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Christopher J. Mertens

Debt collection Attorney at Portland, OR

5.0   12 reviews

also known as Chris Mertens

  • State Years
    California - CA 14 years
    Oregon - OR 14 years
    Washington - WA 17 years
  • Licensed for 14 years
    State CA
    Acquired 2009
    Status
    Active No misconduct found
  • Licensed for 14 years
    State OR
    Acquired 2009
    Status
    Active No misconduct found
  • Licensed for 17 years
    State WA
    Acquired 2006
    Status
    Active No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Christopher

Learn Christopher’s areas of practice.

5
Practice areas
  1. Debt collection
    50%
    Consumer debt DEFENSE and counterclaims against debt collectors and other responsible parties. Consumer credit, student loans, medical debt, and fraudulent/mistaken charges.

    11 years, 80 cases

  2. Consumer protection
    20%
    I sue abusive debt collectors, whether collecting consumer credit cards, private student loans, medical bills, or auto-loan deficiencies. I sue loan servicers, banks, and credit reporters who don't fix mistakes.

    11 years, 20 cases

  3. Bankruptcy and debt
    10%
    Strategic Student Loan Resolution and Planning.

    18 years, 1,700 cases

  4. Chapter 13 bankruptcy
    5%
    Comprehensive and strategic financial relief to address and overcome mortgage, tax, auto, or other debt issues.

    18 years, 1,200 cases

  5. Chapter 7 bankruptcy
    5%

    18 years, 1,000 cases

  6. Debt settlement
    5%

    15 years, 100 cases

  7. Foreclosure
    5%
    Defending Foreclosure, prosecuting mortgage servicer abuses, modification assistance.

    12 years, 50 cases

By understanding the financial systems behind the loans, servicers, and debt collectors, I am better able to provide individuals, families, and small business owners with a comprehensive set of strategic legal options whatever the problems they are facing. I not only want to help my clients obtain relief, but I want to affirmatively assert consumer rights to give my clients every advantage going forward so they feel empowered to achieve future financial goals.

My ten years of experience in the bankruptcy field includes strategic tools to assist consumers and small business owners in working towards their financial goals. I do not represent banks or debt collectors.

Mertens Law, LLC is committed to a focus on the vital area of student loan resolution, including strategic review and planning, default resolution, settlement negotiation, collection defense, and consumer claim prosecution. 

I also assist with:

 

  1. Bankruptcy discharge protection;
  2. Debt Settlement Negotiation;
  3. Suing abusive debt collectors; and
  4. Comprehensive consumer financial reorganization, including mortgage issues, burdensome vehicle loans, income tax liability, small business issues, and strategic use of the tools available under the federal bankruptcy code.

