Advice on Selecting DIY Bankruptcy Software

Advice on Selecting DIY Bankruptcy Software

If you’re considering bankruptcy, you certainly have questions regarding the expense and how you’ll pay for legal representation. One option is that a bankruptcy case can be filed without having to pay a lawyer to handle it for you.

You can file a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy case without an attorney if you’re an individual or married couple (corporations must have counsel to file). All of your dischargeable debts under Chapter 7 are included. With Chapter 13, you create a payment plan with your creditors, and after the plan is finished, your debts are dismissed. 1. When you file documents on your own without an attorney, you are referred to as a “pro se filer.”

Do your research before deciding to file without legal representation. Your road might not be smooth.

Bankruptcy Software Types

Software for bankruptcy comes in two varieties 

  • Form-based: These include straightforward forms, typically in PDF format, together with additional explanations or instructions that go beyond what is provided in the official forms themselves.
  • Interactive: Instead of completing forms, you’ll answer questions online, and the program will use your responses to fill out the relevant forms with the necessary data.

Expectations for Bankruptcy Software

What you can anticipate from commercial suppliers to give, except the official form on the U.S. Court website, is as follows:

  • instructions on what information to supply and at what level of detail.
  • Definitions of commonly used phrases
  • a method for saving your work in progress so you don’t have to enter everything at once.
  • Calculations in math are automatically
  • Details relevant to your jurisdiction, such as state exemptions
  • Where to file your case instructions
  • Common Software

Here are some further details about what to anticipate from the official U.S. Court forms website as well as from five bankruptcy document vendors.

Official Bankruptcy Forms for U.S. Courts

You can download official bankruptcy forms for free from the U.S. Courts website. They can be completed on a computer or tablet, printed, and then submitted to the court when they are completed. They cannot be saved online, but you can download, complete, and save each form on your computer. Additionally, a guidebook is provided by the U.S. Courts to assist you in filling out the forms.

1ClickBankruptcy.com

1ClickBankruptcy.com, which costs $49, is a rather basic application without some of the extra features you’ll find in some of the others. You put the software on your computer, which enables you to print documents as needed and save your work. As long as you obtain and input the necessary data, you can work offline. 

Document Support

  • To give you an idea of the procedure, Document Aid provides a brief live demonstration. Three service tiers are available from this company.
  • Basic (“Genuine”): For $99, this level provides document preparation instructions.
  • Managed: For $159, the company will send a representative to check your papers to make sure they’re complete but not to verify the accuracy of the data.
  • Full: You fill out their “super easy questionnaire” and the business completes the paperwork for you for $299. Again, they don’t give legal counsel, but they say they can connect you with lawyers who will provide free guidance. 

StandardLegal.com

Not just for bankruptcy, StandardLegal.com offers do-it-yourself legal paperwork. Forms for sales agreements, powers of attorney, living wills, and promissory notes are available.

You can purchase basic PDF bankruptcy forms with blank fields for $49.95, which are quite identical to those available for free on the website of the U.S. Courts. They assert that they come with a manual of instructions prepared by an attorney in practice. 

Bankruptcy-CPR.com

Although Bankruptcy-CPR.com is a little more expensive than other services, it seems to offer a simpler guided interface. To get a sense of the data collection procedure, you can test it out with a free demo.

Chapter 7 costs $149.99, while Chapter 13 costs $299.99. Additionally, there are add-ons for after-hours customer service, forms for the return of garnishment funds, and a “review for typical difficulties.” 

EZBankruptcyForms.com

It is true that EZBankruptcyForms.com is a program that relies on forms. It provides a tutorial to assist you through the process and has a limited ability to fill out the forms when the bare minimum of information is submitted.

The basic version, which can handle cases with 30 or fewer unsecured creditors and up to 14 collection agencies, costs $44, while the extended version, which can handle cases with between 31 and 42 unsecured creditors and up to 21 collection agencies, costs $47.50. An unnamed “legal ebook” is also available for a little bit more money. 

There is no DIY tool that can replace the counsel of an accomplished lawyer. If money is an issue, many lawyers offer payment plans, or you could contact your local Legal Aid office for assistance.

What Do Guarantees in Bankruptcy Software Mean?

Be aware that some of these websites provide guarantees, such as that your paperwork will be accepted by the court or that you’ll be released. It’s not quite as simple as that.

Guaranteed acceptance does not imply that the court will always accept your documents and permit the filing of the case. The guarantee of discharge does not imply that you will be released from your obligations. Even a seasoned bankruptcy lawyer won’t provide such assurance. It simply means that the business will return your money if your paperwork is insufficient or you don’t receive your discharge. Maybe.

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