If you find yourself considering bankruptcy proceedings as an option, it means you’ve hit rock bottom in your finances. Bankruptcy is something that affects numerous individuals. When faced with this possibility, seeking legal representation from the reputable attorneys at Lincoln-Goldfinch Law can help you navigate this process smoothly.
For many people that find themselves in situations where they have to consider bankruptcy as an option, they don’t usually see it coming. For example, they may be having difficulty keeping up with their bill payments. However, unpaid debts will eventually accumulate into overwhelming ones, putting an individual in an incredibly precarious financial position.
Bankruptcy offers legal protection from creditors against some, if not all, debts. An individual or entity facing dire financial straits can file for bankruptcy. The protection offered by bankruptcy laws comes in the form of a court order.
While an individual can file for bankruptcy without an attorney’s assistance, it is always advisable to seek legal counsel before doing so. Simply being in a difficult financial situation does not guarantee that a bankruptcy petition will be granted. In fact, a significant number of petitions filed for bankruptcy without an attorney’s assistance end up being dismissed by the courts. That’s why it’s always advisable to seek a bankruptcy attorney when considering such a procedure.
Finding the Best Bankruptcy Attorney for Your Case
For most people, finding a bankruptcy attorney means going online and looking for an attorney nearest to their location. In extreme cases, an individual simply types “bankruptcy attorney near me” into a search engine bar and clicks on the first hit. This is a mistake because an attorney’s excellent online rankings do not guarantee their competence or suitability for your case. You need to do your due diligence and check out any such attorney before considering hiring them.
To find a bankruptcy attorney:
- i) Ask for recommendations or referrals from friends and family. If anyone you know has had to go through bankruptcy proceedings or knows someone that has, they’ll likely recommend the attorney that handled such a case if the outcome was good. As you seek recommendations from acquaintances, go online and search for a list of bankruptcy attorneys in your city.
- ii) Having made a list of attorneys from your online search (and recommendations from family and friends), make appointments with several of them to evaluate each one’s potential for handling your case. During such a meeting, you want to find out as much as you can about each bankruptcy attorney. Ask about details like their area of practice, the size of their law firm, their legal fees, whether or not they’ve handled a case like yours, etc.
iii) Use all the information you’ve gathered to whittle down your list. Look out for things like personality and manner to help you narrow down this list. For example, during the appointment, did you meet with the actual attorney or a paralegal? An attorney that doesn’t bother to show up for an appointment with a potential client may prove to be difficult to work with down the line. Lookout for such things to help narrow down your list.
What to Look for in a Bankruptcy Attorney
In addition to minor things like showing up for appointments, you want a bankruptcy attorney that has certain traits. These traits include:
Experiencing financial difficulties that lead to bankruptcy proceedings can take their toll on people. During such difficult times, the last thing you need is a bankruptcy attorney with no sympathy for your trials. As much as possible, always go for bankruptcy attorneys that are compassionate when representing their clients. A compassionate attorney is better suited to give you the right legal guidance throughout the bankruptcy process.
Ensure to verify the basics, like an attorney’s credentials and whether or not they’re licensed to practice law in that particular jurisdiction. After that, you want to ensure that they have the experience necessary to handle your case. It’s not advisable to hire the first attorney that seems legitimate simply because they’re a graduate of a law school. You want to ensure that the one you choose has the experience to help you navigate bankruptcy proceedings, some of which can become complicated.
Reputation is key. You want a bankruptcy attorney that has a positive record of dealing with clients. Usually, an attorney’s website will have testimonials and reviews from past clients. If you found such an attorney through your own search, it helps to look through their site for any reviews. This will give you a good idea of how your case will likely be handled.
Ultimately, you want a bankruptcy attorney that demonstrates all such qualities in addition to professionalism.