04 Sep Lawyers File Bankruptcy Cases Electronically on Internet
As a Charlotte NC bankruptcy lawyer, in order to file a bankruptcy case I am required to use the ECF system, which is the government Electronic Court Filing system. The Charlotte bankruptcy court was one of the earliest courts in the country using the ECF system and we have been filing documents electronically over the Internet since April, 2001. It ismandatory that all North Carolina bankruptcy attorneysfile documents using ECF, and I believe this requirement is nationwide. Since it’s inception, courts across the country have followed suit and now virtually all
bankruptcy cases are filed electronically. Paper filings are rarely accepted from attorneys, with few exceptions, although debtors filing without an attorney can still submit paper documents. The attorneys have to have a password and be trained to use the system. The NC bankruptcy court offers the training to attorneys.
Most attorneys use special bankruptcy software to prepare bankruptcy petitions that helps them with the process. The attorney’s office will input the information and data collected from clients, and the software puts the information into the forms. The software can also help attorneys physically file the cases with the court, transmitting the information in a manner that works with the ECF system.
I have always used a bankruptcy software package, however when I began practice there were many attorneys still using a typewriter to fill out the paperwork. If changes were needed, it sometimes meant retyping many pages.
Computer bankruptcy software allows changes to be made with relative ease, and inserts some information in multiple places, which keeps lawyers from having to re-type information, like the debtors’ names, onto each page of the documents. While using the software helps prepare bankruptcy, preparing bankruptcy petitions is not just a simple fill in the answer procedure. Attorneys still have to determine what must be put into the documents and how to best prepare their clients’ cases to protect them.
If you are considering filing for bankruptcy, you should seek the advice of an experienced bankruptcy attorney. While it is interesting to know that the documents are filed via the internet by bankruptcy attorneys, the real importance of using a good bankruptcy attorney is what is contained in the documents that were filed. It takes legal skill to be able to guide a client through bankruptcy, and it takes a lawyer to give legal advice.
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