New York Bankruptcy Lawyers
Filing for bankruptcy in New York is a sticky situation. On one hand, you want to increase your chances of being approved but on the other hand, you do not want to spend too much on the process. This is why there are those who decide not to hire a bankruptcy lawyer for their filing.
Note though that according to reports, you have a much better chance of being approved for bankruptcy if you are represented by a lawyer. This is especially true for Chapter 13 bankruptcies.
Filing For Bankruptcy New York
New York bankruptcy filing procedure is no different from other states. In order to get a copy of the documents needed, just check out PACER or the Public Access to Court Electronic Records. This should give you access to the documents you need to fill in for bankruptcy purposes. Note that there are several documents associated with bankruptcy and it is important that you read through each one before passing. Any mistakes or omissions will result to the papers being sent back to you, thereby lengthening the bankruptcy application process.
Bankruptcy Exemptions in New York
Private individuals usually have two options when filing for bankruptcy: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is a clean slate application which essentially wipes out all your debts and lets you start over. Chapter 13 is aptly named as “reorganization bankruptcy” because it allows you to reorganize your debts in order to make it more manageable.
In both cases, you will be asked to sell off some assets in order to make payments to outstanding debts before the rest is adjusted or wiped out as necessary. However, not all your assets will be sold off since New York laws allow for some exemptions.
- Homestead to the tune of $10,000.
- Personal property which may include security deposits, wrongful death collections, motor vehicle, health aids, and others.
- Alimony and child support.
- Public benefits such as social security, veteran’s benefit, and unemployment compensation.
- Tools of trade.
- 90 percent of unpaid wages.
Hiring a Bankruptcy Attorney in New York
Considering the complicated process of filing for bankruptcy in New York, it often makes sense to hire the services of a bankruptcy lawyer in New York. Attorneys will be able to smoothen the filing process by providing you with the documents, explaining each aspect of the requirements, and making sure that your application would not take a long time to decide.
Here are some of the known benefits of hiring bankruptcy lawyers in New York.
Ensure that You Meet Requirements
There is not much point filing for bankruptcy if you do not meet the requirements set forth by the law. A lawyer would be able to make sure that you have legal ground for pursuing bankruptcy, whether you are applying for a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13. In fact, a lawyer would be able to advise you on which Chapter is more promising if you want your bankruptcy application approved.
Ensure Completeness of Forms
This is where many stumble when applying for bankruptcy. Chances are you are having a hard time figuring out what forms apply to you, how to consolidate different information, and the proper way to file them all together. A lawyer – being an expert in the process – should be able to help you with this. In fact, most lawyers take care of the filing and follow-up process themselves, merely informing you on how things stand with your application.
The exemptions stated previously are just a small slice of what you can and can’t add to your bankruptcy application. A lawyer would be able to tell you the maximum exemptions you can get for each item and how to best maximize the benefits of such exemption. This is important especially if you have specific items that you really want to hold on to.
Your creditors are likely to protest your application for bankruptcy. After all, this means that they will not be getting the whole amount of what you owe them. A good lawyer on your side therefore can argue your situation and convince creditors that it is actually in their best interest to agree with the conditions. As for Chapter 13 bankruptcies, you will be asked to create a repayment schedule which some creditors may protest against because it puts them at a disadvantaged position. Again, lawyers can help you argue your side as well as make sure that you create a favorable schedule that makes your finances more manageable.
Of course, let us not forget the fact that bankruptcy lawyers increase the possibility of getting approved by the State. With experience on their side, lawyers will be able to guide you through the system and come out better.
Talk to your chosen New York bankruptcy attorney before choosing to hire their services. As with most, the quality of service you get depends largely on the quality of the person you hire. An attorney who has ample experience in the field and open to talking about your case would be the best option since they will surely keep you up to date about how things are working out.
New York Bankruptcy Lawyers Fees
The cost of hiring an attorney is one of the reasons why people refrain from getting one when filing for bankruptcy. You will find however that New York bankruptcy attorney fees are not as expensive as you might think. In fact, there are several ways of paying their fees, depending on which one best appeal to you. Flat-fee is the most common wherein you pay a specific amount regardless of how extensive or how difficult the process may be. The flat fee may run from $1300 to $1500 depending on the firm. You may deposit a specific sum and pay off the rest afterwards.
The cost is obviously cheaper if you do the filing yourself. New York requires payment of certain fees when submitting bankruptcy papers but keep in mind that you will be doing most of the work yourself.
Other lawyers may have a more itemized approach to their service but more often than not, this does not go beyond $1500 for both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 filings.