Some people wonder if hiring a bankruptcy attorney is worth the expense. Self help books and internet advice often portray the bankruptcy process as simply a matter of filling out paperwork. The truth is that bankruptcy is a mixture of state and federal statutes, case law, procedural rules, and court and creditor customs. An experienced attorney can help you navigate any legal obstacles, but there are other benefits to hiring experienced counsel to handle your case.
Once you hire an attorney, third party collectors are prohibited from contacting you directly. The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act applies to collection agencies and collection attorneys, and forbids contact with the debtor by mail, telephone, or any other means. The collector must communicate with your attorney, which gives you immediate peace of mind.
Your attorney will act as a financial advisor to help you forge a new financial future. Bankruptcy is a remedial process to cure poor financial health, and can eliminate or restructure your debt. Bankruptcy processes like reaffirmation, redemption, lien-stripping, and cram-down can be very beneficial to the debtor, but require experience. Choosing the right bankruptcy chapter, the proper exemptions, and applying the correct legal theories to your debts and property can mean the difference between getting a “fresh start” and a “false start.”
Your bankruptcy attorney will communicate with your creditors, the bankruptcy trustee, and the judge. Your attorney will attend the meeting of creditors with you, as well as any court hearings. Your attorney will be your legal representative throughout your bankruptcy.
If you are considering filing a bankruptcy case, consult with an experienced attorney and discover how to use the federal and state laws to your benefit. The federal bankruptcy process can be complex and intimidating, but an experienced attorney can guide you to a fresh financial start.