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Item Description – Unless you work in finance, there’s a good chance that you do not know all the ins and outs of the bankruptcy process. You are not required to hire a bankruptcy lawyer. Some debtors decide to file on their own. This may work for simpler cases, but it’s not recommended. Even if your finances aren’t complex, many pitfalls could lead to big problems and expensive repayments.When done right, bankruptcy will protect you from creditors and provide relief for debt obligations that you cannot meet. Statistics show that people who hire a bankruptcy attorney saw better results compared to those who did not.According to the American Bankruptcy Institute, 91.5% of consumers were represented by lawyers in 486,347 Chapter 7 cases in 2017. Out of those, 96.2% of cases with a lawyer had their debt discharged. That means a total of 428,097 debtors left court without debt.Only 66.7% of those who filed Chapter 7 without a bankruptcy attorney was successful.The numbers are worse for those who filed Chapter 13 without legal representation. In those cases, only 2.3% were discharged. Debtors who filed Chapter 13 with a bankruptcy lawyer had a success rate of 41.5%.Before you decide to skip the cost of hiring an attorney, make sure you know how much you could potentially lose in the end. It’s well worth the cost to have a professional on your side. Why should you hire a bankruptcy attorney before you file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13?Bankruptcy Lawyers Have Specialized Knowledge That You NeedA bankruptcy lawyer starts their career by earning a bachelor’s degree. Once accepted to law school, they will spend another two to four years furthering their education. After they join the workforce, every case they take on becomes more experience.That means that a highly recommended professional is going to have a wealth of knowledge that the average person doesn’t possess. Unless you are prepared to invest years into obtaining a law degree, you’ll likely not gather the same information and skill set that your lawyer has.You aren’t just paying for someone to go to court and argue on your behalf. You are paying for a professional with a deep understanding of bankruptcy and how to get you the best outcome possible.You Can Gain a Better Understanding of Your Case from the StartA bankruptcy attorney can give you a better understanding of your case from the start. They can assess your situation and let you know about the potential challenges you may face. If you have questions, they can provide answers or advice.Your attorney can also make sure that you don’t do anything that you shouldn’t before filing for bankruptcy. They are your coach through the process. They can help you prepare for what will come and what the court may expect of you.It Could Mean the Difference Between Saving Your Home and Losing ItDepending on how you file and what you do before and during bankruptcy proceedings, your home could be on the line. That is why you should not abandon your property when filing. A bankruptcy lawyer can show you how to proceed and tell you if your state offers a homestead exemption. A federal homestead exemption is also available. Your lawyer can let you know if the equity in your home puts you over the limit or if you are safe and won’t have to sell.Debt Collectors and Creditors Can No Longer Call You DirectlyWithout a legal representative, debt collectors and creditors can call you directly. These interactions can be very stressful. They can also put you in a position to do or say the wrong thing. You should not make special payments to a creditor right before you file for bankruptcy. This may be viewed as a preferential payment by the court. The trustee can undo this type of payment by filing a clawback lawsuit against the entity who received it. This is done to ensure that the creditors you owe are treated fairly.All interactions with creditors and collection companies are routed to your bankruptcy lawyer. If anyone calls you, you can refuse to speak with them and advise them to contact your legal representative. It protects you in the long run and removes the hassle of dealing with debt-related phone calls.They Know Whether You Should File Chapter 7 or Chapter 13Do you know the difference between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy? Your lawyer will. This is essential because the two types have significant differences.When filing Chapter 7, the court will discharge your debts without requiring a payment plan. This type is considered liquidation bankruptcy because you are expected to sell property to help cover some of the debt. This is usually a better option for people with low income and few or no assets. Chapter 7 comes with income limits. If you exceed the limits, then you will be required to file Chapter 13.Chapter 13 bankruptcy is considered a reorganization of your debts. You don’t walk away obligation-free, but the court makes repayment more manageable. You will be required to pay back some or all of the amount owed. A repayment plan will be established that lasts three to five years. This will cover everything that the court deems you responsible to repay after bankruptcy.You get to keep your property, but you must stay up to date on your payment plan. If you fall behind, your assets could be seized. Chapter 13 is usually recommended for people who don’t qualify for Chapter 7, have non-dischargeable debts like child support, or are behind on a house or car payment but want to keep their property.A Bankruptcy Attorney Can Lower the Stress of FilingEven a simple bankruptcy case can be stressful for the debtor. An incorrectly filled out form can cause delays. There are many things you can do to hurt or help your case. Unless you are a legal expert, it may be difficult to know exactly what you can and cannot do when filing for bankruptcy.Relying on an experienced professional will put your mind at ease. It lowers stress and can help emotionally as you cope with money-related changes in your life. Doing it on your own can bring on doubt, fear, and anxiety. You could also end up losing valuable assets that you may have been able to keep had things been done differently.A bankruptcy lawyer can help you navigate the uncertainty of going through this intensive legal process. You could save yourself a lot of frustration, time, and money by investing in someone you can trust to work for you. They can provide advice, explain exemptions, represent you at hearings, and help you correctly complete forms. Visit Bankruptcy Directory today to find a trusted bankruptcy attorney in your area.