Why You Should Rely on a Bankruptcy Lawyer in Mankato, MN for a Skeletal or Emergency Bankruptcy

If you’re facing debt you know you can’t repay and it’s so severe it significantly damages your standard of living, you might find permanent relief with a bankruptcy filing. When you file for any type of individual consumer bankruptcy, your creditors will have the automatic stay preventing them from collecting on your debts.  For the time that your bankruptcy case is pending, the automatic stay is maintained. This means that bankruptcy can be one of the most effective ways to prevent foreclosures, utility shut-offs, wage garnishments, evictions, and other consequences of having delinquent debts. For individual consumer bankruptcy, the timeline can be as short as a few months or as long as five years. It all depends on what chapter you file for and your own financial situation. With the help of a Behm Law Group, Ltd. bankruptcy lawyer in Mankato, MN and the surrounding areas, you can build a strong case for your bankruptcy and find long-term debt relief.

Stop Creditor Collection

If you’re in a situation where you need to stop creditor collection or foreclosure activities immediately and you can’t wait through the typical time it takes to prepare a complete bankruptcy petition, you can file something called a “skeletal” or emergency bankruptcy. This kind of filing goes through the online court system just like a normal bankruptcy filing and it often only takes a few minutes. An online skeletal petition will immediately prevent your creditors from taking further collection actions because the automatic stay injunctive mandates of 11 U.S.C. § 362 will be immediately imposed against them.

Emergency Bankruptcy

A skeletal or emergency bankruptcy petition is not a different kind of bankruptcy.  Rather it is only the very first part of the bankruptcy pleadings you must file and it is incomplete.    A skeletal or emergency bankruptcy petition consists of the basic bankruptcy petition (which includes personal identity information, the chapter you’re filing, and general information), the names, addresses, and contact information for all your creditors, a certificate of your completion of credit counseling, and your B121 form.  A skeletal bankruptcy will also require payment of the bankruptcy fee or the request of a waiver.

Time Limits

After your skeletal or emergency petition is filed, the bankruptcy court will issue an order giving you fourteen (14) days to file the remaining fifty-plus pages of your bankruptcy petition paperwork.  If the remaining paperwork is not filed within fourteen (14) days, your bankruptcy case will be dismissed.  The automatic stay will also be terminated and your creditors will be able to resume collection activities against you.  However, the bankruptcy court will grant an extension of the fourteen (14) day period upon your timely request.

Bankruptcy Lawyer

Filing any case without the help of a bankruptcy lawyer can be difficult due to the nuances and complexities of the bankruptcy code and the rigorous paperwork requirements. Because the process of filing a skeletal or emergency bankruptcy is subject to strict timelines, it can be even more challenging to file without professional assistance.

When you work with a Behm Law Group, Ltd. bankruptcy lawyer in Mankato, MN and the neighboring areas for your skeletal/emergency or regular case, you can count on our guidance and protection to take you from start to finish of your bankruptcy. Contact us today at (507) 387-7200 or stephen@mankatobankruptcy.com to learn more.

Benefits of Choosing Behm Law Group, Ltd. as Your Bankruptcy Lawyer in Owatonna, MN

In the southern Minnesota, Behm Law Group, Ltd. is a law firm that devotes its practice exclusively to bankruptcy cases.  Stephen J. Behm is also a certified consumer bankruptcy specialist certified by the American Board of Certification.  We provide representation and guidance for Chapter 7, 13, and 12 cases.  If you’re struggling with debt, bankruptcy is often an effective option for long-term debt relief and financial stability and financial rehabilitation.  Although it helps thousands of Americans get back on their feet financially each year, bankruptcy can still be a complex and nuanced legal process. While it’s possible to file without an attorney, it’s not something we recommend. The help of a Behm Law Group bankruptcy lawyer in Owatonna, MN and the surrounding areas can be critical in navigating the bankruptcy code and filing a successful case.

