Do You Need A Lawyer to File Bankruptcy?

Do you need a lawyer to file bankruptcy, Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
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Filing of Bankruptcy is best and affords you the desired results when you hire a lawyer.   

I meet time and time again with clients who previously filed for bankruptcy and did not hire a lawyer (pro se).  These filers usually end up in worse shape than before they filed or tried to file bankruptcy on their own.    Here is an example:   

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

 

Example:  Debtor Files Chapter 13 Pro Se (without an attorney)

  • Debtor filed the case.

  • Shortly thereafter,  the case was dismissed.

  • Since the Plan did not address repayment of debts, it was not feasible.

  • In addition, the debt limits exceeded the debt limitations.

  • The Court determined the following:  (1) case was not submitted in good faith, (2) was filed to hinder, delay, or frustrate creditors, (3) avoid foreclosure efforts and (4) was not submitted for a proper bankruptcy purpose.

  • Therefore, the Court barred Debtor from refiling for 1 year.

  • Years later, the Debtor filed a Chapter 13 bankruptcy again.

  • The same exact circumstances were present; the Debtor exceeded the debt limitations.  

  • The Debtor’s salary, which was listed in his schedules, did not even come close to repay the arrearages yet alone the other creditors.

  • Although the Court’s findings were the same as in his previous case,  the Debtor still objected.

  • The Debtor wanted to proceed with his case.

Final Court Ruling:

  • The Debtor filed again to frustrate creditors from exercising their rights to foreclose.
  • The 1-year refiling bar did not deter the Debtor.
  • As a result, the Court imposed a 3-year refiling bar.
Pro se to Bankruptcy Court?
I definitely do not recommend you file without expert bankruptcy representation.

You cannot abuse the bankruptcy process and/or play games with the Court.   You must be a sincere Debtor looking for financial assistance through bankruptcy.

Received a Foreclosure Notice?     Before you consider filing bankruptcy without a lawyer, call me for a free consultation.   Bankruptcy Law is a specialized field of law.   You should always consult a Board Certified Bankruptcy Lawyer.