When someone is at the end of their financial rope, the last thing they want to do is spend more money to file bankruptcy. Many people that are broke want to know if it’s possible to file bankruptcy for free. This is a question that is asked frequently on many online web and blog sites. In a nutshell, a person that wants to file bankruptcy for free will need to go to the bankruptcy court and see the judge about getting a fee waiver. In most cases, the judge will allow it if someone takes the time and hassle of doing the paperwork and seeing the judge.
What someone needs to consider though is this the only cost that is incurred when filing bankruptcy? Since the bankruptcy code changed back in 2005 they added a pre-bankruptcy credit counseling course and a post bankruptcy financial management course. Both of these courses typically cost around 50 bucks apiece. It is possible to find some nonprofits that offer these courses for free. Once again, it will just depend on the diligence and time someone wants to spend to gather all this information.
Although it is technically possible to file bankruptcy for free, it is not advised. The bankruptcy code has become complex as it was written by attorneys and governed by attorneys. Because of this it is hard for the average Joe to be successful without hitting some landmines when filling out the bankruptcy petition. Some people that can afford it will hire a paralegal that is familiar with the document preparation. The only downside to this is the paralegal will not be able to give any legal advice or suggestions on how to fill out the petition. All in all, it’s best for someone to find an inexpensive bankruptcy attorney to make sure the bankruptcy is prepared properly and have them ask for a fee waiver to cut the costs.
While everyone would love to file bankruptcy for free, there is an old adage that comes to mind, you get what you pay for. For those that are just cheap and don’t want to spend the money, they should sit down and add up all of the debt that will be wiped out in the bankruptcy discharge and compare that to the cost of filing including the fee of a bankruptcy attorney. When looking at it from this point of view, an individual can quickly see the value that they will receive from having an attorney. A bankruptcy attorney will know the ins and outs of the exemption laws and get the most benefit out of them for their client. The individual should rest assured that the maximum amount of property is protected and on the day of the meeting of creditors, there will be no surprises.