When faced with financial hardship coupled with harassment and collection attempts from collection agencies and creditors, it is often a good choice to consider bankruptcy. However, for many, hiring an attorney to handle their bankruptcy case may seem counterproductive, especially as they are unable to afford one.
The question of whether or not you need to hire a bankruptcy attorney is a common one among people who wish to file for bankruptcy due to continued financial hardship. However, while hiring an attorney for an individual bankruptcy filing may not be compulsory, it is the right decision to make, especially in the face of a complicated legal process.
If you want to make sure that you are filing for the right category of bankruptcy and are on a path to a favorable decision, having an attorney in your corner is all that you need to get the desired results.
What Your Bankruptcy Attorney Can Do For You
Law firms like Richard M. Weaver Bankruptcy Attorney are available to help consumers wade through the tough legal choices and protocols that come with the decision to file for bankruptcy. In fact, many such firms also offer debt harassment attorney representation in order to help consumers get creditors off their backs while they focus on repaying their debts.
There are two different types of bankruptcies; commercial and consumer bankruptcy. A commercial bankruptcy lawyer is one that is experienced in handling issues of bankruptcy-related to business and business entities. Businesses that are going through hard financial times can count on commercial bankruptcy attorneys to help them with a business bankruptcy filing. On the other hand, consumer bankruptcy attorneys lend their legal expertise to consumers and individuals who are dealing with huge debt profiles and in need of help.
A commercial bankruptcy lawyer can be instrumental to businesses that are going through a rough financial patch, helping them to clear loans and even renegotiating loan repayment terms to the business’ advantage under chapter 7 and chapter 11.
A consumer bankruptcy lawyer protects consumers under chapter 7 and chapter 13 bankruptcy, helping borrowers to renegotiate payment terms and structures or helping them clear their debts.
How Do I Know Whether To Reach Out To A Bankruptcy Lawyer?
The question of whether or not you need a bankruptcy lawyer depends on your financial standing and debt profile. If you find that you are unable to pay your bills, you are experiencing constant harassment calls and collection efforts from collection agencies, faced with huge debts that only appear to be increasing, dealing with no cash flow and bounced checks, then you may need to speak to an attorney.
Speaking to an attorney, contrary to popular belief, isn’t only for legal representation in court. By speaking to a bankruptcy attorney, you can get a better sense of your debt profile as well as the options that are available to you.
From a careful perusal of your income and debt, your bankruptcy attorney may be able to suggest an alternative path to dealing with the huge debt that you are faced with without filing for bankruptcy, however, in the absence of this legal advice, you may just have begun the process of filing for bankruptcy.
Business owners who are facing a bad financial year may be able to enjoy chapter 11 bankruptcy provisions wherein the lawyer helps them to reorganize and restructure their debts in a way that it is easy to repay.
Do I Need To Hire A Lawyer For My Bankruptcy Case?
It is important to note that the law does not compel individuals to have a lawyer to represent them in a bankruptcy case. However, taking into consideration the complicated nature of such a case as this, individuals cannot afford to make mistakes that will ruin the entire process.
To avoid these mistakes which may seem simple and negligible at first, hiring an attorney is essential. In essence, an individual that is filing for bankruptcy is better off working with an attorney than choosing to approach the complicated legal process alone.
How Much Do Bankruptcy Attorneys Charge?
Bankruptcy attorneys usually charge by the hour. Some attorneys ask for a retainer – a fee that is paid upfront and expected to be put towards offsetting the cost of legal services offered by the attorney.
It is important to note that the rates charged by attorneys differ. Factors like location, years of experience, practice authority, and others may determine the rate charged by the attorney.
A client needs to ask upfront the amount charged by the lawyer so that they can make their decision based on the response.
Finding A Good Bankruptcy Lawyer
The experience and tenacity of the attorney you choose to represent you could play a role in the outcome of your bankruptcy filing. Because such legal cases are so imposing and complex, an attorney with added years of experience helping clients to get out of debt successfully can be the strong support and legal backing that you need to get away from credits and rebuild your financial standing once and for all.
Below are some suggestions for choosing a bankruptcy lawyer;
Seek personal referrals
If you have friends, family, or colleagues who have gone through a similar financial difficulty and filed for bankruptcy, reaching out for a personal referral can save you a lot of time and resources. In addition to this, you may speak to your lawyer for recommendations. If you do not have a personal lawyer, you may contact a friend or family member who does to ask for recommendations.
Group Legal Plans
If you have a legal plan that offers low-cost or free legal assistance, it may be a good decision to clarify if such a plan covers bankruptcies. Many plans of this type do not cover financial attorneys, but they may still be able to refer you to an attorney who specializes in bankruptcy filings.
Most bar associations have a list of lawyers grouped based on their practice area. This list of lawyers provides you with all of the possible bankruptcy lawyers that you can work with to get your debt issue sorted.
However, you may have to go through the list of bankruptcy lawyers to carry out a personal vetting process based on factors like years of experience, reviews from clients, success records, number of cases handled, legal fees charged, and more.
You can also make use of online directories that list bankruptcy lawyers practicing in your local area. Using online directories offers you much more information as you can easily begin the vetting process using the internet supplied information available on each lawyer.
The easiest way to get a bankruptcy removed is to prove that the bankruptcy is not being reported correctly. Another strategy is to make sure that the furnisher (the bank or creditor) abides by the laws of the Fair Credit Reporting Act. They must be able to prove with full records that the bankruptcy is yours. If they are unable to do this, they must take the bankruptcy off of your credit report. See more ways on how to remove a bankruptcy on your own.