Columbia River Law Group

I started a law firm with my friends. One of them will be joining us after the first of the year. I would love it if anyone who visits the site would give me their feedback.  It can be seen at CRLawGroup.com. If you have any comments or suggestions, feel free to contact me on the website or here.  We are bankruptcy and consumer protection attorneys. We help people file bankruptcy in Portland, Vancouver, and the surrounding metro area.  We genuinely care about the people we help, and between the three of us, we have several decades of experience. If you know anyone who needs help with a bankruptcy, please do not hesitate to contact us. We like to help!

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Pure Med Spa/Brite Smile

Something weird has happened. Maybe it isn’t weird. Maybe it’s normal. I don’t know. In any case, it used to be if you searched the internet for Pure Med Spa, Brite Smile, et al, my blog would come up and people could see the number of people harmed by this company. There are hundreds of comments on my posts from people who have been robbed or injured by them. Now you search these terms and my blog doesn’t show. In fact, it brings up all the current locations where these thieves are still operating. Want a burned face? How about some severe skin damage on your legs? Better yet, how about having a lot of your money stolen? If you do, head on down to your local Pure Med Spa/Brite Smile,GRF Medspa et al. Free pain and stealing awaits you!

To see those previous posts that have virtually disappeared, here are the links:

You Be Sorry You Mess with Me, Pure Med Spa!

Let’s Eliminate Pure Med Spa

Good Riddance, Pure Med Spa!

Pure Med Spa Again

Pure Med Spa, Brite Smile, Crooks All

Order By Bankruptcy Court for Pure Med Spa

Pure Med Spa/Brite Smile is Now Pinnacle

I Hope We Get You, Pure Med Spa, Brite Smile, et al

Groupon Does Business with Pure Med Spa

Order by Bankruptcy Court for Pure Med Spa

Below is the text of the order by the bankruptcy court in the Northern District of Georgia for Pure Med Spa:

On the 17th day of December, 2009, came on to be heard the Motion to Dismiss Chapter 7 Cases of Non-Operating Debtors (the “Motion”) filed on behalf of Edwin K. Palmer, duly appointed Chapter 7 Trustee (the “Trustee”) for Pure Laser Hair Removal & Treatment Clinics Inc. (“Pure”), John Street Holdings LLC (“JSH”), GRF Medspa Broadway Plaza, LLC, GRF Medspa Redmond Town Center Mall, LLC, GRF Medspa Santa Ana, LLC, GRF Medspa Santa Clara, LLC, GRF Medspa Southcenter, LLC, GRF Medspa Washington Square Mall, LLC, GRF Medspa Village at Corte Madera, LLC, GRF Medspa Clackamas Town Center, LLC, GRF Medspa North Town Mall, LLC, GRF Medspa Alderwood Mall, LLC, GRF Medspa Bellis Fair Mall, LLC, GRF Medspa Fashion Show, LLC and GRF Medspa Sherman Oaks, LLC (collectively, the “Jointly-Administered Debtors”).

Pursuant to the Motion, the Debtor has represented that the Chapter 7 cases for each of the Jointly-Administered Debtors are to be dismissed, other than the Chapter 7 cases of In re Pure Laser Hair Removal & Treatment Clinics, Inc., Case No. 09-62038, and In re John Street Holdings LLC, Case No. 09-62039 (collectively, the “Remaining Cases”).

After reviewing the Motion and the pleadings on file, the Court is of the opinion, and so finds, that no written objections were filed with regard to said Motion and that good cause exists to grant the Motion. At the time the Motion was called for hearing, no parties appeared to object to the Motion. Accordingly, it is hereby ORDERED AND ADJUDGED as follows:

1.  The Motion is GRANTED as set forth herein;

2.  The above-captioned Chapter 7 case of GRF Medspa North Town Mall, LLC; Case No. 08-85315 is hereby dismissed.

3.  Upon entry of this Order, the Remaining Cases will no longer be jointly-administered and any future pleadings, motions or other filings that relate to either of the Remaining Cases must be filed in the applicable Remaining Case unless and until such Remaining Cases are jointly-administered or substantively consolidated by a future Order of the Court.

4.  Notwithstanding this dismissal, all orders previously entered in this Chapter 7 case or any of the Chapter 7 cases of the Jointly-Administered Debtors shall remain in full force and effect.

Why Hire a Bankruptcy Attorney?

Filing bankruptcy can be one of the most difficult choices a person makes. Often you have been struggling to meet your financial obligations. Something happens and the house of cards comes tumbling down, leaving you faced with a proposition that seems like failure. It is difficult and frustrating. You go to see an attorney and realize that even though you have no money to pay your bills, the attorney wants over a thousand dollars or more to represent you.

You discover there may be an alternative. You could pay someone much less to prepare your petition for you. You think Why not? Your case isn’t complicated, at least you don’t think it is. You pay a few hundred dollars and file your case. You may be okay. More likely, after things go very wrong you will realize that you should have hired an attorney.

Bankruptcy is more complicated than it appears on the surface. People who have seen or attended a bankruptcy hearing testify that the meetings are often over quickly. What is not apparent from the meeting is that most of the complicated work is done before the meeting takes place. The hearing should go smoothly if everything was done right ahead of time.

Having sat through countless hearings while representing debtors in the bankruptcy cases, I can assure you that bankruptcy is often more complicated than it looks, especially since the changes that took place in the bankruptcy laws in 2005.

