Written by the Upsolve Team.
Updated September 10, 2020
Many of us dream of a fresh start. Doing away with the errors of the past. Filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Eugene is a huge step toward that goal. Money issues that keep you up at night can be resolved. A fresh start is the goal. Upsolve can help you achieve that goal. In 1989, Billy Hill released a song titled Too Much Month (at the End of the Money). Many people have had that problem. If your money runs out before the month is over, it is likely you are a prime candidate for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The main goal of a Eugene bankruptcy is to give you a fresh start. Once you know you have to do something, the only real question is whether you file Chapter 7 or Chapter 13? If you are behind on your mortgage and want to save the home, Chapter 13 will be a better fit. If you have a large tax debt, again, Chapter 13 may be a better fit.
Rick Upchurch was a great kick returner in the NFL. He had a business go under and made the decision to file a Chapter 7. You are not alone. Many people have faced the problems of “not enough money at the end of the month”. Please remember that honesty is your best option. It is the honest debtor who gets a fresh start when filing bankruptcy in Eugene. Disclose, disclose, disclose! Never attempt to hide anything. Upsolve will work with you to make sure you get the best, free advice when choosing to file an Oregon bankruptcy.
Eugene Bankruptcy Lawyers - Estimated Cost
The average Eugene bankruptcy lawyer cost is approximately $1,000. The cost can be considerably more depending on the issues involved. Quite often paying the cost of a bankruptcy lawyer is a very good investment. When you are filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Eugene, and have major tax issues or mortgage issues, you should seek out advice from local counsel. The cost of local counsel can be easily worth it if you have a difficult case. Some lawyers offer a free consultation to get potential clients into the door. That can be a great opportunity for you to ask questions and determine if you need to hire a lawyer. Your Eugene bankruptcy deserves to be handled by people who truly care about what you are facing.
If you can’t afford to hire a lawyer, then remember that with Upsolve, you will have free assistance, and the personal attention that you need.
How to File Bankruptcy in Eugene, Oregon for Free
Upsolve provides a path you can follow to arrive at your goal quickly and know that your Oregon bankruptcy is being handled with care. Filing bankruptcy in Eugene does not have to be difficult, but it does need to have each step along the way followed in order. That order is what follows below.
Collect Your Eugene Bankruptcy Documents
Just like being in school, homework is required. In the case of filing bankruptcy in Eugene, your homework is to put together the documents that will help you complete the path that leads to a successful bankruptcy filing. The last two years of your tax returns will be needed. Hopefully, you have copies. If not, you can get them from your tax preparer, such as H & R Block. If you did not use a tax preparer, but can’t find a copy of your returns, you are able to order transcripts from the IRS. Just go to their webpage and click on the tab for tax transcripts. It usually takes about 3 weeks to receive the transcripts. You should also put together six months of pay stubs if you are employed. If you’re self-employed, you will need a six month P & L statement. The six months will run from six months before the actual filing date of the bankruptcy, up to the date of filing. Put together six months of bank statements, as well. You should also put together a list of everyone you owe money and get a copy of your credit report. Your Oregon bankruptcy will move forward more smoothly after you put together the required documents.
Take Credit Counseling
There are many companies that advertise credit counseling services. In your Eugene bankruptcy, you want to be sure the one you use is approved. There is a physical location in Eugene that you can go to for an agency that is approved and qualified to help you. If you prefer to do the course online, this local approved service can also meet your needs. Debt Reduction Services will be able to assist you in handling the Credit Counseling course that is required. Upsolve is pleased there is a local provider in Eugene to be able to aid you in this course. As part of your Oregon bankruptcy, you will find the course to be helpful in understanding where you are financially, and how you got there. If you prefer to do the course online you can go find approved agencies offering it online as well.
Complete the Bankruptcy Forms
Reviewing your bank statements, and any credit card statements will help tremendously in understanding where all your money goes. Or, at least, where it has gone in the past. You will need to fill out quite a number of documents before filing bankruptcy in Eugene. Just take one question at a time, and make sure you don’t skip over any. Every question is important. Some may not seem very important, but they are. They are very straight forward, and designed to give your trustee and the court a clear picture of your financial condition. If you don’t know the answer to a question, make the effort to find out the answer, as you will need the information eventually. Your Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Eugene will be a much better and smoother process if you answer every question in your bankruptcy forms as completely and honestly as possible.
Get Your Filing Fee
Your filing fee for your Oregon bankruptcy under Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code is $338. The fee is helpful in paying the cost of having a trustee, who is part of a group of people assigned to oversee your bankruptcy. It also helps offset the expense to the court for the clerk’s office to maintain and update your case as it moves through the system. It is generally better to pay the fee in one single payment. If you are simply unable to do that, you can ask that the fee be paid in payments, or completely waived. Waiver is a possibility if your income is very low and you can’t afford to pay the fee even after filing bankruptcy in Eugene. The Court makes the decision on whether to grant a waiver. If you are not qualified for a fee waiver, it is usually better to pay the fee for your Eugene bankruptcy in a single payment. The reason is simple. Some people forget to make all the payments. Failure to pay on time may result in a hearing before the judge, or worse, having the case dismissed. If you can avoid the “out of sight, out of mind” problem by making one lump sum payment, you should do so.
