Contact Information: 
PH: (608) 257-1369, ext. 226

Patricia K. Hammel

Patricia K. Hammel has been practicing law in Madison and Janesville, Wisconsin for the last 34 years. Her practice emphasizes debtor representation in bankruptcy, divorce, legal separation and post-judgment matters and wills. More recently she successfully defended over a dozen cases of clients cited and arrested for participating in free speech and protest displays at the Wisconsin State Capitol. In May 2015 she and a group of 40 other lawyers she helped organize to defend First Amendment rights received a “pro bono” (Latin”for good”) award from the Dane County Bar Association.  She worked for the King Street Alternative Law Office/Law Collective for 17 years, and joined the firm of Herrick and Kasdorf in July of 2006.

In 2008 she represented the debtor in the case of In Re Kuehn in the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, which awarded damages and attorneys' fees to her client whose student transcripts had been withheld despite the fact that her tuition debt had been discharged. By virtue of this decision she was named "Consumer Bankruptcy Attorney of the Month" by the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys in June, 2009.

Patricia has spoken at seminars on student loan debt, the Chapter 13 “means test” and First Amendment issues. She works closely with clients to determine the right course of action in each particular case.  Chapter 128 debtor amortizations are part of her practice, as is representing homeowners in loan modification proceedings in and out of the bankruptcy court. Her bankruptcy information is available here.

Her family law experience includes representing married individuals and people in non-traditional relationships when the "marriage" comes to an end. She has experience before many Dane County judges and court commissioners and with case mediation and binding arbitration.  She charges reasonable retainers with monthly fee payment options to make legal representation available to people of modest means, and accepts referrals through the State Bar “Modest Means” program. She limits her practice to matters where child custody is not contested.

Patricia also drafts marital property agreements to clarify couples' expectations with respect to previously-owned property, future ownership of property and debt-related matters, and as a tool in estate planning for couples. Her experiences with divorce, bankruptcy, and probate provide a useful background.

Finally, Patricia Hammel assists people with planning for their death or incapacity through the use of wills, trusts, powers of attorney, and "living wills" to make their wishes known and enable their families and friends to handle necessary financial and legal matters.

Patricia strives to keep her legal fees reasonable and to provide access to the legal system to those in need of legal services. For those who want or need to represent themselves, she provides information for those who choose that option and will review documents they draft for an hourly fee. She offers evening appointments on some days, and can be contacted by email or by phone at (608) 257-1369, ext. 226. Send Patricia an email.

 

USEFUL INTERNET SITES FOR BANKRUPTCY AND FAMILY LAW

U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Western District of Wisconsin
http://www.wiwb.uscourts.gov. Information regarding court offices, map of the two main Wisconsin federal districts (east and west), procedures, filing fees, links to research, median income information and bankruptcy forms

Wisconsin Circuit Court Automation Project (CCAP):
wcca.wicourts.gov/index.xsl
Information regarding cases filed in Wisconsin state courts, judgments entered, case numbers, attorneys representing parties, etc.

"Means Test" Calculator
www.legalconsumer.com/bankruptcy/means-test

Enter your income and expense information to see whether you would pass the test to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case (estimate only -- but pretty detailed)

Credit reports: www.annualcreditreport.com
Get your free annual credit report from any of the three or all three national reporting agencies (Transunion, Experian, Equifax)

Foreclosure avoidance; Mortgage modifications
www.makinghomeaffordable.gov
Description of options under the federal Making Home Affordable plans to help homeowners modify or refinance, eligibility, terms, lists of contacts for mortgage servicers and calculators to estimate affordable payments

Greenpath Credit Counseling Solutions: www.greenpath.com
Find out about alternatives to bankruptcy, counseling re: budgeting, debt consolidation and repayment; offers pre-bankruptcy and post-bankruptcy counseling and education certificates; also H.U.D. certified housing counselor for the Dane County area

Wisconsin State Bar: www.wisbar.org
Links to attorney information, legal research, court forms

Wisconsin Dept. of Workforce Development Child Support:
http://www.dwd.state.wi.us/bcs
Information regarding support payments, arrears, liens, child support calculators

Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau:
http://www.legis.state.wi.us/rsb/stats.html
Wisconsin statutes (laws)