Hiring an attorney is not required to file for bankruptcy but it is highly recommended. Bankruptcy law is very complex and this is especially true after the bankruptcy laws were changed in 2005. Just like how anyone can perform surgery on themselves, most people would agree that it's better to let a knowledgeable and experienced doctor handle it.
If you file for bankruptcy without a lawyer, you will not be given any special consideration by the court. If you miss a deadline, fail to perform a required task, have a deficit bankruptcy petition, or fail to respond properly to an action, your bankruptcy case could be dismissed. You could also be denied from having your debt discharged from bankruptcy, or you could lose property which you might otherwise have been entitled to keep.
The bankruptcy courts cannot give you legal advice. Paralegals and bankruptcy petition preparers are also prohibited from giving legal advice. Only an attorney can provide legal advice. Important legal advice includes what chapter of bankruptcy to file under, how to prepare for bankruptcy, when to file for bankruptcy, and how to protect your assets in bankruptcy. It is in your best interest to let an experienced and professional bankruptcy attorney handle your bankruptcy case.
If you have any questions about bankruptcy, contact 1st California Law Inc at (949) 735-8499 for a free consultation with an attorney.