Choosing a bankruptcy lawyer should be your first priority when you need to deal with the bankruptcy process.
Bankruptcy is certainly not something that anyone wants to go through, but it can be a necessity for many who are dealing with financial problems. Are you going to have to deal with bankruptcy? Do not worry. It can be a stressful process, but the stress can be greatly relieved by choosing the right lawyer to represent you through the process. Do you know how to choose a bankruptcy lawyer? Here are some tips that can help you.
Of course, since you are going through the financial stress of bankruptcy, the last thing that you will want to do is add more debt to what you are already dealing with. However, as with almost any professional service that you may need to choose, the old phrase “you get what you pay for” certainly holds true. Just because a lawyer indicates that they offer low cost or “rock bottom” bankruptcy fees, does not mean you should immediately choose them. You may not get the representation that you need. To really understand what to expect from fees and how to choose the right lawyer, you need to know what you should be paying.
Depending on your location, legal fees can vary. That has to do with the lawyers themselves, the filing fees for the state and municipality and other incidentals. There is no way to tell you exactly what you will pay, but here are some of the types of fees that you need to be prepared for:
- A flat consultation and analysis fee
- Preparation and review fees for the actual bankruptcy petition
- Meeting attendance for arbitration with creditors
- Follow-up meetings and phone calls
- Representation during a court hearing
- Creation of financial reorganization to present to the court
The most important thing to remember is that because a lawyer claims to charge one flat fee, you should be a little suspicious. There will be other fees involved in the bankruptcy process and you need to be willing to pay for them in order to get the best representation.
Choosing a Speciality Lawyer
Another way to ensure that you will be getting the best bankruptcy representation would be to consider attorneys that specialize only in bankruptcies in particular. Of course, any attorney can technically handle the bankruptcy case and they may do a good job. However, a professional that specializes in bankruptcies in particular will know all of the ins, outs, and subtle nuances of the bankruptcy process.
Choosing a speciality lawyer can actually make a big difference in the type of representation that you get and their ability to provide you with the best services possible.
Choose Real Lawyers, Not a “Bankruptcy Mill”
There is one thing that you should avoid at all costs. That would be the phenomenon called the “bankruptcy mill.” You will easily be able to spot them because they often include huge and garish advertisements indicating that they can get you through your bankruptcy as fast as possible and as cheaply as possible. The problem with these mills is that they care less about the client, and ethics, than they do about making money. The results can include bad representation for you and underhanded methods of dealing with creditors. The best choice that you can make is choose a real lawyer who will meet with you and take their time instead of just churning out one bankruptcy after another.
When you find yourself in a financial bind and you realize that the only way out is through bankruptcy, make sure your first step is to choose a quality bankruptcy lawyer.
Guest Author: Melanie Johnson is a writer for TBRCLaw.com and offers information on bankruptcy in Northern Virginia.