Filing bankruptcy is a serious matter of federal court, and is overseen by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. It is highly advised to seek legal counsel when considering bankruptcy. Below is more information about the steps to filing bankruptcy in Oregon.
The main types of bankruptcy an individual will file include Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Chapter 7 bankruptcy allows for all debts which are allowed to be discharged, where the debtor does not need to repay them. However, there is a means test that the debtor must fulfill before the court will allow this type of filing. Oregon also provides a bankruptcy clinic for anyone considering this type of filing.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy reorganizes debt by allowing the debtor and creditors to agree on a lesser amount for total debt and/or payments due in order to allow the debtor to become current. The plan must be approved by the court.
In the state of Oregon, anyone considering filing bankruptcy may attend a bankruptcy clinic. There is also an attorney referral service available through the Oregon State Bar, which will provide contact information for a lawyer who may provide bankruptcy consultation at a reduced rate. If you qualify as a low-income debtor, you may also qualify for a volunteer attorney service through the state. However, you will still be required to pay necessary filing and court fees.
Within six months of filing bankruptcy, you must attend a credit counseling class in order to be eligible. After a bankruptcy is approved by the court, many debts may be discharged. However, individual debts such as taxes, student loans, criminal restitution fines and others are not dischargeable. Check with you local bankruptcy office for a complete listing.
Failure to report any income, correctly reporting debts, filling out forms incorrectly or any false statements on court documents may result in a bankruptcy being denied. You must also pay all necessary fines and follow all court rules to prevent case dismissal. If a bankruptcy court is dismissed, the creditors may continue any and all collection activity.
Prior to the creditor meetings, evidence of income, past tax returns, attendance at a credit counseling service, account statements and balance sheets showing all income and expenses must be submitted to the court. After a bankruptcy is discharged, credit bureaus may report the bankruptcy for 10 years.
There are two districts in the Oregon Bankruptcy Courts, one in Portland and one in Eugene. The Portland court may be reached at (503)326-1500, 1001 SW 5th Ave #700, Portland, OR 97204. The Eugene court may be reached at (541)431-4000, 405 E 8th Ave #2600, Eugene, OR 97401.