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What is the maximum allowable fee a bankruptcy petition preparer can charge in Maryland, and why is this info so top secret?

Baltimore, MD |

I have researched this question for years and have yet to receive a definite answer. Does anyone truly know?

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Attorney answers 5


There probably is no definitive answer. Depends on District, judges, what kind of filing, how complicated. Like legal fees.


There may not be an answer. If that's the case you can research for four more years and still not find it.


Don't believe there's a maximum - fees must be reasonable considering the scope of the representation, skill, training and eduction of the attorney and the nature of the matter. It's like asking what the maximum price of a house in MD can be - depends on the house and the market.

Good luck.

Evan A. Nielsen is licensed to practice law in California. The information provided here is for educational purposes only and is not intended as legal advice for a particular matter. This response does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, please consult an attorney.


Non attorney petition preparers fees are regulated by the office of the United States Trustee. I have never heard anyone claim that there is a secret as to the amount. Each local office can establish the amount a petition preparer can charge.

As to attorney fees, in Chapter 7 the amount is limited to a dollar amount. Hope this perspective helps!

Dorothy G Bunce

Dorothy G Bunce


Sorry, I meant to say attorney fees are NOT limited to a dollar amount.


The maximum amount is $100, according to the Office of the U.S. Trustee in Baltimore.

This is not legal advice and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Discepolo LLP is a Maryland law firm with offices in Baltimore, Towson, Columbia and Calverton. Call us at (410) 296-0780 to arrange for a free consultation.



Finally, a response from a MD attorney. The reason I am asking is because I keep getting different answers, from both attorneys and online. (1) "Some courts limit preparer fees to $150 to $250. But there's no cap in Maryland, and fees can range from $100 to $700 for a few hours' work. In comparison, a lawyer in Maryland may charge $500 to $3,000 for a simple Chapter 7 bankruptcy, says Brett Weiss, a Greenbelt lawyer." - The Baltimore Sun, 6/26/12; (2) "The Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Michigan limits a preparer from charging more than $100 without filing a request with the court. Likewise, the Northern District of California limits preparer fees to $150, along with publishing guidelines specifying what a petition preparer may and may not do. " - Bankr. Law Network - I don't care about different districts; I need to know what the fee is in MD. (3) an attorney called me 3 days ago saying he had just heard the maximum allowable fee in MD is now $100. (4) I have looked on the U.S. Trustee's website for MD and see nothing indicating BPPs can only charge $100.

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