There are people that are perfectly capable of filing their own bankruptcies. For most people, though, it really is better to hire an attorney. Bankruptcy is a fairly complex process. The Bankruptcy Code itself is one of the most difficult legal codes to read and follow because every section refers to a ton of other sections. So you have to keep jumping around. Try it sometime. So it really is helpful to have the guidance of someone familiar with the issues involved in bankruptcy. It’s important to prepare your petition, schedules and statement of financial affairs completely and accurately so that the meeting of creditors is a routine matter, and does not become a fact finding mission for the trustee or creditors. You do this by properly and fully disclosing the required information. Experience helps in doing so. While I haven’t seen every possible circumstance, I’ve seen many, and know what in a particular set of circumstances may require more information or some sort of action. As I said, bankruptcy is just a complex area of law. Again, some people are perfectly capable of doing their own but it can take a lot of effort to try to understand some fairly complex things.
Also, filing bankruptcy can be stressful, though it is a different kind of stress than being crushed by debt. There’s a period of stress before you file, which can be greatly relieved when you learn what filing bankruptcy can do for you. Once the petition is filed, however, many people experience a growing anxiety about the looming 341. It can be intimidating for people that aren’t used to being involved with a court system. It may be thought to be embarrassing because it is being in public as a debtor. There is a trustee at the meeting, you’re going to be answering questions under oath, somebody has examined your financial life by pouring over your petition, schedules and statement of financial affairs. It comforts a lot of people to know that they have an attorney with them and on their side.
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The 341 is a function of what’s gone before. If you present your circumstances accurately and you are eligible for the relief your petition seeks, it really is just part of the process. It’s the part that stresses people out but if you’ve done everything up to that point, it should just be routine. The hard work has gone before.
For more information on The Barriers that arise during these Hearings a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling (510) 594-2551 today.