Can’t Afford a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Attorney?
Attorney fees in a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy come out of the money that would have been paid to unsecured creditors! If you file Chapter 13 Bankruptcy on your own, you are normally working for free. Poorly filed petitions can cause Bankruptcy Debtors to lose money, property or spend added time in court. The court monitors and authorizes fees to insure you are never overcharged.
How do you file exemptions for property you own or how do you compute the means test. That and 100 other rules of how to file have to be memorized to prepare a petition. The Bankruptcy Code is a complicated federal statute that involves technical terms, accounting principles and rules of law that even non-bankruptcy attorneys have problems with. If average attorney can’t properly file petitions, why do people believe they know how to file their own. Sure some people have done it.
The job of a panel Trustees is to take your property away. He is paid a commission to take property away from you. The failure to properly file your petition is a common reason for losing property. Often a Trustee will just smile while he takes the property of a debtor who didn’t use an attorney and didn’t know how to file.
Pleading I didn’t know how to file won’t prevent losing property.
When a Debtor prepares their own case, it often unravels. A paralegal is not supposed to offer assistance (offering advice is practicing law without a license). A paralegal can’t tell you whether or not you would lose property and only works under the supervision of an attorney. An experienced bankruptcy attorney will review the debtor’s financial file, obtaining documents to ensure security interests are properly filed and that property wasn’t improperly transferred.
The bankruptcy attorney cannot always accomplish goals some clients demand like a free home. But a bankruptcy attorney can advise you and warn you about potential problems like the possible loss of a home and outline to you how you should file a bankruptcy.
It is worth the time and money to have an experienced attorney help you plan and file. Some Debtors try to save money by not hiring a lawyer. But often they end up having it costing more work, time and property. You can’t afford not to file with an experienced bankruptcy attorney.