How To Pick The Right Bankruptcy Lawyer?


By:Mike Cibik

Lawyers are not interchangeable. One lawyer is not necessarily as good as another. Price is probably the poorest basis on which to choose an attorney.

Bankruptcy law is not about filling out forms. You do file forms in bankruptcy, but the job requires a lawyer because it is not obvious what information goes in those forms and what the implications of that information is to the conduct of the case.

You can fill out the form properly, and find that the Chapter 7 trustee is suing your mother for the money you repaid her before bankruptcy. Ouch!

While it’s not rocket science, it isn’t about the forms.
Just the facts

Here’s my checklist for evaluating a prospective bankruptcy lawyer.

  • How much of the lawyer’s practice is bankruptcy cases for individuals?
  • Does the lawyer ask about your goals in filing ?
  • Do you get a chance to talk and are you really heard?
  • Does the attorney explain your choices and the legal procedures in language you can understand?
  • Are you comfortable asking questions and disclosing the difficult and messy situations in your financial life?
  • Are you offered a written representation agreement that you can understand that tells you what services are included in the quoted fee?
  • Do you get real, unhurried face-time with the lawyer, not staff


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