When an agency identifies
itself as a “bankruptcy service,” the
information seeker should definitely be wary. Numerous bankruptcy
services may not exactly be clear as to what they are providing, or may
nonetheless indicate as much but leave the terms of service ambiguous or
curiously absent, so that what is billed as a “free bankruptcy
service” may be anything but once one has finished using it and the actual
It can be difficult to know which
paid bankruptcy services to trust, let alone a free service. Still,
for debtors who don’t really have much of an option in facing tons of debt and
relatively low levels of income, a free bankruptcy service may be all
they are willing or able to manage. Thankfully, there is hope for these people
to gain access to legal services, and for little to no cost to boot.
Below are some bankruptcy services that
may be available in an individual’s area, some of which give consideration to
one’s socioeconomic status:
One of the most logical places to find a
free bankruptcy service would be to go through public channels to solicit
legal assistance. Granted, such a service is only free to prospective clients,
as these avenues subsist on tax dollars and charitable donations. Still, as far
as these petitioners are concerned, the benefits justify the means.
Federal and state agencies run their own
bankruptcy services as conduits of civil aid for disaffected Americans. The
Legal Services Corporation, for example, is a non-profit Federally-funded organization offering grants to legal
services agencies across the nation that are then funneled down to individual
applicants, many of whom are women, economically challenged and/or minorities.
Speaking of disadvantaged populations,
certain financial breaks may be offered to filers in consideration of their
circumstances. Of course, not every free legal program authorized in this vein
is necessarily going to be a bankruptcy service. Some of these systems of
relief may be contingent on extreme situations, such as women who are victims
of abuse or who have been diagnosed with/treated for breast cancer.
Nonetheless, for older Americans and people who served in the U.S. Armed
Forces, irrespective of race, gender, or health, free bankruptcy
services may be available.
Some services may be free of charge, but will
come from individuals rather than whole organizations. Of course, a
particular bankruptcy service may be the product of a partnership or
a subset of a public agency. Just the same, individual attorneys at law
may offer their services pro bono, working for citizens’ good and not asking
for a flat fee or hourly rate. Seeing as there is such a high demand for
bankruptcy services with the way our nation’s economy continues to limp
along, pro bono representation will continue to be requested
in high numbers.