Hub of tech.

10 steps to building a bankruptcy practice

Many attorneys are trying to build a bankruptcy practice these days. Many make the critical mistake of using outdated ways of getting the practice off the ground and end up being mediocre in their area. Competition is fierce and lawyers are working smarter, not just harder, to succeed.

10 steps to building a successful bankruptcy practice

  1. Join the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Lawyers: This is the largest national organization dedicated to the plight of consumer debt. With more than 4,400 member bankruptcy attorneys, it is the best source of information and continuing education for both new and established professionals. NACBA also runs some very active list servers to help members share information.
  2. Shop the entire library of the National Consumer Law Center, including the book on consumer bankruptcies: NCLC publishes the most comprehensive set of books on bankruptcy, consumer protection, and related topics. Period. After practicing bankruptcy law for over 14 years, I still check my books almost daily. If you attend any of the NACBA conventions, you’ll find NCLC books on sale at a significant discount.
  3. Try the petition preparation software packages and get the one you like best: You cannot practice bankruptcy law without a petition preparation package. There are plenty of good ones out there: BestCase, EZFiling, Bankruptcy2010, and Bankruptcy Pro are among the best, but you won’t know which one is best for you until you try them. They all provide a free downloadable demo to work with, so take your time before spending a dime.
  4. Go short: Find out where your court bankruptcy hearings are held and plan to sit there every day for a week or more. You will learn about trustees as well as the types of people who file for bankruptcy in your area. Once you know more about who is filing for bankruptcy, you will be in a better position to learn about their motivations and concerns.
  5. Sign up for CM/ECF: Most courts require bankruptcy attorneys to file cases electronically through the court’s electronic filing system. You must obtain a password and (in some places) attend training to learn how to file cases.
  6. Get a scanner: Bankruptcy is a paper-intensive area of ​​practice. If you don’t start scanning everything on your system now, you’re going to be overwhelmed. I personally use a Fujitsu ScanSnap, and it’s a lifesaver (plus, it comes with a fully functional copy of Adobe Acrobat).
  7. Start reading blogs about bankruptcy: There are plenty of great resources online to help you stay up-to-date on the latest bankruptcy-related topics. Bankruptcy Law Network, BankruptcyProf Blog, and Bankruptcy Mastery are just a few great sites that can teach you a lot.
  8. Learn to write: Yes, you know how to write like a lawyer, but that’s not the important thing. You must be able to communicate in a way that your prospects understand without a dictionary. Writing like a lawyer is fine for judges, but clients need you to make it easier.
  9. Online Legal Marketing Basics: Most people start their search for a bankruptcy attorney by accessing a search engine, so it’s important that you know the basics of online legal marketing. Start a blog, set up Twitter, and consider if marketing your practice with video is right for you.
  10. Start building forms: Your bankruptcy practice will require you to be organized, so things like intake forms and retainer agreements are essential. The best places to find them are other attorneys. If you’re on the NACBA list servers, just ask and you’ll receive; there is no reason to pay money to get canned admission papers.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *