Do I Need a Lawyer to File Bankruptcy in New York City?

Do I Need a Lawyer to File Bankruptcy in New York City?

Although you are not required by law in New York to hire a lawyer for your bankruptcy, in the eyes of almost all legal experts it is a very bad idea to try to file on your own.  The US Bankruptcy Code and New York Bankruptcy Laws are complicated.  Attorneys spend a lot of time and money learning about the bankruptcy process.  For you to do well in your bankruptcy without the help of an attorney you would need to dedicate a considerable amount of time to learning the subject of consumer law.  In fact, for most people just filing out the basic bankruptcy petition can be surprisingly difficult- and you do not want to make a mistake.   Bankruptcy trustees are not forgiving when it comes to an unprepared filer and if you do make a mistake you may be at the risk of losing your car, home and assets. It’s possible you could even be accused of a crime.

It’s not hard to convince most people that filing by themselves is a bad idea, but don’t make the similar mistake of working with a bankruptcy preparation service instead of an attorney either.  Bankruptcy preparers are not attorneys and cannot provide you with legal advice.  A preparation service cannot come with you to the bankruptcy hearing, so you will be on your own with the trustee if there happens to be a problem.  Also, using one of these services might save you a little money in the short term, but the advice of a qualified bankruptcy attorney will usually result in a better bankruptcy discharge in the end.  So even if you don’t have problems upfront, using a preparation service could actually cost you big overall.

When you are faced with crushing debt and are in serious financial distress, taking action can seem impossible.  Before consulting with our office many of our clients believe their situation is utterly hopeless.  They throw good money after bad thinking that bankruptcy is too complicated for them, or will ruin them forever.  How will they live with the embarrassment they wonder?  What most people don’t understand until they face a bankruptcy of their own is that bankruptcy is designed to protect you, not punish you.  It is a second chance, not a scarlet letter.  Millions of people file for bankruptcy every year, and seeking debt relief is your legal right in America.

An experienced bankruptcy attorney will prevent any problems with your filing, make the process simple and smooth for you from start to finish, and will relieve the overall stress associated with bankruptcy.  A bankruptcy firm will also immediately get the creditors off your back and will eliminate any intimidating communications from them on day one.  After consulting with an attorney you will know exactly what to expect if you file, there will be no guessing about the result.  Having the peace of mind that an expert is handling everything from start to finish with your best financial interests at heart is absolutely worth the reasonable expense of a bankruptcy attorney.

If you live in New York and need to find affordable bankruptcy help please give the Law Offices of William Waldner a call at 212-244-2882 to arrange a free bankruptcy consultation today.  As of 8/31/16 we have a 99% Chapter 7 Bankruptcy discharge record in New York City.

This article is intended for educational purposes only.  By reading this article no attorney-client relationship has been created.

William Waldner