Behm Law Group, Ltd. is a family-owned law firm with the best interests of all our clients always at the forefront. Our attorneys are skilled in helping people facing many different kinds of financial circumstances. Stephen J. Behm has worked with clients in the local region for twenty-three years, supporting those struggling with accumulated or sudden debt. Our goal as bankruptcy lawyers is to work our clients through a bankruptcy case from start to finish as quickly and as stress-free as possible.

When we hear back from previous clients about their experiences with a Behm Law Group bankruptcy lawyer, we hear a lot of the same great feedback. At Behm Law Group, the peace of mind of our clients is always something we are concerned about and try to promote and improve.  We understand that filing for bankruptcy can be a scary process.  We work hard to be direct with our clients and to apprize them of what they need to do and what documentation they need to produce to get through the bankruptcy process as efficiently and with as little disruption to their lives as possible.  However, we also remain sensitive to our clients’ fears and insecurities about the process.

These terms come up the most frequently from our past clients:

  • Professional: Our attorneys have the education, legal training, and expertise to handle even the most difficult bankruptcy cases. Behm Law Group is also a law firm that many other legal professionals in the area will contact for advice and guidance on financial and bankruptcy court matters. Both our clients and the legal community can rely on our professionalism and experience.
  • Direct: We don’t beat around the bush with our clients. Instead, we believe in delivering an honest evaluation about a case while remaining kind and sensitive to our clients’ worries and fears.
  • Fast: Depending on the chapter filed, our attorneys will work to complete a case from start to finish as efficiently and as quickly as possible without compromising the quality of results for our clients.
  • Knowledgeable: Our staff is proficient in handling a range of financial circumstances with sensitivity to the different life circumstances of all our clients.
  • Understanding: We’ve worked with those struggling to meet debts while also handling many life stresses. From raising children as a single parent to facing unemployment, we are empathetic to all client situations throughout a bankruptcy.
  • Caring: Not only do we wish to see our clients safely through a bankruptcy process with long-term stability for the future, but we also truly care about the emotional and mental well-being of our clients and we care about our community as a whole.

When you choose Behm Law Group, Ltd. for your bankruptcy lawyer in Owatonna, MN, you can trust us to guide you from start to finish in any case. To learn more about our services, contact us today at (507) 387-7200 or stephen@mankatobankruptcy.com.


Why a Bankruptcy Lawyer is Worth the Cost

Bankruptcy is a court administered legal process that almost always requires the support of a bankruptcy lawyer to be done correctly. Like most other legal processes, you can represent yourself in a case, but bankruptcy is a complex and nuanced procedure, and having the support of a bankruptcy lawyer will vastly improve your chances at filing and completing a successful case. In the United States, 8-10% of individuals filed a bankruptcy case without the help of a lawyer, and only around 2% of those cases were successfully completed. Compared to the 60% success rate of attorney represented cases, it’s undeniable that the guidance and support of a bankruptcy lawyer is crucial despite the modest costs involved. At Behm Law Group, Ltd. we can give you the protection and legal advice of an expert, skilled bankruptcy lawyer in Mankato, MN.

Specialize in Chapter 7,12, and 13

Our firm specializes exclusively in Chapter 7, 12, and 13 bankruptcy matters. We work primarily with both individual filers and businesses. As bankruptcy attorneys, we understand the financial difficulties clients are facing, but our guidance and protection is well worth the modest costs. Our assistance can actually save you time, stress and further legal costs.

What We Do

Behm bankruptcy lawyers help you build your bankruptcy case every step of the way, from determining what chapter to file to preparing paperwork and finalizing case details, to providing protection even after your case is closed if aggressive creditors continue to pursue you. This includes:

  1. Taking into account your current income-to-debt ratio and payments you may be delinquent with, such as mortgage payments or vehicle loan payments, to determine if Chapter 7 liquidation or Chapter 13 reorganization will be effective for you.
  2. Case preparation such as helping you with the Means Test, valuing your property so you can correctly disclose your assets to the bankruptcy court, guiding you with what exemptions to choose in order to protect your property, and helping you with budgeting and the planning of your finances after your case is closed.
  3. Working with the bankruptcy trustee and the bankruptcy court during the processing of your case, including completing all your paperwork and providing correct documents to the bankruptcy trustee, helping you prepare for your bankruptcy hearing, protecting you from creditors that may ignore the injunctive mandates of the automatic stay, negotiations with creditors you want to continue working with on reaffirmation agreements, and helping you create and propose an acceptable and effective Chapter 13 bankruptcy plan .
  4. Supporting you even after your case is closed with protection from creditor harassment and helping you make chapter 13 repayment plan adjustments when your financial circumstances change.

