Bankruptcy Lawyer Careers
One receives more clients as a bankruptcy lawyer during times of dire economic situations. This is so since at such times of economic hardships, people are forced to file for bankruptcy, and there are risen cases of foreclosures of homes, as well as high rates of unemployment.
The main role of a bankruptcy lawyer is to assist clients in proceedings of court so that their debts are eliminated or reduced or in order to continue with bankruptcy. The clients of a bankruptcy lawyer can either be corporations or individuals. These may be in the form of bankruptcy trustees, creditors’ committees, corporate or individual creditors, and corporate or individual debtors. To accommodate the schedules of the clients, work hours are prolonged and meetings extended into weekends and/ or evening hours. The workplace of the bankruptcy lawyer can exist in various environments including libraries, courtrooms and offices.
The requirements are a juris doctorate and a current attorney’s license. Chances of better employment opportunities, for an applicant, can be enhanced through graduation from reputable schools of law. In as much as there are general course requirements in law school, after the first year students are able to choose courses as per their areas of specialization. Bankruptcy specific courses and courses such as negotiations, income taxation and creditor’s rights are recommended for aspiring bankruptcy lawyers. Moreover, the applicant enjoys a certain advantage if they have some work experience in the sector of the potential employer.
For students already with their J.D., a program in masters of law in bankruptcy is optional. This is a program for students who want to specialize in bankruptcy, and takes a year to complete. Professionals and law students show their commitment and dedication to their specializations by joining such professional organizations as the ABI (American Bankruptcy Institution). Such memberships permit professionals and students to study further while having access to industry updates and publications.
Job Description & Skills Required
The bankruptcy lawyer works both outside and inside courtrooms. While outside courtrooms, they give counsel on how to reduce debts such as by paying creditors or via asset liquidations or inform their clients concerning the complexities of the laws regarding bankruptcy. While working for creditors they could seek to get much money owed as manageable from the debtors.
While in the courtroom, bankruptcy lawyers may present for courts approval plans for re-organization of debts with the goal of steering their clients from bankruptcy. On the other hand, if need arises, they can file (for their clients) bankruptcy documents. There are unique bankruptcy laws for every state. There is also the U.S. Bankruptcy Code (the federal laws on bankruptcy) that are to be adhered to.
To have success as a bankruptcy lawyer, one requires skills in both transaction and litigation. To correctly guide clients through the complexities of bankruptcy laws and to perform brilliantly in court proceedings, one also needs to have strong written and verbal skills in communication. The filing process for bankruptcy can be quite emotional and lengthy. Because a lot is in the line, the affairs of the client must be handled with great delicacy and seriousness by the bankruptcy lawyer. Other equally important assets in the field are those of negotiation, math and analysis. This kind of practice builds its foundation upon a very strong finance background. The bankruptcy lawyer must keep themselves updated with industry news because laws on bankruptcy can always change at any particular time.
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