Determining whether bankruptcy is the right decision for you depends on a number of factors. Over the past few years, there has been an increase in pro se bankruptcy filings. In fact, western states have the highest percentage of people filing for chapter 7 or 13 bankruptcy without the assistance of an attorney. Most consumers file for bankruptcy hoping that it will afford them a fresh start, but federal reforms to bankruptcy laws in 2005 have made consumer bankruptcy cases more complex. It is important to understand common mistakes that can be made along the way for individuals who have considered filing for bankruptcy without an attorney.