Even if your debts and financial circumstances appear to be simple, a bankruptcy lawyer will still play an essential role in helping you file a successful case, avoid the possible dismissal of your case, and protect you from aggressive creditors. To learn more about how a bankruptcy lawyer in Mankato, MN is worth the fees involved, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 or stephen@mankatobankruptcy.com

Credit Repair and Getting Loans After Bankruptcy

Even if you’re facing severe financial difficulties, the social stigma around filing for bankruptcy can get in the way of making decisions that will positively affect your circumstances in the long term. But, getting past the negative social ideas around filing for bankruptcy might be the best choice you can make for your household’s financial health and overall quality of life.


The debt relief that bankruptcy provides alleviates the burden of unpaid bills and loans, prevents creditor harassment, stops foreclosure, and eliminates wage garnishment. Despite the truth that bankruptcy will damage your credit score temporarily, once your case is closed, you can start with a fresh financial slate where a lowered credit score might not even matter.


If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy, Behm Law Group, Ltd. can guide you through the process and help you begin your path to credit repair in Marshall, MN and the surrounding areas.


Though its damage to your credit score is far outweighed by its benefits, filers should keep in mind their standing after their case is closed. Filers with good credit scores will experience a significant drop after filing for bankruptcy, but those with a poor score will only see minor changes. Even though your score drops when you file, the post-bankruptcy period is an ideal time for effective credit repair.


In addition to having an opportune moment for credit repair, filers will most likely still be able to get loans of necessity after their case is closed despite a score drop. Credit card loans are often the easiest lines to open after filing, but other important loans like mortgages and car loans are also possible.


Credit Cards: Credit card companies will jump to offer you lines of credit if they know you’ve just finished a bankruptcy case. Because you won’t be allowed to file another case any time soon, they know you won’t be able to discharge any debts you rack up on their cards. Those who have just filed for bankruptcy should be wary of extreme interest rates, high annual fees, and potential hidden charges.


Auto Loans: Even if you have a large dent in your credit score after filing, you’ll probably still be able to get a reasonable car loan. However, most of these loans will come with poor loan terms and excessive interest rates. Autocreditexpress.com is a service available that helps you determine if you’re eligible for better car loans other than those offered by “bottom feeder” creditors.


Mortgages: For the most part, you’ll have to wait two to four years after your bankruptcy case is closed to be eligible for conventional mortgages. FHA loans might be available to those still in their Chapter 13 bankruptcy repayment period or to those two years after their Chapter 7 case is closed. While these are minimum periods, many filers will have to wait longer to get a mortgage depending on the lender and their current finances.


To learn more about bankruptcy and credit repair in Marshall, MN, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. today at (507) 387-7200 or stephen@mankatobankruptcy.com.

How a Bankruptcy Attorney Can Help Prevent Case Dismissal

If you’re struggling to make monthly debt payments, you’re not alone. Especially after the impacts the coronavirus pandemic made on the U.S. economy, thousands of American households are finding their finances catastrophically impacted. Despite all the changes the pandemic forced on our country, there is still an option that has always been there for those who cannot repay their debts: bankruptcy. While bankruptcy is sometimes cast in an unfavorable light, it’s actually a process that has helped many debtors regain long-term financial stability. However, the process of filing a bankruptcy petition can be complicated, and the handling of debt in any given case is nuanced. Because of this, the help of a bankruptcy attorney can be key to filing a successful case. At Behm Law Group Ltd., we offer comprehensive legal services, including protection and guidance for those looking for an expert bankruptcy attorney in St. Peter, MN, and the surrounding area.

