There's an old saying in the legal profession that a lawyer who defends himself has a fool for a client. If a lawyer is a fool for defending himself, what would you call a lay person who tries to go to court without any type of legal advice?
I'll leave the answer up to you, but suffice it to say that anyone trying to declare personal bankruptcy without legal counsel is not very wise. A chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney is an absolute must if you are trying to file bankruptcy these days. You see, there have been since changes in the bankruptcy laws during the last several years which have made the whole process much more complex (especially for someone without a legal background). Even some attorneys have had a tough time trying to sort through all of the new statutes.
There may have been some in the past who have gone through the process by themselves, and you may even have some friends or family members trying to convince you that you don't need a lawyer at all. But as we stated above, the laws have changed and have become much more complex. Don't try to go through the process by yourself.
By the way, you want to make sure that you are choosing a lawyer who specializes in bankruptcy law. Considering the recent changes that we've talked about, it would be difficult for a lawyer with a general practice to keep up with all the recent changes in the law (along with the corresponding court rulings which come out all the time).
One thing you want to be careful about when choosing a lawyer is whether you're getting good honest advice. You don't want to simply get the sales pitch for filing bankruptcy. You want to get the best advice possible for your situation, and it may turn out that personal bankruptcy is not even the best option in your circumstances. Make sure your lawyer is trying to understand your particular needs and financial history and not just treating you like a generic case.
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