Photos and videos

Location

Mertens Law, LLC
1040 NE 44th Ave, Ste 4
Portland, OR, 97213

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Reviews

5.0 / 5.0
  12 customer reviews
5 Star
 
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Posted by S | June 26, 2023
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Great work!
We had an unfortunate experience that needed dealing with and Chris was thoughtful, patient, and went above and beyond to help resolve our issue. Would definitely recommend!
Posted by Michael | October 16, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Thank you Chris Mertens
Many years ago I co-signed for a student loan. 2 years ago I began getting calls and emails from a company claiming to own the paper on the loan and even filing in the court to hopefully achieve a summary judgement against me. Rather than stick my head in the sand (as many people do), I went looking for counsel. The first two “companies” I spoke with were as bad as the collection company itself and wanted huge upfront fees that I could not afford. Somehow in one of my searches online I happened on Chris and reached out to him with only days to spare before my scheduled court appearance. We had a long phone consultation and he agreed to help me. Chris calmed me down and put my initial fears to rest. He was able to wade through the ins and outs of this particular “student loan” and get it settled fairly and quickly. I am not able to discuss particulars, but I am one happy client. I heartily recommend Chris Mertens.
Read less
Posted by Bryan | July 13, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Honest, Hardworking, and Knowledgeable - Chris Saved Us When We Were Sued by a Private Student Lender
After being served papers by the Sherrif's Department, for a loan that I had forgot even existed, Chris guided us through a very difficult time, and in the end, won our lawsuit. Although we live several hours apart, Mr. Mertens established strong communication with me via email, phone, and text. He proved to be a very detail oriented person, and was able to communicate very clearly with me about what was happening with our case. The case first went to arbitration, at which time Chris drove to my hometown to meet with me and talk in person. I was very impressed by the level of attention he was giving my case, but then again, it was my first lawsuit, and I wasn't sure how much attention I should be getting. However, it became clear to me that Chris was going way above and beyond for me and my family, when he told me that he needed me to send a document to him that day because his wife was going into labor with their child. I was so grateful at that moment to have him on my side. During arbitration, the judge ruled against me without really considering what Mr. Mertens had reported. After the decision, he gave me some options as far as the next step. One of the options was to keep fighting. I was scared, but Chris told me he was confident, and I am so glad that I trusted him! Mr. Mertens submitted the appeal to the court ( I think that is what it is called) and the evidence was included. The judge ruled in my favor this time, stating that the statute of limitations was in effect, as well as other stuff that I don't really remember. In the end, Mr. Merten's hard-work, attention to detail, and immense knowledge of the law had prevailed. I wholeheartedly recommend Chris Mertens to anyone seeking a lawyer to help fight student loan companies. He will work tirelessly for you, and be honest about the outlook.
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Posted by Matt | April 2, 2019
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
A True Professional
My wife and I met with Chris to discuss our private and federal student loan balances and the options and strategies we have. From the moment we first emailed Chris was responsive, helpful, and courteous. He was thorough and organized in detailing the financial information he wanted to collect from us to help us understand our go-forward options. We arrived at our initial consultation and Chris was prepared with detailed notes and it was clear he completely read through the information we provided. During the consultation Chris walked us through our options for each loan and gave us many useful tools to craft our plan. After the consultation Chris followed-up with a detail email reviewing what we discussed, a valuable tool we will refer to along our journey to financial freedom.
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Posted by Christy | March 21, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Great Experience with Amazing results
Christopher Mertens helped me with my student loan with which I have been fighting a losing battle for over 20 years Contacting him for help was the best decision I could have made I finally feel in control of the situation and see light at the end of the tunnel thanks to him I found him to be very knowledgeable, professional, always quick to respond and I learned a great deal from him in this process. I feel that he really went above and beyond to help me. The results of his work with my student loan are saving me over 14,000.00 this year alone. I was able to feel confident in how to handle things and I have hope for a resolution for the first time in over20 years. It’s s great feeling and I am grateful for his help. I would highly recommend Christopher Mertens.
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Posted by Tim | September 12, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Federal Student Loan Help - Worth Every (Affordable) Penny
After some worrying about what to do about my student loan debt, which had gone to collection, I knew I didn't want to deal with them alone. After consulting with Chris he provided a plan to resolve default status and file an Income Based Repayment with a new loan. Chris clearly understands the ins and outs of Student Loans and he made this a stress free process. He was worth every (affordable) penny.
Read less
Posted by Tami | April 19, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Foreclosure
When I came to see Chris, I was terrified. I had spoken to many other attorneys, and was sure I had no options. He calmed me down, and explained worse case scenario and the best we could expect. He never promised things he couldn't deliver. I will be forever grateful to him. I'm sure some days he wished I had walked right past his office, but he didn't let me down. During these times in your life, you need someone who is right there with you and actually cares about the outcome.
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Posted by Chris | May 18, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Superb Service
I came to Mr. Mertens when I found out he was the ONLY attorney in the Portland metro who specializes in student loan debt management. He was very helpful and explained to me very clearly how to navigate through my student loan situation. As we worked through the case, Christopher did a great job assuring me that we were on the right track and kept me up to date to help me feel confident in how things were proceeding. He is a very calm and easy-going person and his demeanor is very complimentary to his specialty of law - considering how emotional and disheartening dealing with debt can be. Mr. Mertens was a pleasure to work with and I have already recommended him to friends and colleagues.
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Posted by Matt | March 26, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Federal and Private Loans
My Private and Federal Loan payments were starting to cause be a great deal of stress. After meeting with Christopher he gave me great advice, which I followed and now my financial situation is much better. I would recommend him to anyone, anytime.
Posted by Elizabeth | September 2, 2015
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Student Loan Review
Mr. Mertens is an extremely effective and consciousness attorney. He addressed my situation with great transparency and made recommendations that were not obvious to me and were well-matched to my goals. Absolutely would recommend.
Posted by Chris | August 28, 2015
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Great guy that does great work
I had a great experience with Chris. He was knowledgeable, and very helpful with my case. I had not paid my student loans in 8 years and he got me back in good standing and making my monthly payments like I should of. This is something I should of taken care of myself years ago but thankfully I had Chris to help me with my case and I truly don't know what I would of done without him
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Posted by anonymous | August 27, 2015
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Significantly Lowered my Student Loan Payments
I have a large amount of federal student loans and they were getting unaffordable since I changed jobs recently. Christopher helped me go through all of my options for different repayment plans in a knowledgeable, thoughtful manner. In my new repayment plan, my monthly loan payment is significantly lower. I will certainly come back to Christopher in the future if my financial circumstances change again.
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Cost

