Bankruptcy is a reality for significant numbers of people every year. Filing for bankruptcy is one of the most critical decisions you'll ever make in your life. Bankruptcy stays on your credit report for up to ten years, which can make it nearly impossible to apply for loans and credit cards during that time.
In the past, most people hired lawyers to file for bankruptcy. If filing for bankruptcy is the right decision for you, you don't have to add to your financial burden by paying an exorbitant hourly rate for an attorney. In recent times new laws have been passed concerning Chapter Seven and Chapter 11 filing. It's important to become familiar with these changes if you plan on asking for a dismissal of unsecured debt. This is especially true if you plan on filing without legal representation.
If you don't want to pay for a lawyer, or you can't afford one, it's still a good idea to find some support in the bankruptcy filing process. Many people turn to non-profit organizations for help. Some companies offer discounts on bankruptcy filing services for people in need. When you consider how much is at stake, you really can't afford to file for bankruptcy on your own. This is especially true if you don't thoroughly understand the ins and outs of the bankruptcy process.
People who file for bankruptcy without the aid of a lawyer often use software programs that contain official legal forms and filing instructions. It's important to find a program with forms that are valid in all 50 states. The right software program provides you with everything you need to file with the Federal Bankruptcy Court in your state.