Bankruptcy Law

Bankruptcy Law Questions? Ask a Bankruptcy Lawyer.

Ask a Lawyer,
Get an Answer ASAP!

Bankruptcy Law

I am currently in a chapter 13 bankruptcy filed in 2013.

Customer Question
I am currently in a...
I am currently in a chapter 13 bankruptcy filed in April 2013. My plan was confirmed in July 2013. A month afterwards I had received two notices of proofs of claim submitted to the courts from both my 1st and 2nd mortgages that contradicted earlier statements on the 1st mortgage on payoff information and arrearage and asking the court to start payments on my behalf to the second which is being stripped according to my lawyer. I also have been receiving bills from my creditors throughout this process even though they were to have stopped. I called my lawyer and sent emails to address these issues only to receive brief reassurances that everything was fine which I took in trust. One month later I received a bill notice from the court that my law firm is billing me for these email responses 562.00 that is to be added to my current plan. I have a chance to respond to the court to refute these charges (which I do) within 21 days. I have tried to talk to my lawyer first who responded that cursory glances to emails, not having a lot of time do to other court matters, billing doesn't always reflect actual dates and time spent on my issues, but that calls and emails do take extra time on my lawyers part to address these issues. My question is that this is all part of handling a bankruptcy case isn't it? I get notices in the mail I should be able to ask my lawyer about them and not expect to be billed more than what I have already paid out in the set fee we originally agreed upon. That is why I hired an attorney in the first place I am not familiar with the bankruptcy process or the laws and if I have questions about court notices including the one I received from the court asking for payment to be added on behalf of my law firm I should be able to ask my lawyer about these issues without incurring more debt which is the whole point of why I'm doing the bankruptcy in the first place. I feel I am backed into a corner here. I don't want to file a formal response with the court and risk upsetting my lawyer to the point where the issues that are soon going to be addressed ie. mortgage modification and other points left may not be properly addressed because I do dispute the charges on the other hand I don't want my lawyer to think that it's alright to bill me for work that has been overstated or not addressed at all.
Submitted: 4 years ago.Category: Bankruptcy Law
Show More
Show Less
Ask Your Own Bankruptcy Law Question
Answered in 1 hour by:
10/7/2013
Bankruptcy Lawyer: Elizabeth Prentice, Attorney replied 4 years ago
Elizabeth Prentice
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 174
Experience: Managing Attorney for one of the largest consumer bankruptcy firms in America.
Verified
I am a bankruptcy attorney and I would be happy to assist you. I am sorry to hear about your matter and understand that Chapter 13 can be very difficult to understand, Let me clear up your confusion on all of the issues. First, the creditors are required to file a proof oc claim with the court. The proofs of claim are actually the correct numbers, even if you don't agree. The reason is that these numbers have included interest and their attorneys fees up to that date. Your bankruptcy did not stop the amount from escalating since it is a secured debt. Further, they had to retain an attorney after you filed bankruptcy which would have compounded the amount due to attorneys fees and legal costs. The 1st mortgage is the only proof of claim you should be concerned with. It should have a copy of your original mortgage signed by you, attached to it. Make sure it has your name and it is not someone else's mortgage. Next, you should not be concerned about the 2nd mortgage. Although your attorney has filed a motion to strip the lien (and it sounds like it was granted since your plan was approved), let me explain this further since most debtor's in bankruptcy are confused about what "stripping" means. Essentially, your 2nd mortgage is not YET gone. In order for it to be fully removed from your case, you must continue to make payments to the trustee and complete your 3 or 5 year plan. Only then will you recive a discharge. Then, when you recieve your discharge, you may go and complete whatever is required in your county recorder's office to take the lien 2nd mortgage lien off the house or request that the 2nd mortgage company do it. You will need a copy of the order (you can get a copy at the court clerk's office) and your discharge which will come in the mail. Many times debtors are unable to make it all the way through a Chapter 13. If that were to happen, the 2nd mortgage would come back as if it never left. This is why they filed a proof of claim.

