I get this question all the time- how does a bankruptcy attorney get paid? It is a good question because you would rightly assume that if someone has to file for bankruptcy, they most likely do not have a lot of money sitting around for filing fees. This is why I try to charge very reasonable fees for both Chapter 7 bankruptcy and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. For Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases, I can help a client that has very little money for legal fees by putting them on a payment plan. Please note that I cannot file the case until all the fees are paid. However, by retaining me and making payments pursuant to a payment plan, the client is able to tell creditors they have retained a bankruptcy lawyer.
For Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases, the limit for fees set by the Bankruptcy Court in South Carolina is $3,500 for normal cases and $4,000 for business cases. However, the court allows me to accept a lower amount and put the rest into the Chapter 13 plan payment. In most cases I am able to file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy to save a home from foreclosure for $1,000-$1,300 up front. In many cases, clients have one to two mortgage payments available for legal fees because they have not made a mortgage payment in months.