UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT

DISTRICT OF OREGON


July 28, 2014
Portland
1001 SW 5th Ave #700
Portland, OR 97204
(503) 326-1500
Hours & Information
Map & Directions
Exterior of Eugene Bankruptcy Court location: click for map
Eugene
405 E 8th Ave #2600
Eugene, OR 97401
(541) 431-4000
Hours & Information
Map & Directions

Debtors -General Information (9)

  • 1.  How do I obtain court or case information? (REV. 7/3/13)  

      I. COURT LOCATIONS AND PHONE NUMBERS

      1. The District of Oregon Bankruptcy Court has offices in the following two locations, and they are both open from 9:00 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. every Monday through Friday except for federal holidays:

      PORTLAND OFFICE
      1001 SW 5th Ave #700
      Portland, OR 97204
      All Access: From the 7th Floor
      Phone Numbers:Main: (503) 326-1500

      EUGENE OFFICE
      405 E 8th Ave #2600
      Eugene, OR 97401
      All Access: From the 2nd Floor
      Phone Numbers:Main: (541) 431-4000

      Bankruptcy case and adversary proceeding files are public records and available for viewing in the Clerk's Office until 4:15 pm in either Portland or Eugene, depending on where the case was filed. If the debtor resides in Benton, Coos, Curry, Douglas, Jackson, Josephine, Klamath, Lake, Lane, Lincoln, Linn, Marion or Polk counties, filings must be made in the Eugene office. If the debtor's address is in any other county, filings must be made in the Portland office. NOTE: Eugene cases are designated by either a "6", "7", or "8" as the first digit of the five digit portion of the case number. Portland cases are designated by either a "3", "4", or "5" as the first digit of the five digit portion of the case number.

      II. ELECTRONIC ACCESS TO CASE AND COURT INFORMATION

      The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Oregon maintains two (2) systems for electronic access to information relating to Oregon bankruptcy cases filed since October 9, 1984, and adversary proceedings filed since August 1988. These systems are described below. You must try one of these systems before calling the court as there is a very good chance it will have your information. The systems are:


      1. PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records) - Extensive access to case records via the Internet. See details immediately below.

      2. VCIS (Voice Case Information System)- A free service using a touch-tone telephone that provides basic case information. Click here for details



      PAC E R

      Public Access to Court Electronic Records


      The court provides real-time access to electronic case records via PACER services over the internet. You may access PACER here. There is a slight fee charged for access to each page viewed or printed, but with a maximum fee per document. Please refer to the opening page of the court's PACER site for important information regarding the site. It also provides a valuable link to the court's free web site containing other extensive and frequently updated general court information at: www.orb.uscourts.gov If you've ever had a PACER account, it remains active for your use. The access fees are charged to your account.

      If you don't presently have an account, or have questions such as regarding fees or access to the federal courts' PACER services (including other court's PACER sites and/or the US Party/Case Index system), contact the PACER Service Center at 1-800-676-6856 or at www.pacer.gov.

      V C I S

      Voice Case Information Service


      VCIS is a free service that uses a touch-tone telephone. It provides basic case information. To connect, dial 1-866-222-8029. VCIS uses a computer-generated synthesized voice device to automatically read case information in the court's database such as the case number, chapter, date the case was filed, debtor's name (and, if applicable, names of principal adversaries), debtor's attorney's name, trustee's name, judge's name, date and location of the 341(a) meeting of creditors, any claims filing bar date, case status, and any discharge and/or closing dates of the case.

      INSTRUCTIONS ON HOW TO USE THE VCIS SYSTEM

      1. To connect, dial 1-866-222-8029.

      2. You may either say "Oregon" or you may press pound [#], then "27" for Oregon.

  • 2.  How do I remove inaccurate information from my credit report? How do I remove inaccurate information from my credit report if I have never filed bankruptcy?  

      The Bankruptcy Court does not report to the credit reporting agencies. The Bankruptcy Court has no jurisdiction over credit reporting agencies.

      The bankruptcy petition, schedules and other documents are public record and are available at the Clerk's Office and online through PACER with an account (see www.pacer.gov for more information). Credit reporting agencies regularly collect information from the petitions filed, and report the information on their credit reporting services.

