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Adversary Proceedings

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  • Adversary Proceedings

    After consulting a lawyer yesterday he told me that Adversary Proceedings is not covered by the bk fee for Ch 7( 1,320 including filing fee and 2 counseling classes).
    Is it right? What should I do?

    Mike.
    Hope is in our way. After BK!

  • #2
    The attorney's fee is usually a fixed amount that does not include "extras" like AP's since most BK filings don't have AP's.
    Filed CH 7 9/30/2008
    Discharged Jan 5, 2009! Closed Jan 18, 2009

    I am not an attorney. None of my advice is legal advice in any way..

    Comment


    • #3
      AP's are actually quite rare and most attorney's do limit their service. But you need to ask yourself, do you really want to hire an attorney that limits his service to you (what else is NOT covered). Granted, if you go to a full service attorney or firm, you will pay more, but you are also paying for the peace of mind that if something were to go haywire in your case, you would not be on your own.

      I never really understood why attorneys try to be like WalMart, you may be paying the cheapest price, but paying a cheap price for crap service is still getting crap service.
      Last edited by HHM; 12-09-2009, 11:07 AM.

      Comment


      • #4
        My 1500 fee + filing costs did not include representation in an AP either. The fee agreement that I signed was very clear as to what was included and what was not. I still signed the agreement because, IMO, the attorney I hired is well worth it - he is experienced, yet doesn't run a "BK mill." So far, he has responded to every question I have had, and he always responds timely, by email mostly, and gives me advice and reassures me. He always ends the communication with "nothing to worry about." Isn't that what we pay an attorney for? To do our worrying? He has definitely added some comfort to this process and from what I've heard on the street, he is respected by the local TT. I hope my 341 is uneventful and that no APs are filed. I wish you the same.
        Stopped paying CC: September 2009 ; Retained attorney: 9/9/2009; Filed Chap 7: January 18, 2010; 341 Meeting: March 9, 2010; Discharged and Closed: April 29, 2010

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks guys for replies. I have couple more appointments and I will check their offer.
          Thanks ace13. I also need an attorney to feel comfortable with.
          Hope is in our way. After BK!

          Comment


          • #6
            Can you hire another attorney in the interim to help you with the adversarial proceedings. I may end up in the same situation with trying to handle tax liens that I owe that I need to try to see if I can lift.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by HHM View Post

              I never really understood why attorneys try to be like WalMart, you may be paying the cheapest price, but paying for crap service is still getting crap service.
              Because people will spend a whole day on the phone price-shopping to find someone who is $20 cheaper than you are. And because they're ignorant of whether they got crap service or not. They may actually think they got good service unless and until something their attorney didn't do comes back to bite them in the a$$.

              So your prices for your services have to be ala carte. So much for the basic bankruptcy. Additional fees for lien avoidance if that's needed. Additional fees to avoid non-purchase money security interests if that's needed. Additional fees if they have more than 30 or so creditors. A LOT of additional fees if they need an adversary proceeding of any complexity at all. Adversary proceedings are rare, though not unheard of, in consumer bankruptcies. But when they do crop up, they are a BIG deal. They involve a lot of work and expense. You'd be shooting yourself in the foot big-time to quote fees that included adversary proceeding fees.

              If you try to quote people a one-price-fits-all bankruptcy, your pricing will appear out of line.
              Pay no attention to anything I post. I graduated last in my class from a fly-by-night law school that no longer exists; I never studied or went to class; and I only post on internet forums when I'm too drunk to crawl away from the computer.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by cinderella View Post
                Can you hire another attorney in the interim to help you with the adversarial proceedings. I may end up in the same situation with trying to handle tax liens that I owe that I need to try to see if I can lift.
                Why would you do that? My bk attorney provides AP and other bk-related services, he just bills hourly to do it. Most experienced attorneys do provide the service just not for one low price. I think it is extremely important that anyone considering bk consult with many attorneys before retaining. Good luck.
                Stopped paying CC: September 2009 ; Retained attorney: 9/9/2009; Filed Chap 7: January 18, 2010; 341 Meeting: March 9, 2010; Discharged and Closed: April 29, 2010

                Comment


                • #9
                  I consulted with at least 12 attorneys and made many many phone calls to get a feel of some of these attorneys before selecting one. The one I chose seem liked the best of all of them and I have paid over $3,500 to file my case. Anything more that I simply did not have money to pay. They seemed VERY helpful before I filed and at the correspondense. Sometimes you see their true colors after you actually file and pay your case in full.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by cinderella View Post
                    I consulted with at least 12 attorneys and made many many phone calls to get a feel of some of these attorneys before selecting one. The one I chose seem liked the best of all of them and I have paid over $3,500 to file my case. Anything more that I simply did not have money to pay. They seemed VERY helpful before I filed and at the correspondense. Sometimes you see their true colors after you actually file and pay your case in full.
                    Did your attorney advise you he/she would not assist with your possible issues? IMO, I would think it would cost you more money in the long run to retain a second attorney v. paying your current an hourly fee to do the "extras." If your current attorney won't help you with your issues, that is a different story; but if he/she will, and is experienced to do so, why not go that route. Of course, I do not know your entire story, and am just offering my 2 cents. This whole process can be overwhelming and sometimes we let the fear of the unknown guide us.

