File Bankruptcy Without a Lawyer: 3 Reasons You Shouldn’t

When you feel overwhelmed by debt, it’s wise to consider bankruptcy. However, if those same feelings of drowning in debt prevent you from seeking professional help with your bankruptcy, you are doing yourself and your family a grave disservice. Bankruptcy is complicated; it even has its own judicial system. Bankruptcy involves negotiation with all interested parties, and it is unlikely that you will manage to get the kind of terms with corporate entities that an attorney can. Errors that an ordinary person can easily make can have huge implications, even including case dismissal. So even if it feels counter-intuitive to engage an attorney to pursue bankruptcy on your behalf, it’s the best course of action. Bankruptcy without a lawyer is a bad idea.

Bankruptcy is Complicated

There are three different kinds of bankruptcy that an individual can file, each named after the Chapter of the Bankruptcy Code that describes it. Chapter 7 is the most common. It is generally known as Liquidation Bankruptcy, and a Trustee appointed by the Court sells your assets to satisfy a portion of your debt. Chapter 13 bankruptcy is available to individuals and businesses with a consistent income and there are caps on the amount of debt you can have. Under Chapter 13, a plan is created to pay back as much debt as reasonably possible over the next three to five years, taking into account your financial situation. Chapter 11 bankruptcy is usually used by businesses, but can be accessed by individuals. Like Chapter 13, it arranged for partial payments of debts over 3 to 5 years, but the Court does not require an outside administrator. It’s also noteworthy that there is an entire legal system dedicated to bankruptcy. Not every attorney is an expert in bankruptcy law; those at Burr Law are.

Bankruptcy Negotiations Need Professionals

With Chapter 7, there are exemptions to what assets must be sold to satisfy your debts. Having one of the expert attorneys at Burr Law means that you can be sure that all of your property that can possibly be exempt from liquidation will be.

There is also an income status requirement; your income needs to be equal to or below Wisconsin’s median income, which in 2018 was $62,629. Again, there are ways to calculate your income that can work to your advantage, especially if you are near the limit for filing Chapter 7. Burr Law attorneys know how to help with that. With Chapter 13 and Chapter 11, the repayment plan is made with you, your creditors, and the Court. Isn’t it probable that one of the professionals at Burr Law would make sure that your interests are served best over the next 3 to 5 years? With professional help, unsecured debt can be totally or partially eliminated, and assets (like your house) can be protected.

Bankruptcy Legal Process

The paperwork involved in initiating, pursuing, and successfully concluding a bankruptcy suit is enormous and intricate. There are all kinds of deadlines that must be met for different aspects of your bankruptcy case in order for it to proceed. For Instance, you can file your bankruptcy petition without all documentation in place, but then if you fail to submit the entirety of required documentation within 14 days, your case will be dismissed. With the experts from Burr Law on your side, you’ll have the confidence that every bit of paperwork will be done and every single court deadline will be met.

Deciding to declare bankruptcy may be the smartest decision for your situation. But bankruptcy without a lawyer is simply stupid. Isn’t it worth it to have professionals working on your behalf?