Should I file for bankruptcy on my own?
I’m often asked “should I file for bankruptcy on my own? I do not think you should file your own bankruptcy unless you are a bankruptcy attorney yourself. You may think to yourself, “This guy is a bankruptcy lawyer. Of course he does not think I should file my own bankruptcy. If everyone filed their own bankruptcy, then you would be out of business!”
Although I personally benefit from having more clients, I assure you that, in most cases, filing a bankruptcy without a lawyer is not a good idea. I have written this article to outline a few things you should consider if you are considering filing for bankruptcy on your own. I should also say that the content of this article is based on my experience practicing bankruptcy law in Georgia, and things may vary slightly in other jurisdictions.
Filing for Bankruptcy is not limited to just filling out a whole bunch of bankruptcy forms.
Bankruptcy is a very complicated and highly specialized area of law. Many aspects of the practice of bankruptcy law can be quite counterintuitive. The bankruptcy forms correspond to laws that need to be considered when they are being filled out. No research online is a good substitute for a law degree and considerable relevant experience.
The type of bankruptcy you file has a consequence on assets you get to keep and things you protect.
Just by way of an example, chapter 7 is a liquidation bankruptcy, and if someone files a Chapter 7 case with assets that can be liquidated (i.e. a paid off car), those assets can be taken by the bankruptcy trustee. Documents that are filed in a bankruptcy case can have severe unintended consequences if they are not done by an expert.
Bankruptcy attorneys often offer very reasonable payment plans, so why file bankruptcy on your own?
Bankruptcy lawyers understand that people considering filing for bankruptcy may not have a lot of money to pay lawyer fees and retainers, so they offer payment plans. At least in my office, in most Chapter 13 cases, we include the attorney’s fees in the person’s monthly payments, making it very easy to be represented by a competent lawyer. We also offer payment plans for Chapter 7s.
Bankruptcy attorneys are required to act in their client’s best interest.
Attorneys are ethically required to act in your best interest. So, by hiring an experienced bankruptcy lawyer, you get expert representation that will act in your best interest.
If you want to learn more about Khoshnood Law Firm, PC and the advantages of selecting us, please click here. If you are not sure, if you should file for bankruptcy, read my article “Should I file for bankruptcy” for some ideas.