Perhaps one of the most common phrases that bankruptcy attorneys and other legal professionals hear when it comes to why a person has waited so long to file is this: “I can’t afford to file bankruptcy.”
While it’s true that bankruptcy filing comes with associated costs, the truth is that most people who are in an unmanageable financial situation that requires bankruptcy would be better served to go ahead and file – even if it leaves them wanting for money. However, there are many options for those who feel that they can’t afford to begin the bankruptcy filing process. Let’s look at a few of those now, as well as a few ways we can help:
Before you begin the process of figuring out how to finance your bankruptcy filing, ask yourself if finances are what’s really holding you back from filing. Many people believe that they should save every dime they get ahold of when they’re dealing with a bankruptcy, but the truth is the debt you’re buried beneath is unlikely to be significantly changed by the amount it would take to pay your legal fees.
What’s more, legal fees may not be as much as you believe they are. Most lawyers offer free initial case reviews and consultations, meaning that only after they assure you that they can take on and properly handle your case will there be any need to hand over a fee. Ask about a consultation upfront, and never settle for paying for services you’re not yet assured will be available to you.
Do you have a friend or family member who has offered to pay the fees associated with your bankruptcy filing? If so, you’re in luck; many people don’t have this luxury. Unfortunately, some of the people who are fortunate enough to have this gift offered to them believe that they cannot accept since they would have to declare that money as part of their bankruptcy filing.
This simply isn’t true. If your mother, grandfather, or well-meaning friend offers to give you the cash to cover your legal expenses when filing for bankruptcy, don’t look a gift horse in the mouth. A monetary gift – especially one as relatively small as that which would cover bankruptcy legal fees – does not count as income and would not be part of your bankruptcy filing at all. So, let your loved ones help if they’re inclined to do so. Soon things will be better for you, and you can return the favor one day if life hands them lemons.
You may have noticed that when you begin the bankruptcy filing process, professionals and advisors seem to come out of nowhere offering their services. However, most of these services are for-profit on their part, meaning they want some of your hard-earned and already-strained money.
Don’t let them talk you into services you don’t need. A common mistake for bankruptcy filers is to seek out the services of a petition preparer. These are simply professionals who complete your bankruptcy paperwork for you. They help you fill in the blanks, so to speak, and then hand the finished papers over to you. They don’t offer advice, don’t accompany you to court, or really provide any service beyond readying your paperwork.
If that sounds like too little to be worth paying a fee for, you’re absolutely right. Anything one of these preparers can do for you, your lawyer can also do. In addition, your lawyer can offer you guidance, legal advice, and represent you in court – even help you with appeals if you don’t like the decisions made there. The best part? No matter how many services your lawyer provides as part of your bankruptcy filing, they’ll only charge you once.
Many legal practices in the modern-day understand that clients who are dealing with bankruptcy are already under a great deal of financial strain. Adding the upfront costs of legal fees is almost inhumane. That’s why so many lawyers now offer financing options as part of an incentive to work with them for your bankruptcy.
Talk to your lawyer about what financing options might be available. At Van Horn Law Group, we’re willing to work with you to make your bankruptcy process as affordable and accessible as possible. Just ask us about financing options to learn more.
Did you know that many bankruptcy attorneys now offer no money down options for beginning the bankruptcy filing process? It’s true; just as lawyers in other areas of practice tout their acceptance of fees only after you win your case, so too do many bankruptcy attorneys now only accept payment once your process is well underway.
This is a huge boon for those undergoing the struggle of bankruptcy. You’re here because you’re dealing with a financial situation that is already unmanageable – why add to it by paying expensive legal fees upfront? Choosing a legal practice that offers a no money down option is the best way to turn “I can’t afford to file bankruptcy,” into “I’m so glad I moved ahead with filing.”
At Van Horn Law Group, we want your entire bankruptcy filing process to be as smooth and stress-free as possible. Talk to us about a no money down option for your filing. We also offer financing options to make paying for our services a better fit for your budget. You might be surprised at just how easy and affordable we make the bankruptcy filing process.
We believe that bankruptcy happens to good people and that you don’t deserve to be punished for your circumstance. Let us help you find a way to finance the legal help you need, as well as offer you the support and guidance you want for navigating the bankruptcy process. You’ll be so glad you finally decided to take the plunge.
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