Filing for any type of bankruptcy comes with a set of requirements and thorough examination of the filer’s financial records. This includes detailed paperwork and documentation of debts, income sources, and properties. It also includes a set of pre-bankruptcy requirements that almost every filer must satisfy before his or her petition is even set into motion. The guidance and support of a bankruptcy attorney can help prevent many common reasons that could cause the dismissal of your bankruptcy case.

The help of a bankruptcy attorney can prevent case dismissal due to:

  1. Failure to attend credit counseling: Every filer is required to attend a credit counseling session within 180 days before the filing of his or her bankruptcy petition. A bankruptcy attorney can help you find a court-approved credit counseling agency so you can attend the 60- to 90-minute session at your convenience.
  2. Intentional or unintentional fraud: If you’re planning on committing bankruptcy fraud, forget about any credible attorney helping you in that effort. Filers attempting intentional fraud will likely have their cases denied and could even be criminally prosecuted. However, there are occasions in which a filer is well intentioned, but because of mistakes on his or her petition paperwork, there is no actual fraud committed.  A bankruptcy attorney will, for the most part, put your paperwork together for you, ensuring accuracy and helping to prevent mistakes that might lead to your case being dismissed.
  3. Ineligibility for Chapter 7 bankruptcy: Because Chapter 7 bankruptcy is reserved for those with an income below the state median income for a similar household, there are many filers that won’t qualify for that chapter. While a bankruptcy attorney can’t make you qualify for chapter 7 bankruptcy if you do not pass the Means Test, the attorney can help you organize your paperwork, review your monthly income and expenses, and help you file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy case in which a reasonable three to five year repayment plan is proposed.

Both Chapter 13 and Chapter 7 bankruptcies are nuanced processes that can vary greatly from case to case. Take advantage of the skill and protection that a bankruptcy attorney in St. Peter, MN, and the local area can provide you, and contact Behm Law Group Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 or stephen@mankatobankruptcy.com today.


Why the Help of a Bankruptcy Attorney is Important for 2021 Bankruptcies

The difficulties of the coronavirus pandemic and a changing economy are still affecting all American citizens, and those effects come with significant financial struggles for many. The initial boost of stimulus checks, federal additions to state unemployment benefits, and room for accommodation on debt payments helped many stay out of bankruptcy throughout much of 2020. Without those benefits, pressure for unemployed households, business owners, and even those with steady incomes is projected to create a surge in bankruptcies in 2021.


While it’s possible to file for bankruptcy relief without legal protection and guidance, it’s always beneficial to take advantage of the skills and expertise of a bankruptcy attorney. With Behm Law Group, Ltd., you can expect comprehensive protection and expert advice with a Behm bankruptcy attorney in Worthington, MN and the surrounding areas.


Behm Law Group, Ltd. is the only law firm in south central and southwestern Minnesota practicing in bankruptcy cases exclusively. Behm bankruptcy attorneys will work with you from the start to the finish of your case, guiding you through the highly nuanced bankruptcy legal process. We work with individual consumers, business owners, and family farmers filing for Chapter 7, Chapter 13, or Chapter 12 bankruptcy.


Filing for bankruptcy, even when there isn’t a global pandemic going on, can be difficult. The bankruptcy code can be complicated and the process of filing is nuanced, requiring filers to meet strict specifications and requirements. If you’re thinking about filing for bankruptcy relief, it’s highly recommended that you seek out the advice of a trained bankruptcy attorney.


This coming year, however, might make the bankruptcy process even more difficult and intricate due to added laws regarding COVID-19 and care packages. The question of how different incomes are treated in any bankruptcy will involve additional income sources established in response to the coronavirus, such as potential future stimulus checks and additional state and federal unemployment income.


Household conditions directly impacted by the pandemic will also be taken into consideration when a bankruptcy case is filed. This may include how medical debts are treated or whether filers’ health conditions caused by COVID-19 infections could be handled as a disability or as an undue hardship.


