Most state court systems have guidelines in place for what a Dayton bankruptcy lawyer can reasonably charge their clients. This helps cut down on predatory practices and ensures the client gets proper protection. Whether it is a no-look fee or a presumptively reasonable fee, it involves looking out for the best interests of the client.
Bankruptcy Lawyer’s Fees Must Be Reasonable
According to bankruptcy law, bankruptcy lawyers who file Chapter 13 bankruptcies must disclose their fees to the court. The court reviews these fees and determines whether they are reasonable under the circumstances; if not, the court may order some or all of the attorney’s fees to be refunded to the client. Most local courts have fee guidelines, which state that if the attorney’s fees are lower than the guidelines, those fees are exempt from review except in certain cases. This practice avoids the courts having to review attorney fees in every single case. It is known as a “no-look” fee or a presumptively reasonable fee. Most bankruptcy lawyers tend to set their fees within these guidelines to avoid review, and thus it is seen as a kind of fee limit.
Services Can Vary
Chapter 13 bankruptcies vary wildly from case to case, and so do the services included in an attorney’s fee for filing. Sometimes the fee includes all filing services without additional charge; other times the attorney may charge for new services, as long as those fees are properly disclosed.
Finding Your Local Fee Guidelines
Bankruptcy courts have links to the local fee guidelines for the district. Many Chapter 13 trustees have websites that contain the information. Guidelines vary by location but are generally within the $2,000 – $5,000 range.