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Photo of attorneys Shelley Slafkes and Bruce Levitt
Photo of attorneys Shelley Slafkes and Bruce Levitt
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6 Questions to Ask a Bankruptcy Attorney at Your First Appointment

On Behalf of | Nov 23, 2022 | Bankruptcy Basics, Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, Why Hire an Attorney?

Curious about how bankruptcy works and if it might be right for you?

The first step is to set up a consultation with an experienced NJ bankruptcy lawyer. Many people are nervous about this first meeting since it involves discussing something as personal as their finances. Please remember that the NJ bankruptcy lawyers at Levitt and Slafkes are here to help you and will not judge you.

How do you decide which bankruptcy attorney is the most qualified and who you can best work with?

Here are the top 6 questions that we believe you should ask and that the attorney should answer during your initial bankruptcy consultation. This resulting conversation will help you make the best choice for you!

1. Should I file for bankruptcy?

In order for a bankruptcy attorney to answer this question they’ll need to know, generally, what your assets, income and liabilities are. The bankruptcy attorney should explain both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy and offer recommendations and options based upon your unique situation and goals.

Additionally, the bankruptcy attorneys at Levitt & Slafkes always want to understand each prospective clients’ goals as that will inform whether or not the individual should file.

2. What are the benefits and negatives if I file for bankruptcy?

The bankruptcy attorney should take the time to explain how you can benefit from filing bankruptcy. The attorney should also explain if there are any negatives from filing based on your unique situation.

3. How much of the attorney’s practice is devoted to bankruptcy cases?

When you walk into the office of an attorney who says they practice bankruptcy law, you are likely to assume that bankruptcy is their primary area of practice. That is not, however, always the case. Sometimes attorneys who practice bankruptcy law also practice many other types of law and may actually have very little experience in bankruptcy law.

Ideally you would want to work with an attorney that has extensive experience in bankruptcy as it is a specialized area of the law.

4. What information must you provide to the attorney?

The more information the attorney asks you to provide the better. In order for the bankruptcy attorney to properly evaluate your case, they will need to review various information including income information, tax returns, your assets and other financial data.

At your initial consultation, the bankruptcy attorney should explain to you what documents and information will be required to properly prepare your bankruptcy.

5. Who will go with me to my 341 meeting?

In every bankruptcy case, there is a 341 meeting with a bankruptcy Trustee that the debtor (the person whose bankruptcy it is) must attend. These meetings are currently being held on the phone or virtually. Many clients are very nervous about this meeting and it is therefore important that the attorney that has been handling your case also be on the meeting with you. At Levitt & Slafkes, P.C. our attorneys will work on your case and always attend the meeting with you.

6. How much does the attorney charge?

After determining whether a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy is right for you, the bankruptcy attorney should specify how much their fee is and what it covers. The fee should cover both the attorney’s fee and the filing fee.

Remember that cheaper is not always better. Experience and knowledge are very important.

At Levitt & Slafkes, P.C. We Welcome Your Questions

Bankruptcy offers hope and financial relief to those in need. At Levitt & Slafkes, Bruce Levitt and Shelley Slafkes have dedicated the last thirty years of their lives to providing smart, effective legal representation, and we can provide it for you. Let us help you move into your brighter future. Contact us at (973) 323-2953 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation where you can ask all of your questions.

We are proudly designated as a debt relief agency by an Act of Congress. We have proudly assisted consumers in filing for Bankruptcy Relief for over 30 years. The information on this website and blogs is for general information purposes only. Nothing should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.