A friend of mine once said, “Would you try to do your own brain surgery?” And the answer to that is, clearly, “No.” You want an expert who knows what they’re doing. Bankruptcy, while not as life threatening as brain surgery, is still very technical — one of the most technical areas of law.
Consequently, it’s important, especially when it comes to your financial future, and your assets —protecting those assets — that you have somebody who knows the law, who knows the judges, and who knows the trustees. It’s important that you have someone who can shepherd you through the process, protect your assets and get rid of your liabilities properly.
Creditors tend to take advantage of people who are filing the bankruptcy themselves — what is called “pro se legal representation” — because the creditor knows the person doesn’t have legal knowledge. Or they don’t have anybody in their corner.
It’s important to hire a bankruptcy attorney so that you have someone in your corner who can get you through a very technical process and can ease your mind. Most importantly, you need someone who can make sure you get a discharge of your debt and protect your assets properly. Because if you don’t list something in your bankruptcy properly and exempt it properly, you could lose that asset. Or, if the creditors want to challenge your ability to obtain a discharge and they see you’re by yourself, then they will more likely file that because they know that they will be able to get a default judgment on somebody to frankly doesn’t know how to respond to that. If they see that the person has a lawyer, they’re less like to challenge you.