Bankruptcy Attorneys – Tips For Locating Personal Or Business Bankruptcy Lawyers

Retaining the services of bankruptcy attorneys is not required by law. However, filing bankruptcy is no easy feat and generally requires some level of legal assistance. Bankruptcy attorneys specialize in helping individuals and businesses obtain debt relief through the various bankruptcy chapters.

Most bankruptcy attorneys specialize in either personal or corporate bankruptcy. Personal bankruptcy chapters include 7 and 13. Chapters 9 and 11 are generally reserved for corporations and partnerships; however, individuals with extensive debts can file Chapter 11. Chapter 12 bankruptcy is reserved for farmers. 

It is a good idea to consult with at least three bankruptcy attorneys before making a final decision. Keep in mind you will be spending a considerable amount of time with your lawyer and their staff.  

Oftentimes, paralegals are assigned to your case and will conduct the majority of work. This helps keep legal fees affordable since paralegals are compensated at a lower hourly rate than attorneys. Therefore, request the presence of the paralegal and other staff members at your initial meeting.  

One of the best sources for locating bankruptcy attorneys is other lawyers. The majority of attorneys network with colleagues and are familiar with their skills and areas of expertise. If you retain the services of an attorney for other legal matters, ask for a referral.  

If you have friends, relatives, neighbors or co-workers who have filed bankruptcy, ask them for a referral. This can be a touchy subject, so it is best to ask the person in private. It’s not a good idea to yell across cubicles to ask Sally how she liked her bankruptcy lawyer. It’s also not a good idea to ask someone for a referral unless they have personally told you they filed bankruptcy.  

If you prefer to seek out bankruptcy attorneys on your own, visit the American Bar Association website at ABA provides a list of nationwide bankruptcy lawyers. Although most ABA chapters do not offer referrals, they can provide a list of names and contact information.  

Once you have compiled a list of bankruptcy attorneys, contact each to arrange an initial consultation. Be certain to ask if the law firm provides complimentary consultations or if there will be a fee. Additionally, ask what documents they will require and request three to four customer referrals.  

Most bankruptcy attorneys will require financial information including income, expenses, current tax return, real estate and financial portfolios, and a list of assets such as automobiles, jewelry and household furnishings.  

By reviewing your finances, lawyers can advise which bankruptcy chapter you are qualified to file. Chapter 7 requires liquidation of assets to repay creditors, while Chapter 13 requires repayment of debts over a specified period of time.  

The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act (BAPCPA) enacted in 2005, has made filing bankruptcy exceptionally challenging. One provision requires debtors to repay a portion of their debts whenever possible. Every person who files for bankruptcy protection must undergo the ‘means’ test to determine how much of their debts they will be required to pay.  

Additionally, BAPCPA requires debtors to undergo credit counseling through an agency approved by the U.S. Trustee Program. A reputable attorney will explain the rules of BAPCPA, the pros and cons of each bankruptcy chapter and advise you of all options available.  

Last, but not least, it is best to work with bankruptcy attorneys who put you at ease and thoroughly answer your questions. Undergoing the bankruptcy process can be quite stressful. The last thing you want to do is work with an attorney who is harsh, impatient or makes you uncomfortable.

What You Need to Know About Bankruptcy Attorneys Before You Hire One

The function of good bankruptcy attorneys is to guide potential bankruptcy applicants through bankruptcy procedures and to act on their behalf in court. With the new amendments, good bankruptcy attorneys will also inform their clients about why certain legal loopholes no longer exist.

It is best to seek services of a bankruptcy lawyer if you are facing any difficulty in declaring bankruptcy and starting over again. Bankruptcy proceedings have to be initiated and proceeded in adherence to all relating legal laws and requirements. A bankruptcy attorney is best qualified to explain the finer details of bankruptcy issues to make concepts and procedures clear and simple. Such attorneys help to relieve you of the pressure and anxiety that arises when filing for bankruptcy proceedings. They help you to successfully complete a discharge of debts under bankruptcy code helping you with advice, support and also assisting you with all related legal formalities and paperwork. An experienced bankruptcy lawyer can relieve you of your debt problems and help you find a feasible debt solution without jeopardizing your home, vehicle, wages, retirement account and other valuable assets.

You may seek services of a bankruptcy attorney if you are facing any of the following problems:

· Tax problems

· Foreclosures

· Auto and truck repossessions

· Creditor harassment

· Lawsuits

· IRS wages garnishment

· Tax levies and seizure

It is common procedure to seek referrals from family and friends when looking to find a reliable attorney. However, this procedure may not be entirely advisable when looking for a bankruptcy attorney unless your friend has gone through a bankruptcy. Instead, ask for suggestions and reference from legal professionals whom you already know. Check if your attorney is certified by the American Bankruptcy Institute and also meets the required additional standards. Make it a point to personally check out your attorney’s law firm’s offices. You may not be comfortable dealing with an attorney having a completely disorganized office. Also, it is essential to look for an attorney with whom you are comfortable discussing your personal and financial problems.

Every state and city has a Bar Association, and the Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys is another good source. While narrowing down your final choice, ensure that the attorney is certified by the American Bankruptcy Institute, so that a reasonable degree of accountability is established. Finally, find out how many actual bankruptcy cases the attorney has handled in the given year, and how many of them yielded satisfactorily results from the client’s point of view.

Here are few factors to consider while selecting a bankruptcy lawyer:

· Check out and Compare profiles and credentials

· How experienced is the particular bankruptcy attorney

· How many bankruptcy cases the attorney has handled

· What is the nature of bankruptcy cases that he commonly handles, are they personal, consumer, or business filings

· Is the attorney willing to offer personalized services apprising you of the various procedures that are involved

· How comfortable are you with the attorney to discuss your problems

· How much access you have to your attorney during bankruptcy filing

· How much fee does the attorney charge, etc.

Freelance Lawyers and Some Facts

To any person who is actually not very familiar with the intricacies of law, the term freelance lawyer may bear an uncanny meaning. You must have frequently heard about freelance writers or reporters, but freelance lawyer is a term which is rarely heard.

In this article I have tried to share some information with my reader friends about this topic.

Freelance lawyers are the contemporary description of contract attorneys, temporary attorneys or independent contractors.

With the emergence of legal outsourcing, one new aspect of law profession or to say more precisely, the overlooked part of law profession that has come into limelight and that is freelance lawyers.

According to ethic committee it is ethically proper for any temporary lawyer to work for any employing lawyer or law firm on temporary basis or even getting involved in the legal outsourcing companies.

Ethic committee instructs the employing attorneys that involvement of any freelance(temporary) lawyer requires consent of the client, otherwise it will be considered as a void contract. The duty of the retaining attorney increases with the involvement of the temporary lawyer on contractual basis to disclose this fact to the client.

But according to the opinion 284 of Ethic committee the disclosure of involvement of a freelance lawyer depends upon the following factors:

o Relationship of the retaining attorney with the temporary attorney or the freelance lawyer.
o Nature of legal work to be performed.
o Clients’ reasonable expectation regarding the work.

The employing attorney has the authority to supervise directly the freelance lawyer and it is not necessary for him to disclose the client that how much remuneration is paid to the temporary lawyer. The employing (retaining) lawyer may bill the client for the service on behalf of temporary lawyer according to the mutual understanding with one another. A temporary lawyer can object to any unreasonable billing against the client charged by the retaining attorney.

The motive behind engaging a freelance lawyer is to attain highly supple and lucrative contractual terms in the outsourcing industry as there has been ample scope of employment arrangement between law firms and temporary lawyers.