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Bankruptcy Court Fee Structure, Attorney’s Fees, and Other Costs of Filing

When debtors file bankruptcy they must pay the bankruptcy court a filing fee, payable to the Clerk of Court for the United States Bankruptcy Court. Currently, the filing fees are $281 for a chapter 13 bankruptcy, $306 for a chapter 7 bankruptcy, and $1069 for a chapter 11 bankruptcy. The law breaks down each of these fees into different components of the bankruptcy court system that each component of this fee goes to pay, but that is totally irrelevant to debtors.

The fees are charged on the debtors attorneys registered credit card by the clerk of court when the attorney istock_000003952856xsmallelectronically files the case and the debtor, basically, is reimbursing his attorney for the charge on his attorney’s credit card.

The new bankruptcy law placed many burdens on the debtor’s attorney to investigate debtor’s affairs to ensure the information given to the attorney by the debtor and subsequently filed with the bankruptcy court is as complete and correct as possible. Keep in mind that everything filed with the bankruptcy court by debtors is filed under penalty of perjury.

For that reason most attorneys are having to use outside help to verify debtor’s information and those costs are passed on to the debtor just like the court filing fees. Some examples are that I have to pay to check the three major credit reporting agencies because I have a service which charges to import credit data into my file. I charge $50 for this service. I cannot guarantee that it is correct, but it is better than nothing. Also, if it is necessary I pay a title abstractor $50 to search at the county courthouse for liens and transfers and assets.

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  • Can I go to Jail for not Paying my Bills?

    No, not unless you committed a crime in the creation of the debt (for example, fraud). Simply borrowing money and not being able to pay it back is not a crime. Many creditors representatives will tell you lies on the telephone and say that they will have you put in jail. Perhaps they are too ignorant to know they are wrong or that it is illegal for them even to say that. See More Bankruptcy Q&A