      You can request your credit report at no charge from each of the three reporting bureaus by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com (however, you will have to pay to see your credit score).

      The three credit reporting agencies are:

      Equifax Information Services LLC
      (800) 829-4577
      www.equifax.com

      TransUnion LLC
      (800) 888-4213
      www.transunion.com

      Experian
      (800) 311-4769
      www.experian.com

      Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act [15 USC § 1681c], the credit reporting agency (and the creditor) are required to correct inaccurate or incomplete information on a credit report. The credit bureau will reverify the item in question with the creditor at no cost to the consumer.

      The credit reporting industry has a policy that requires a creditor to respond to a reinvestigation within 30 days. After the reinvestigation is complete, the credit reporting agency will notify the consumer of the outcome. If information in the report has been changed or deleted, the consumer will receive a copy of the revised report. For additional information on credit report disputes, click on or call the credit reporting agencies above.

      If your credit report indicates that you have filed bankruptcy, but you have never filed bankruptcy in Oregon, you can request a document that states you have never filed a bankruptcy case in Oregon. This document is called a Certificate of Negative Filing. (You may want to contact the credit reporting agency first to determine if this is a document that they will accept from you.) To request a Certificate of Negative Filing, please mail a letter, with your full name and social security number, along with the certification fee of $11.00 and a self-addressed stamped envelope, to the Bankruptcy Court. If no record of a bankruptcy is found for you, the court will mail the Certificate of Negative Filing back to you.

      There are a number of educational publications that the Federal Trade Commission has on its website (www.ftc.gov) to help consumers address credit and financial issues.

  • 3.  What is a bankruptcy "estate" ?  

      A bankruptcy “estate” is defined in Title 11 of the United States Code § 541. It is a very broad definition and includes all legal or equitable interests of the debtor in property, wherever located, as of the commencement of the case. It also includes any property in which the debtor has an ownership interest that is recovered by the trustee if it was merely out of the possession of the debtor. In certain circumstances, property acquired by the debtor within 180 days after the filing of the case may also be considered part of the bankruptcy “estate”.

      An attorney should be consulted if there is any question as to whether specific property will be included in the bankruptcy “estate” and the exemptions available to the debtor which may exclude certain property.

  • 4.  What is a “trustee”?  NEW!

      The trustee in a bankruptcy case is the representative of the estate.

      In chapter 12 or 13 cases, the appointed trustee receives the payments from the debtor and disburses those funds to the debtor’s creditors according to the debtor’s plan which has been approved by the court.

      In a chapter 7 case, the appointed trustee examines the debtor at the First Meeting of Creditors in an effort to locate and take charge of the debtor’s nonexempt assets, if there are any. The trustee will then take whatever steps are necessary to reduce those assets to cash. Since there generally is not enough money to pay all the creditors in full, the trustee, under the supervision of the office of the US Trustee, disburses the funds according to the priorities set out in 11 USC §507.

      To be eligible to serve as a trustee, the individual or corporation must be competent to perform the duties of trustee and, in chapter 7, 12, or 13, must reside or have an office in the judicial district or adjacent to the district in which the case is pending. The trustee must also maintain an insurance bond which guarantees faithful performance of the trustee’s official duties.

      Promptly after a case is filed with the court, the United States Trustee appoints a disinterested person who is a member of the panel of trustees established pursuant to 28 USC §586.

      The compensation of a trustee is set by statute [11 USC § 326].

  • 5.  What is the function of the U.S. Trustee and where is their office located?  

      The Office of the U.S. Trustee (often referred to as the UST) is an Executive Branch agency that is part of the Department of Justice. Its function is to oversee the administration of bankruptcy cases. The U.S. Trustee establishes and supervises a panel of private trustees in chapter 7 cases, appoints standing trustees in chapter 12 and 13 cases, and appoints case trustees in chapter 11 cases. The U.S. Trustee monitors the administration of chapter 11 cases by, among other things, reviewing disclosure statements and plans of reorganization, and monitoring post-confirmation plan performance. The U.S. Trustee also monitors bankruptcy cases for possible fraud which may be reported to the United States Attorney for investigation and prosecution.

