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Brent R. Wilson, 2019 Leaders in Law

Making the complex understandable

Passionate about helping clients navigate bankruptcy law


Brent R. Wilson profile

Brent Wilson enjoys bankruptcy law and volunteers with both state and federal hotlines to help people in need. Photo by Pete Grady.

Brent R. Wilson believes in approaching a client’s problems as his own.

“It can add a perspective (to) see different solutions out there that you wouldn’t actually see if you were looking at it from an outsider’s point of view,” he says.

Wilson uses this approach in his work as an associate attorney at Hawley Troxell in Boise, where he focuses on bankruptcy law.

Wilson grew up in southern Indiana and earned an undergraduate degree from Indiana University Bloomington. After working for several years post-grad as an insurance adjuster, Wilson enrolled in the UIC John Marshall Law School in Chicago.

Until law school, Wilson had always assumed he would go into criminal law. However, he was introduced to bankruptcy law as a student and found his passion, completing an externship for a bankruptcy judge. From there, he worked for the U.S. Trustee Program for the Northern District of Illinois and Wisconsin, which administers bankruptcy cases for the U.S. Department of Justice.

2019 Leaders in Law magazine

Click here to read the full 2019 Leaders in Law magazine.

Bankruptcy law is a very complex and personal practice where you can provide a lot of relief, Wilson explains.

“It’s kind of a dynamic, shifting-type law where things can change very drastically and dramatically for people in bankruptcy, and I like to be on that side of things,” he says. “It makes a big impact on the people you are working with and working for.”

While in law school, Wilson met his wife Amy, a fellow lawyer who is from Star, Idaho. In 2012, they moved to Boise, where Wilson clerked for Judge Jim D. Pappas in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Idaho. In 2015, he started at Hawley Troxell.

Sheila Schwager, a partner at Hawley Troxell who heads the practice group for creditors rights and bankruptcy, praises Wilson’s work ethic.

“He is very motivated and works extremely hard at anything he does,” Schwager says. “He doesn’t do anything halfway.”

Aside from his work at Hawley Troxell, Wilson devotes time to providing legal advice, pro bono, for the Idaho State and Federal Bar’s bankruptcy hotline. He also authors articles for the Idaho State Bar’s Commercial Law and Bankruptcy Section, as well as for Hawley Troxell’s banking and business blog.

It is this work of teaching and helping others understand the ins and outs of bankruptcy that help him be a better lawyer, Wilson says. Bankruptcy can be an emotional time for a client, he adds, but having a lawyer who understands the process and possible outcomes can help people manage expectations and achieve the best possible solution.

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