Do I need a lawyer to file bankruptcy?
No. You do not need a lawyer to final bankruptcy.
You can file bankruptcy without hiring a lawyer; just like you can pull your own wisdom tooth out of your head or take a bullet out of your arm by yourself, saving the cost of a surgeon by using a butcher knife.
But, would you? Of course not. It costs money to hire a lawyer, just like it costs money to hire a dentist or surgeon. You do it because you want the expertise and because you don’t want to take chances with your life or your future.
There are companies on TV and on the web that will encourage you to file bankruptcy without a lawyer. Their pitch is that “You can file bankruptcy without a lawyer”. That is true, just like you can take the bullet out of your arm by yourself. The bad thing is that these ads give you the impression that it is safe or appropriate to do so.
It is NOT safe or appropriate to file bankruptcy without an attorney
If you need to file bankruptcy, money is tight. I understand. That goes without saying, but it makes no sense to be “penny-wise and pound-foolish”. Bankruptcy law is very complicated, with many twists and turns, and with traps for the unwary.
Without an attorney you could well file a bankruptcy where there is no need, or put your house or car at risk for no reason, or file at the wrong time, or get in trouble for failing to disclose important facts. The list of risks goes on and on. Almost every day I talk to someone who has debt but would be in far worse shape if they did file bankruptcy, because of little technicalities that even the casual bankruptcy attorney might miss. I am a Board Certified Bankruptcy Specialist. Our firm offers board certified consumer bankruptcy services. Our practice is limited to providing debt relief to consumers.
Do you need a lawyer to file bankruptcy? If you want it done right, the answer is yes.