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Just wondering,

If a senior citizen has to file for Bankruptcy, are bankruptcy attornys lenient with fees? It's kind of a catch 22. The person filing has very little disposable income but the attorney I contacted charges several thousand up front. If she had several thousand up front, she wouldn't be facing bankruptcy. This person might face foreclosure.

She lives in Rockland County, NY if that helps.

Any info would be greatly appreciated.

I should add that a decent payment plan would be fine. It's the thousands up front that's the problem.

Sub: #1 posted on Mon, 01/31/2011 - 12:31


Is she filing Chapter 7 or 13? If she is filing a Chapter 13, then the attorneys fees are included in the 3-5 year repayment plan. If she is doing Chapter 7 then yes unfortunately it is generally paid up front. Look into a Legal Aid Society in your area or even some Senior centers offer help for seniors in that position. It may just take some time and phone calls to find a place that can help if she is doing a Chapter 7. Or if your brave in trying to help her and she doesnt have a lot of debts, it is harder, but it can be done Pro Se, no lawyer-you do all the paperwork and footwork and legal filings

Sub: #2 posted on Mon, 01/31/2011 - 14:13


Thanks for the reply.

She's thinking of filing Chapter 13. She doesn't have huge debt--a couple of loans is basically it--but she makes very little from Social Security. I've been subsidizing her for years ("She's" my mom btw), but my company's been at a dead stop for the past 6 months. Too long to go into that now, but bottom line is that she's applied for SSI which looks pretty good so far, and when my biz starts up again shortly, she's more than fine.

It's the next 2 months though! She can face foreclosure on a co-op she's owned outright for over 12 years for "maintenance fees". Until 6 months ago she was never late on a payment.

What you told me about Chapter 13 was extremely helpful. Guess it's just a matter of finding the right Legal Aide advice. The ones I've called so far just refer me to the NY BAR Association. The 1st BAR Assoc. reference I called didn't even ask whether she was filing 7 or 13. Just said it was $100 an hour, it would run into thousands and that it was payable up front. Nice.

So my next question is then--can anyone recommend a good Legal Aide Society for Seniors? I can brouse the Internet, but it's a maze and you're never sure who you're dealing with.

Sorry for the long question. It's just breaking my heart seeing her have to go through this. I'm like a 3 y/o when it comes to this stuff myself.

Thanks again.

Sub: #3 posted on Mon, 01/31/2011 - 17:13


I personally do not know of one. Does she belong to AARP by any chance? I wonder if they offer anything? If shes trying to save her home Chapter 13 is the way to go. Web searching might be the best way to go, otherwise. Just always check with your state bar association to make sure their legit and check out their credentials. A decent lawyer should give a free consultation, it may be a short time frame, just try and make sure she takes everything with here to squeeze in as much as possible in that time frame-SSI paperwork, all bank accounts, charge cards, all sources of income, income tax papers for the last 5 years, mortgage and maintenance fee paperwork. Write down questions for them before hand to save time and confusion and forgetting anything.

Hopefully someone else on here may know of a law firm.

Sub: #4 posted on Mon, 01/31/2011 - 21:30


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