A bankruptcy mill, or bankruptcy factory, is a lawyer or law firm that treats clients like commodities. Imagine a flour mill. Wheat comes in, it all goes through the same grinder, the same processes and it all comes out as flour. The objective of a flour mill is to turn as much wheat into as much flour in the shortest time as is possible.
It’s the same way with a bankruptcy mill. Clients come in, they go through the same process and they come out with a discharge. The objective is to process as many debtors in the shortest time as is possible. The reason that some lawyers operate this way is economics. Many clients choose their lawyer or law firm based on one criterion: cost. Whoever quotes the lowest cost gets the job. So these lawyers cut their fees to the bare bones and try to run as many clients through as possible to still make money. Law is a business like everything else. The bankruptcy mill is one business model. But it’s not the only model.
The fact is, pretty much any competent lawyer can get a bankruptcy discharge in most cases. Even so, most clients want some personalized attention. They want to feel like their case is important to the lawyer, not just the legal equivalent of another bushel of wheat to be processed. A routine case to a lawyer is anything but routine to the client. Most people will file bankruptcy once in their life. So filing is unique to them. It’s scary. It’s unfamiliar. They deserve someone who will be there to answer their questions. This is where the the mill business model tends to break down. Bankruptcy mills aren’t set up to provide personalized attention.
Another problem with the bankruptcy mill model is, a client might have a case that isn’t typical. Until the lawyer looks over your case, and sometimes not even until the lawyer is well into the case, it might not be apparent which kind of case that client’s is. I’ve written before about what to look for when choosing a bankruptcy attorney.
If you have bankruptcy questions, contact us here. Or you can email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call or text (801) 413-3708.
We won’t put you through the grinder.