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Internet Research Should Not Replace Professional Advice

We live in the Internet age, and every time we have a question, we consult the web. I am no different from anyone else. When I want to buy a coffee maker, I search the net to find reviews on each model before I make my decision. When my back hurts, I check Google to see if I should use heat or cold to ease the pain. These searches are great and can provide a lot of initial information, but they are no substitute for professional advice.
When I search for remedies for my back pain, I know that I am only using it as a starting point. If the pain persists, or gets worse, I need to immediately consult a doctor (a physical one, not WebMD). Searching the internet is no substitute for sound advice from a professional, especially when it’s a matter of health or finances.
The practice of law is no different from medicine in this sense. It’s important to go to a professional in order to weed through all of the information you find online. I am a firm believer in doing the initial online research before meeting with an attorney because it helps give you a background and also helps you formulate questions to ask during the consultation.
Bankruptcy can be an emotional and embarrassing process for many people. It’s tempting to stick to the safety and comfort of your computer to find information. But at some point, you owe it to yourself to speak to someone in person, not only to get more information, but to find out how things affect your individual circumstances. For example, you can look up the median income levels in your area to see if you qualify for chapter 7 bankruptcy. If you earn an amount above this level, an online-only researcher might stop here and throw in the towel. Someone who plans to follow up with a professional would use this information to ask specific questions about whether or not there are other factors that can help them qualify for a chapter 7 even if they earn more than the median income.
By all means, do some initial research online, but follow it up with an in person, one-on-one consultation with a professional. You may just find that it not only saves you time, but money too. To schedule a free consultation, call the offices of Greenwald & Hammond at 303-731-4234.
Submitted by: Kerry Hammond, Esq. Bankruptcy Attorney

Tags: Internet research, chapter 7, means test, median income, qualify


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