You generally have to pay the fee if you earn above 150% of the poverty line for your state, and you generally don't have to pay the fee if you earn below 150% of the poverty line.
Written by Attorney Jonathan Petts.
Updated December 9, 2020
If you earn less than 150% of the federal poverty guidelines - shown here - you are eligible to apply for a fee waiver. You submit the application for a fee waiver to the court along with your other bankruptcy forms. The judge decides - based on the information in your application - whether to grant your application.
If your application is granted, you don't have to pay the $338 filing fee. If your application is denied, you'll have to pay the full amount, usually based on a payment plan set by the court.
If your household income is more than 150% of the federal poverty guidelines, you will have to pay the full $338 to the court. If you can't save up the money to pay it in full at the time your file your case, you can ask the court to pay it in installments instead.
If you're an an Upsolve user and earn more than 150% of the federal poverty guidelines, you can select to pay the filing fee in installments instead of paying the full fee at the time of filing. The selection can be made in the questionnaire. If you need to change your selection after completing the questionnaire, please visit upsolve.org/contact to send us a message.