My philosophy of practice comes through in most of my posts. Sometimes I am more direct about it like in this post on why I am a counselor at
lawrather than an attorney at law. As my practice in bankruptcy law grows, I thought it timely to express a few direct thoughts regarding my philosophy of practice in this area. As I alluded to here, I want to help decent, hard working people overwhelmed by debt get a fresh start. I also want to help people who have dug themselves into a hole, but who wish to learn how to live lean in the future. Conversely, I do not want to enable people with harmful habits to continue in a cycle of debt. To that end, I practice differently than many high volume consumer bankruptcy lawyers. When you call to get assistance, you will talk to a lawyer rather than support staff. It will be either myself of one of the other two attorneys in the firm. This does mean a little bit of phone tag occurring, but it is worth the extra effort. When you come in for an appointment, you will meet with myself or the other attorney you spoke with at the firm. We will talk about your situation and you will get actual feedback about your overall circumstance and the best approach. Of course, once the detailed information comes in, some revisions to the plan will occur, but you will hear about those revisions from an attorney rather than a secretary or paralegal. When you go to court, you will already be familiar with the attorney who will be there with you and he will have prepared you for what is going to occur. This contrasts to many bankruptcy specialty firms in that most of your interactions in those firms is with support staff. In some situations, you may not even meet with the attorney who will represent you until the meeting of creditors. This raises the question of how we can do this when our competitors are maximizing low cost support staff. I can answer that question easily enough: we charge a tiny bit more than those firms. The fee is not so much higher that you will notice the difference, especially since the attorney's fees are a drop in the bucket for the amount of debt that will be eliminated, but you will feel the difference of personal attention as you go through the process. That brings me to the second way my philosophy of bankruptcy practice expresses itself. We plan from the very beginning for you to achieve a discharge. For Chapter 13 bankruptcies, we plan from the start to have a plan of repayment that gets approved and works. You will find some few practitioners that are more concerned about having a high number of filings and less concerned with the end result. We are concerned about the end result, and would rather do fewer filings. We care about this because it is the right thing to do and because it is a good way to do business. That is to say, it will bring more wealth to us in the long run than doing a high volume business.