How To Effectively Communicate With Your Bankruptcy Attorney
Many clients understand that effective communication with their bankruptcy attorney is vital to the success of their bankruptcy. Without effective communication, the filing of a bankruptcy petition can be delayed. More drastically, poor communication can lead to a bankruptcy petition that does not accurately reflect assets, debts, transactions and other essential information signed under penalty of perjury. Despite the importance of successful communication, some clients and bankruptcy attorneys do not adopt measures to aid effective communication.
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The Problem With Phone Calls and Letters In Bankruptcy
Many clients and bankruptcy attorneys assume that phone calls and letters will be sufficient forms of communication. However, debt-avoidance strategies taken during bankruptcy can inhibit the success of these forms of communication. Take phone calls for instance. Your bankruptcy attorney will call you several times before your bankruptcy petition is filed with the court. If you are screening your phone calls to avoid debt collectors there is a good chance that your attorney’s phone calls will not reach you. In this instance, the common debt-avoidance tactic of screening phone calls will decrease the utility of the phone as the primary communication medium between attorney and client.
Email Is A Great Method of Communication In Bankruptcy
The solution to effective communication between you and your bankruptcy attorney is to adopt alternative communication methods. Your bankruptcy attorney should have gathered your email address and asked you what other confidential communication methods you use. In bankruptcy, the use of email and your commitment to frequently check it can greatly increase the effectiveness of attorney-client communication in bankruptcy. Email communication is fast, cheap, confidential, and does not have to be screened like phone calls. Consequently, both attorney and client should exchange email addresses from the outset of representation and establish alternative forms of communication.
- Share your email address with your bankruptcy attorney
- If you are screening your phone calls or have unreliable phone service, tell your bankruptcy attorney to send you an email whenever he or she contacts you. The email can simply state that the bankruptcy attorney called and left you a message on your voicemail. This email will alert you to the message and help you stay in contact with your bankruptcy attorney.
- Commit to checking your email several times a day. Staying on top of attorney emails will help your bankruptcy stay on track and help your bankruptcy attorney.
- If alternative forms of confidential communication exist, share those forms with your bankruptcy attorney.