With 2021 starting a new presidential term as well, it’s difficult to predict how bankruptcy law might change in the near future. The slightest changes could affect how a case is handled and may even prevent a filer from qualifying for bankruptcy relief. At Behm Law Group, Ltd., we expect 2021 to have extremely high bankruptcy rates and we expect that there may be many changes to the bankruptcy code, making it more crucial than ever to seek the help of an experienced bankruptcy attorney.


To learn more about our services as a law firm and to locate an experienced bankruptcy attorney in Worthington, MN, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. today at (507) 387-7200 or stephen@mankatobankruptcy.com.

Part 3: Costs of Filing for and Hiring Bankruptcy Assistance

In the previous Parts 1 and 2 of this blog, we covered what bankruptcy fees you will be required to pay if you file, and what an attorney may cost as well as why it costs this much. In Part 3, the final section, we cover ways for you to pay those costs and what you can do if you are truly unable to pay certain required costs. If you are considering filing for bankruptcy, you need to understand the fees you’ll have to cover and what the full cost of a bankruptcy case of any chapter may be. Behm Law Group Ltd. provides expert bankruptcy assistance in New Ulm, MN, and the surrounding area.


While there are many costs involved in the bankruptcy process, and we understand that attorney fees can seem daunting, there are many ways of covering those costs.


How to Pay

If you can, you’re certainly able to pay bankruptcy fees and attorney costs with one lump sum. However, some people are not able to pay the fees and costs in full and all at once. This makes perfect sense since they are in dire financial circumstances that are requiring them to file for bankruptcy debt relief in the first place. For those who cannot afford the fees and attorney costs up front, there are other ways to pay.


  1. Payment plan: If you are filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you can generally set up a payment plan for the attorney’s fees and court costs. An installment plan can be established as long as your fees are paid in full before your petition is filed and in a minimum of four installments.  Any bankruptcy attorney who is decent and worth hiring will not agree to file your bankruptcy case and then agree to accept monthly payments from you.  Such an arrangement is highly irresponsible and unethical because the same attorney helping you through your bankruptcy would become one of your creditors.  Also, any credible attorney worth hiring would not expect you to ask a friend or relative to sign a personal guarantee for the payment of your attorney’s fees and costs.  Such an arrangement is also highly unethical and extremely inappropriate because it allows the attorney to legally pursue the friend or relative if you fail to pay.  Such an arrangement essentially allows the friend or relative to be drawn into your financial vortex of misery and that is simply not right.
  2. Waivers: For the bankruptcy court filing fee, you can request a waiver of the requirement to pay it. To qualify for a waiver, your income must be 150% under the federal poverty line and you must not be able to pay the court filing fee in an installment plan.  However, bankruptcy courts are generally extremely reluctant to grant such waivers because the bankruptcy court filing fees help fund the entire bankruptcy system from bankruptcy judges to bankruptcy court law clerks to bankruptcy court staff and more.
  3. Pro bono: Attorney costs can be high for those who are unable to meet the basic bankruptcy fees, but there are some lawyers who occasionally set aside time in their schedules to offer legal aid for free to those who truly cannot pay the attorney’s fees and costs themselves or are unable to rely upon other resources such as friends and relatives.
  4. Legal aid: Government legal aid is offered nationally for individuals who cannot afford an attorney. While these legal aid offices provide guidance and important information, not all of them will offer bankruptcy filing assistance.
  5. Friends and family: When all else fails, most filers can turn to their loved ones for financial support. Keep in mind that family debts must be disclosed in your bankruptcy if there is a legal contract or other official documentation or even if there is a non-written expectation that you should pay them back.
  6. Borrowing from a 401(k), IRA or Life Insurance Policy:  Sometimes people can borrow against their retirement plans or cash value life insurance policies to acquire the necessary funds to pay their bankruptcy attorney’s fees and bankruptcy court filing costs.
  7. Employer Provided Legal Insurance Plans:  As part of a benefits package for their employees, some employers offer legal insurance plans such as ARAG Legal Insurance.  Typically, legal insurance plans will pay up to $2,000.00 towards bankruptcy attorney’s fees.  However, you must still pay the bankruptcy court filing fee of $335.00 for a chapter 7 case or $310.00 for a chapter 13 case.


