In some instances the financial stress of everyday life becomes unbearable. When this happens, the only way out may be to declare bankruptcy. There are many factors to consider; the first thing you should do is consult with a competent bankruptcy attorney. There are many attorneys who claim they can help. What follows are guidelines on how to choose a bankruptcy attorney that is right for you and will guide you through the bankruptcy process. If you still have questions, call 443-380-3800 or contact us.
Why Do I Need a Bankruptcy Attorney?
While a bankruptcy attorney may not be required for an individual to file bankruptcy, in the courts legal representation is strongly recommended. There are many court forms to complete and documents to file. If not completed correctly, the bankruptcy procedure could be delayed or an accusation of fraud could be made.
Where to Begin
Begin by asking questions and doing some homework.
- If you have a friend or relative who has declared bankruptcy, ask for a referral.
- Go to the NACBA ( National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys). This site lists qualified, professional bankruptcy attorneys in your area.
- Make appointments with several attorneys. Get to know their personality, fee structure, and expected outcome of your situation in the bankruptcy process.
What Questions to Ask a Bankruptcy Attorney
There are many kinds of law specialties such as family law, corporate law, or tax law. A qualified bankruptcy attorney concentrates most of his or her practice in bankruptcy law. He or she will listen to your situation and explain your options.
There are different kinds of bankruptcy; Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Each has different consequences. Come to the appointment prepared: the more information you have available for the bankruptcy attorney the more thorough their explanations and the better their advice.
During the initial interview ask questions and determine:
- Is your initial meeting with a paralegal or an attorney?
Your first meeting should be with a bankruptcy attorney. A paralegal is someone who assists an attorney in their work but doesn’t take the place of an attorney.
- How many cases have you handled?
An experienced attorney who has filed many cases may help guide you to a better result.
- What is the fee structure?
If it sounds too good to be true, maybe it is. You don’t have to choose the attorney with the highest fee since sometimes the court will limit the amount an attorney can charge.
However don’t choose an attorney just because his or her fee is the lowest.
Following the guidelines listed above will help insure the process of choosing a bankruptcy attorney is a smooth one. Bankruptcy protection offers you a fresh start. Investing time to select the best legal representation will keep the process as stress free as possible.
Disclaimer: This is not meant to serve as legal advice. You must consult a lawyer for proper legal advice.
Call 410-415-0445 or contact us if you want to learn more about your options.