Is It Necessary to Hire a Bankruptcy Attorney?
Congress changed the bankruptcy code back in 2005 to eliminate serial bankruptcy filers. At that time, they had no idea of what was to come of the economy beginning in 2007. Immediately after making the changes, the rate of Americans filing bankruptcy drastically dropped and they believed the changes were a complete success. Fast forward to 2008 when America faced the beginning of a recession that only could be compared to the 1929 depression. Because of these economic conditions there are large numbers of individuals with no other option but to file for bankruptcy. Now, there is only one problem, the bankruptcy code has now become so complex they shouldn’t be attempted without the help of a bankruptcy attorney. It is true, it is one’s legal right to file bankruptcy and represent themselves. It’s just not a good idea. With the changes to the bankruptcy laws, came the addition of a means test, pre-bankruptcy credit counseling and post-bankruptcy financial management courses. Not only did they add this but the bankruptcy petition is twice as long. With these changes its best to hire a bankruptcy attorney to help navigate the complex bankruptcy laws. When considering the amount of debt that typically gets wiped out in a bankruptcy filing, the fee a bankruptcy attorney charges is very minimal.
Filing for bankruptcy may be the most responsible way to alleviate financial debt without losing everything you own. If you’re interested in seeing if bankruptcy will work for you, take a moment and fill out the form below to speak with a local bankruptcy attorney for a FREE NO OBLIGATION CONSULTATION.
How to Find a Good Bankruptcy Attorney
When looking for a bankruptcy attorney, one should consider that they will be working with this person for about six months when filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy and around five years when filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy. So first and foremost, it’s important to hire a bankruptcy attorney that you feel comfortable with and you trust. When someone doesn’t feel comfortable with their bankruptcy attorney, many times they will feel intimidated and fail to disclose all of their past financial failures because they’re embarrassed. This is not the time to leave something out because you’re embarrassed. This all can come back to haunt you at the 341 meeting or meeting of creditors. Your bankruptcy attorney will be blindsided with the new information from the bankruptcy trustee which could damage the bankruptcy case.
To start out looking for a bankruptcy attorney, if you don’t know of a referral, search the Internet using referral sites like the Better Business Bureau, Yelp, Angie’s List and Yahoo. Many of these will have ratings of service provided. Remember, just because a bankruptcy lawyer has a nice website, doesn’t make them a great lawyer. After finding a few attorneys that seemed to suit your needs, make an appointment for a free consultation and do a face-to-face with the bankruptcy attorney. Take a list of questions with you that you believe are important to your personal situation. Always meet the staff at the law office to make sure there is no personality conflicts as you will be spending a lot of time with them. Hire the bankruptcy attorney that seems to be the best fit for you personally after checking with a few of them. After hiring your bankruptcy attorney, you will be able to file your bankruptcy petition and get on the road to financial freedom.