Bankruptcy is more than what bills you owe. People often do not realize that all of their belongings are assets that may or may not be exempt. Other intangible things such as claims, insurance policies, and retirement accounts could also be assets. You may fail to disclose an item that could have been protected, only to lose it because of the lack of disclosure. The actions taken in the years and months leading up to bankruptcy can have consequences, and can cause unintended ramifications for friends and family members.

Every consumer bankruptcy case is assigned to a trustee. That person is responsible for ensuring the interests of your creditors are protected. When you hire a bankruptcy attorney, this person is there to represent you. Your attorney can help you to determine which debts you can discharge or pay off. Your attorney will help you protect assets that are not exempt, and will help you to do so legally.  Your attorney will make sure you list every asset and that every asset that can be is protected. Your attorney will help you ensure that bankruptcy is what it is intended to be:  a fresh start.

When you pay an attorney, you are paying that person to ensure you file everything you are supposed to file, turn over all the paperwork you are required to turn over, help you maximize your assets and minimize your losses, and to represent you against your creditors. In short, you are paying for the best fresh start you can muster.

What can a petition preparer do? Legally, all a petition preparer can do is fill in the blanks on your bankruptcy documents. If you choose to pay someone hundreds of dollars for this service you are, in effect, paying hundreds of dollars for data entry service.

If a petition preparer does more than enter information into your petition, that person is breaking the law. Both federal bankruptcy laws and state rules governing the practice of law forbid anyone except a licensed attorney from giving you advice.

Why? To protect you, the consumer. If an attorney messes up your case, there are protections in place to help you. Attorneys in Oregon,Washington, and many other states are required to carry malpractice insurance. They can also be sanctioned by their bars for failure to adhere to a basic code of conduct. There are no systems in place to help you if a document preparer messes up your petition or gives you erroneous advice. You may be able to file a complaint claiming they practiced law without a license, and while the person may face fines or sanctions, you will not get anything to cover your losses.

Hiring an attorney to represent you during your bankruptcy can be expensive. After suffering through financial difficulties and falling behind on your financial obligations, handing over a large sum of money to an attorney can seem like a real hardship. But bankruptcy is not an area to shortchange yourself.  Filing bankruptcy is your opportunity to make a fresh start. Make it the best start it can be by hiring a good attorney to represent, protect, and advise you. Think of it as your first investment in a new financial future.

I am a bankruptcy attorney. I help consumers file for chapter 7 and chapter 13 bankruptcy in Oregon and SW Washington.

Pure Med Spa Again

In spite of the rather large number of comments I received on my posts about Pure Med Spa, not one of the commenters responded to my request to interview them for an article I am doing on the company.  I am posting this in an effort to find people who were harmed by Pure Med Spa, employees who would like to tell their story, or even those who had a great experience.  If you would like to speak to me, please comment on this post and I will contact you.  If you would like to remain anonymous, that request will be honored.

Thanks much.

Original posts:

You be Sorry You Mess With Me, Pure Med Spa

Let’s Eliminate Pure Med Spa

Good Riddance, Pure Med Spa

America the Ugly

Milla’s dad informed me that a store I was looking for was in Longmont, Colorado.  Considering I have explored the south and the east of Boulder fairly well, and also considering Milla was spending the day with her dad, I decided to traipse on over to see if I could find the store and check out the town.

No offense to Longmontites, but what a disappointment.  Longmont is covered in ugly, bland, spread-out big box stores and their smaller corporate cousins.  The houses were modern bland equivalencies, the sort preferred by developers who buy their blueprints from Plans-R-Us.  Maybe I turned around to leave too soon, but I did not discover a prettier town center.  I had to get out.  The place sucked the life out of me.  Like so many truly homogenized American towns, the place had no aesthetics, no character, nothing.  No wonder so many Americans are depressed.

Going to Longmont, Colorado was exactly the same as going to Redding, California, which was exactly the same as going to Sioux Falls, South Dakota, which was exactly the same as going to Beaverton, Oregon, only flatter.  With few exceptions, American towns have zero character.  It is impossible to tell you are in another city in another state other than the fact that the license plates are different.  People lament the lack of community in America today; perhaps part of the problem is that we can’t tell one community from the other any more.

Longmont resembled the tri-cities area of eastern Washington nearly identically.  One thing Oregon has that seems to be sorely lacking in both Washington and Colorado is an urban growth boundary.  In both Colorado and Washington, buildings sprout seemingly out of nowhere, randomly placed wherever the landowner had a whim, regardless how well it fits with the landscape or where a town ends.  Lots of developers in Oregon bitch about the growth boundary, but I’m all for it.  It forces people to be creative with the space they do have.  In towns in Oregon where the boundary has been extended, the decimated orchards and fields are replaced with cloned McMansions, cloned townhomes, and hideous utilitarian corporate chains.  In the coming weeks, yards will be filled with hideous, plastic, walmart holiday atrocities.  Wretched.

While I’m not a huge fan of overly ornate, clean has translated into purely utlitarian, which basically means completely ugly.  Who knows, maybe clean wasn’t the culprit.  Perhaps it has more to do with rape and pillage development, make as much money as possible and get out.  Whatever happened to wanting to make something look nice?  Whatever happened to originality?  It was all sacrificed at the alter of the almighty dollar.

There is that Cree proverb that states, “Only when the last tree has withered, the last fish has been caught, and the last river has been poisoned, will you realize you cannot eat money.”  It seems when money is the only consideration or the highest consideration, not only are life and nature sacrificed, so too is beauty.  What a shame.

We should change the name of the song “America the Beautiful.”  It does not hold true any longer.  We are now America the Boring, America the Utilitarian, America the Ugly.  We don’t need some futuristic, sci-fi warning of a world in a plastic bubble to worry about.  We’re already there.