713Training.com has trained literally thousands of Virtual Bankruptcy Assistants. Below is a compilation of the majority of questions we receive from people investigating this field as well as the answers. This information will prepare you in making an informed decision whether to move forward in the Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant field or not.
- What is a Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant Preparer (VBA)?
A Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant or “VBA”, is a person that is skilled in drafting highly detailed, accurate and professional Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy preparer petitions (documents), for attorneys, but working “virtually” from their own home. Qualified bankruptcy petition preparers are uncommon in legal offices, so training in this field is invaluable.
- Why should I become a VBA?
The Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant field is one of the best home-based business opportunities in existence.
For starters, the field of bankruptcy is growing by leaps and bounds, and there is a huge need for people that are skilled in drafting highly detailed and accurate bankruptcy preparer petitions.
Furthermore, no legal experience is required!!! You can learn the skills necessary to become a work from home Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant preparer at your own pace, in the comfort of your own home, using our bankruptcy school.
VBA’s set their own work hours, and work the schedule that fits their lifestyle. This allows you to start and grow your bankruptcy paralegal preparer business as a stay-at-home mom or dad, while working a day job, while going to school, etc. Many of our bankruptcy school students started their business this way.
The skill of drafting bankruptcy petitions pays well (up to $100/hr or more), and allows you to work as much or as little as you like, putting bankruptcy petition preparers in control of their own time and money.
You can learn all of the skills necessary to become a working VBA preparer in a reasonably short period of time at our bankruptcy school.
It’s a good feeling to be able to help people that are experiencing a difficult time in their life. As a bankruptcy paralegal preparer, the customers and attoney's appreciate you.
This opportunity of becoming a bankruptcy petition preparer gives people freedom to live where they want, and do what they want when they want. Some of our students use a laptop computer with a wireless internet connection and a cellular phone to run their business, allowing them to be on the go. Imagine never missing another football game, play, recital, etc.
- How long does it take to prepare a bankruptcy petition?
Because every bankruptcy petition is as different as the person or couple that the petition is being prepared for, there is no set amount of time it takes a bankruptcy paralegal to prepare a bankruptcy petition.
A simple petition may only take you 1-2 hours, whereas a very difficult petition could take a bankruptcy petition preparer 8 hours or more.
We find however, that once a person learns the skills necessary to prepare a bankruptcy petition, and gets some experience as a bankruptcy paralegal, that the average time it takes to draft a bankruptcy petition is roughly 2-3 hours for a Chapter 7, and a bit longer for a Chapter 13.
- How much money can I make as a VBA?
With nearly 2,000,000 (yes, two million) consumer bankruptcy filings in the United States per year, your earning potential as a bankruptcy petition preparer is HUGE! So The better question is, “How much money do you want to make?”
The amount of money earned per petition varies, and is influenced by several factors including the local economy and local court rules, your relationship with the attorneys you work for, etc.
To get an idea though, part-time VBA preparers can earn anywhere from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars per month.
Full-time VBA preparers can earn anywhere from a few thousand dollars per month, to well over $10,000 per month.
Our most successful students have built a team of people working for them, and earn $30,000 or more per month.
Basically, if you can dream it and believe it, you can achieve it, and earn as much as you’re willing to work for being a bankruptcy petition preparer.
NOTE: Individual results may vary.
- How long does it take to become a VBA?
There is no set amount of time that it takes to become a VBA. Each individual’s personal and professional experience, commitment level, study habits, and a myriad of other variables will determine how long it will take to learn the skills required of a VBA preparer; however, in our experience, most of the students at our bankruptcy school complete their studies in 2-6 months and continue their career as a bankruptcy paralegal.
- Do I need to be a paralegal or have legal experience to become a VBA preparer?
No way! That’s what makes this opportunity so great. Some of our most successful students and qualified bankruptcy petition preparers never even pursued an education beyond high school.
- What do I need to run a VBA business?
Basically all that you need to run a VBA business is a computer with internet access, email, bankruptcy software, and a telephone. A fax machine or online fax service is also helpful.
- You mentioned bankruptcy software. What bankruptcy software do you recommend? 713Training.com does not recommend or endorse any particular bankruptcy software product. Our bankruptcy school feels that this decision is best left to you, based on your goals, budget, etc.
