Small business owners who declare bankruptcy could find it easier to get back on their feet if a bill passed by the Oregon Senate Monday becomes law.
Bankruptcy is governed by federal law. But states are allowed to draw the line for businesses to protect "tools of the trade."
That means a painter, for example, gets to keep his spraying machine even if he goes bankrupt.
Tualatin Democrat, Richard Devlin, says the Senate has agreed to increase the "tools of the trade" exemption from $3,000 to $5,000.
Richard Devlin: "It doesn't mater if you're a small contractor in Bend, or a small business owner in Lake Oswego, restarting a business not only takes commitment and strength of character, it also takes tools and equipment. This is a small update to existing law that could make life better for Oregonians struggling to return to the workforce."
The bill passed the Senate unanimously and now goes to the House. Last year, more than 20,000 Oregonians filed for bankruptcy.