      If you wish additional information regarding either the trustee program in general or individual trustees, you should contact the Office of the U.S. Trustee at:

      For cases filed in Portland: 620 SW Main St Rm 213, Portland OR 97205 (503) 326-4000

      For cases filed in Eugene: 405 E 8th Ave #1100, Eugene OR 97401-2706 (541) 465-6331

      You may also visit their web pages by clicking here for Eugene or clicking here for Portland.

  • 6.  How can I learn more about bankruptcy?  

      Bankruptcy Basics provides basic information to debtors, creditors, court personnel, the media, and the general public on different aspects of the federal bankruptcy laws. It also provides individuals who may be considering bankruptcy with a basic explanation of the different chapters under which a bankruptcy case may be filed and answers some of the most commonly asked questions about the bankruptcy process.
  • 7.  How many years will a bankruptcy show on my credit report? How long will it take before I can get credit?  

      The Bankruptcy Court does not report to the credit reporting agencies. The Bankruptcy Court has no jurisdiction over credit reporting agencies.

      The bankruptcy petition, schedules and other documents are public record and are available at the Clerk's Office and online through PACER with an account (see www.pacer.gov for more information). Credit reporting agencies regularly collect information from the petitions filed, and report the information on their credit reporting services.

      Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act Act [15 USC § 1681c], the fact that an individual filed a bankruptcy can remain on a credit report no longer than 10 years. (If a chapter 13 bankruptcy is successfully completed, according to the Consumer Data Industry Association, the credit reporting industry retains the information for only seven years rather than the ten years allowed by law to encourage debtors to file under that chapter.)

      Bankruptcies may be taken into consideration by any person reviewing a credit report for the purpose of extending credit in the future. The decision to grant credit in the future is strictly up to the creditor and can vary from creditor to creditor, depending on the type of credit requested.

      There is no law to prevent anyone from extending credit immediately after the filing of a bankruptcy; and, there is no law that requires a creditor to extend credit. (A chapter 13 debtor, however, is generally prohibited from incurring credit while the case is pending without the approval of the chapter 13 trustee.)

      The best way to obtain credit after filing bankruptcy is to generate adequate and regular income and to pay all financial obligations in a timely and responsible manner. Many creditors will not deal with you in the future unless you have already established credit with someone else and demonstrated that you are a reliable debtor.

      In general, it is recommended that, after the filing of a bankruptcy, one learn to live within one's income and not request credit which is not absolutely necessary.

      There are a number of educational publications that the Federal Trade Commission has on its website (www.ftc.gov) to help consumers address credit and financial issues.

      You can request your credit report for free from each of the three reporting bureaus every year by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com (however, you will have to pay to see your credit score).

  • 8.  What are my options to obtain copies of case documents, including certified copies? What are my options to review a case that was sent to the National Archives? (REV. 12/01/13)  

  • 9.  Is there any place I can get free or low cost legal advice before I file?  

      Here are a few possibilities to consider:

      1. The Oregon State Bar has a Lawyer Referral program which will direct you to an attorney who has agreed to provide limited consultation at reduced rates. The Oregon State Bar Lawyer Referral Program can be contacted by calling 503-684-3763 in the Portland metropolitan area or 1-800-452-7636 if calling from other areas.

      2. In Portland, the Lewis & Clark Legal Clinic provides services of law school students under the supervision of an attorney to low income clients. Their office can be reached by calling 503-768-6500.

      3. Multnomah, Yamhill, Washington, Clackamas & Columbia Counties - If you are low income and live in Multnomah, Yamhill, Washington, Clackamas or Columbia Counties, you can call the legal aid office for your county and, if you meet the income and asset guidelines, they will schedule you for an appointment to meet with a volunteer lawyer immediately after you attend one of the Bankruptcy Clinic classes described below.

      In Multnomah or Yamhill County: Call Multnomah County Legal Aid Service at (503) 224-4086.

      In Washington, Clackamas or Columbia County: Call Oregon Legal Services (Hillsboro office) at (503)-648-7163.

      4. The Debtor-Creditor Section of the Oregon State Bar in cooperation with Legal Aid and the Lewis & Clark Legal Clinic has a Bankruptcy Clinic. Anyone who is thinking about filing a consumer chapter 7 can come to the class but only those low income people who have separately made an appointment through the Legal aid offices will receive individual help from their volunteer attorney after the class. Click here for further information on the Bankruptcy Clinic.


Back to Home Page