                    I hope it works out for you!!!
                    Stopped paying CC: September 2009 ; Retained attorney: 9/9/2009; Filed Chap 7: January 18, 2010; 341 Meeting: March 9, 2010; Discharged and Closed: April 29, 2010

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      No, they said they would but now dont bother to return phone calls or emails. I always get a call back from the parallegal instead how does not know much. They just send messages to me on behalf of the attorney. I just have to call and keep nagging them. I dont even call or email much. I would be perfectly ok not to call them if I did not think I needed some answers to some questions.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        This is the common practice. AP's usually run $5000 and up.

                        Originally posted by BrokeMike View Post
                        After consulting a lawyer yesterday he told me that Adversary Proceedings is not covered by the bk fee for Ch 7( 1,320 including filing fee and 2 counseling classes).
                        Is it right? What should I do?

                        Mike.
                        Filed Pro Se: 10/16/2009
                        341 Scheduled: 11/23/2009
                        Last Day for Objections: 1/22/2010
                        Discharged: 1/28/2010

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          But let's remember that the AP (adversary proceeding) also is going to cost the respondent the same if not more! I have seen aggressive creditors spend tens of thousands just to get a relief from stay (and be defeated). I have seen creditors (lienholders) go sell their lien and proof of claim just days before the hearing just to get out from underneath.

                          Filing an AP is just one more gambit. You can assume that the attorneys for hte parties are going to be talking settlement quickly. And if you are doing it pro-se (remember, there is no filing fee for an AP within the BK system for a debtor, only for a creditor), then you are putting them on notice that their legal bills are about to take off. Of course, the adverse party can also fold and withdraw the proof of claim. SO - one approach: write the adverse party (of the attorney if you are represented) and tell them that you will be filing an AP if they do not (a) modify the claim, or (b) withdraw the claim, or whatever else is your objective. I once saw a $50,000 proof of claim vanish without the actual filing of an AP - just the suggestion that the filing was imminent. the adverse party doesn't want those legal fees either.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by jribe View Post
                            This is the common practice. AP's usually run $5000 and up.
                            It is just cowardice by the attorney. If the attorney has sales skills, confidence in his ability to assess a case at an initial consultation, there is no need to nickel and dime. MSbklawyer, and others with that mind set, are leaving money on the table by having "what if" menus in their fee agreement. Just imagine how strong a selling point you would have (and higher fees you could charge) if you told clients, "all those other losers are going to nickel and dime you, but I am so confident in my ability that I will charge a guaranteed flat rate for your case, no matter what, including AP's"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by HHM View Post
                              It is just cowardice by the attorney. If the attorney has sales skills, confidence in his ability to assess a case at an initial consultation, there is no need to nickel and dime. MSbklawyer, and others with that mind set, are leaving money on the table by having "what if" menus in their fee agreement. Just imagine how strong a selling point you would have (and higher fees you could charge) if you told clients, "all those other losers are going to nickel and dime you, but I am so confident in my ability that I will charge a guaranteed flat rate for your case, no matter what, including AP's"
                              I have to disagree.

                              If AP's are rare, which they seem to be, accounting for the average AP defense could add hundreds of dollars per filer. This would be a deal-killer for most people.

                              AP's are also not one-size-fits-all proceedings. Some might last one court hearing. Others may take dozens.

                              With something so unpredictable, I would not, if I were an attorney, ever consider offering a plan that included unlimted AP defense. At least not at a rate the average person would be willing to pay.

                              Lawyer: Yes, I AM $800 higher than the average attorney, however, you ARE protected, just in case this incredibly rare thing called an Adversary Proceeding occurs. It happens in less than one percent of cases, but you can bet I got your back if it does.

                              Me: Err, I think I will go with the cheaper guy, since this probably won't happen to me.

                              Sorry, sounds like financial suicide to attorneys who would try this. If it would work, it seems they would ALL be doing it. They are not ignorant people, in general.

                              Best to all,

                              -dmc
                              11-20-09-- Filed Chapter 7
                              12-23-09-- 341 Meeting-Early Christmas Gift?
                              3-9-10--Discharged

                              Comment

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