When dealing with any legal situation, it is ideal to select your lawyer carefully, especially when going through bankruptcy. There are some considerations you should keep in mind when looking for a lawyer to help you issue your bankruptcy.
When you’re trying to find the best lawyer for your situation, keep the following factors in mind:
- Make sure you are receiving what you pay for:
- Get help from a bankruptcy ‘expert’:
- Up-to-date on any code changes:
- Don’t get involved in a mill:
- Comfortable talking with them:
It is sad, but true, that the initial fee will be the main factor for many people when it comes to hiring a bankruptcy attorney. After all, money is the main element of this certain problem. With the price being at least $1,000 and varying depending on where you live, it is critical to make sure you’re receiving everything you need for the money you’re paying.
It is true that any lawyer can handle bankruptcy, but it is only worth your time if it is a lawyer that specializes in this case. You are allowed to ask lawyers questions about their past to make sure they have experience in your specific legal matter. Questions you ask can be anything from how many cases they have done in bankruptcy and to how many of those cases they have won. It is your right to know these answers because you are paying them.
Though staying up to code may not have any effect at all, it’s safe to say that a someone who is not a lawyer or unfamiliar with this issue won’t be able to tell prior to this how their case can change because of a different lawyer.
Mill firms are infamous for low-quality legal work, upset clients and increasing the suspicions of judges, who are concerned that mills, and their clients, are more likely to try and pull a tricky act on creditors by attempting to abuse the process.
As with any situation, it is important to make sure you are comfortable with the person in whom you will be confiding. For a lot of people, having to declare bankruptcy is a tough and embarrassing decision to make. Because of the emotions going on during the process, you’ll want your attorney to not only have the appropriate experience, but to show that he or she wants to understand your specific situation and goals. Your lawyer should portray empathy and a readiness to take the time to ask difficult questions.
You always want your attorney to be honest and upfront with you about issues your case might face. Some risks you can encounter can include being in danger of losing your property or not being able to dispose of a certain debt. From the first time you meet, your attorney should be upfront and tell you this information if it pertains to your situation.
Here are some other questions that you may ask your lawyer when meeting with them:
- Will you be going to court with me?
- Who will be preparing my bankruptcy papers?
- How much will this cost?
Some law firms may take on more bankruptcy cases than their lawyers can manage. Because of this, there may be someone else that attends the court case with you. Whether they come to court with you or not will also help determine if they are a mill.
Asking this question is just as important to know as who will be going to court with you. A bankruptcy attorney that has experience will review every aspect of your case with you, including who will be preparing your papers — which will most likely be them with the help of an assistant. A sign you want to look out for is if your attorney mentions handing your papers off to a paralegal. Chances are you don’t want them to be by your side in court.
Though it is an obvious question, some lawyers will attempt to get more out of this process than others. The price usually depends on the chapter case you have to file; some are more expensive than others. Generally speaking, your attorney should charge a sensible fee to take care of your bankruptcy based on the specific facts regarding your case.
Once you’ve found the lawyer who possesses your ultimate combination of traits, including experience, personality and cost, you’re ready to take action on your case. If you decide to move forward with your bankruptcy, you can do so with the reassurance that you will be working with a lawyer you can trust.