Clarke Balcom Law

Bankruptcy, Debt Settlement, Foreclosure & Tax Problems

Contact Us

Firm Overview

Experienced and detail oriented--we take the time to make sure that you really understand what your options are. We focus our practice on bankruptcy and other debt relief solutions for individuals, families, and small businesses.
Our staff is knowledgeable and friendly. We think the "human element" is very important and go to great lengths to make our clients feel comfortable and well cared for. In fact, a lot of our cases have been referred by prior clients.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy
Chapter 13 bankruptcy
Debt Settlement Negotiations
Foreclosure Defense
Tax Problem Resolution with the IRS and State
Offers in Compromise
Innocent Spouse Protection
Lawsuits against abusive debt collectors

We help homeowners who have been subjected to predatory lending and are now at the unreasoning mercy of banks and mortgage servicers, with no success in voluntary mortgage modification. Each case is reviewed on its own merits, and in every case we take, we fight for the best possible outcomes for our clients.

Example cases

We take complex bankruptcies with tax or business components and are able to work out solutions for our clients in many cases that initially appeared to be difficult to impossible. In fact, we have become the go-to practice for this type of case. We have helped our clients discharge hundreds of thousands of dollars in consumer, tax, and business debt through Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. We also file Offers in Compromise (OIC) with the IRS and have gotten great results--as in the client who owed over $140,000 and we got the IRS to accept $525 in full satisfaction of the tax debt.

Main Office

Clarke Balcom Law
1312 SW 16th Ave
Portland  OR  97201

Phone
  • (503) 224-5950
Fax

Fees

Free Initial Consultation?

Many of our initial consultations are at no charge. In some cases we charge a small fee.

Services Offered For Fixed Fees?

Chapter 7 bankruptcies are usually flat fee, at an amount quoted in advance depending on the issues in the case. Chapter 13 bankruptcies are normally an estimated fee, with the hourly billings subject to the approval of the bankruptcy judge. Debt settlements are generally done on a contingency basis, in which the fee is a fixed percentage of the amount that is saved for the client. In lawsuits against abusive debt collectors, we typically collect our fees from the debt collectors rather than from the client.

Hourly Rates

vary

Office Information

Office Hours

Monday through Friday
9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Emergency after hours by appointment on a case-by-case basis.

Emergency After Hours

Yes

Bankruptcy
Experienced and knowledgeable. We file simple and complex Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies. In fact, attorneys across the state refer complex cases to our office.
We are a consumer rights firm. This means we are on the side of the little guy, the small business, homeowners in foreclosure, and individuals with collection problems.

We are not on the side of the big banks and mortgage companies whose profits come at the expense of the misery of families and individuals who are fighting to keep their homes and makes their payments.

In the first month and a half of 2014 alone, we settled cases on behalf of our clients for six figures with two mortgage giants.

Two attorneys and five support staff with one goal: Help our clients handle their problems with debt and taxes and get a fresh start!
Foreclosure
Experienced and knowledgeable. We protect individuals in foreclosure through Chapter 13 bankruptcy and foreclosure litigation.
We are a consumer rights firm. This means we are on the side of the little guy, the small business, homeowners in foreclosure, and individuals with collection problems.

We are not on the side of the big banks and mortgage companies whose profits come at the expense of the misery of families and individuals who are fighting to keep their homes and makes their payments.

In the first month and a half of 2014 alone, we settled cases on behalf of our clients for six figures with two mortgage giants.

Two attorneys and five support staff with one goal: Help our clients handle their problems with debt and taxes and get a fresh start!

How did your firm decide on the primary area of practice(s)?

So many good people occasionally find themselves in trouble financially. The current wave of foreclosure actions by the big banks is only making things worse. I was initially a "tax nerd." But people with tax problems frequently have other debt problems as well, so I also handle other problem areas that deal with debt, and I enjoy being able to do what I do where it really matters.

What is your firm's point of view regarding clients educating themselves on legal issues?

A well-educated client is a better client and easier to help, because they understand the issues. They should be aware, however, that much information they hear, or read online, is incomplete, outdated, misleading, or just false. Bankruptcy and tax are complex areas of the law with many potential traps, which are best navigated with the guidance of knowledgeable legal counsel.

Is your firm willing to review documents prepared by clients?

We are willing to review documents that our clients bring us, providing they have already retained us.

Is your firm willing to coach clients who want to represent themselves?

I am always willing to help coach clients in issues where that type of help is appropriate. Both bankruptcy and tax have become complex areas filled with traps, and are difficult even for attorneys who are not experienced in these areas. I will tell clients when I think they can handle a particular issue on their own, with tips on what to do and what not to do. I will also tell them when self-representation is not advisable in a particular case or controversy, for which they should engage competent legal counsel to represent them.

Clarke Balcom

I have been involved with various human rights organizations for most of my adult life. I have worked with, and helped, a broad and varied range of individuals with their own unique backgrounds and problems. I believe that every individual has basic fundamental rights and I am passionate about the importance of defending those rights. I did not grow up rich or privileged, and have worked hard long hours at low pay, before embarking on my legal career. Thus I understand the plight of those who have worked hard and now find themselves in severe financial difficulties. We try to find the best options for each person, to get their situation behind them, and get on with their lives with a fresh start.

I enjoy and welcome the analytical challenge of complexities in a case. I have the mature judgment that age can bring, but I still have the mental dexterity to look at things from many angles in working out the possible problems and solutions. I really like people, communicate well, and I prefer to work things out by negotiation rather than fight. But if a legal fight is necessary, then I can be quite resourceful, and very persistent, on behalf of my clients.

Personal interests:

Running, bicycling, hiking, traveling -- in the Pacific Northwest and beyond. I also have degrees in the Social Sciences and in Linguistics and enjoy learning more about other languages, places, and cultures.

License
  • Bar Number: 01195
    Oregon , 2001
Education
  • Lewis and Clark Law School
    J.D. (Juris Doctor) , 2001
    Portland, OR
    Executive Editor of Law Review; Tax Moot Court - National Competition Finals; Certificate in Federal Tax Law.
  • Portland State University
    Bachelor of Science (B.S.) , 1996
    Portland, OR
    3.9 Grade Point Average in all PSU courses. Political Science (Pre-Law), Linguistics.

Clarke Balcom

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