Bankruptcy in Portland, OR

Are you contemplating bankruptcy or hiring a bankruptcy attorney in Portland, Oregon? Are you tired of creditors calling for payments you can’t make? Maybe looking for a way to get out of debt and have you exhausted all other options? Then bankruptcy might be the solution you seek. It is a legal option that can erase a portion or all of your debts.

Types of Bankruptcy in Portland, Oregon

Bankruptcy is a legal process that helps individuals and businesses get a fresh financial start. It eliminates a portion of or all of their debts or financial liabilities. In Portland, OR to be approved, individuals must prove they have a hardship that prevents them from staying current on their financial obligations. Keep in mind that not all debts qualify. Some liabilities, such as child support arrears, delinquent taxes, alimony, and student loans generally do not qualify for discharge. Consumers who find themselves falling behind in debt can file either Chapter 7, 11 or 13. To determine which option is right for you, you’ll need to assess your goals, assets, and income. You should also consider working with an experienced bankruptcy attorney.

Those filing bankruptcy in Portland are required to appear before the U.S Bankruptcy Court for the District of Oregon.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Many people find Chapter 7 to be the right solution for their circumstances because it provides them with the opportunity to start over financially. However, before filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you should thoroughly assess your income and ability to repay what you owe. You should also speak with a bankruptcy attorney in Portland  who can help you to decide if a liquidation plan is right for you.

Typically, individuals approved for Chapter 7 lack stable income or have experienced a change in circumstances that has resulted in an inability to manage their debts. Though Chapter 7 erases debts, the tradeoff is you may have to give up certain possessions, such as your home, car or some other assets. However, once you file your petition, an automatic stay goes into effect that requires all collection activity against you like foreclosures and garnishments, to stop temporarily. However, the automatic stay does not prevent all collection attempts. For example, if you owe child support or restitution for a criminal case, you are still liable for those payments.

Oregon Bankruptcy Law states that due to provisions in the Bankruptcy Act of 2005, all Portland residents filing for Chapter 7 will be required to undergo a means test. This will examine your income and expenses to see if you qualify for protections under Chapter 7. You’ll also be required to complete credit counseling courses within six months of filing for bankruptcy.

Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

Chapter 11 bankruptcy is more complex than other types of bankruptcy. It is often used by businesses and certain types of people. It allows petitioners to restructure their debts with a reorganization plan. This way, they are easier to manage over a determined length of time. Usually four to 18 months. The main benefit of Chapter 11 bankruptcy is that it does not require petitioners to sell off or liquidate their assets. In order to pay what they owe. It does allow debtors to negotiate with their creditors a reorganization plan that enables them to stay current on their debts moving forward.

The Oregon State Bar provides an in-depth overview of Chapter 11 bankruptcy. It should be noted, however, that Chapter 11 is generally used by businesses seeking to restructure their debts. Typically in order to avoid liquidation. In Portland, when Chapter 11 is filed the debt is reorganized to allow for more time in order to pay off the debt. Under this timeline of reorganizational bankruptcy, the debtor enacts the same processes as the trustee, but remains in control of all the assets as they pay down the debt. Generally, a period of between 3 and 5 years is given for the debtor to pay off the debt.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is a debt restructuring or wage earners plan. In Portland, OR after you file, the courts will assign a trustee to examine your liabilities and assets and ability to pay bills. Unlike other types of bankruptcy, Chapter 13 involves you restructuring your debt with a three to five-year repayment plan. The flexibility of this repayment plan will depend on what property you want to keep. Also how steady your income is will be a factor. It may also give you the opportunity to have some or most of your debts discharged.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is more commonly referred to as debt adjustment. This chapter allows a debtor to file a plan as to how they will pay off the debt from their current income. Typically within a given 3 to 5-year time frame.

The most significant advantage that filing Chapter 13 gives an individual is the ability to save their homes if they are in default. You’ll have to submit a payment plan to the court, and this can be where an experienced attorney in Portland is most beneficial to you.

The Bankruptcy Process in Portland, Oregon

There is never an ideal time to declare bankruptcy. However, if you are unable to pay off what you owe within five years, filing for bankruptcy can help you to lessen the negative impact on your situation and help you get back on track.

In Portland to begin the filing process, gather all of your financial records, including monthly expenses, debts, assets and annual income. This information is crucial to give the courts an accurate picture of your circumstances. Failure to provide all necessary information can result in your petition being denied.

When filing for bankruptcy in Portland, you’ll have to complete debt and credit courses. As well, you must file the appropriate forms and pay their accompanying fees. You’ll have to decide if bankruptcy can actually alleviate your debt, and which particular type of bankruptcy you will pursue. Then you’ll need to stop paying qualifying debts and begin to file for your exemptions.

Oregon Bankruptcy Statutes declare that a homestead can be exempt up to $25,000 of equity, and $3,000 in your motor vehicle. In addition, there are provisions for $5,000 worth of tools of your trade. As well, you can have $3,000 worth of personal items such as furniture, televisions, and other household items.

At least six months before you file for bankruptcy, eliminate unnecessary spending. Do not run up the balances on your credit accounts. You’ll also need to complete an approved credit counseling course, usually online or over the phone. Credit counseling is necessary to help you learn financial literacy and help you learn better financial habits. Once you complete the course, you’ll receive a certificate of completion to include in your filing. If you don’t have the certificate of completion from the credit counseling course that you took, the courts will reject your bankruptcy petition.

Work With an Experienced Portland, Oregon Lawyer

Hiring a local bankruptcy lawyer in Portland during this process can help reduce the costly risks of self-representation in court. An experienced bankruptcy lawyer understands state and federal bankruptcy laws. He or she can help you understand which laws apply to your case, especially which debts that can be discharged or can’t be discharged. An experienced Oregon attorney can also offer you guidance to improve the outcome of your case.

Keep in mind that there are debt management alternatives and financial resources that may benefit you more than bankruptcy, such as debt consolidation. Though bankruptcy is an attractive solution, it is best as a last resort. Do you need immediate help? Then one of our experienced lawyers in Portland can guide you through the entire bankruptcy process. We can even help you connect with an attorney across Oregon state lines.

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