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DIY Bankruptcy: Good or Bad Idea?


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TERMINOLOGY

While a diy bankruptcy can be an ideal solution, it may not be the best direction depending on your particular circumstance. You must determine if your situation even warrants filing for bankruptcy. Bankruptcy is already a hard process and not having money to hire an attorney can add more stress to the procedure. Filing bankruptcy requires extensive knowledge about finances and the law. It is critical to ensure that bankruptcy is the only option available to help eliminate debt. By doing it yourself, there are advantages and disadvantages to consider before deciding which option would be best.

Advantages

The main advantage of doing it yourself bankruptcy is the financial savings. Using an attorney or any other financial expert can cost a lot of money. For a person who is already facing a financial burden, doing it alone can prove to be a better investment.  The reduction in cost can allow you to focus on the actual case and not how to fund it. The second advantage of doing it yourself bankruptcy is time flexibility. When using attorneys, he or she has to have meetings for each step of the process. This can become time-consuming. With doing it yourself, you control the speed and time taken to file the paperwork. The last advantage of doing it yourself bankruptcy is the availability of forms. With today’s technology, you are able to access the necessary forms right from the comfort of your home. The instant access reduces the amount of time spent traveling to get the forms.

Disadvantages

As with all good things, there are cons to doing it yourself bankruptcy. First, the lack of knowledge can cause a mistake. Not knowing the ins and outs of bankruptcy filing can potentially create an issue where a mistake is made in the paperwork. Depending on the mistake, it can affect the decision made on your case. The second disadvantage is not having knowledge about bankruptcy. While the internet and do-it-yourself companies provide general knowledge and some consulting, it may not be enough for you to understand when doing the paperwork. The last disadvantage is not having any representation at the hearings. When the hearings occur, you will have to represent yourself and attempt to negotiate with creditors. If you are not well versed in bankruptcy proceedings, you can end up doing more damage.

Deciding

Do  it yourself bankruptcy filings can be quite beneficial if you have a good background in bankruptcy and know what to expect in the court proceedings. On the other hand, if you are not sure about bankruptcy and have a limited knowledge, it may be best to consult an attorney before deciding which direction is best for you. Some attorneys provide free initial consultations. Take advantage of these offers before deciding which option works best for you. An attorney may be able to provide different options on how to protect your credit and eliminate your debt without having to file for bankruptcy. Empower yourself with knowledge before making a final decision.