What Your Bankruptcy Lawyer Will Do For You
What happens when you file bankruptcy, and what will your bankruptcy lawyer do for you throughout that process? If you have never dealt with bankruptcy or even the court system, you may feel lost. It is important to understand what happens when you file bankruptcy, however, so that you can fully comprehend your rights and responsibilities. This is where an experienced bankruptcy lawyer is very helpful, as he or she has done this before and can guide you through every step you must take.
A bankruptcy means test is likely one of the first things your lawyer will help you complete. The bankruptcy means test helps you and your lawyer decide what type of bankruptcy is best for you. If you are below the median income you can qualify for both a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13. While a Chapter 13 will require monthly payments, sometimes in the long run it may be a better option than a Chapter 7.
Through the bankruptcy means test, your lawyer will help you figure out if your income is low enough to file for Chapter 7, or if Chapter 13 is a better option for your situation. Because this determination also depends on things like income and expenses, it is a good idea to get the expert help of your lawyer to complete it.
Filing for bankruptcy involves a lot of paperwork, documentation, and forms, all of which your lawyer will have experience handling. In theory, you could do this yourself, but it will likely take you a long time and cause a lot of frustration. You could also inadvertently make a mistake that would tie your case up in the court system. A lawyer, on the other hand, will have no troubles properly collecting, completing, and filing all necessary documentation with the court, to expedite your case as much as possible.
In general, obtaining a discharge when filing a Chapter 7 without an attorney occurs about 60-70% of the time. With an attorney, that goes up to nearly 100%. What is not reflected in these numbers is whether you were able to save most or all your assets by applying proper exemptions.
Your lawyer will also navigate wage garnishment laws and the manner in which they may apply to you. Wage garnishment laws require your employer to withhold some of your income to pay creditors. In Arizona, there are limits on the amount of money that can be withheld through wage garnishment laws, and filing for bankruptcy should put a halt to these orders. If you are facing wage garnishment, contact your bankruptcy lawyer right away for expert assistance and guidance.
This blog is intended as a general discussion of legal issues and not as a statement of fact, legal advice or a legal opinion. No attorney-client relationship is created by this blog. Do not act or rely upon law-related information in this communication without seeking the advice of an attorney licensed to practice in the relevant area.