Only lawyers are allowed to give you legal advice and lawyers are bound by ethical rules to act in your best interest. A lawyer can tell you options that best meet your goals and protect your interests, and we don't put your creditors' needs ahead of yours.
You don't want just any lawyer. You want a lawyer who knows what they are doing and who has lots of experience in bankruptcy law. You want a lawyer who is going to take the time to meet with you and to explain how the law works. And you need a lawyer who is licensed in Maryland and regularly practices law in your local area.
You are not required to have a lawyer to file bankruptcy, but if you don't know the law you can find yourself facing unintended results, including losing some of your assets or being dismissed from your case.
Despite what some do-it-yourself web sites say, the law is complicated and it requires you to fill out hard to understand legal documents, and take exact steps. Each person is different, and each case is different. There is no "one size fits all" way to fill out the forms. If you don't do it correctly you may find that you have created a problem that might not be able to be fixed, and that Internet preparation service won't be there to help either.
These problems could just be that corrected documents have to be filed, but they may be, among other things, loosing property and money, being denied access to bankruptcy by having a case dismissed, or being pulled into a drawn out legal process. Once problems arise, a lawyer will often have to charge more to try to fix it (and not always able to fix it) then to have done it right to begin with.
The lawyers at the Maryland Bankruptcy Center are experienced and will handle your case properly.