Search Site
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Lake Oswego Attorney Helps Consumers Achieve a Clean Slate with Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Personal and responsive service yields favorable results in the Portland area

If you are living with a mountain of debt, it’s time to take an objective look at your situation and decide on a solution. Can you hope to ever pay off the debt? With the interest, how long will that take? What will your quality of life be during all that time of struggle? Is there a better way?

I founded the Ian Shearer Bankruptcy Law Firm in 1997 because I believed there is a better way. In 10 years of practice, I have helped individuals, families, and small-business owners get relief from crushing debt, reclaim their freedom and find new purpose in life. I provide personal assistance for every client I help, tailoring debt relief strategies to your specific needs and goals. If Chapter 7 bankruptcy is your best option, I can help you discharge your debt, usually in just a few short months.

Discharging your debts quickly through Chapter 7

Chapter 7 is called “clean slate” bankruptcy because you can get a quick discharge of your qualifying debts, often in just a few months. After that, you are free and clear. But there are a few facts you need to know:

  • Not all debts are dischargeable — You cannot discharge most tax debt, unpaid alimony, unpaid child support, personal injury judgments, criminal fines and restitution, or debt you accumulated in the run up to filing bankruptcy. In most situations, you cannot discharge student loan debt.
  • You may be required to liquidate assets — Under Chapter 7, the bankruptcy trustee takes charge of your nonexempt property and sells it to partially satisfy your creditors.
  • Bankruptcy exemptions let many debtors keep substantial property — State and federal law allow debtors to retain several types of property up to certain amounts. There are exemptions for your home, your vehicle, furnishings, clothes, jewelry, tools of your trade, books, pets, retirement funds, life insurance, and other types of assets.

The decision to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy requires a thoughtful weighing of the costs and benefits. I help you assess your situation and proceed with the right course for you.

Qualifying for Chapter 7 under the means test

Not all debtors qualify to file Chapter 7. First, you must pass the means test by showing that you earn less than the current median monthly income for a household your size in the state of Oregon. You must calculate your income from all sources, including:

  • Business income
  • Rental income
  • Interest and dividends
  • Pensions and retirement plans
  • Contributions by others to your household expenses
  • Unemployment benefits

If you do not pass the means test, you might fit one of the limited exceptions, or you can file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Preparing for your first appointment

Your initial free consultation is an opportunity for you to learn about bankruptcy. It’s also a chance for me to learn about your financial situation and your goals for life after bankruptcy. So that I can give you an accurate assessment of whether bankruptcy is right for you, you can bring accurate financial information with you to our first meeting, including:

  • Tax returns for the last couple of years
  • Pay stubs
  • Bank statements
  • Retirement savings statements
  • Information on your stocks and bonds
  • Monthly expense budget

*If you are unable to bring any of the listed documents above during the first initial meeting, this is ok. You do not need to bring any documents at the first initial meeting however they can be resourceful during the meeting.

Filing for bankruptcy is a big step. But after thorough analysis and candid advice, it can prove to be a very positive step. One thing that makes me distinctive is I do not send clients home with a large packet of papers to complete after the initial consultation. If you have to spend hours filling out paperwork, this can be a real obstacle for you to get on the right path to a fresh start. I do the work with you in person so I can have a better understanding of your case which in fact will save you hours of frustration. I can often get your paperwork completed within 72 hours of our first meeting.  This avoids sending you home with a stack of papers which really is a big deal. I will handle all the meetings, discussions, and hearings for your case.


Contact a knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney in Lake Oswego for a free personal assessment

For a quick and affordable discharge of your consumer debt, you can trust the Ian Shearer Bankruptcy Law Firm. Take advantage of a free consultation to learn how Chapter 7 bankruptcy can deliver the relief you need. Call me at 503-810-0471 or contact my office online to schedule your appointment.

Contact us

Please fill out the form below and one of our attorneys will contact you.

Quick Contact Form

Our Office
  • Lake Oswego Office
    4248 Galewood Street
    Lake Oswego, Oregon 97035
    Phone: 503-810-0471
Avvo - Rate your Lawyer. Get Free Legal Advice.
Ian G ShearerClients’ ChoiceAward 2016 Ian G ShearerReviewsout of 10 reviews