In Which, I Rant Even More about LegalZoom
I can’t stand Legalbuffoon Legalbaboon Legalzoom. Seriously. Absolutely. Can’t. Frigging. Stand. Them.
Why, I hear you ask? Is it because they out-market you, Ventura Estate Planning and Santa Clarita Bankruptcy Attorney Ridley, to a fare-thee-well (didja catch the clever google juice I splashed in there?)?
I dislike Legalfool.com, because I had a client who was considering a bankruptcy today. BK was not the appropriate answer to her problems. But she hung up the phone with me, and went to LegalScrew’s website, where they promptly signed her up for an inappropriate bankruptcy, charged her $500 more than I charge for the same service (and dammit, I give more personal bk service than anyone I know), and then, when I pointed these facts out to her, and she tried to get her money back, she called the Legald’oh attorney, and he tried to tell her that he had already done ‘most of the work’ on her bankruptcy filing.
After talking to a client for 30 minutes, you had already ‘virtually completed her file?’
You sack of crap.
Let me tell you about preparing a bankruptcy file. Shhh, don’t tell anyone, this is a trade secret. Ready?
We all use software. Just like your accountant uses a mega-powered up version of TurboTax, us bankruptcy wizards put all your data into a piece of software that spits out the forms, then we push a button and the filing whizzes through the intertubes to Court-Land, where happy little elves pore over it to see how they can disqualify you.
Really. It’s true. Except the elves.
The real work in a bankruptcy petition comes in talking to and advising the client, gathering their information, getting certain forms signed by them, evaluating their situation for appropriateness of the bankruptcy solution, explaining things to them, and telling them how the rest of the process will play out. The role a good bankruptcy attorney plays is in being able to provide advice and planning, in an area of the law which is quite complicated and fraught with potential error.
No two bankruptcies are the same, and it’s not a matter of just “filling out the forms.” Rather, a good bankruptcy attorney will spend a good deal of time evaluating each client’s circumstances to be sure bankruptcy is in fact an appropriate solution, then the attorney will help the client do any necessary planning, give oodles of advice, check the petition for accuracy, help with the sticky situations (every bankruptcy has something unusual or odd), and represent the client at the 341 meeting.
This Legalpoo dunderhead did… exactly… NONE of that. He asked her some questions, and wants to charge a broke, scared woman $150 for his trouble.
Now I’ve got to call him in the morning and explain what a flaming piece of legal poo he really is.
I hate lawyers sometimes.