- Does this business really work?
Absolutely! When the bankruptcy laws changed in 2005, a higher level of skill became necessary to complete the bankruptcy forms. It has been proven that a well-researched and well-prepared bankruptcy petition is the cornerstone of the debtor bankruptcy law firm.
If the bankruptcy petition is prepared correctly, the entire bankruptcy process normally flows with precision, saving attorneys, bankruptcy courts, trustees, and the client a great deal of time and frustration. And since these skills are not taught anywhere else, many law firms (including attorneys, paralegals and legal personnel) lack these skills. If you have obtained these skills to become a bankruptcy petition preparer, you can write your own ticket and move your career into the direction you want to go. You can become the Bankruptcy paralegal that everyone is in need of.
This business isn’t for everyone, but for those who want the ability and freedom to control their time and income, and enjoy doing something to help other people, and have fun in the process, becoming a bankruptcy petition preparer could very well be it.
For most people, drafting 2-3 petitions per week for 2-3 attorneys will replace their full-time income. This is just 16-36 petitions per month, which would earn the VBA somewhere between $3,000 to over $10,000 of income per month!
Think about it…
You can invest about $1,500, train for 2-6 months and have an earning potential of $100,000 or more per year. The choice is up to you.
- Do attorneys really hire people that work from home?
They sure do. Attorneys, especially those in small law firms, understand that it is much more cost effective to pay someone to work from home only when needed, than to hire in-office staff. One survey showed that using the services of a VBA preparer can increase the attorney’s profits by up to 46% by lowering his/her expenses. What attorney doesn’t want to increase profits by almost 50%?
- Can I only work for bankruptcy attorneys in my area?
No. Because Bankruptcy law is Federal law, you can work for attorneys nationwide.
Just like a 1040 Tax Form in New York looks the same as a 1040 Tax Form in California, Federal bankruptcy forms look the same in every state. The only difference (like tax forms) is the addition of local forms required by the state. Just like the state tax forms vary from state to state, local forms inside the federal bankruptcy forms may (or may not) vary from state to state. However, the bankruptcy software you use will ensure that you have all the correct forms for the state and jurisdiction your attorney is working in, thus eliminating any guesswork.
Therefore, once you learn the skills of preparing well-detailed bankruptcy petitions, you can work as a bankruptcy preparer for attorneys in your local area, in your state, or in every state within the U.S. Because the work you do is virtual (communication is by email and telephone), there is no requirement that you must live in the same state as the attorney or law firm you work for.
- Do I need any kind of insurance to run a Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant (VBA) Business?
No. VBA’s work under the direction of attorneys who must abide by a Code of Regulations that state that THEY are ultimately responsible for any errors made by them, their legal staff, and contractors. Because the attorney bears the responsibility of liability, you DO NOT need any sort of errors and omissions insurance, bond, or liability insurance of any type.
- Who is 713Training.com?
We are the only source for end-to-end Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant (VBA) training preparers that can take a person from no legal experience, to successful VBA, in just a few short months. Our bankruptcy school experience is second to none.
713Training.com also operates the National Association of Virtual Bankruptcy Assistants (www.NAVBA.org), which provides valuable services to its members, including discounts on training and prepare a listing of member’s services in the online directory, allowing attorneys seeking a VBA to find them, among other things.
By popular request, 713Training.com also developed and operates the VBA certification program (www.VBACertification.com); the only certification program in existence utilizing exams that accurately measure skill level in preparing Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy petitions, and allows those that become certified, to provide attorneys nationwide, with the assurance that they possess the necessary skills to prepare bankruptcy petitions.
- Do I have to be certified to be a VBA?
Absolutely not. Once you possess the skills to draft bankruptcy petitions, you’ll have it for life. Taking the VBA certification exam and becoming a certified VBA does not increase your ability to draft petitions, but it may be helpful in getting work from your first attorney’s, as certification is evidence that you have the ability to draft highly detailed, accurate and professional bankruptcy petitions
- What do I need to study for the VBA certification exam?