With regards XXXXX XXXXX attorneys fees, typically in a Chapter 13 debtors will pay a flat fee. For example - $1500 before the case is filed by the debtor and $3500 in the plan. HOWEVER, Chapter attorney fees bill by the hour. So if a client's calls, meetings, work in file exceeds that amount, OR if work is performed after confirmation of the Chapter 13 plan, the attorney may file a motion to request that they be paid in the plan. Attorneys do not work for free and they flat fee that a client pays is not limitless. You should read your original attorney retainer agreement close. Your attorney probably charges $300/hour which is the norm in the industry. Your emails would have required he go and research your case, evaluate the docket and other documents in your file in order to respond to you. Unfortunately, most bankruptcy attorneys have so many clients that we can not remember them all, which is why when a client asks a question we have to go back and review your file, which we are sure that the clients appreciate so we aren't telling incorrect information. The motion your attorney filed with the court is so that your attorney can be paid out of the plan. It merely decreases the amount that the unsecured creditors get. So think of it this way - your attorney is going to be paid for the work he did for you instead of some credit card company or your second mortgage. Therefore, your attorney is entitled to ask to be paid for providing services in excess of what he was obligated under the attorney retainer agreement. In the future though, you should not hesitate to contact him if you have a problem, but remember that he has the right to file a motion to be compensated.

I hope my answer has assisted you and that you will provide me a positive rating!
Ask Your Own Bankruptcy Law Question
Ask Elizabeth Prentice Your Own Question
Elizabeth Prentice
Elizabeth Prentice
Elizabeth Prentice, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 174
174 Satisfied Customers
Experience: Managing Attorney for one of the largest consumer bankruptcy firms in America.

Elizabeth Prentice is online now

A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How JustAnswer works:

  • Ask an ExpertExperts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional AnswerVia email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction GuaranteeRate the answer you receive.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises!

Gary B.Edmond, OK

My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer.

EricRedwood City, CA

I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight.

MichaelWichita, KS

PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent.

Three H.Houston, TX

Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!!

ElaineAtlanta, GA

It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem.

TonyApopka, FL

Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help.

Mary C.Freshfield, Liverpool, UK

< Previous | Next >

Meet the Experts:

Terry L.

Terry L.

Attorney

2,672 satisfied customers

Better Business Bureau. 18yrs bankruptcy experience. Chicago Bar Assoc. American Bankruptcy Institute member.

cortrightlaw

cortrightlaw

Attorney

511 satisfied customers

Attorney practicing Bankruptcy Law including Chapter 7, Chapter 11, Chapter 12, and Chapter 13.

JoeLawyer

JoeLawyer

Attorney

376 satisfied customers

Attorney in the practice of Bankruptcy Law since 1996

A.J.

A.J.

Attorney

262 satisfied customers

Experienced consumer bankruptcy attorney.

Fritz

Fritz

Attorney

209 satisfied customers

Florida attorney with extensive experience in Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 consumer bankruptcy cases

Law Girl

Law Girl

Attorney

153 satisfied customers

I am an attorney.

Paul K, Esq.

Paul K, Esq.

Attorney

141 satisfied customers

10 years Exp., Great customer service, Prompt responses.