Rates
  • Free Consultation 15 minutes
  • Hourly Rates $ 450-480 per hour
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card

Resume

AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Managing Attorney
  • Mertens Law, LLC
  • 2015 - Present
  • Associate Attorney
  • Todd Trierweiler & Associates
  • 2010 - 2014
  • Consumer Bankruptcy Attorney
  • Various Entities
  • 2008 - 2010
  • Federal Judicial Law Clerk
  • United States Bankruptcy Court (N.D. Cal.)
  • 2006 - 2008
  • Judicial Extern
  • United States Bankruptcy Court (W.D. Wa.)
  • 2005 - 2005
  • Student Research & Writing Fellow
  • University Of Washington School Of Law
  • 2005 - 2006
  • Student Law Clerk
  • Geico Insurance Company
  • 2004 - 2005
View all work experience

Education

  • University of Washington School of Law
  • J.D.
  • 2006
  • Macalester College
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 2001

Sample of Legal Cases

  • Student Loan Analysis and Repayment Plan
  • Reviewed client's financial situation post-graduation, explained in detail repayment options and enrolled client in an affordable repayment plan.
  • Student Loan Default Resolution
  • Avoided garnishment, facilitated the client bringing the loans current, and got client on an affordable payment for his loans so he could stay current going forward.
  • Chapter 13 Multiple Residential Rental Properties
  • Drafted and confirmed Chapter 13 plan to bring mortgages current, kept all performing properties, and crammed second mortgage down to value of property so that it was no longer underwater.
View all legal cases

Associations

  • Oregon State Bar Consumer Law Section
  • Executive Council Member
  • 2018 - Present
  • Max Gardner's Consumer Defense Academy
  • Member
  • 2015 - Present
  • Student Loan Law Workshop Graduates
  • Member
  • 2015 - Present
  • Washington State Bar Association, Solo and Small Practice Section
  • Member
  • 2015 - Present
  • Oregon State Bar, Consumer Law Section
  • Member
  • 2015 - Present
  • Oregon State Bar, Sole and Small Firm Practitioners Section
  • Member
  • 2015 - Present
  • National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
  • Member
  • 2010 - Present
  • Oregon State Bar, Debtor-Creditor Section
  • Member
  • 2010 - Present
  • Washington State Bar Association, Creditor-Debtor Section
  • Member
  • 2010 - Present
  • U.S. District Court of Oregon
  • Member
  • 2010 - Present
  • State Bar of California
  • Member
  • 2009 - Present
  • United States District Court for the Western District of Washington
  • Member
  • 2009 - Present
  • Order of the Coif
  • Member
  • 2006 - Present
  • Consumer Law Section, Oregon State Bar
  • Chair
  • 2020 - 2021
  • Consumer Law Section, Oregon State Bar
  • Chair Elect
  • 2019 - 2019
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Graduate - completed Bankruptcy Litigation Bootcamp
  • Max Gardner's Consumer Defense Academy
  • 2015
  • Graduate - completed litigation bootcamp
  • Pete Barry's FDCPA/TCPA Bootcamp
  • 2015
  • Graduate - completed student loan resolution workshop
  • Student Loan Law Workshop
  • 2015
  • Pro Bono Assistance Award
  • Volunteer Lawyer Project
  • 2014
  • Pro Bono Bankruptcy Attorney
  • Volunteer Layers Project
  • 2013
  • Pro Bono Bankruptcy Clinic Attorney
  • Volunteer Lawyer Project
  • 2012
  • Pro Bono Bankruptcy Clinic Attorney
  • Volunteer Lawyer Project
  • 2011
  • Pro Bono Bankruptcy Clinic Attorney
  • Volunteer Lawyer Project
  • 2010
  • Graduated with High Honors
  • University of Washington School of Law
  • 2006
  • Order of the Coif
  • University of Washington School of Law
  • 2006
View all awards

