Filing for bankruptcy is a scary prospect, even if you do it voluntarily. There are several different chapters, each with different rules. Hiring qualified bankruptcy attorneys can make the process easier and protect you from your creditors. However, choosing the best attorney for your case can be difficult. Ask these four questions to get answers that can help you decide.
Do you charge a flat fee to represent me?
Hiring any lawyer costs money. This is particularly concerning when you are considering filing for bankruptcy, as money is the cause of the problem in the first place. Some legal professionals bill by the hour. The good news is that most bankruptcy attorneys charge a flat fee for the entire course of representation. Typically, this fee will include consulting with you and analyzing your circumstances, preparing and presenting the necessary documents, and representing you during the insolvency proceedings. Sometimes creditors challenge bankruptcy. Other times, creditors can still come in and foreclose on a home. Often times, the flat rate does not cover these additional situations. Before choosing from several bankruptcy attorneys, make sure you understand each attorney’s fee arrangement.
Is bankruptcy your main line of work?
Any licensed attorney can help you submit the required documentation. However, insolvency proceedings involve complex areas of law that do not apply elsewhere. Also, deciding which chapter to archive involves a detailed analysis of your individual financial situation and your expectations. Even an experienced legal practitioner whose primary job is to file tort claims or structure business transactions will generally not have the knowledge and skills necessary to adequately protect you from your creditors. You need an attorney dedicated to handling bankruptcy cases.
What can I expect from you regarding communication?
It is important to find an attorney whose practice is primarily dedicated to handling bankruptcy cases, but it is equally important to find an attorney who devotes individual attention to your case, because determining the best course of action requires a detailed analysis of your case. financial situation. You should know how much time the legal professional will spend reviewing your situation, how quickly your phone calls will be returned, how often the attorney will update you on the progress of the case, when you can expect relevant documents to be drafted, and what efforts your advocate will make. . it will halt the collection efforts of creditors.
Will you have staff to help you with my case?
Bankruptcy attorneys have a significant number of clients and will not always be directly available to work on your case. There will be routine matters that will need attention, but do not necessarily require the personal attention of the attorney. It is important that the attorney have staff or junior attorneys available to work the case when the lead attorney is not directly available. However, you should also ensure that the attorney handling the case personally reviews the work of junior attorneys and non-attorney staff members.
Asking these important questions will help you choose from the many bankruptcy attorneys in your area.