Q: Can you file bankruptcy without a lawyer?
A: Yes, you can file bankruptcy without a lawyer. You can even have petition preparers draft all the necessary documents that have to be filed, but without an attorney things may not be done correctly and this could affect the whole proceeding. The filing fee for a chapter 7 is now $306, and a reasonable attorney's fee is around $1200. Look at how much debt you are trying to get out of. Let's say it is $50,000.00. Paying around $1500 to get out of 50 thousand is a pretty good deal. Most attorneys accept payments, but cannot file a chapter 7 until they are paid in full. Petition preparers cannot give legal advice. Make a choice, get out of debt, federal law can protect you, and the debt can be wiped off the slate if it is done right.
A: If you are an individual, yes. You have the right to represent yourself. I would recommend getting a lawyer. If you mess up your paperwork, your debts may not be discharged. If you can't afford an attorney, try the bar association or legal aid in the county where you reside. They might be able to provide you free or low cost service.
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