Questions to Ask Your Pittsburgh Bankruptcy Lawyer to Get the Best Deal
Those considering filing a voluntary bankruptcy petition under the United States Bankruptcy Code often look far and wide in order to get the best deal possible. When considering engaging a lawyer to represent you, here are a few things to consider.
Does the Lawyer have Experience Representing Debtors in Bankruptcy Cases?
Bankruptcy is a very complex and ever-developing field of law. The basis for bankruptcy law is traceable to the United States Constitution. Today, American bankruptcy law is based in a federal statute codified in Title 11 of the United States Code. Bankruptcy practice is further governed by the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure which rules are set out by the United States Supreme Court. While original jurisdiction for bankruptcy cases rests in the United States district courts, that jurisdiction is routinely referred to the United States bankruptcy courts. Bankruptcy courts are courts of limited jurisdiction and its judges are not appointed by the President to serve for life as are Article III judges.
Because of the specialized nature of bankruptcy practice, consumers are best served by first ascertaining whether their prospective counsel has represented debtors in bankruptcy cases in Pittsburgh. In addition to the United States Bankruptcy Code and Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure, bankruptcy courts and even individual bankruptcy judges often have unique forms, procedures and rules for debtors to follow. In some instances, non-conformity to those rules and procedures can have important consequences that may impact debtors’ substantive rights.
What Other Costs are Associated with Filing a Bankruptcy Case in Pittsburgh?
Lawyers in Pittsburgh may detail their legal fees separately from other costs that debtors will also have to pay. Almost all consumer debtors will need to complete a course in pre-petition credit counseling prior to filing their bankruptcy cases. The cost of those credit counseling courses may vary substantially from one approved provider to another. Your bankruptcy lawyer may be able to give you advice on how to get the best deal on your bankruptcy credit counseling. Similarly, debtors must take a post-petition course in financial management. An experienced Pittsburgh bankruptcy attorney may be able to help find the best deal on bankruptcy debtor education.
Lastly, an important cost in most is the fee for filing the case itself. That fee changes from time to time and also varies based upon the kind of bankruptcy case you file. Your Pittsburgh bankruptcy lawyer can provide you with a schedule of court fees and explain how those payments will be made.
Do you Trust your Pittsburgh Bankruptcy Lawyer?
Debtors sometimes find that saving money by hiring lawyers in whom they do not have confidence may end up being a very costly mistake. Your Pittsburgh bankruptcy lawyer should provide you with dependable advice that helps you decide whether a bankruptcy case is right for you, what type of bankruptcy might best fit your circumstances, how to apply bankruptcy exemptions, disclose your financial condition and comply with the formalistic mandates of bankruptcy in order to achieve your fresh start goals.
Gives yourself the best chance of getting the best deal on a bankruptcy filing in Pittsburgh.