< Previous | Next >

Related Bankruptcy Law Questions
A few years ago I lost a house to the trustees. It went on a
A few years ago I lost a house to the trustees. It went on a short sale. Now the Franchise tax board says I Tax Board says I "earned" $184,000.00 and that I owe them $20,000.00 in taxes. Of course I r… read more
FiveStarLaw
FiveStarLaw
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
477 satisfied customers
I am a small creditor and have been sent a notice of motion
I am a small creditor and have been sent a notice of motion for the debtor to be at bankruptcy court on Thursday It is a chapter 11. I am without funds. Do I just show up? Have my proof? I do not need… read more
cfortunato
cfortunato
J.D.
7,967 satisfied customers
I am filing an ammended plan for chapter 13 bankruptcy,
I am filing an ammended plan for chapter 13 bankruptcy, which I am handeling without a lawyer. I know I must send notice to all creditors. the orders say I must file a cirtificate of service. Can I do… read more
KUMI95
KUMI95
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
17 satisfied customers
My question is regarding a bankruptcy, chapter 13. one of my
Hello. my question is regarding a bankruptcy, chapter 13. one of my clients filled for chapter thirteen 8 years ago. I leaned several pieces of his equipment. We went to trial in Oakland ca. several m… read more
Ray
Ray
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
30,219 satisfied customers
If you have a trial scheduled and the US Trustees Office is
If you have a trial scheduled and the US Trustees Office is trying to get your case dismissed and you have been dealing with your attorney who has been doing things that will get him disbarred, how do… read more
Michael Bradley
Michael Bradley
JD
1,127 satisfied customers
I filed bankruptcy and just received a notice saying
hello. I filed bankruptcy and just received a notice saying sheriffs notice of bankruptcy procedures. pursant to a creditors instructions under a writ of execution , the sheriff levied on and is curre… read more
DrakeLAW
DrakeLAW
Juris Doctorate
831 satisfied customers
I filed a proof of claim for wages awarded by the CA Labor
I filed a proof of claim for wages awarded by the CA Labor Commission but the earned date is outside of the 180 day threshold per 507(a)(4) to qualify for priority status. Can I tardily file a wage cl… read more
PaulmoJD
PaulmoJD
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
106 satisfied customers
I have hard evidence that the Trustee and Trustee atty were
Hello - I have hard evidence that the Trustee and Trustee atty were negligent, breached their fiduciary duties and allowed my federal case of fraud in the inducement run the SOL, without pursuing as t… read more
Dwayne B.
Dwayne B.
Juris Doctor
28,498 satisfied customers
The Trustee in a corporate bankruptcy case erased and/ or
The Trustee in a corporate bankruptcy case erased and/ or deleted tape recorded testimony of a key witness in a 2004 bankruptcy rule deposition. what recourse do I have being that witnesses testimony … read more
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
5,921 satisfied customers
Second opinion] The Trustee in a corporate bankruptcy case
Second opinion] The Trustee in a corporate bankruptcy case erased and/ or deleted tape recorded testimony of a key witness in a 2004 bankruptcy rule deposition. what recourse do I have being that witn… read more
DrakeLAW
DrakeLAW
Juris Doctorate
831 satisfied customers
My confirmation meeting is next week and th trustee wants a
my confirmation meeting is next week and th trustee wants a modified plan so i won't be confirmed, what may happen … read more
Phillips Esq.
Phillips Esq.
Attorney
Juris Doctor
17,979 satisfied customers
I received notice from the Trustee of an "Order Striking
I received notice from the Trustee of an "Order Striking Filing For Failure To Comply With Required Procedures".I believe the problem is with a creditor who had an undeliverable address, however, I ha… read more
DrakeLAW
DrakeLAW
Juris Doctorate
831 satisfied customers
I received a notice of bankruptcy from my ex husband. I am
I received a notice of bankruptcy from my ex husband. I am named as a creditor who has unsecured claims. It is domestic support obligation. Do I have to fill out the proof of claims form? If so what d… read more
LegalGems
LegalGems
Juris Doctorate
10,163 satisfied customers
I had just filed chpt 13 met with trustee last Thursday I
I had just filed chpt 13 met with trustee last Thursday I got a surprise when I got home my son had paid off my home and car 359000 What do i do from here? … read more
PaulmoJD
PaulmoJD
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
106 satisfied customers
I recently made my last chapter 13 payment to the trustees
I recently made my last chapter 13 payment to the trustees office. I fell behind on my mortgage and have been in a trial modification. On the notice of final cure my lender stated the amount I was del… read more
socrateaser
socrateaser
1,031 satisfied customers
I need a sample letter to respond to a Amended Notice Motion
I need a sample letter to respond to a Amended Notice Motion in bankruptcy. Its a Motion for Relief from a Automatic Stay.… read more
Terry L.
Terry L.
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
2,672 satisfied customers
Does the trustee need a court order to sell a debtors
Does the trustee need a court order to sell a debtors primary residence? The equity is claimed as exempt, but the trustee believes there is more equity in the house than the debtor claimed. Reference … read more
Phillips Esq.
Phillips Esq.
Attorney
Juris Doctor
17,979 satisfied customers
An unimpaired creditor filed a really dodgy proof of claim
An unimpaired creditor filed a really dodgy proof of claim in my bankruptcy. They claim to be the lender, but that's because one of their employees is also a MERS asst. secretary, and signed an assign… read more
PaulmoJD
PaulmoJD
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
106 satisfied customers

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

Show MoreShow Less

Ask Your Question

x