Filing for bankruptcy can be a stressful process, regardless of how you got there. Most people realize that it isn’t wise to attempt to navigate bankruptcy proceedings on your own, but how do you find the right bankruptcy lawyer for your unique situation?
Searching For Top Bankruptcy Lawyers
With these helpful tips – and My341’s exclusive tools – you can find the guidance and assistance from top bankruptcy lawyers you need to help you navigate this process.
Look Past Your Budget
Most people who are facing bankruptcy are worried about money. After all, bankruptcy is typically the result of a financial failure of some kind, even if that failure is not the fault of the debtor. However, refusing to hire a top bankruptcy lawyer because of high legal fees may actually be an unwise decision.
Because many courts put a cap on how much a lawyer can earn on a bankruptcy case, the fees your lawyer is asking are likely to be in the same “ballpark” category as most of their peers. However, with legal guidance – as with many other things in life – you’ll find that you get what you pay for. Many lawyers who offer their services at discounted rates may be brand new to the field, may have a spotty track record of success, or may be hiding other reasons for being so much less expensive than others. Always question why your prospective provider is so much cheaper – and look past those low numbers to find better providers at reasonable rates.
Look for Experience
Any time you want legal help, you want to find a legal professional who has specific experience related to your case. While all bankruptcy lawyers understand how bankruptcy works and can provide acceptable guidance, you should search for a professional that has the kind of experience you’re looking for. Filing chapter 7 bankruptcy? Look for a lawyer with experience handling chapter 7 cases. Thinking of filing for chapter 13 instead? Look for lawyers who understand the difference and who can guide you through the process of chapter 13 bankruptcy with years of experience under their belt.
At My341, we offer a battery of tools to help you find the right lawyer in your area based on experience. From our multi-state attorney directory to our experience rating tool, we offer the technology and support you need to find top bankruptcy lawyers in your area who have handled the kind of case you’re dealing with – sometimes dozens or even hundreds of times! Choosing a legal professional based on what kind of cases they typically handle will give you the kind of experienced, knowledgeable legal guidance you’re looking for, as well as the results you want when your case is finished.
Something that few people think about when looking for a bankruptcy lawyer is honesty in suggesting other alternatives. By the time that most people are ready to file for bankruptcy, they have already made up their mind that bankruptcy is their only option. However, top bankruptcy lawyers understand that bankruptcy should be a last resort and that many other options exist.
Being presented with other options for solving a financial crisis will show you two things. The first is that your lawyer is ethical. A good person makes a good lawyer, regardless of what people may believe about ruthless legal professionals. An ethical lawyer will lend those ethics to your case. Secondly, being offered other options than filing for bankruptcy will also show you that your lawyer is an experienced professional and that if they don’t see your case as obviously winnable and beneficial for you, they aren’t going to take it to court. That honesty is a quality that should never be disregarded when choosing a bankruptcy lawyer.
Top bankruptcy lawyers shouldn’t make you feel afraid to ask questions. Questions can help you establish your own expectations and desires for the case and find out what to expect from your legal team. Some good questions to start your conversations with bankruptcy lawyers include:
- Will the 2005 change to the bankruptcy code impact my case at all? While 2005 may feel like ancient history to younger lawyers, older, veteran bankruptcy lawyers may struggle to adjust to the changes that occurred during the revision to the bankruptcy code that year. Experience is important, but not at the expense of using a modern approach to bankruptcy advice and guidance.
- How large is your practice? While you may prefer the personal touch offered by single-proprietor practices or boutique-style firms, larger firms offer far more resources. You can find top bankruptcy lawyers in all these practice formats, though, so don’t let practice size be the deciding factor.
- How involved are you with the case itself? Some attorneys meet with you once, then let their staff handle everything from there. While this usually doesn’t impact the results of the case, this can be very off-putting for some clients. Ask how involved your lawyer typically is upfront and communicate your expectations as well. This way, neither of you will be surprised if you do choose to work together.
Above all, you should feel comfortable and secure with your choice of legal professional. Even if someone you’re looking at is among the top bankruptcy lawyers in your area, if they don’t make you feel heard and understood, you are going to be uncomfortable throughout the entire bankruptcy process. Considering bankruptcy is already a challenging experience, you should look for a professional who lifts you up and encourages you to make good decisions, rather than talking over you and ignoring your concerns and suggestions.
Filing for bankruptcy is almost always a painful and confusing process. Your bankruptcy lawyer should be willing to hear your worries and what led you to the point of declaring bankruptcy – and be able to put your concerns to rest. Don’t settle for anything less than a lawyer that makes you feel better about what you’re going through. There are many bankruptcy lawyers to choose from; use the tools here at My341 to select the best for your situation and start feeling better about your financial future today.