Besides any attorneys' fee, which will be hundreds of dollars, bankruptcy carries an out-of-pocket cost of at least $284-$299 for the court fees and fees for a prebankruptcy credit counseling briefing and a credit education course required after the case is filed. Some of these fees may be waived for people too poor to pay them. Other fees may raise this figure somewhat. In a Chapter 13 case, for example, the trustee is usually entitled to a commission of up to 10 percent of the payments made through the plan. In some cases, various utilities may require security deposits to ensure continued service.
These costs, like the less tangible costs, must be weighed when deciding whether to file a bankruptcy case. Where the debts are not large or troublesome, it may simply not be worthwhile to spend the amount necessary to eliminate them.