Do I Need a Lawyer
Like many areas of the law, you are not required to have an attorney to file for bankruptcy. However, there are many things that can go wrong if you do not know what you are doing. There are good legal self-help guides (www.NOLO.com). The problem is that even though the bankruptcy is filed using forms that while not simple, could be filled out. The questions use technical language that has legal meaning that may be different from plain English. There are cases that have interpreted what things actually mean. There is also local custom as to what is proper or not. You need an experience LOCAL bankruptcy attorney to review these with you. There are questions that are not on the forms, but that need to be asked, otherwise, there can be serious consequences. Most attorneys will give you a free consultation. Do not assume that your case is "easy" or "expensive". Find out by calling today.
List of Information to give your attorney:
The following are some of the things I will ask you to provide at our first meeting.
- 6 months of paystubs.
- 6 month business income and expenses statement (cash flow).
- Mortgage statements.
- Car loan statement.
- IRS Notice.
- Notice of Default on Mortgage (or notice of sale).
- List of credit card debt.
- Information if you have it about the value of home and cars.
- Copy of any lawsuit you have been served with.
- List of bank accounts and balances.
Post – Filing, Pre Discharge counseling
Bankruptcy law requires you in most cases to obtain a credit counseling certificate before the case can be filed. An additional certificate will be required in order to obtain the Discharge before the case can be closed. Here is a list of links for the credit counseling: