This information is presented by the Bankruptcy Practice Group of Baxter & Baxter, LLP. The Portland, Oregon bankruptcy attorneys and Vancouver WA bankruptcy lawyers of the Bankruptcy Practice Group represent individuals in Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies. We offer a free initial consultation. We can stop collection calls from debt collectors and home foreclosures. We can advise consumers whether to file for bankruptcy, and what form of bankruptcy to file.
Sound Advice with Dignity and Empathy
Deciding whether to file bankruptcy is a very serious decision. The majority of bankruptcies are precipitated by circumstances outside a person’s control — loss of a job, divorce, or significant illness. The stress of these events is compounded by collection letters and calls, and the fear of losing a home to foreclosure. The dedicated and compassionate bankruptcy attorneys of Baxter & Baxter, LLP, understand all of these realities, and endeavor to provide clear and concise advice, so that the bankruptcy process is as transparent and understandable as possible. Once the bankruptcy is completed and the discharge order is entered, our clients can begin a new life and get a fresh start!
Benefits of Filing for Bankruptcy
Filing for bankruptcy is a serious and important decision that has significant ramifications. The Portland bankruptcy lawyers of Baxter & Baxter, LLP, can help you decide whether filing for bankruptcy is right for you. We can advise you on whether you qualify for a Chapter 7 liquidation, or would be better served by entering into a Chapter 13 repayment plan.
Among the many benefits of filing for bankruptcy are:
* Stop garnishments on bank accounts and wages
* Stop home foreclosures
* Stop harassing phone calls from bill collectors and collection agencies
* Prevent utilities from being shut off
* Stop car and truck repossessions
* Eliminate some back taxes
Filing for Bankruptcy in Oregon and Washington
The most common types of personal bankruptcy for individuals are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. As much as 65% of all U.S. consumer bankruptcy filings are Chapter 7 cases. In Chapter 7, a debtor surrenders his or her non-exempt property to a bankruptcy trustee who then liquidates the property and distributes the proceeds to the debtor’s unsecured creditors. In exchange, the debtor is entitled to a discharge of most of their debt. Certain debts (e.g. spousal and child support, student loans, some taxes) will not be discharged even though the debtor is generally discharged from his or her debt. Many individuals in financial distress own only exempt property (e.g. clothes, household goods, an older car) and will not have to surrender any property to the trustee. The amount of property that a debtor may exempt varies from state to state. Chapter 7 relief is available only once in any eight year period. Generally, the rights of secured creditors to their collateral continues even though their debt is discharged.
In Chapter 13, the debtor retains ownership and possession of all of his or her assets, but must devote some portion of his or her future income to repaying creditors, generally over a period of three to five years. The amount of payment and the period of the repayment plan depend upon a variety of factors, including the value of the debtor’s property and the amount of a debtor’s income and expenses. Secured creditors may be entitled to greater payment than unsecured creditors.