The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy
Editor-in-Chief: Jürges, Hendrik / Ludwig, Sandra
Ed. by Brunner, Johann / Fleck, Robert / Mendola, Mariapia / Requate, Till / Schirle, Tammy / de Vries, Frans / Zulehner, Christine
4 Issues per year
IMPACT FACTOR 2017: 0.306
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 0.492
CiteScore 2017: 0.50
SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.414
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2017: 0.531
Chapter 7 or 13: Are Client or Lawyer Interests Paramount?
Households often rely on professionals with specialized knowledge to make important financial decisions. In many cases, the professionals financial interests are at odds with those of the client. We explore this problem in the context of personal bankruptcy. OLS, fixed effects, and IV estimates all show that attorneys play a central role in determining whether households file under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 of the bankruptcy code. We present evidence suggesting that some attorneys maximize profits by steering households into Chapter 13 bankruptcy even when the households objective financial benefits are low and the probability of case dismissal is high. An attorney-induced Chapter 13 filing increases household legal fees and reduces the probability of long-term debt relief.
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