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Inherited IRAs are not exempt in bankruptcy

U.S. Supreme Court rules against exempting inherited IRAs in Bankruptcy On June 12, 2014, the United States Supreme Court ruled that an individual that owns an inherited IRA may not protect or exempt the same if they file bankruptcy.  In the case of Clark v. Rameker, Trustee, the Debtors in bankruptcy attempted to exempt approximately […]

Bankruptcy Homestead Exemption Updated in Nebraska

Nebraska Legislature Expands Protection of the Homestead but other bills fail to pass Previously, certain individuals could not protect the equity in their house if they encountered financial trouble in Nebraska.   (Please see my earlier bankruptcy exemption blog from January 23, 2013) In general, the old law allowed only the Head of the Household or individuals […]

Nebraska Bankruptcy Exemption Update | 2 New Developments

An Update on the “Tool of the Trade” Exemption in Nebraska I recently posted a blog that discussed lien avoidance and the “tool of the trade” exemption in Nebraska.  The “tool of the trade” exemption was under fire after a local bankruptcy Judge ruled that a vehicle was no longer protected under the exemption if […]

Better Bankruptcy Exemptions proposed for Nebraska in 2014

What are bankruptcy exemptions and why are they important? Bankruptcy exemptions are extremely important to anyone thinking about filing bankruptcy with equity in their assets.  They are you financial “shield” and are what protect your stuff.  For example, can you keep your car and furniture if you file bankruptcy?  Will you be able to keep your […]

Powerful Tool in Bankruptcy – Lien Avoidance

What is a lien avoidance and why is it important? I recently passed my sixth year as a practicing bankruptcy attorney. Over these years my experience has impacted my advice to clients. One of my first memorable experiences involved a powerful tool under the bankruptcy code is known as “lien avoidance.” Basically, “lien avoidance” is […]

Will I lose my house if I file bankruptcy in Nebraska?

Can I protect the equity in my house in Nebraska if I file bankruptcy? Normally, the answer is yes, up to $60,000.  But, not everyone qualifies for this exemption.  The bankruptcy homestead exemption law in Nebraska is geared toward protecting families and people 65 years of age or older.   Thus, if you are married […]

DON’T pay back family debts if you are thinking about bankruptcy!

Paying back loans and debts owed to family members is extremely important to most people.  But, if you really care about them, please don’t pay them back before you file bankruptcy! Paying back family loans before bankruptcy causes problems for them. As the saying goes, no good deed goes unpunished.  This is especially true when you […]

Do I get to keep my INHERITANCE if I file bankruptcy?

Inheritances and bankruptcy.  Can I keep it? Few areas of consumer bankruptcy law cause more confusion and frustration than the issue of an inheritance.  Part of this reason is likely due to the fact that a loved one has recently died and this was their money and is was intended for me!  There is a natural […]

If I file bankruptcy, do I get to keep my tax refund?

Tax refunds and bankruptcy.  Is it safe? Every year, around the time that tax refunds start coming in, there are a lot of unnecessary tears shed at bankruptcy hearings in Omaha and Council Bluffs.  Why?  Because there is a limit on what can be protected under the exemption laws of every state.  Nebraska and Iowa have different […]

If bankruptcy is necessary, don’t spend retirement funds first

It’s a hard decision to make:  Do I use my retirement funds and try to avoid bankruptcy, or do I just file bankruptcy to begin with? Author and financial commentator Jane Bryant Quinn addressed this issue with her article in The Daily Beast (a subsidiary of Newsweek magazine) on January 3, 2009.  Quoting from Katie Porter, […]

Can only one spouse file bankruptcy? | Am I liable for my spouse’s debts?

Yes and maybe.  One spouse is certainly able to file bankruptcy by themselves and they may or may not be jointly liable for their debts.  Let’s break this down. Any individual person may file bankruptcy, even if they are married. There are definitely times when one spouse should file bankruptcy alone and not involve the […]

Bankruptcy Exemptions in Nebraska- Part III | The WILDCARD

The WILDCARD exemption in Nebraska bankruptcy cases   Nebraska law provides a wildcard exemption for any personal property except wages.  Personal property is generally defined as anything that is not real estate or wages.  In Nebraska, each debtor in bankruptcy receives a $2,500 wildcard exemption that may be used to protect any personal property.  The […]

Introduction to Nebraska Bankruptcy Exemptions | Part II

An overview of the Nebraska Bankruptcy exemption scheme The foundation of determining which exemption laws apply in Nebraska with respect to a bankruptcy filing starts with Neb.Rev.St. § 25-15,105.  This section of the law reads as follows: The federal exemptions provided in 11 U.S.C. 522, subsection (d), are hereby rejected by the State of Nebraska. The State of […]

Bankruptcy EXEMPTIONS Part I | Omaha Bankruptcy Lawyer explains

Bankruptcy exemptions are designed to PROTECT your assets One of the most fundamental tasks that an Omaha bankruptcy attorney must quickly and effectively determine is what assets of his or her client are safe and protected if a bankruptcy is filed and which are not, if any.  If you don’t get that analysis right, there […]

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