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Did I hire the wrong attorney?

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  • Did I hire the wrong attorney?

    These issues I wonder about.......
    1. My attorney never gave me the option to sell my non exempt property and spend the money
    2. My attorney never suggested I get a new car before filing, my car has 100K mile s on it when I filed, it's paid for though, valued at $7000 ( iowa exempt)
    3. My attorney never told me his fees would be this much, He said it was $1300 to file but he filed a claim for another $2700 which has been paid
    4. My attorney submitted my plan with a trustee payment of $265 but the Trustee forced it up to $440 because of my home equity which is suppose to be exempt I think. I bought the home in 2004 and lived in until 2007. I rented them home out from 2007 - April 2015. I moved back in in April of 2015 I filed BK13 in March of 2016.

    Is it too late to get a second opinion from another Attorney?

    Should I just take it as is now? I can handle the trustee payment with no problem but I don't no how I'll pay my medical bills and if my car will need major repairs during the 60 month plan. I drive 30K miles a year.

    TIA

  • #2
    Originally posted by 5yrplan View Post
    1. My attorney never gave me the option to sell my non exempt property and spend the money
    Chapter 13s are special and most people don't need to sell and liquidate! The entire purpose of Chapter 13 is to keep property.

    Originally posted by 5yrplan View Post
    2. My attorney never suggested I get a new car before filing, my car has 100K mile s on it when I filed, it's paid for though, valued at $7000 ( iowa exempt)
    Many attorney's don't directly "recommend" getting a new car before filing because they may be considered "debt relief agencies" and that makes things more complex! This is a real thing and is why some attorneys will say that "you might want to consider getting a new car (wink) (wink)" and not directly tell you to buy a car. It's a strategy and they must be extremely careful or they have to fill out additional paperwork declaring that they are other than a bankruptcy attorney.

    Originally posted by 5yrplan View Post
    3. My attorney never told me his fees would be this much, He said it was $1300 to file but he filed a claim for another $2700 which has been paid
    You always need to actually read your fee agreement. All Chapter 13s have about $1,300-$1,500 to file with another $2,000-$3,500 "in the plan". This is standard. Chapter 13s cost at least twice to three times as much as a Chapter 7 because the Plan, cram downs, relief from stays, hearings, lien strips, lien avoidance, and other items are much more time consuming.

    Originally posted by 5yrplan View Post
    4. My attorney submitted my plan with a trustee payment of $265 but the Trustee forced it up to $440 because of my home equity which is suppose to be exempt I think. I bought the home in 2004 and lived in until 2007. I rented them home out from 2007 - April 2015. I moved back in in April of 2015 I filed BK13 in March of 2016.
    I can't speak to your exemption issues and don't know where you even live. There may be local precendence (cases) which may point to these issues.

    Originally posted by 5yrplan View Post
    Is it too late to get a second opinion from another Attorney?
    No, but they won't take your case as it was already filed.

    Originally posted by 5yrplan View Post
    Should I just take it as is now? I can handle the trustee payment with no problem but I don't no how I'll pay my medical bills and if my car will need major repairs during the 60 month plan. I drive 30K miles a year.
    You can always petition the court to incur debt. Incurring debt is actually a thing that is done often in Chapter 13. It just requires patience and planning as you typically need a hearing. In some District, the Trustee has a form and will let you complete the form and then the Trustee will have your attorney file a motion and they will concur with the motion to incur debt.
    Chapter 7 (No Asset/Non-Consumer) Filed (Pro Se) 7/08 (converted from Chapter 13 - 2/10)
    Status: (Auto) Discharged and Closed! 5/10
    Visit My BKForum Blog: justbroke's Blog


    I am not an attorney. Any advice provided is not legal advice.

    Comment


    • #3
      I live in IA which has no limit to the value of a home exemption if it fits in the acreage limits.
      Should I just lay low make my payments? 5 years is a long time so many things can come about. I can't stop thinking about trying to end this earlier.
      Thanks

      Comment


      • #4
        There must be some issue with your homestead exemption that only local attorneys/trustees understand. It could also be questionable since you didn't maintain it as your homestead for at least some period of time (50%, or some number of continuous years)... and no one wanted to fight the Trustee.

        You can just lay low and make your payments over the 60 months, or make a fuss about the homestead exemption (lack thereof). It's up to you.
        Last edited by justbroke; 12-08-2017, 02:43 PM.
        Chapter 7 (No Asset/Non-Consumer) Filed (Pro Se) 7/08 (converted from Chapter 13 - 2/10)
        Status: (Auto) Discharged and Closed! 5/10
        Visit My BKForum Blog: justbroke's Blog


        I am not an attorney. Any advice provided is not legal advice.

        Comment


        • #5
          OK I agree that makes sense but if I were him I'd explain it. I'm going to increase my size of household to two. How do I get my plan/means test redone once I do? My fiance' has no income.
          Thanks

          Comment


          • #6
            Once you are married, you can ask your attorney to file a Motion to Modify Confirmed plan along with a new Means Test and Schedule I/J. Prior to marriage, it's questionable whether a Trustee would allow you to modify the plan based on relationship that doesn't have a legal status. I could be wrong, but there have been many cases where non-legal relationship statuses are not recognized for purposes of Means Testing.
            Chapter 7 (No Asset/Non-Consumer) Filed (Pro Se) 7/08 (converted from Chapter 13 - 2/10)
            Status: (Auto) Discharged and Closed! 5/10
            Visit My BKForum Blog: justbroke's Blog


            I am not an attorney. Any advice provided is not legal advice.

            Comment


            • #7
              justbroke has already given you excellent answers. I just wanted to make a couple additional points.

              Originally posted by 5yrplan View Post
              I can handle the trustee payment with no problem but I don't no how I'll pay my medical bills and if my car will need major repairs during the 60 month plan. I drive 30K miles a year.
              The fact that you can handle the payment with no problem is a good indication that it is a fair payment. If that changes during your plan, then you deal with it at that point.

              The only reason I knew I could buy a car before filing is from reading bkforum. I asked my attorney and he said that if I need a car, I could buy one if I can afford it. I don't think he would have brought it up if I hadn't asked.
              LadyInTheRed is in the black!
              Filed Chap 13 April 2010. Discharged May 2015.
              $143,000 in debt discharged for $36,500, including attorneys fees. Money well spent!

              Comment

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