In many areas of law, it is acceptable to hire an inexperienced attorney for certain types of representation or document preparation. However, in some fields, like bankruptcy law, hiring an experienced attorney is crucial to the success of your case.
While we won’t dive into the complexities of bankruptcy law itself (entire books can, and have, been written on this subject), we have included some examples below of how a bankruptcy may be affected by the experience of the attorney handling the case.
- Hypothetical example
Inexperienced attorney: Places client in a plan paying back 70% of his or her debt, resulting in a monthly payment of $800.
Experienced attorney: Uses exemptions to minimize the asset-to-debt ratio and places client in a plan paying back only 10% of his or her debt, resulting in a monthly payment of $114.
*Note: the experienced attorney in the example above places the client in a 10% plan. Seymour & Associates consistently places our clients in 1% plans, resulting in even lower payments. To see what percentage you qualify for, please Contact us today.
- Hypothetical example
Inexperienced attorney: Does not properly exempt debtor’s property from liquidation. Also, may not leave room in the budget to reaffirm secured debt (cars, houses, etc). Client loses property and cannot reaffirm car, house, or other secured debt that may be affected by inadequate budget preparation.
Experienced attorney: Experts in asset protection. Protects your property from liquidation using exemptions found in the Federal bankruptcy code, and leaves room in the budget to ensure the reaffirmation of secured property.
*Note: Federal law places a limit on certain bankruptcy exemptions. However, inexperienced attorneys often misapply or fail to include certain exemptions, resulting in unwanted consequences for their clients.
By hiring an inexperienced attorney, you could risk paying back a much higher amount in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, or losing your property in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. While these are only a couple of the unwanted consequences of hiring an inexperienced attorney (usually less than 10 years in bankruptcy law), there are simply too many risks associated with inexperience in the legal field.
Furthermore, you may be thinking inexperienced attorneys are cheaper than their more experienced counterparts. While this is sometimes true, Seymour & Associates recognizes the fact that financially stressed individuals should be able to afford the best legal representation possible. This is why our fees are lower than any bankruptcy attorney in the area (experienced or not). Getting people out of debt isn’t only our job, it’s our passion. We are a family firm who understands the needs of yours, and our compassion for what we do is reflected in the legal representation of our clients.