Choosing a Bankruptcy Lawyer in the US
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Statistics indicate that we are more likely to face bankruptcy courts than any other form of a legal process, except family law courts. With this in mind, it is a good idea to familiarize ourselves with the process of choosing a bankruptcy lawyer. Doing this for the sake of just being ready might not be that appealing, but when you are struggling with debts, it is one of the most important things to do.
It should be pointed out however that it is totally ok to file for bankruptcy without a lawyer in the US, in which case, the court will call it a proper filing or a pro se. in some regions in California, 25% of cases are filed without the help of an attorney, while nationwide, the rate stands at 9%, most of which are Chapter 7.
But how do you choose a bankruptcy lawyer? You should have your bankruptcy matters handled by an experienced debt relief attorney. There are two types of bankruptcy lawyers: consumer bankruptcy lawyers and commercial or business lawyers.
Having learned the different type of bankruptcy attorneys let us now find how to choose a bankruptcy lawyer.
Choosing a Bankruptcy Lawyer
The crucial part in finding the best lawyer to represent your bankruptcy case is knowing exactly what to look for in one. Below are some helpful tips on finding the right bankruptcy lawyer.
If you don’t get an experienced bankruptcy lawyer, you may find yourself in troubles other than just being bankrupt. A good experience is reflected in the number of cases the lawyer has handled, as opposed to the years of practice. Find a lawyer that has a good balance between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 cases and not more of one than the other.
It is hard to gauge a lawyer’s competence. They may have long years of practice but failed in most cases. It is sometimes good to go for young and hard-working ones who have grown under the tutelage of an experienced bankruptcy attorney.
Although cheaper isn’t always better, at least you should look for an attorney who charges reasonable fees for their services. Check out what they usually charge for a Chapter 7 or 13 cases.
After taking care of the above factors and you are confident about the attorney you have chosen, it is time to schedule for an appointment. During the meeting, you should look for the following things:
Is the Lawyer available?
Make sure you talk directly to the lawyer when making an appoint, that way you will get a hint of how accessible they are.
The last thing you want is a lawyer who can’t communicate effectively in front of the jury. Ask specific questions and see if they are fluent.
Does the lawyer have malpractice insurance? If not, consider looking for someone else. Though malpractice insurance protects the lawyer and not you, the fact that he or she is insured may make it easier to recover damage.