How Much Does It Cost To File Bankruptcy?

The better question might be, "How much will it cost if I file bankruptcy without an attorney's help?" With the wealth of information available to us on the internet, we can either be wonderfully informed or tragically misinformed. Bankruptcy done wrong can cost you thousands of dollars.

Most people find themselves considering bankruptcy due to a catastrophic event in their life such as a sudden illness, a failed business, job loss or divorce. Others find that credit card spending simply gets out of control. People struggling financially typically wonder, "If I don't have the money to pay my debt, how can I possibly afford an attorney to file bankruptcy for me?" The good news is that at the Orlando office of Lewis & Monroe, PLLC, it costs nothing to meet with an attorney for an initial bankruptcy consultation to explore your options, including how best to afford hiring counsel to navigate the bankruptcy process on your behalf.

At the Orlando office of Lewis & Monroe, PLLC, we work with regular, hardworking folks and owners of small to midsize businesses to find solutions to troubling financial situations. We understand your financial concerns. Here are a few important things to know about the cost:

Our fees can be tailored to your situation. In every case, our goal is to provide effective and affordable legal services. Because of that, our fee is right up front on our contract for services. We don't bury additional fees in the small print or charge for every photocopy. Our quoted prices include the court filing fee and, for individuals, a credit report fee. The court's filing fee for a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy is several hundred dollars and the credit report we pull includes all three credit reporting agencies. We want to ensure that if you are taking the enormous step of filing for bankruptcy protection, we have everyone included who believes you owe them money.

Filing bankruptcy is an investment in your financial future. Many clients have said they only wish they had taken the step earlier, before they depleted retirement and other savings accounts and before they spent years trying to work out a solution with their creditors. Yes, it costs some money upfront, but it can potentially save you a considerable amount of time, money and emotional distress down the road. Bankruptcy may help you:

  • Save your home from foreclosure
  • Protect your car from repossession
  • Erase insurmountable credit card and medical debt
  • Discharge or pay income tax debt
  • Start fresh and rebuild your credit score
  • Reorganize your business

Beware of offers that are too good to be true. Some firms offer low prices, while hiding the true costs in the small print of their contract. Others may not be bankruptcy attorneys at all! If you see online advertisements stating, "Bankruptcy petitions for only $99" or touting similar offers, be aware that you will likely be working with a petition preparer, not an attorney.

Essentially, a petition preparer types your information into a court form. However, he or she is not allowed to provide legal advice. This means you won't gain the benefit of legal counsel that is uniquely tailored to your situation. You may miss out on valuable opportunities to erase more of your debt, keep more of your property or otherwise gain a stronger financial footing. Bankruptcy done wrong can cause you to lose automobiles or bank accounts shared with family members or, worse, the very discharge of debt you are seeking can be withheld. Don't take this risk. Consult one of the board-certified bankruptcy lawyers at our firm for the comprehensive legal advice you need.

It costs you nothing to learn about your options. To learn more about the benefits of filing bankruptcy — and the costs — call Lewis & Monroe, PLLC, at 407-917-4147 or contact us by email to set up a free initial consultation at our Orlando office. We are here to help.