Can I just use a paralegal to prepare my bankruptcy case documents in Oklahoma?

by Dan Nunley

One of the challenges that many people face in filing bankruptcy is coming up with the cash to pay the attorney’s fee.

Due to the substantial changes in the bankruptcy laws that were passed by Congress in 2005, there is much more work required of a bankruptcy lawyer to properly prepare a bankruptcy case these days. Even what some would call a fairly simple Chapter 7 bankruptcy case is in reality not so simple anymore. And if not done correctly, both the person filing bankruptcy and the bankruptcy lawyer could face serious trouble. Therefore, a good bankruptcy lawyer will now spend at least twice as much time if not more on each case than prior to 2005, and as a result, attorney fees have gone up.

In an attempt to save money, some people decide to skip the expensive bankruptcy lawyer and instead hire a cheaper paralegal or bankruptcy document preparation service. And that’s where the trouble begins.

There are many problems that can arise from filing bankruptcy without a good bankruptcy lawyer. Probably the most serious problem is that paralegals and bankruptcy document preparation services are not attorneys and therefore are strictly prohibited from giving legal advice.

And one thing a person who is considering filing bankruptcy needs is a ton of good legal advice. Beginning with which type of bankruptcy would be best for that person’s specific situation.

Many dangers come from a lack of good bankruptcy advice. A person could end up losing valuable or sentimental personal property in bankruptcy without good advice. A person could have their bankruptcy case dismissed by the judge without good advice.

Linda Rantz, a bankruptcy paralegal, has written an article called “Reasons Not to Use a Paralegal for Your Bankruptcy Case.” I highly reccommend you read this article.

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