- Personal Finance
Three Reasons You NEED a Bankruptcy Lawyer
When faced with the need to file for bankruptcy you may find yourself in an interesting situation. You can’t afford to pay your bills but you can’t afford the $1,000+ to hire an attorney, either. If this is the case you may consider attempting to file for bankruptcy on your own. While this may seem like a great idea, it’s really not one you should consider. Here are a few reasons why you should not file for bankruptcy without a lawyer.
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Stopping Harassing Calls from Creditors
Your creditors have the right to continue calling you to collect payment up until the moment you file your bankruptcy petition. Once you’ve retained an attorney, however, you can refer the calls to his office or ask your lawyer to call the creditors in an attempt to get them to stop calling you. Once the calls stop you’ll find that you are better able to focus on your bankruptcy petition and proceedings. Receiving harassing phone calls from creditors is, despite what you may want to believe, very stressful and having them stop will ease some of your burdens as you go through the bankruptcy process.
You’ll Make Fewer Mistakes
Let’s face it. The amount of paperwork required to complete a bankruptcy petition is monumental. You’ll find yourself filling out schedules and forms you’ve never seen before in your life. Who are you going to ask when you have a question? Assuming you know the answer and making a mistake could be damaging to your case – the judge may even dismiss it altogether. A lawyer will know exactly what information is needed to fill out the forms, will know what needs to be included and excluded, and will ensure your paperwork is properly completed before it is filed with the courts.
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Eliminating Confusion and Uncertainty
After your petition is filed with the courts you’ll probably get letters from court trustees, maybe even your creditors, asking for additional information. Considering you’re dealing with personal financial information it is often difficult to determine who really needs what. Your lawyer will help you to determine which information to disclose, to which parties, and when. Following his advice will ensure you don’t take an action that will result in your case being dismissed.
You may think bankruptcy is your only option but imagine finding out later that you had no need for the process at all? We recently read about a woman who had collections agencies attempting to collect debts that were over 15 years old. She decided to file for bankruptcy to rid herself of the debt. Had she contacted a lawyer she would have known that her debt was beyond the statute of limitations in her state and that the creditors, if they had attempted to sue, would have lost their case.
A good bankruptcy lawyer is just that – a bankruptcy lawyer. He spends all of his time dealing with tough financial situations and knows the bankruptcy process inside and out. It may seem like a difficult investment decision to make at the time but paying for a lawyer to help you through the process is worthwhile – especially if you want to ensure your success in the court system.