Are you a standout bankruptcy lawyer?
California’s certification of bankruptcy specialists helps consumers find standout bankruptcy lawyers.
In a state of 35 million residents, with 189,00 active lawyers , only 163 are certified bankruptcy specialists.But the doors to becoming a certified specialist will swing open for a day in October for the written specialist exam.
The exam is only given every two years. Miss this one, and you’re on the sidelines until October, 2019.
Better yet, the exam fee has been reduced for this year only. The cost is $350 and the exam is given in Oakland and Pasadena.
And, it’s open book.
Here’s the list of materials you can bring into the exam:
- United States Bankruptcy and Rules Booklet, LegalPub.com.
- The Portable Bankruptcy Code and Rules, ABA.
- The Portable Bankruptcy Code and Rules Package. ABA.
- The Collier Portable Pamphlet 2015 Edition, LexisNexis.
The Collier Pamphlet (Complete Set), LexisNexis. ( Only volume 3, the Portable Pamphlet containing the full text of the code, is allowed in the examination room.)
- Bankruptcy Code, Rules and Official Forms, Thomas Reuters.
Bankruptcy Code and Rules, Thomson Reuters.
What’s required to be certified
Once you’ve passed the test, a couple of steps remain on the road to certification.
- Demonstrate the case experience needed
- Meet the CLE requirement
- Proffer recommendations from peers and other bankruptcy professionals
Why the public benefits from certification
Unlike other areas of law, bankruptcy lawyers hope NOT to have repeat customers. We hope to fix debt problems and launch our clients back into the economy, never to cross our thresholds again.
Those in need of a good bankruptcy lawyer are reluctant to ask their friends and family for recommendations. Few want to noise their financial troubles within their social circles.
So, pairing up good bankruptcy lawyers with those who need them is a challenge.
Advertising by bankruptcy lawyers tells the public only who has a big advertising budget, not necessarily who has the skills to help.
Certification of bankruptcy specialists makes it easier for consumers to pair up with standout bankruptcy lawyers. The state bar has an online search feature especially for specialists. Consumers can enter the county they live in and pull up the bankruptcy specialists with offices in that county.
Sign up to become certified
The State Bar offers free preparation packets and information about the other certification requirements. For more information or to register, see the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization website.
Remember, the last day to register is October 2, 2017.
Image courtesy of Chris Betcher and Flickr under a Creative Commons license.