Evaluation Criteria For a Good Bankruptcy Lawyer

A bankruptcy lawyer can very likely help if you think you may be close to financial disaster. Unfortunately, there are many people who deal with many financial problems. Medical bills can crop up, you can lose your job, and many little things can combine to lead you down the road of financial disaster. In many cases it seems that the last resort available is bankruptcy. If you are considering bankruptcy, you may need to find a good lawyer to handle your case for you. More than likely you are not very informed on bankruptcy, so you need to find someone who can help you through this period, and a bankruptcy lawyer can definitely help. Not sure what to look for in a lawyer? Here are a few great tips that can help.

Research Your Options – There are many great lawyers out there, and when you are looking for a bankruptcy lawyer, you may want to research all of your options. Looking through the yellow pages is not a good way to start. Consider asking your personal lawyer to give you a suggestion of someone who is qualified in the laws surrounding bankruptcy. Also, you may want to get the names of several lawyers and then spend a bit of time interviewing them to find out whether or not you really want to use their services.

Consider Past Cases and Experience – When you’re looking for a qualified bankruptcy lawyer, it is important that you take a look at their past cases and the experience that they have in this field. Have they done well with the cases that they have previously dealt with that are similar to your situation? Find out if they have good experience in the field as well. You don’t want a newbie working on your case, but someone who has some good experience in this field so you’ll have the quality help that you need.

Get Referrals – Before you make your decision one which lawyer to choose, make sure that you check around and ask for referrals. Find out what others have to say about this lawyer, and if you hear a lot of negative things about a certain lawyer, you may want to go with someone else.

Alternative to Bankruptcy – One of the most important things that a good lawyer can do for you is to make sure that you know about any alternatives that are available to you other than bankruptcy. You don’t want to go bankrupt unless you have to. So, make sure you find a good lawyer that will help you determine whether or not you have any other alternatives based on your unique situation.

So, if you are having financial difficulties and you think that bankruptcy may be in your future, it may be time to start looking for a bankruptcy lawyer. Make sure that you keep these tips in mind when you are picking out a lawyer for your needs. The right lawyer can make a difference in your life, so make sure you choose carefully. Finding the right lawyer can actually more than pay for the legal fees in terms of the money and assets they will likely save you in the process.

Patience Is a Virtue When Dealing With Your Bankruptcy Attorney

When a person is filing bankruptcy, their whole world seems like it’s going upside down. The only focus they have is on getting that bankruptcy discharge and getting the creditors off their back. During these stressful times many people continuously call their bankruptcy attorney with problems or to ask stupid questions. While they don’t believe the questions are stupid, in the big scheme of things they are wasting the time of the attorney. Overbearing clients can cause a rift between the bankruptcy attorney, the law office staff and the client.

The attorney knows the timeline that needs to be to get a successful bankruptcy discharge and usually is on top of things. It is best to let the attorney do their job and not bother them unless you are being harassed by creditors. If the bankruptcy has already filed and creditors are continuing to call, the individuals should call the bankruptcy attorney and make them aware of the automatic stay violations. Most of the time, a staff member from the law office will call the creditor and make them aware of the bankruptcy filing. This usually will stop them from calling.

Because of the relationship and the time frame it takes to file bankruptcy, it’s important that people need to take the time to look for a bankruptcy attorney that they get along well with. The entire process of filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy takes about 4 to 6 months of someone’s life. Because someone’s life is turned upside down, they are very hypersensitive during this time frame. If the person filing for bankruptcy finds an attorney they trust, they will be able to chill out and let the attorney do their job. If there is no trust or relationship there, the individual will try and micromanage the law office making everybody mad. This is not the way to have a successful bankruptcy filing. When someone becomes a problem, typically, the bankruptcy attorney will stop calling the individual back and the fight will be on. The old statement, patience is a virtue should be taken to heart because this process doesn’t happen overnight.

My personal belief is hiring a bankruptcy attorney should be looked at the same as putting a sports team together. If all the members don’t work together successfully, the outcome will be shown in the results. There will be important items that might slip through the cracks because the dynamic of the relationship has gone south. In today’s complicated legal system it is much better to rely on the expertise of a bankruptcy attorney then trying to go it alone. Try to keep in mind at all times the reason of why the attorney was hired in the first place.

Your Bankruptcy Attorney – Guiding You Through the Process

If you are in deep financial trouble and are thinking about filing for bankruptcy, then you should hire a knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney that can guide you through the entire process.

Here is what your bankruptcy attorney will do once you have contacted them.

Your Attorney Will Ask For All the Relevant Papers

You will first need to go for mandatory credit counseling six months prior to filing for bankruptcy.

The proof of that counseling, along with other financial papers (such as a list of all your debts, expenses, income and assets), will have to be provided to your bankruptcy attorney before they can proceed.

They will study your documentation and then advise you on the best way out of your financial predicament.

Your Bankruptcy Attorney Will Then Decide On the Relevant Chapter

Based on your financial records, your bankruptcy attorney will come to a conclusion as to which chapter is more suitable for your situation.

If you have exhausted your sources of income, then you might be advised to file for bankruptcy under chapter 7. If you have a reduced source of income and would also like to save most of your assets, then your attorney might advise you to file under chapter 13.

If you own a business and you want to continue running it, then you could file for bankruptcy under chapter 11.

Your Attorney Can Help You with the ‘Means Test’

If you are filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy, then your bankruptcy attorney can help you calculate your gross and net income for the previous six months. That income will be compared to the average median income of a similar-sized family in your town.

If you do qualify to file under Chapter 7 bankruptcy, then your attorney will coordinate with a trustee appointed by the bankruptcy court in disposing your assets in order to pay off your creditors.

If your income exceeds “means test” guidelines for qualifying filing a Chapter 7, then your attorney will now have to shift their attention to filing for bankruptcy under chapter 13, which requires a new repayment schedule.

This schedule will help you clear your old debts over a period of 3 to 5 years.

Your Bankruptcy Attorney Can Draw Up a New Schedule for the Court

If you need to file for bankruptcy under chapter 13, then your attorney can draw up a new repayment schedule and get it approved by the court after arranging a meeting with your creditors.

Once the repayment plan is approved, then you will need to start your payments according to that schedule.

Your Attorney Can Help You Avoid the Pitfalls

Filing for bankruptcy can be a complicated affair – and you will probably be too worried to be thinking straight.

An efficient bankruptcy attorney can calm you down and point out the pitfalls and advantages of filing for bankruptcy under different chapters after analyzing your case.

Hiring an attorney can save you a lot of time and effort. They will do the legwork involved to close your case at the earliest possible time.

An experienced, knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney is a vital asset to have on your side when you are facing financial difficulties and thinking of filing for bankruptcy.