attorney & Reg. Architect | J. NORMAN STARK, ATTORNEY
Check with the Clerk of the Bankruptcy Court in the old Federal Courthouse, 1st Flr. on Superior Ave. at the Northeast corner of Public Square, and directly North, across from the BP Office Building. Request information for filing Bankruptcy with a Poverty Affidavit. They'll explain.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Weber & Phillips, P.A. | John G. Phillips
There may be a legal services office in your area that assists with indigent cases. Also, attorneys will sometimes work out payments over time. I would suggest you call around and speak to a few attorneys to see what they can do and see if there is a legal services office in your area.
Answer Applies to: Arkansas
Law offices of John P. Brooke | John Brooke
There are several options available to file a bankruptcy, but generally I would recommend that you file with an experienced, local attorney as to avoid any mistakes in the petition and so you don't lose any assets that you may otherwise be entitled to retain. You may want to contact your local bar association as there are attorneys who will take on your case pro bono (for free). You probably shouldn't attempt to file pro se (without representation) because the petition and schedules are lengthy and it is easy to make mistakes if you do not know the law. There are also document preparation services who are not attorneys that will help you prepare the petition for a much cheaper fee but they cannot offer you legal advice they simply help you fill out the paperwork.
Answer Applies to: New York
Tokarska Law Center | Kathryn U. Tokarska
There are no easy answers to this question. If you have no money, most attorneys will allow you to make small payments to them until enough is saved up to file a case. I've set up payments as low as $100 a month to whatever you can afford. Many attorneys will also try to give you the most affordable fee based on your needs & the complexity of your case. Typically, the less you make, the less stuff you have, the less complicated the case. The more you earn particularly if earnings come from several sources, the more stuff you have, the more debt you have, the more types of debts you have, the more complicated the cases. However if you have no income or your income comes from social security or unemployment, and/or you have very limited assets (an old car not worth much, used clothes & furnishings, nothing of significant value like expensive jewelry or antiques, investment accounts) then the truth is that you be judgment proof. Being judgment proof means that even if a creditor sues you, there is nothing for the creditor to take, hence nothing to protect through bankruptcy. Social security, unemployment is exempt from garnishment. Vehicle worth $4800 or less is exempt. They're not going to come to your house and sell your old TV, clothes, old furnishings, kick you out of an apartment if you're current on the rent or throw you in jail for not paying. Typically debtors file bankruptcy because they WANT a fresh start and some file it not just because they want a fresh start but they also NEED to protect assets. Most Legal Aid clinics, check in your local area, don't offer bankruptcy representation for indigents I suppose because an indigent person filing for bankruptcy is more of a want than a need. State, County, and Local Municipal resources are limited and so they tend to fund things they consider more life/liberty threatening like: restraining orders, child support, eviction. You could try to represent yourself but understand that the process is not easy for most people to navigate. There is a self help Nolo Book you should be able to get at the library. The local court, depending on the jurisdiction, may also have links and information for self-represented individuals. You will have to invest some considerable time into reading and understanding of how to prepare the petition and the documents you need to provide to your Trustee. Bankruptcy petition preparers charge less than a lawyer, however, the big caveat is that they can only help you fill out the forms, not offer you advice, so that makes me wonder if paying someone for that part of the process is worth the expense, even if it is less than having an attorney represent you. I've wanted to do some low cost bankruptcy seminars to help people do their own cases but there are ethical considerations that make this dangerous and not feasible. Practicing law is highly regulated, as you can imagine.
Answer Applies to: California
Richard L. Hirsh, P.C. | Richard L. Hirsh
As you might guess, most debtors are in true financial trouble, so just being "broke" doesn't cut it. but if you are truly indigent you can apply to the court to waive the fees. And, you can file a bankruptcy case without a lawyer, although it is difficult.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
SmithMarco, P.C. | Larry P. Smith
There are means to file bankruptcy without paying the fee. There is an application that can be filed along with the bankruptcy petition that requests that you proceed without paying. The court will make a determination that you can proceed without paying or whether you will have to come up with the money after your expenses and income are considered.
Answer Applies to: Illinois