Bankruptcy Attorney: Questions To Ask

If you have tried every way imaginable to avoid bankruptcy but find that you have no other way out of the situation, the first step you should take before filing is to consult with a bankruptcy attorney. A bankruptcy attorney can be hired or appointed by the court systems to help you through the court proceedings. If you decide to select your own attorney, make sure to select someone with previous experience in bankruptcy law, preferably someone who works specifically with bankruptcy.

No matter which bankruptcy attorney you select, you should always be prepared to ask the attorney questions regarding your own case. Here is a list of questions you should always ask your attorney to make yourself more aware of your bankruptcy proceedings:

* What type of bankruptcy is right for me?

Keep in mind that the Federal court system in the United States has eight different types of bankruptcy filing available. Of course the two most popular are Chapter 13 and Chapter 7, but there are a variety of different details and rules that apply to each type of filing. A good bankruptcy attorney will be able to sift through your financial difficulties and recommend the best type of bankruptcy for you.

* How do I file for bankruptcy?

Filing for bankruptcy will need to be done in the state where you currently live. If you plan to remain represented by a bankruptcy attorney, their legal staff can help to prepare all of the paperwork that is necessary to present to the court system. If you simply want to use the bankruptcy attorney for a consultation, make sure you don’t leave the attorney’s office without the necessary paperwork to begin the bankruptcy process.

* What type of fees will I owe?

This is important to ask in regards to your bankruptcy attorney as well as the court system. Most bankruptcy attorneys will give a free consultation but any remaining time on the proceeding or in court will cost a fee. Some attorneys charge by the hour while others charge a flat fee for bankruptcy services. As well, the court systems usually charge a court fee connected with filing the case, administrative charges and extra Chapter 7 fees to pay a trustee in charge of the bankrupt account.

* Where do I go to file my bankruptcy claim?

Bankruptcy cases are handled by the federal court systems in every state. This usually means that the bankrupt party will need to give the bankruptcy paperwork to the state courthouse, usually in a state’s capitol city. Your bankruptcy attorney should know the address and rules regarding whether or not paperwork can be sent by mail or if paperwork needs to be given in person.

* What happens after filing for bankruptcy?

Immediately after filing for bankruptcy, the court system will send out notification to creditors of the pending bankruptcy case. From this point on, creditors are considered to have a “restraining order” by the debtor and are not allowed to contact the debtor requesting payment. Depending on the type of bankruptcy, a hearing will be scheduled and deadlines will be set for creditors to file a claim and attend the hearing. Of course, all of the proceedings from here are dependent on the type of bankruptcy filed, so it is important to be in contact with your bankruptcy attorney who can more readily answer these questions.

If I Don’t Need to Pay an Hourly Rate, How Do Personal Injury Lawyers Get Paid?

Whether you have ever needed the services of a personal injury lawyer or not, you have probably heard the term “contingent fee arrangement”. What exactly does the term “contingent fee arrangement” mean and when do lawyers get paid by a contingent fee arrangement? A contingent fee arrangement basically means that your lawyer will receive a percentage of the monetary settlement that you, the client, ultimately receive. Under a contingent fee arrangement, if you do not receive and money at the end of your case, then your personal injury lawyers does not receive anything either. State laws fix the maximum percentage that a lawyer may receive from a settlement; however a standard percentage is around one-third of the final settlement.

Contingency fee arrangements are most common in injury lawsuits and in fact are forbidden in other types of legal matters such as criminal cases and divorce proceedings. Why are contingency fee arrangements allowed in personal injury lawsuits? The idea behind allowing a personal injury lawyer to collect a contingency fee is that without an arrangement where the lawyer gets paid when the case is settled, many people would effectively not have access to the judicial system. Personal injury lawsuits can frequently be very costly after you factor in the administrative costs of the lawsuits, the personal injury lawyers time, his staff’s time, experts testimony fees and other miscellaneous costs. Many people could not afford to pay all of the fees up front even before being involved in an accident. After an auto accident many people are left with no vehicle, a pile of medical bills and less income from lost time at work. If they were required to pay their personal injury attorney up front, or as she worked the case, then most people would never be able to file a personal injury lawsuit and therefore would not receive the compensation they deserve. Another consequence of a system that did not allow injury attorneys to accept contingency fees would be that more people might be inclined to behave negligently if they knew that very few people would actually sue them and force them to be responsible for their negligence.

Another reason for allowing injury lawyers to collect contingency fees is that it encourages the lawyer to fight as hard as possible for his client. If their interests are both dependent on the end result, then the injury lawyer has as much invested in the outcome as the client. This makes for a win-win situation for both the client and the injury lawyer. Likewise, it cuts down on frivolous lawsuits or on negligence claims that have no merit. If a client presents a lawyer with a set of facts that the knows will not amount to a meritorious personal injury lawsuit, then he is more likely to decline to represent the client and thereby avoid a lawsuit that cannot be won. Clients, therefore, can be reasonably assured that if a lawyer decides to represent them that they will recover something in the end.

