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Chapter 12 Bankruptcy Lawyers in Seattle

Helping Farmers & Fishermen Obtain Relief from Debt

Designed in the 1980s to assist family farmers and fishermen, Chapter 12 is a relatively new version of bankruptcy that provides a powerful alternative to Chapter 13 and Chapter 11. If you are a farmer or fisherman in Seattle looking for an effective method of debt relief, our team at Henry & DeGraaff can help you file this form of bankruptcy and attain the fresh start you need.

To learn more about how we can assist you, call (206) 483-0505 to get in touch with our Chapter 11 bankruptcy attorneys in Seattle today.

How Does Chapter 12 Work in Washington State?

Chapter 12 is similar to other chapters of bankruptcy in many ways. For example, you will need to attend a Meeting of Creditors, in which the trustee and your creditors ask you about your debt and other financial affairs. Additionally, Chapter 12 triggers the automatic stay, which freezes all collection actions. Like Chapter 13, it also implements the co-debtor stay, which protects others who are liable for your debt—even if they aren’t filing for bankruptcy.

Chapter 12 bankruptcy allows you to propose a repayment plan that will last for 3-5 years and use all your disposable income. The judge will need to approve this plan, upon which you will begin making regular payments to the trustee, who will distribute these funds to your creditors according to bankruptcy laws.

Once you complete this repayment plan, you can benefit from a debt discharge. So long as your creditors receive as much as they would through the Chapter 7 liquidation process, you can be released from liability for any unsecured debt that remains after your repayment plan.

Additionally, you may be able to “cram down” secured debt (e.g. mortgages or boat loans), which allows you to convert any debt owed beyond the collateral into unsecured debt. Once it is unsecured, it can be discharged, and your payments on the secured amount can be stretched beyond your original 3-5-year plan.

In most cases, farmers and fishermen continue their operations after bankruptcy. As such, Chapter 12 can be an effective way to restructure and reduce debt without losing the family business.

The Henry & DeGraaff Difference

  • Experienced, Creative & Sophisticated

    With years of experience between our attorneys, our goal is to deliver a higher level of service, only taking cases where we can add value.

  • Personalized Attention

    We understand that no two cases are ever the same. We provide tailored solutions for every client and strategize in order to provide optimal results.

  • Comprehensive Service

    As a law firm that focuses on creative and collaborative solutions, we always seek opportunities that go even beyond the law to help provide the results you deserve.

  • Groundbreaking Results

    Our ability to tackle complex issues has allowed us to win appellate decisions and push the law in our clients' favor. We pursue compensation arrangements that reward success.

Who Can File Chapter 12?

Chapter 12 is reserved for family farmers and fishermen with regular income. To account for these debtors’ seasonal operations, Chapter 12 allows for flexible, periodic payments.

To qualify for Chapter 12, you must:

  • Be engaged in a commercial farming or fishing operation
  • Owe no more than $10 million as a farmer or about $1.9 million as a fisherman
  • Owe at least 50% or 80% (for farmers and fishermen, respectively) through farming or fishing activities/expenses (not including home mortgages)
  • Earn more than 50% of your income from these operations

If you are filing as a corporation or partnership, one family must own more than half of all stock and equity.

Let Us Help You Regain Control over Your Finances

At Henry & DeGraaff, our goal is to help you reduce debt without losing your business. We have spent more than 30 years developing the skills needed to accomplish this goal. As a team of problem-solvers, we take the time to understand each client’s unique situation before developing the strategy they need for long-term growth and prosperity.

We are on your side when you need us most. Give us a call at (206) 483-0505 or fill out our online contact form to get started today.

Hear From People Like You

Client Testimonials
  • It is my belief that we came out way ahead of the game but we owe the success to Jacob.

    “Jacob very clearly explained the course of action we should take and held our hand through the very scary process of the bankruptcy nightmare.”

    - Kim & Mike
  • 5 stars are not enough.

    “She knows the ins and outs of all types of bankruptcy, listens to your personal situation, and lays out the options for you.”

    - Joe
  • Jacob successfully took over our Chapter 11 bankruptcy case.

    “His professional attitude and calm and efficient demeanor guided us through what could have been a much more agonizing process. He and his staff worked out a settlement which was actually better than my most optimistic expectation.”

    - Jerry
  • Jacob was always focused on our needs and desires concerning our real estate.

    “He is not an income-driven attorney, but an attorney that gives great value and caring as his greatest assets. He works hard to get his clients the best result possible!”

    - Previous Client
  • If you need their services don't hesitate to give them a call.

    “They offer a no-nonsense/no-hustle approach to financial counseling and bankruptcy. I witnessed a dear friend go through the process, and Henry & DeGraaff was great to them.”

    - Reese H.
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