Go to any local stationery store and you’ll see booklets on how to file bankruptcy yourself, without the help of an attorney. Why would you want to do that? For something as life changing as a bankruptcy, why on earth would you want to go through it without legal advice? Make sure you talk to a Chapter 7 Law Firm or personal bankruptcy attorney before you do anything. Bankruptcy might be the solution for you and it might not. Only a qualified attorney can tell you for sure. That kind of advice doesn’t come from inside a box at Staples or Office Max.In some cases, bankruptcy is not the solution. For instance, a portion of your debt may be dischargeable due to statute of limitations. There are some debts that become uncollectible after a certain number of years. If they haven’t dropped off your credit report before now we could look into it for you and make sure they get removed. Once they’re gone you may find your overall debt is more manageable. Even tax debt, though not something you can include in a bankruptcy, has an expiration date.As a Minneapolis business bankruptcy attorney, Michael K. Hoverson has seen dozens of cases where individuals have come to our office thinking there was no option available to them other than Chapter 7 or Chapter 11. With a little restructuring and a few phone calls to creditors and credit agencies, they were happy to learn that their choices weren’t as limited as they believed. In some cases, the bankruptcy filing was indeed necessary, but understanding how the process works and why makes it easier for our clients to deal with. Bankruptcy filings are actually pretty common these days.Will a bankruptcy filing affect your ability to do business? In some cases, it actually opens up new opportunities for credit. Lenders see a bankruptcy filing and know that you cannot file again for a number of years, so they’re more willing to lend you money now. It seems a bit upside down, but that’s the way they look at it. Be careful though. It was borrowing and credit card debt that got you into this mess in the first place. Speak to your personal bankruptcy attorney before you make any loan decisions.