When a person is filing bankruptcy, their whole world seems like it’s going upside down. The only focus they have is on getting that bankruptcy discharge and getting the creditors off their back. During these stressful times many people continuously call their bankruptcy attorney with problems or to ask stupid questions. While they don’t believe the questions are stupid, in the big scheme of things they are wasting the time of the attorney. Overbearing clients can cause a rift between the bankruptcy attorney, the law office staff and the client.
The attorney knows the timeline that needs to be to get a successful bankruptcy discharge and usually is on top of things. job and not bother them unless you are being harassed by creditors. If the bankruptcy has already filed and creditors are continuing to call, the individuals should call the bankruptcy attorney and make them aware of the automatic stay violations. Most of the time, a staff member from the law office will call the creditor and make them aware of the bankruptcy filing. This usually will stop them from calling.
Because of the relationship and the time frame it takes to file bankruptcy, it’s important that people need to take the time to look for a bankruptcy attorney that they get along well with. The entire process of filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy takes about 4 to 6 months of someone’s life. Because someone’s life is turned upside down, they are very hypersensitive during this time frame. If the person filing for bankruptcy finds an attorney they trust, they will be able to chill out and let the attorney do their job. If there is no trust or relationship there, the individual will try and micromanage the law office making everybody mad. This is not the way to have a successful bankruptcy filing. When someone becomes a problem, typically, the bankruptcy attorney will stop calling the individual back and the fight will be on. The old statement, patience is a virtue should be taken to heart because this process doesn’t happen overnight.
My personal belief is hiring a bankruptcy attorney should be looked at the same as putting a sports team together. If all the members don’t work together successfully, the outcome will be shown in the results. There will be important items that might slip through the cracks because the dynamic of the relationship has gone south. In today’s complicated legal system it is much better to rely on the expertise of a bankruptcy attorney then trying to go it alone. Try to keep in mind at all times the reason of why the attorney was hired in the first place.
You can do some of your bankruptcy work yourself, it still helps significantly to have a bankruptcy attorney look over your documentation and make sure everything is in order before you file. You also need to know your rights as someone who is filing for bankruptcy to as well.
In addition, a qualified, experienced and knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney is going to have many insights you do not have. For example, they can make suggestions or recommendations as to what other options you may have which may be much better for you than facing the long-term negative effects of bankruptcy.
Bankruptcy laws have changed in the last few years, so that today, Chapter 7 bankruptcy is basically what used to be called “straight bankruptcy.” With this, those who file for bankruptcy turn over any nonexempt assets for liquidation to creditors, and then debts are paid off with these liquidated assets. When the proceedings are over, the debtor is completely exempt from further pursuit by creditors and the debt is completely discharged. If you do, it’s generally advised that you take advantage of this type of bankruptcy, since it will exempt you from any further responsibility for these debts once the bankruptcy is complete. However, be advised that you will lose nonexempt assets for liquidation, including perhaps your house. Therefore, the pros are that you are completely “forgiven” your debts, but you may have to start from scratch.
Also you need to be aware that there are certain types of debts such as tax liens, student loans, child support and others that cannot be discharged by any form of bankruptcy, so if this type of debt makes up a major portion of your indebtedness, declaring bankruptcy is not going to help you in the least.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is the other major type of bankruptcy that most debtors look to file for today. With new bankruptcy laws, most states will not let you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy if you have a regular income. What this type of bankruptcy says is that you’re not going to be forgiven your debts. Instead, Chapter 13 bankruptcy is what is known as “reorganization” bankruptcy for debtors with an income. With this, you are allowed to keep most assets, including your house in most cases. However, you’re going to have to make payments to your creditors through a trustee over a period of several years, usually, until the debt is paid off. A plan is drawn up for the repayment and then a court approves or disapproves of it, based upon whether or not it meets bankruptcy code requirements for confirmation.