Some filers also sell some of their possessions that will be exempt from the bankruptcy process, such as electronics, antiques, furniture, jewelry, and so on in order to pay for their attorney’s fees and bankruptcy court filing costs.


Filing for bankruptcy should be the opposite of a financially crippling experience. Because of that, there are many ways to pay the required fees and to get legal aid. To learn more about receiving bankruptcy assistance in New Ulm, MN, contact Behm Law Group Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 or stephen@mankatobankruptcy.com.


How to File for Bankruptcy with and without a Bankruptcy Attorney

If you’re struggling to meet monthly debt requirements as an individual or a business, you may want to consider filing for bankruptcy as a long-term debt relief solution. Filing for bankruptcy may seem like a drastic choice with some negative effects on your credit, but in reality, bankruptcy has helped thousands of debtors regain their financial footing and improve their quality of life with the reduction of debts.


If you’re planning on filing for bankruptcy, there are several ways to do it, with or without the assistance of a bankruptcy attorney. At Behm Law Group, Ltd., we know that there are many individuals who can’t afford a bankruptcy attorney in Jackson, MN and the surrounding area, and we want you to know your options.


Filing for bankruptcy is a legal process that’s done through the U.S. bankruptcy court system. Because of this, it requires a comprehensive amount of documentation and paperwork that covers your entire financial history, including debts and income. In addition to the required paperwork, there’s a significant amount of pre-bankruptcy requirements that must be done before you file a case.


Filing a petition is a complex process where one will greatly benefit from the guidance of a trained legal professional. With or without an attorney, there are four main ways you will file:


  1. Attorney filer: If you can afford a bankruptcy attorney, you’ll have the easiest and most positive experience in filing. An attorney will do many things for you throughout your case. Learn more about what an attorney does here.
  2. Non-attorney petition preparer: If you absolutely cannot afford an attorney and can’t find one that will offer pro bono services, you can use a bankruptcy petition preparer instead. A petition preparer will fill out documents and forms for you and give them to you to send in.  The BAPCPA has guidelines and warnings for working with a petition preparer.
  3. Federal bankruptcy forms: To prepare your petition yourself, it’s recommended you visit a legal aid center for guidance on how to file. You can access the federal bankruptcy forms on the U.S. court website and download all the documents you’ll need to fill out. These templates, while standardized, do not provide any guidance on filling them out.
  4. Bankruptcy software: Filers can pay to use a software program that functions similar to online tax programs. The program will walk the filer through their financial records, asking questions and providing digital forms. However, these programs can be inaccurate because they can have issues translating the more nuanced parts of a filer’s financial circumstances and they are not always accurately updated in a timely way.


In general, taking advantage of the knowledge and legal protection of an attorney is the best-case scenario for putting together your petition and filing your bankruptcy. To learn more about filing for bankruptcy with or without the help of a bankruptcy attorney in Jackson, MN, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. today at (507) 387-7200, or stephen@mankatobankruptcy.com.

Part 2: Costs of Filing and Hiring Bankruptcy Assistance

Part 1 of this blog covers the bankruptcy fees involved in filing an individual consumer petition and breaks down what each fee applies to. Part 2 covers the costs of hiring an attorney and why the fees are what they are. As a provider of bankruptcy assistance in Mankato, MN, Behm Law Group Ltd. understands the difficulty that many filers have in trying to come up with the legal fees to file for bankruptcy relief. Our goal is to offer a better explanation of what these fees cover and why it is still important to take advantage of the expertise of an attorney no matter what type of chapter you file for.


In Part 1 of this blog, we generally placed the cost of a Chapter 7 case between $1,000 and $3,500, and a Chapter 13 case between $2,500 and $6,000. The largest part of that cost will typically be the fee for hiring an attorney. Despite this cost, it is almost always recommended that you take advantage of an attorney to assist you.  The bankruptcy code is a very complex system that can be extremely difficult to pick apart without experienced assistance. Many filers have their cases dismissed or be otherwise unsuccessful, wasting time and money, when this wouldn’t have happened with the help of an experienced lawyer. But why should I pay a lawyer? Put simply, a bankruptcy lawyer will do a lot more than you may initially realize and the lawyer will be there for you from the start of your bankruptcy case to the end.


