How can I get good representation for my bankruptcy case? 18 Answers as of April 02, 2012

What do I need to look for when getting a good but not too expensive bankruptcy lawyer? Where can I get a good BK lawyer? How much do they usually charge?

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Burnham & Associates
Burnham & Associates | Stephanie K. Burnham
The best advice on finding a good bankruptcy attorney is to "interview" or speak with a few different attorneys about your situation. Least expensive is not always best, nor is most expensive, when evaluating an attorney. You will want an attorney whose style of representation is consistent with how you would like to be represented. The costs of representation are different, but you can expect a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy to be between $1,200 and $2,300. A Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is more expensive and will likely cost close to $3,500 or more.
Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
Replied: 4/2/2012
Mercado & Hartung, PLLC
Mercado & Hartung, PLLC | Christopher J. Mercado
Check out Avvo for ratings.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 3/26/2012
J.M. Cook, P.A. | J.M. Cook
I would suggest looking at the NC State Bar's list of board certified consumer bankruptcy specialists. These are experts in their field and surprisingly cost no more than other less qualified attorneys. The cost depends on the Chapter and the attorney handling the matter. Normally a Chapter 7 costs will start at $1,200 and Chapter 13 costs will start around $3,000. Both of these include the court's filing fee and counseling certifications. Most folks are paying that much monthly in credit card bills so it is really not very expensive.
Answer Applies to: North Carolina
Replied: 3/16/2012
Bankruptcy Law office of Bill Rubendall
Bankruptcy Law office of Bill Rubendall | William M. Rubendall
Contact the State Bar for a list a certified bankruptcy specialists in your area. Ask about fees and compare prices with other highly qualified bankruptcy specialists.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 3/15/2012
Law Office of Jeffrey Solomon
Law Office of Jeffrey Solomon | Jeffrey Solomon
You should ask about the attorney's experience in bankruptcy and that the attorney did not just get into it when the economy went bad. Most have websites and you can review qualifications. They might be members of National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys. You may not want a mill where you never speak with the attorney.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 3/14/2012
    Debt Relief Law Center | Roger J. Bus
    Best thing to do is to call around. Attorney fees can vary wildly, from inexpensive ($300 plus costs- usually another $306) to very high ($1,500 or more plus costs) for the exact same case. Make sure the attorney is experienced, and has a real office with a real full time secretary. You can double check even with the State Bar of Michigan to make sure there are no grievances against the attorney. Most initial interviews are free and if the attorney seems rushed or wants you to do the majority of the work or immediately sends you off to a paralegal's office, you may want to go elsewhere. Make sure too the attorney you is actually going to represent you personally and not farm it out to another attorney you have never met before until 5 minutes before your creditors meeting.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    The Law Offices of Kristy Qiu
    The Law Offices of Kristy Qiu | Mengjun Qiu
    There are many many good bankruptcy attorneys out there; there are, however, probably twice as much bad ones. You want to make sure that the attorney actually knows what he/she is doing. You could, for instance, ask questions and see how quickly the attorney can respond. If he/she gives you a lot of eeeh aaah or deviates from your initial question, it's a sign that he/she is probably guessing the answer. Good attorneys will never guess the answer, they will tell you straight up that they do not have the answer and would offer to research it. There are many legal issues out there, it is impossible for an attorney to know them all, experienced or not. But if an attorney guesses for an answer, that means that he/she does not care enough to find the right answer for you, it's definitely a bad sign. Also a good sign is when the attorney only gets your information without telling you how bankruptcy works. Word of caution: only because an attorney looks older, claims to have been in practice longer, or appears to have a large firm, does not necessarily mean that the attorney is knowledgeable in bankruptcy. Many older attorneys no longer practice personally and they only give the cases to their younger, new associates, they might not know the current law any more. These young associates might not know what they're doing either. Many big firms let their paralegals draft the petition and related paperwork, and the attorneys usually don't review them prior to filing. Unfortunately these are things that you won't find out until you meet them in person.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Ashman Law Office
    Ashman Law Office | Glen Edward Ashman
    Fees vary by city and by lawyer. Look for someone who is experienced, and avoid the mills that have the giant phone book ad and do TV, as they are impersonal.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Asaph Abrams
    Law Office of Asaph Abrams | Asaph Abrams
    Client reviews are helpful. Be sure to check status on the state bar's website. And find an attorney you're comfortable with. Some clients may prefer the anonymity of a mill-type office where clerks do the lion's share. Others may (wisely) choose a personable attorney who personally handles their affairs. Precious
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Dan Wilson Bankruptcy
    Dan Wilson Bankruptcy | Dan Wilson
    In this district Chapter 7 is usually $1000-$2000, more if difficult issues. Interview a few lawyers. Go with someone who has been doing it at least a couple years.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney
    Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney | Janet Lawson
    As an example, I charge 900.00 plus the filing fee of 306.00 for an uncomplicated chapter 7. Look one up at the NACBA web site (National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys).
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/13/2012
    Carballo Law Offices
    Carballo Law Offices | Tony E. Carballo
    You should talk to two or three bankruptcy attorneys in your area. Do not hire attorneys out of the area who are not familiar with local procedures and will likely not attend the meeting of creditors with you (they will send a special appearance attorney likely if not in the area). You can ask the attorney about experience and check credentials at the website of the California Bar Association to make sure that the attorney is currently licensed and has no disciplinary action pending. You can also go to the website of the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys (NACBA) and see if the attorney is a member of that association. Do not select an attorney on the basis of cost of fees alone. There might be a reason why that attorney is a lot cheaper than the others. The cost of bankruptcy Chapter 7 probably averages about $1,500 plus cost of filing and likely the cost of a credit report. However, the fees depends on the case so if you are self-employed, have car loans, a mortgage, rental property, a business, high income requiring a means test, etc. the fee may be a more. If just credit cards and regular employment income the fee might be $1,200 or less depending on the case.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/13/2012
    Diefer Law Group, P.C.
    Diefer Law Group, P.C. | Abel Fernandez
    I believe the only way to really go about this is to interview several attorneys.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/13/2012
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC | Darren Aronow
    Most bankruptcy attorneys for a chapter 7 will run $1,500 to $3,000. It is more expensive to have a failed bankruptcy than to pay an attorney to do it properly the first time.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 3/13/2012
    Judith A. Runyon, Esq. Attorney at Law
    Judith A. Runyon, Esq. Attorney at Law | Judith A. Runyon
    $1800.00 is the normal fee for a CH. 7.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/13/2012
    Jakob-Barnes Law Firm, LLC
    Jakob-Barnes Law Firm, LLC | Jennifer Jakob-Barnes
    The fees for a bankruptcy vary greatly depending on whether you are filing for a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13. It is best to meet with the attorney and make sure you feel comfortable with them before hiring. You want an attorney that knows the law and can give you the service you deserve.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 3/13/2012
    Law Offices of Joseph A. Mannis
    Law Offices of Joseph A. Mannis | Todd Mannis
    Why not call a few, and ask some questions over the phone? Following up on that, you can set up a consultation or two and talk - most of the time our consultations are absolutely free. You'll also get an idea of how much this is going to be, which really depends on how simple or how complex your case is.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/13/2012
    Kenneth A. Parker, P.C.
    Kenneth A. Parker, P.C. | Ken Parker
    Look for someone who does primarily Bankruptcy work and doesn't just file 5 cases a year. The best reference you can possibly get is from family or friends. If all else fails, then search the internet for Bankruptcy Attorney and also put in your city and state. The fee depends on what type of case you want to file, but a good Bankruptcy Attorney should offer you a free consultation in which you can discuss fees.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 3/13/2012
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