Many people attempt to navigate the bankruptcy process alone. While this is possible, the process can be both confusing and overwhelming. The benefits of hiring a bankruptcy lawyer are infinite and most people find having a representative can take the stress out of the situation. Your lawyer knows the ins and outs of the process and can even deal with creditors so you don't have to. Overall, having a bankruptcy lawyer can significantly increase your chances at a debt discharge, but it doesn't mean that your work is done.
The average bankruptcy filing is between 40-60 pages in length. The filing petition includes information about your income, expenses, assets, debts and fund accounts. The court requires this level of detail in order to accurately determine your financial position, which will influence how your case is pursued. The more detail you can provide at this stage of the filing, the better your chances of gaining a successful outcome. The details do matter and inaccuracies can delay the closing of the case or lead to a dismissal. When working with your lawyer, be sure to be as detailed and accurate as possible. Even if you don't think it matters, report it anyway just to be sure. Your lawyer can help you sort through which information is important or relevant, and which is not.
Not only are the details important but the accuracy of the information as well. Because the bankruptcy process requires full disclosure of your financial details, it is important that you are 100 percent honest about your finances. Any attempt to hide or conceal information about a debt, asset, income or monies you may have can be viewed as fraudulent in the eyes of the court, leading to some serious consequences. Remember that what you tell your lawyer is confidential and, although they may be required to report it to the court, you can rest assured that your information is protected from outside view. It is important to the outcome of your case that you are always honest about what you have spent, what you earn and the status of all of your assets.
Your bankruptcy lawyer only knows as much as you tell them, which is why it is up to you to keep in touch with your lawyer. If your financial situation changes in any way, you must report it to your lawyer right away so they can make the necessary changes. This includes acquiring more income or loss of income, changes to debt accounts or assets, and even inheriting money. Your lawyer must deal with numerous financial details so it is important that you maintain contact, but also have patience. They are working for you and the process can take some time.
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