Finally, if for some reason, lawyer is not able to garner any compensation for the client, then the client owes the lawyer nothing. Again, this allows injured people that otherwise would not be able to risk filing a lawsuit the opportunity to do so without risking anything.

Bankruptcy Attorney – Tips For Choosing the Best One

Your bankruptcy attorney plays the most important role in handling your bankruptcy case. The bankruptcy laws are so complex that it is not possible for you to understand all the ins and outs associated with the same. What is more, the inclusion of the new bankruptcy laws has made it much more complex and complicated. The bankruptcy attorney is a specialized person, who knows how to use the various sections of the bankruptcy laws, to defend the bankruptcy claim for you. Therefore, if you are thinking about handling your bankruptcy case yourself, you must think twice. However, you should also note that not every bankruptcy attorney is the right one for your specific bankruptcy case. You are supposed to be very careful while choosing the one. Several factors seek your careful consideration in this regard. The more efficient your bankruptcy attorney is, the more are the chances that you will be able to defend your bankruptcy claims successfully.

License To Handle Bankruptcy Cases In A Specific State

Perhaps, the first thing that you need to look into, before hiring a bankruptcy attorney is to check, whether he or she is licensed to handle bankruptcy cases in your state. Since the bankruptcy laws differentiate widely from one state to another, it is important for you to make sure that the bankruptcy attorney you have chosen is thoroughly aware of the specific bankruptcy laws that are applicable in your state.

Are You Comfortable With The Bankruptcy Attorney?

The next big thing that you need to do is to make sure that you have good comfort level with the bankruptcy attorney you have chosen. It is very important because filing bankruptcy is a very crucial thing, and you want things to be done thoroughly. An experienced bankruptcy lawyer will take all your worries and make things much easier for you. The best way to determine if the bankruptcy attorney is the right one for you is to interview them. Ask as many questions as you want to. Ask about their qualifications and experience. Ask if they have handled your type of bankruptcy cases earlier as well. If yes, what is the success rate?

Bankruptcy Attorney Fee

Of course, budget is one of the most important elements in this regard and you cannot ignore this. Therefore, make sure that the first of the few things that you inquire about is regarding the fee they will charge. Make sure that you are capable enough to pay the fee. Usually, the bankruptcy attorney charges a substantial fee.

File Bankruptcy Under Supervision of a Bankruptcy Lawyer

Bankruptcy is a section in federal law that governs those laws and regulations pertaining to people who end up in so much debt that they cannot recover from it. This section of the federal law is designed to enable such people to recover from their debt and make a fresh start. This is done by giving them a longer time period margin in which they have to pay back all their debt and by even reducing the total debt amount by a certain percentage. All bankruptcy laws are distinguished from each other based on the chapters of the Bankruptcy Code in which they appear. There are a total of five chapters for all types of debtors and out of these five chapters three pertain to individuals. These chapters are Liquidation (chapter 7), Reorganization (chapter 11), and Reorganization (chapter 13).

Whether you are an individual or a business facing liens, lawsuits, repossession, wage garnishment, or foreclosure you should definitely hire a bankruptcy lawyer to help you solve your financial problems the efficient way. Finding a good bankruptcy lawyer is the first and most important step in this whole process. There are multiple resources that you can consult to find the perfect bankruptcy lawyer for you but always ensure that the lawyer you hire is from your area rather than any other area. This is because the laws and regulations differ from one state to another and only those lawyers who have been practicing bankruptcy cases in your area will be able to handle your case better. Therefore stick to the list of bankruptcy lawyers working in your state.

You can try getting a list of all bankruptcy lawyers working in your state from the yellow pages or through an online directory. Once you have tracked down a list run some preliminary background check to see which ones are the most reputed ones. The ones with most experience should be your first priority. Contact them and arrange for a free consultation session. If the lawyer does not offer a free consultation session then you should switch to someone else. These lawyers already charge a pretty high fee and since you are filing for bankruptcy it’s obvious that you do not have enough cash to just throw around. Therefore avoid the most costly lawyers and stick to the ones offering free consultation.

When attending your free consultation session always notice the lawyer’s habits. Lawyers who are keen about timings and are more organized can be trustworthy and reliable. Another important factor to look out for is how comfortable you feel with that person. Since you will be spending a great deal of time with that person in the future you need to ensure that the two of you click, understand each other, and you feel comfortable with him or her. Only then can you work well together. Always check out at least four or five bankruptcy lawyers before finally settling on one. Carefully planning all these things will help you find a good bankruptcy lawyer who will successfully take you through your case.

One last thing you should analyze is the size of the firm your bankruptcy lawyer is working for. Here the opinion of experts differs. Some people prefer hiring lawyers who work for really large and famous law firms whereas some people prefer hiring lawyers working for smaller firms. The problem often associated with big law firms is that they usually have so many cases lined up that they fail to give you the personal attention you need. On the other hand smaller firms have fewer cases and dedicate much of their time to it to ensure a strong name from winning those cases.