Do you want to file for Chapter 7,13, or 11 bankruptcy? You need to pick someone with the right experience and knowledge for your case, especially if you are a small business owner or sole proprietor.
No one likes to be placed in this position, but that does not mean you should take forever to make a choice. You need to hire someone reputable as soon as you can, but be sure to put in the proper legwork to find the person. Some like to wait until the last minute to do anything. The only issue with that is you could pick someone at the bottom of the barrel. Not every bankruptcy lawyer is the same. Some have more pros than cons. Pick someone right away and make sure you can live with that choice.
Do you know any legal professionals in the area? Talk to them first. They can help guide you. They might have a better solution than the one you think of. Legal professionals have a wealth of information and resources, even if you do not choose the one you speak to represent you. Using a tool like the bankruptcy attorney directory can definitely speed up the process of finding a qualified bankruptcy attorney.
You cannot do this alone. You need help. The more qualified expertise you have on your side, the better the outcome for your case.
It is a good idea to spend a day with a bankruptcy lawyer, even if you spend all day in court. The experience will give you an idea of what to expect. Some people do not know what to expect when they file for bankruptcy. They just know they have filed for either Chapter 7, 11, or 13. Most clients do not know the ins and outs of that decision.
Shadowing someone will also help explain what happens with the process. Your situation might be different, but the basic rules still apply.
Who sits on the board for the bankruptcy court of appeals panel? That is something you should know because just one person could change the outcome. You should also write down the names of the people who sit on the panel boards and the debt collectors. The more names you know, the better off you will be.
You might have hired someone else to represent you, but the other board members make decisions too. It is similar to someone thinking they have everything “taken care” because of “someone” sitting on the panel. They forget there are other people too. The other people have the power to sway the decision one way or the other.
The person you hire for your bankruptcy case should have an office. Take the time to visit where they work. Most reputable lawyers will not mind you doing that. Take a look around.
Everything should look organized. Do you sense something feels “out of place.” Talk to the person to find out why. You should never hire someone when they give you the feeling that something is wrong. Your bankruptcy case might not go as well as you expected.