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Pro Se Chapter 13s Are Special!

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  • Pro Se Chapter 13s Are Special!

    We all speculated but never really thought about how many Chapter 13 cases actually reach confirmation. How about the percentages based on those that are represented by attorneys? Would you believe that only 55% of attorney-represented debtors make it to Chapter 13 confirmation? Incredible... right?

    The real kicker for Pro Se debtors, is that only 0.4% make it to confirmation (in California). That's less than 1 in every 200 Pro Se filings.

    I'm not bragging or boasting, because others on BKForum have obtained confirmation as a Pro Se debtor, but it's nice to know that we are in the top 1%! Just think, 45% of the cases filed by attorneys do not get to confirmation.

    I don't dare speculate how many Pro Se Chapter 13 confirmed cases actually make it to discharge. The report quips that "[a]pproximately 92 percent of the debtors did not receive a discharge." They continue by also saying that all "debtors who filed a chapter 13 case and did not convert to chapter 7 have had their cases dismissed." I guess that makes it 0% of Pro Se Chapter 13 cases which were confirmed and made it to discharge as a Chapter 13. (Another source mentions that it is 1 in 2,500 Pro Se Chapter 13 cases that start as a Chapter 13 and receive a discharge as a Chapter 13 (under 11 USC 1328).

    I think we just had one recently here on BKForum, and we all salute tigergem!

    Approximately 55 percent of attorney-represented cases reach confirmation. The number of self-represented debtors that manage to get to confirmation of a chapter 13 plan is 0.4 percent – clearly demonstrating that it is nearly impossible for this population to succeed in chapter 13.
    .
    .
    .
    Finding out more about the 39 percent of self-represented chapter 7 cases that are dismissed, and the nearly 100 percent of self-represented chapter 13 cases that are dismissed, would allow us to better identify abusive or fraudulent filings and reach out to those who just need better legal assistance.

    Source: California Bankruptcy Courts 2011 Report
    http://ecf-ciao.cacb.uscourts.gov/Co...sectioniib.htm
    http://www.cacb.uscourts.gov/sites/c...eport_2011.pdf
    Last edited by justbroke; 02-24-2015, 10:04 PM. Reason: editing some mistakes
    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.

  • #2
    bkforum member beat the odds! JustBroke, tigergem and I think there was another pro se Chap 13 discharge in the recent past. Congratulations for accomplishing what so few are able to accomplish.

    It is very sad that only 55% of attorney represented Chap 13's make it to confirmation. Perhaps somebody should look into that. I'm sure a certain % were filed to keep creditors at bay temporarily. But 55% seems very low. Why are attorneys filing Chap 13s that they can't get confirmed?
    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


    • #3
      Originally posted by LadyInTheRed View Post
      It is very sad that only 55% of attorney represented Chap 13's make it to confirmation. Perhaps somebody should look into that. I'm sure a certain % were filed to keep creditors at bay temporarily. But 55% seems very low. Why are attorneys filing Chap 13s that they can't get confirmed?
      There was some speculation that some people file Chapter 13 without any expectation of getting to confirmation. As you write, some do it for the temporary stay and this is very likely the reason why Congress added the rules which temper serial filings.

      Actually, after I finished reading more of the report, I'm not as special as tigergem and the other forum member. I converted to a Chapter 7 to get my discharge. While I still did get to the less than 1/2 of a percent (0.4%) of the pro se people that make it to confirmation, I'm not that special.

      Here's to tigergem and others that tread these waters. You are amongst the most accomplished debtors.
      Last edited by justbroke; 02-24-2015, 06:45 PM. Reason: tigergem is actually discharged
      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


      • #4
        I think you are pretty special, justbroke!
        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


        • #5
          Awe, shucks!
          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


          • #6
            Include me in your fan club!
            "To go bravely forward is to invite a miracle."

            "Worry is the darkroom where negatives are formed."

            Comment


            • #7
              I think you are special too JB :-) Thanks for posting that. You were a real inspiration to me throughout the process. And I get the feeling that very few people "get it" why I am so giddy about my discharge. I remember my trustee saying that I was the first Ch 13 Pro Se debtor to make it to confirmation in our district since BAPCA. And he did make the comment that I would likely be the first discharged as well. That was at my confirmation hearing. I am so geeky proud of that lol.

              Comment


              • #8
                Yeah those figures might seem strange, but I see over and over again where debtors just don't abide by the payment terms, either the fee installments or the monthly payments to the trustee... I see that A LOT... and then they get dismissed. I don't know if attorneys need to hire babysitters for their clients or what, but if you think about it... if the REASON someone is in bankruptcy is because they have no budget management skills or are just plain irresponsible, then that behavior is not going to be changed by the filing.

                I modified my plan A LOT, as soon as I saw something was coming up the pike to change my circumstances. My trustee finally told me, you know, if you have to, it is ok to skip a month and make it up the following month if you have to. (I think I modified maybe a little too often?) "Oh." I said.

                It never happened that way, but one time in all the years, a payment actually got lost in the mail and I freaked out lol. And at one point I took a 4 month moratorium on payments. I had legitimate reasons for doing so, but was relieved that I was able to do so.

                I think maybe debtors with attorneys don't realize that modification is possible, or maybe they can't afford to pay the attorney fees to make a mod, or maybe they just assume the attorney will fix it if they mess it up or the trustee won't notice? I dunno... Or maybe attorneys aren't truly making the plans affordable? There could be all kinds of reasons.
                Last edited by tigergem; 02-27-2015, 12:42 AM. Reason: fingers faster than brain.

                Comment


                • #9
                  While nothing ever repeats itself here at BKForum, let me just say this...

                  A Chapter 13 debtor who can not or refuses to budget, will never make it to discharge. A Chapter 13 debtor who can not or does not save money, will likely never make it to discharge. A Chapter 13 debtor that does not speak up, when they are having money issues, will never make it to discharge.

                  The successful Chapter 13 debtor makes and keeps a budget, saves money, and advises their attorney immediately when there is a change in income.
                  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

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