Publications

  • 81 The American Bankruptcy Law Journal 123 (2007), reprinted in 29 California Bankruptcy Journal 379
  • Travelers and the Implications on the Allowability Of Unsecured Creditors’ Claims for Post-Petition Attorneys’ Fees Against the Bankruptcy Estate
  • 2007
  • 15 Pacific Rim Law & Policy Journal 233
  • Australian Insolvency Law and the 1992 ISDA Master Agreement—Catalyst, Reaction, and Solution,
  • 2006
View all publications

Speaking Engagements

  • Oregon Legal Aid Foreclosure Defense Attorney Training
  • Mortgage Issues in connection with modifications and bankruptcy
  • 2016
  • Audigy Student Summit
  • Student Loan Planning for Recent Graduates
  • 2016
  • Student Loan Law from a Student Loan Lawyer
  • Student Loan Planning
  • 2015
  • Oregon House Business and Labor Committee
  • Testified in support of Senate Bill 935 to increase tools of the trade exemption.
  • 2011
  • Bankruptcy: An In-Depth Guide to Practice in the U.S. Bankruptcy Courts Taught by Current and Former Law Clerks
  • means test issues, chapter 13 plan requirements, and objecting to discharge and dischargeability of debts
  • 2008
View all speaking engagements

Attorney endorsements

Received (6)
Given (7)
Endorse Christopher
Consumer protection Attorney | May 02
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Chris Mertens provides considerate and thoughtful representation to his clients, which in the field of consumer law is invaluable. He knows consumer protection laws, bankruptcy law, as well as student loan debt. With his extensive knowledge, he can provide you with a plan that is custom fit to your needs. I highly recommend this attorney as he is dedicated to helping all and is generous with his wisdom."
Bankruptcy and debt Attorney | Jul 18
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Christopher is a bright, determined attorney who works great as a team player and always is offering to help others. I am pleased to work together with Christopher and know that he is a positive influence to the Oregon Bar."
Bankruptcy and debt Attorney | May 31
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Chris is my go-to expert on bankruptcy and consumer issues. He's helped me with cases involving these issues and I've always been grateful for his knowledge, calm demeanor, and pleasant personality. I've recommended Chris to clients who've also enjoyed working with him."
Bankruptcy and debt Attorney | Oct 29
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Chris is an outstanding advocate for debtor rights who knows how to solve difficult debt problems. His knowledge of resources for eliminating student loan debts is particularly valuable for those who are burdened with large student loans while they try to find success in their young careers and start families. I highly recommend Chris to anyone who has personal or business debt problems that are preventing them from finding success and enjoying life."
Bankruptcy and debt Attorney | Sep 11
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Christopher knows what he is doing when it comes to the law. Specifically for bankruptcy and creditor/debtor issues he has tremendous experience. I fully endorse this lawyer."
Bankruptcy and debt Attorney | Aug 17
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Chris is a very compassionate, intelligent attorney. I endorse this lawyer."
View more endorsements

Avvo Contributions

1 Legal Answers 0 Legal Guides
Portland Debt collection Lawyer Christopher J. Mertens
Christopher J. Mertens
Debt collection Attorney
Portland, OR
Licensed for 17 years
Free Consultation