Top Grand Forks, ND Bankruptcy Lawyers Near You
Bankruptcy Lawyers | Grand Forks Office
2825 36th Avenue South, Suite A, Grand Forks, ND 58201
Grand Forks Bankruptcy Information
Lead Counsel independently verifies Bankruptcy attorneys in Grand Forks and checks their standing with North Dakota bar associations.Our Verification Process and Criteria
- Ample Experience Attorneys must meet stringent qualifications and prove they practice in the area of law they’re verified in.
- Good Standing Be in good standing with their bar associations and maintain a clean disciplinary record.
- Annual Review Submit to an annual review to retain their Lead Counsel Verified status.
- Client Commitment Pledge to follow the highest quality client service and ethical standards.
What Is Bankruptcy?Bankruptcy is a legal process that allows an individual or a business (the debtor) to get a fresh financial start by forgiving debts that the debtor cannot repay while allowing creditors to obtain some repayment through liquidation of the debtor’s assets. Federal bankruptcy courts manage cases according to the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. Bankruptcy law includes several types of bankruptcy. Chapter 7, chapter 11, and chapter 13 bankruptcies are the most common.
- Individuals typically file Chapter 7 bankruptcy to clear their unsecured debt, such as credit card balances and medical bills. The debtor must liquidate nonexempt assets, such as a second home, stocks, and bonds, to repay some of their unsecured debt. The remaining unsecured debt is typically discharged. The debtor is not required to liquidate exempt assets, such as household goods, clothing, and a personal vehicle (up to a particular value).
- Chapter 11 bankruptcy allows a business to reorganize and remain in business to become profitable. This type of bankruptcy allows the business to continue its activities while working on a debt repayment plan under court supervision.
Are There Any Bankruptcy Lawyers Near Me In Grand Forks, ND?Finding the right fit for your case may seem daunting, but many attorneys in your area are ready to help advocate for clients like you. The LawInfo directory can help you find verified bankruptcy lawyers in Grand Forks. It can significantly benefit you to consult with an experienced bankruptcy attorney early in your case.
What Can a North Dakota Bankruptcy Lawyer Do For Me?Filing for bankruptcy is a complex process requiring a thorough knowledge of state and federal bankruptcy laws so you can decide what chapter to file under and which exemptions to claim, among other things. A bankruptcy lawyer will help guide you through this stressful and time-consuming process. Some of the ways a bankruptcy lawyer may be able to help you include:
- Explaining and guiding you through the bankruptcy process,
- Analyzing your financial situation,
- Evaluating your assets and obligations,
- Advising you regarding which exemptions to claim,
- Preparing and reviewing your bankruptcy petition,
- Attending meetings with your creditors (341 meetings),
- Following up with your creditors to stop any post-filing collection efforts,
- Representing you in any litigation that may arise out of the bankruptcy, and
- Attending hearings on your behalf.
How Much Does a Bankruptcy Attorney in Grand Forks Cost?Bankruptcy lawyers charge from $200/hr to $400/hr depending on the issue, the attorney’s skill, and location. In complex cases, rates can exceed $1,000/hr.
When Should I Hire a Lawyer?It is in your best interest to get legal help early in addressing your situation. There are times when quickly hiring a lawyer is critical to your case, such as if you are charged with a crime. Having a lawyer review the fine print before signing legal documents may also be a good idea. A lawyer can also help you get the compensation you deserve if you’ve suffered a severe injury. For issues where money or property is at stake, having a lawyer guide you through the complexities of the legal system can save you time, hassle, and possibly a lot of grief in the long run.
What Are the Top Questions Should I Ask a Bankruptcy Lawyer?
- What is the usual process to resolve my case?
- How long will it take to resolve this?
- What are the likely outcomes of a case like mine?
- What should I expect during bankruptcy?
How Will A Bankruptcy Charge Me?A reputable attorney will be very upfront about how they will charge you. The three most common fee structures that attorneys use to charge for their services are:
- Bill by the hour
- Contingent fee agreement
- Flat fee agreement
What is bankruptcy?Bankruptcy is a legal process that allows people to get out from under debts that are causing serious financial harm. Through the bankruptcy process, you may be able to get rid of debts like medical bills, credit card bills, and other unsecured debts. Factors such as your income and whether you have assets that you can sell to pay off some of the debts are taken into account when filing for bankruptcy and will determine what happens.
What happens when I file for bankruptcy?When you file for bankruptcy, you will be under a federal bankruptcy court’s supervision and protection. During this time, you, your lawyer, the court, and your creditors will work on a plan for discharging your eligible debts. Collectors will also be unable to repossess property and garnish your wages or bank accounts during this time.
How much does it cost to file for bankruptcy?There is no easy answer to this question. The ultimate cost will be a mix of court filing fees and what you owe your attorney for guiding you through the process. What you owe will depend on how complicated your case is and whether there are any prolonged disputes with creditors. Most likely, however, the debt relief that comes with bankruptcy will outweigh any fees.
How long does bankruptcy stay on your credit report?A Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing will stay on your credit report for up to 10 years, while a Chapter 13 will remain for up to seven years. A bankruptcy filing will also harm your credit score. However, if you need to file for bankruptcy, it’s likely your score is not that high anyway, and your bankruptcy will give you a chance at a fresh start and time to rebuild your credit score.
Top Questions to Ask When Hiring an Attorney
- How many years have you been practicing law? How long have you practiced law in the local area?
- How many cases similar to mine have you handled in the past?
- What is the likely outcome for my case?
In legal practice, experience matters. An experienced attorney will likely have handled issues similar to yours many, many times. Therefore, after listening to your situation, the attorney should have a reasonable idea of the time line for a case like yours and the likely resolution.
Tips on Approaching an Initial Attorney Consultation
- Use the consultation as a means of gaining a better understanding of your legal situation.
- Ask the attorney how many cases similar to yours he/she has handled. An attorney’s experience and knowledge can speak to their expertise (or lack of) in addressing your situation.
- Your attorney should be able to articulate roughly how long a case like yours will take to resolve and what sort of procedures to expect.
- Determine how comfortable you are working with the lawyer and/or law firm.
Types of legal fees:
Bill by the hour: Many attorneys bill by the hour. How much an attorney bills you per hour will vary based on a number of factors. For instance, an attorney’s hourly fee may fluctuate based on whether that hour is spent representing you in court or doing research on your case. Attorneys in one practice area may bill you more than attorneys in a different practice area.
Contingent fee: Some lawyers will accept payment via contingent fee. In this arrangement, the lawyer receives a percentage of the total monetary recovery if you win your lawsuit. In sum, the lawyer only gets paid if you win. Contingent fee agreements are limited to specific practice areas in civil law.
Flat fee: For “routine” legal work where the attorney generally knows the amount of time and resources necessary to complete the task, he/she may be willing to bill you a flat fee for services performed.
Common legal terms explained
Pro se – This Latin term refers to representing yourself in court instead of hiring professional legal counsel. Pro se representation can occur in either criminal or civil cases.
Statute – Refers to a law created by a legislative body. For example, the laws enacted by Congress are statutes.
Subject matter jurisdiction – Requirement that a particular court have authority to hear the claim based on the specific type of issue brought to the court. For example, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court only has subject matter jurisdiction over bankruptcy filings, therefore it does not have the authority to render binding judgment over other types of cases, such as divorce.