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Choosing a Bankruptcy Lawyer

At Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP, we know that choosing a bankruptcy lawyer is an important decision for our clients. Many of our clients have never needed to hire a lawyer and do not know where to begin. We believe the following things are important to consider when choosing the right bankruptcy attorney:

Accessibility. Choose a bankruptcy attorney who is accessible. After all, what good is a bankruptcy lawyer if you never get to talk with him or her? When you call a law firm, consider whether you get to talk with a lawyer, even if you are not yet a client, or if you are told that you can only speak to a staff person or a legal assistant until after your first appointment. At Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP, most of the time you will be able to speak with a bankruptcy lawyer on your very first phone call. All of our lawyers try to take calls from clients as they come in, and we pride ourselves on the fact that we promptly return clients' phone calls. At some of the high volume law firms, the clients are actually photographed so the lawyer who attends the hearing will be able to recognize the client. At Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP we make every effort to have the same lawyer who meets with you on your first visit be with you every step of the way, including representing you at your 341 hearing with the bankruptcy trustee.

Local. Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP is a local Portland, Oregon law firm. We have been providing bankruptcy services to our community for over 30 years. The national bankruptcy law firms in the area are managed by out-of-state-lawyers who are not familiar with our local courts and bankruptcy bar. These firms typically hire lawyers who are new to the practice of law. We strongly suggest that you consider choosing a lawyer who has long-standing local ties, such as the attorneys at Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP, many of whom have lived in Portland for several decades.

Experience. If you needed medical surgery, you would obviously want to have a doctor who has experience performing the type of surgery you need. The same holds true with lawyers. Bankruptcy is a complex process. You deserve, and need, a lawyer with many years of experience because of the skill that is acquired from that experience. Mr. Vanden Bos has over 30 years of experience in bankruptcy, all in Oregon. Ann Chapman has been representing bankruptcy clients in Oregon for over 25 years. Our attorneys have represented both consumer bankruptcy clients and business bankruptcy clients. Our legal assistants and staff have many years of experience in the bankruptcy field (most have more than 20 years of experience), and several of them have worked in the Chapter 13 Trustee's office prior to working at Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP. This combined experience will be available to you as one of our clients.

Respected. You need, and should choose, a lawyer who has the respect of the legal community. Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP prides itself on providing quality legal services to its clients and enjoys the respect of the legal community. Numerous other attorneys have indicated their confidence in our firm by referring their clients to us when those clients need bankruptcy representation. We have been referred clients from virtually every major firm in the Portland vicinity. We have received referrals from lawyers throughout the state, including lawyers in the cities of Astoria, Bend, Eugene, Medford, Grants Pass, Hood River, LaGrande, Newport, Pendleton, Salem, Seaside, and The Dalles. We have also received referrals from out-of-state attorneys. These lawyers refer their clients to us because they have confidence that their clients will be in good hands. If lawyers have enough confidence in Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP to refer their clients to us, then you can retain Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP with equal confidence. We encourage you to verify our reputation with your own lawyer or with any other source.

For over 100 years the independent firm of Martindale-Hubbell has conducted peer review ratings for lawyers throughout the United States. Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP holds the "AV" rating from Martindale-Hubbell. This is Martindale-Hubble's highest rating and is held by only the top 10% of attorneys nationally.

Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP has also been selected for inclusion in the "Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers," again an honor that is held by less than 10% of lawyers nationally.

As of 2011, Ann Chapman was the only Oregon lawyer named as a “Super Lawyer” for the field of Consumer Bankruptcy. Robert Vanden Bos has been named as a Super Lawyer in each year that Super Lawyers has ranked Oregon lawyers. Only the top 5% of lawyers within a particular state are named to the "Super Lawyer" classification. Super Lawyers has also ranked Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP as the number one ranked small law firm in Oregon for the category that includes bankruptcy, the firm’s primary field of emphasis.

Specialized But Well-Rounded. Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP is unique among most of the bankruptcy law firms in Portland, Oregon in that Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP has expertise in handling virtually all aspects of bankruptcy, including both consumer and business Chapter 7 cases, consumer and business Chapter 13 cases, and Chapter 11 individual and business reorganizations. In addition, Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP has represented creditors in Chapter 7, Chapter 13, and Chapter 11 cases, and creditors' committees in Chapter 11 cases. We specialize in complex individual Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 cases, often receiving referrals from other attorneys who prefer to handle only "simple" cases. Representing clients in the many different aspects of bankruptcy has given us a unique perspective in analyzing the possible issues that might arise because we are able to see a case from many different points of view based on our experience.

Compatibility. Ultimately, you should choose a lawyer with whom you feel comfortable working. Bankruptcy is a difficult and often stressful process. You need a lawyer who will treat you as an individual and not a number. We treat our clients with the dignity they deserve and see to it that the Court system does likewise. You need someone you can openly and candidly discuss your case with because your lawyer needs to know as much as possible about you and your case in order to effectively represent you. At Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP we pride ourselves on being good listeners and getting to know our clients. We know that most of our clients never dreamed that they would ever need to hire a bankruptcy attorney. We will help guide you through this difficult time in your life.