Creditors’ Rights

We are highly experienced bankruptcy lawyers and have represented almost every kind of participant in almost every type of bankruptcy or insolvency proceeding. We have represented trustees, secured creditors, trade creditors, creditors’ committees, equity holders, individual debtors and other parties in interest in bankruptcy courts throughout Oregon and Washington, including appeals of bankruptcy court decisions. Our attorneys have deep roots in the Pacific Northwest insolvency landscape, having served on bar committees, authored bar publications and presented at numerous continuing legal education events related to bankruptcy and receiverships.

When bankruptcy court is not available, there are receiverships under state law administered by state court judges. Fortunately, the Pacific Northwest has the benefit of codified receivership statutes in both Oregon and Washington, which many states do not have, and which resembles a mini-Bankruptcy Code in a number of important respects.

We have commenced, defended, appeared in and successfully concluded many receiverships, often representing the Receiver or a major creditor.

If you confront bankruptcy or state-court receivership issues in your business, we can assist you and assert and protect your interests.

The cannabis and hemp industries are in a uniquely bad position with respect to having access to the U.S. Bankruptcy Code because of Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. With respect to hemp, which was removed from Schedule I with the 2018 Farm Bill, there is no reason under the Bankruptcy Code why businesses and individuals in the legal hemp industry should be denied the protections of bankruptcy court, in any of Chapter 7, 11, 12 or 13, as appropriate. With respect to cannabis, however, the bankruptcy court cannot, for example, confirm a Chapter 11 plan that proposes to reorganize a debtor with direct ties to the cannabis industry; nor can, for example, a Chapter 7 trustee administer an income-producing estate if the income is from the sale, manufacture or distribution of cannabis (without regard to its legality under state law). 

There have been to date very few reported decisions from U.S. bankruptcy courts concerning these issues because these debtors mostly stay away from bankruptcy, fearing their cases will be dismissed – or worse. We have appeared in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in cases touching on these issues and have advised potential debtors, both companies and individuals, about the likelihood of being able to take advantage of bankruptcy or other insolvency legal solutions given how they may be situated within the industry.