Our training materials and bankruptcy school are designed to help people from all walks of life to be able to learn how to draft bankruptcy petitions preparers and become bankruptcy paralegals, whether they have any legal experience or not. As such the VBA certification exam is based off of the training products offered by 713Training.com.
With this being the case, it would be difficult to pass the exam without having studied the training materials that we offer.
- What is an average day in the life of a VBA like?
The process begins when the attorney has their client fill out a “client intake form”, which is a questionnaire designed to gather information needed to prepare the bankruptcy petition with.
When the client has completed the client intake form and returned it to the attorney, the attorney then sends it to the VBA preparer (usually via email or fax), along with other needed information that needs to be included in the preparers petition.
NOTE: Free and personalized client intake forms are available for downloading and giving to your attorney clients by going to 713Training.com, and clicking on the Client Intake Forms link.
- The Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant begins inputting the information from the client intake forms into the bankruptcy petition, and during the process, compiles a list of questions regarding items that need clarification, or additional information needed.
The training materials at 713Training.com teach you how to properly prepare and input the information into the petition.
- The Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant will normally call the client and obtain any missing information not provided in the client intake forms. This is a skill that is also taught in the training you received from 713Training.com. It takes training as well as the ability to “think outside the box” to uncover hidden assets and liabilities that many clients omit due to their lack of knowledge in bankruptcy. Because you are a trained bankruptcy petition preparer, from a specialized bankruptcy school, the attorneys benefit considerably because you are helping to protect them from possible fines and fulfilling their due diligence. This is only one reason why attorneys prefer to hire professionally trained Virtual Bankruptcy Assistants. The average law firm employee or paralegal has never received this level of training.
The training and preparing materials at 713Training.com teach you what things to look for, how to document this, how to communicate with and obtain this information from the client, and how to communicate this information to the attorney.
- The Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant then conducts a wide range of different online researches for property values, judgments, and criminal activity. This is not simply a background search where you get previous addresses and employment records. For the bankruptcy petition you are looking for different information in order to protect the debtor as well as the attorney you are working for.
The training materials at 713Training.com teach you how to conduct online research to collect information to support the data entered into the petition.
- The Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant then combines all this information into a draft of a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition, which is emailed to the attorney, either as a software file, or in Adobe Acrobat PDF format.
- The attorney will review the petition and documentation, and either makes corrections, or communicated needed corrections to the VBA who will implement them, and return the final petition to the attorney for approval for filing with the bankruptcy court.
- The bankruptcy petition is electronically filed, either by the attorney or the Virtual Bankruptcy Assistant. All bankruptcy software provides electronic filing support
- Do you provide additional training and support?
Additional training and support is available via several options:
Personal 1-on-1 Training at Our Office in Salt Lake City, Utah
Bankruptcy Petition Review Training
Those that have purchased training materials from 713training.com, may receive basic email tech support at no cost. Please understand that we have a small staff, and although we answer all emails, email support for future bankruptcy paralegals may have a delay.
Email support is not intended to be a replacement for the training materials offered by 713training.com.
Disclaimer: We at 713training.com are not attorneys, and any information provided by any of our representatives is for training purposes only, and should not be construed as legal advice.
713Training.com supports the National Association of Virtual Bankruptcy Assistants (NAVBA), and encourages all Virtual Bankruptcy Assistants to join.
Membership in the association has many benefits, including discounts at 713Training.com and other retailers, listing your VBA services in the national directory where attorneys seeking a VBA can find you, free software, two free support calls per month, and more.
- This Sounds Great! How do I get started?
Excellent Question! And while this is an excellent question, there isn’t one simple answer, as it depends on your goals, experience, budget, and other factors.
We recommend that you download and read our FREE EBOOK
Go to www.713Training.com and click on the “FREE EBOOK” link at the top of this page
Learning the skill of drafting well detailed bankruptcy petitions is your key to a long-term future career
Ask any bankruptcy attorney if they are satisfied with the petition drafting skills of their office staff and most of them will say “no”.
Due of the lack of education in this area, the law office staff had to learn how to prepare bankruptcy petitions from their co-workers. The co-workers normally learned from past errors and mistakes they made. Therefore, when you learn the skills at a bankruptcy school to become a well-trained virtual bankruptcy specialist, your skills are rare and your income earning potential is endless.