Print Your Bankruptcy Forms
Once your forms are all prepared, you need to print them. You will want to make sure you have at least two copies of the forms for your Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Eugene. If you have a printer, you can print them at home, on regular 8.5” x 11” paper. If not, you can go to the nearest public library to print them. You have three locations to choose from. You can go to the Downtown Library.at 100 W.10th Ave. or the Bethel Branch located at 1990 Echo Hollow Road. Your third choice is the Sheldon Branch located at 1566 Coburg Rd. The Downtown Library is the only one open 7 days per week. The others are closed on Sunday. One other option is to go to any office supply store. Remember to print at least 2 copies of your Eugene bankruptcy forms.
Go to Court to File Your Forms
Eugene has a U.S. Bankruptcy Court located in town at 405 E 8th Ave #2600. When you arrive at the courthouse, you can expect to pass through a metal detector. It is recommended that you not bring any sharp devices into the building. Things like nail files or pocketknives can be a problem. Save yourself a trip back to your car and simply leave these type items in the car, or at home. Your Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Eugene can be filed after 9:00 A.M. until 4:00 P.M. If you can choose your time, you might want to go in at mid-afternoon to avoid the traffic problems associated with people going to or from work. Ask security where the clerk’s office is located. That is where you will file your documents. You will need to give the clerk an original set of documents. Ask for a date and time stamped copy for yourself. That copy can come in handy if you have to deal with an aggressive creditor after filing your case. Your Eugene bankruptcy is officially underway after you get the case filed. Remember that the court and the clerk’s office is always closed on weekends and on federal holidays.
Mail Documents to Your Trustee
The trustee that is appointed to handle your case will send you a list of needed documents. Be sure to get these to the trustee on time. It is likely that the trustee will require your tax returns, pay stubs and bank statements. After filing bankruptcy in Eugene, you will receive a notice from the court that gives you the trustee’s name and contact information. You should also receive a letter from the trustee letting you know what documents they want from you. Be sure to open anything from the court or the trustee when you receive it. Don’t let it lay around. You have come too far in your Oregon bankruptcy to allow a problem to come up that can be easy to avoid.
Take Bankruptcy Course 2
You will have to take a second course before your discharge can be entered. As before, it is to be from an approved Debtor Education provider. Bankruptcy rules require that you take this course. The emphasis will be directed more toward the future. You will look at budgeting and handling money going forward. Hopefully, you will find this course to be helpful to you, so you can avoid the issues that caused you to file in the first place. We recommend you take the course seriously to get the most benefit possible from your Oregon bankruptcy experience. When done, make sure to file your certificate of completion with the court to let the judge know you’re ready for a discharge in your Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Eugene.
Attend Your 341 Meeting
The 341 meeting gets its name from section 341 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. The intent is to allow creditors and bankruptcy to get together outside of the presence of a judge. The hearing is conducted by your Chapter 7 trustee, and as part of your Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Eugene, creditors have a right to show up and question you under oath. It is unlikely that a creditor will show up in your case, but if they do, don’t be concerned. Answer any questions from the creditor representative or from your Chapter 7 trustee, fully, and honestly. You may have to wait a while for your case to be called as others filing bankruptcy in Eugene on the same day as you will have their meeting set for the same time. The actual 341 meeting should only take 5 to 10 minutes. Be sure not to wear flip flops or cutoffs. Dress respectfully, and answer truthfully, and you will be fine.
Dealing with Your Car
Some people prefer to keep a car when they file a Eugene bankruptcy. This is done through signing a reaffirmation agreement. This agreement says you will continue to pay for the car as you originally said you would. The interest usually remains the same, and you will complete your payments in the same number of months as originally agreed. The down side to the reaffirmation agreement is that if you later default on making your payments, the car will be repossessed, and you can be sued for any shortfall. You may also elect to redeem the car by paying its market value to the lender in exchange for a clear title. The downside to a redemption is that you are essentially refinancing your car (unless you have access to the funds another way), and the interest rate is normally much higher. Your third option is to surrender the car. People in similar circumstances who are filing bankruptcy in Eugene make the decision to walk away from the car debt by surrendering the car. They then buy a car that is much more affordable to save funds so they can get what they want somewhere down the road.
Oregon Bankruptcy Means Test, Bankruptcy Forms, and Exemptions for Eugene
Oregon Means Test
If your annual income is below the median you automatically qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Eugene. If it is higher than the median, you may still qualify after looking at all other factors considered by the Oregon bankruptcy Means Test.
Median Income Levels for Oregon
Oregon Median Income Standards for Means Test for Cases Filed On or After May 1, 2021
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Poverty Levels for Oregon
Oregon Fee Waiver Eligibility for Cases Filed On or After May 1, 2021
Eligible for fee waiver when under 150% the poverty level.
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Oregon Bankruptcy Forms
When you are filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Eugene, you will use Oregon bankruptcy forms. These forms consist of Schedules A-J, the Petition, and various Statements. You will want to fill them out completely and make full disclosure of all available information. Your integrity and thoroughness in completing the Oregon bankruptcy forms will greatly aid you in going through your Oregon bankruptcy process with success.
Exemptions are types of property or belongings you are allowed to keep when you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Eugene. Each state has different wage and income amounts and also allow people to retain different assets should they file bankruptcy. When filing an Oregon bankruptcy, the allowed exemptions are specific to the state of Oregon.