What Lawyers Do

Bankruptcy attorneys build your case for you: organizing documents, gathering financial information, examining all your debts and properties, and creating a financial plan for your future. They also help you meet pre-bankruptcy requirements and protect you from creditors. In addition to all of this, they take on the vast majority of communication and organization among all parties involved (you, your creditors, the trustee, and the court). Overall, a bankruptcy attorney takes a significant burden off of your shoulders in many ways.



Attorney Costs

The cost of an attorney largely depends on your financial circumstances and any anticipated complexities involved in your case. It may also depend on the attorney involved, since some more experienced attorneys – attorneys who specialize only in bankruptcy matters — can charge more than lesser experienced lawyers who may not have been practicing as long and who may not be nearly as experienced with the bankruptcy process. Minimum costs are around $1,000, while maximum fees can exceed $5,000. To prevent excessive charges, the bankruptcy court reserves the right to examine the charges and make sure that they are reasonable. Many attorneys offer free consultations, and there are lawyers that reserve some of their time to offer pro-bono services to filers who absolutely cannot pay for bankruptcy assistance. In Part 3 of this blog, we’ll cover how you can pay bankruptcy court fees and attorney costs.


To learn more about receiving bankruptcy assistance in Mankato, MN, or to get a fee quote today, contact Behm Law Group Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 or stephen@mankatobankruptcy.com.

Importance of Bankruptcy Attorneys Even with the Automatic Stay

As with any other legal process, it can be difficult and complicated to navigate the bankruptcy court system, including correctly filling out the right forms and paperwork, and understanding which dates and stipulations mean what. Unlike most other types of legal processes, bankruptcy is one that can be handled without the assistance of an attorney. However, bankruptcy is a highly nuanced system that can change in an instant with the introduction of a new form, different financial circumstances, or the decision of an attorney or trustee. Because of this, it’s strongly recommended that filers take advantage of the resources and protection a bankruptcy lawyer can provide. When you work with Behm Law Group Ltd. expert bankruptcy attorneys in Luverne, MN, you are ensured a neatly compiled case that offers long-term effective debt relief.


Individual consumer filers can use Chapter 7 bankruptcy to liquidate their non-exempt assets in exchange for debt relief or they can use Chapter 13 bankruptcy to reorganize their debts into a three- to five- year repayment plan suited to their unique financial circumstances. No matter which chapter you file for, however, you will immediately receive the benefits of the automatic stay.


The automatic stay is a routine procedural rule for bankruptcy cases. It goes into effect the moment a bankruptcy petition is filed. The implementation of the automatic stay prevents creditors from collecting debt payments from you, stops them from filing claims or lawsuits against you, keeps them from enforcing liens on any of your assets, and establishes a formal reconciliation or balance between them and you for the duration of your bankruptcy case. This legal reconciliation or balance prevents creditors from contacting/harassing you or sending other collections agencies after you.


The automatic stay protects you from your creditors while your bankruptcy case is being worked out, but it is still important to have the protection, guidance, and expertise of a trained and certified professional bankruptcy attorney. Aside from the valuable work of organizing your case, filling out the correct paperwork, establishing communications with the court, and overall guiding you throughout your case, a bankruptcy attorney can protect you against your creditors if uncommon events should occur. For example, the court could lift the automatic stay if one or more creditors file a motion to lift it. Additionally, creditors can ask the trustee administering your case to take action against you if they believe you have engaged in fraudulent behavior, object to the discharge of a particular debt, protest your paperwork, and take many other actions that can damage your case or leave you unprotected.


The helping hand of bankruptcy attorneys is often the key in forming a strong case that will produce successful results, and it is also critical for protecting you against any actions your creditors might take that compromise the automatic stay or introduce new legal proceedings.


To learn more about the help bankruptcy attorneys in Luverne, MN, can offer, contact Behm Law Group Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 or stephen@mankatobankruptcy.com today.