Can an inherited IRA be claimed as an exemption?: U.S. Supreme Court decides Clark v Rameker

The answer to this question may matter to you, your children, and your grandchildren! (Hint, the answer is no.)

Clark v. Rameker (13-299), in a unanimous decision:

JUSTICE SOTOMAYOR delivered the opinion of the Court.

When an individual files for bankruptcy, she may exempt particular categories of assets from the bankruptcy estate. One such category includes certain “retirement funds.” 11 U. S. C. §522(b)(3)(C). The question presented is whether funds contained in an inherited individual retirement account (IRA) qualify as “retirement funds” within the meaning of this bankruptcy exemption. We hold that they do not….

The Bankruptcy Code does not define “retirement funds,” so we give the term its ordinary meaning….” [Link to full case.]

Some Students CAN Discharge Student Loans in Bankruptcy

Marketplace Money ran an interview with Ron Lieber, author of the recent NYT story on discharging student loan debt in bankruptcy:

1) Marketplace Money (9/7/12) podcast: Student loans and bankruptcy

2)  Ron Lieber’s (9/31/12) New York Times article:
Last Plea on School Loans: Proving a Hopeless Future

Other NYT articles by Ron Lieber.


Disclaimer: The information provided on this blog is for research purposes only.  We do not provide legal advice, nor do we endorse any person, product, or company.
These blog posts are snippets of news, research tips, and commentary. They are starting places for legal research, not full legal research strategies or results. Please talk to a lawyer or law librarian if you want to research your legal issue thoroughly.

Oregon Bankruptcy, Employment, and other Pro Bono Legal Clinics

Do you have questions about … debt collection, bankruptcy, employment (wage claims, termination, discrimination & unemployment), or expungement of a criminal record?

Oregon attorneys volunteering at these two Pro Bono Legal Clinics may be of assistance. Link to clinic flyers from the Washington County Law Library What’s New? webpage:

1) Oregon Law Center & Intel Corporation’s Pro Bono Debt Clinic

2) Bankruptcy Clinic (sponsored by Legal Aid, Oregon Law Center, & Debtor-Creditor Section of OSB)

New legal research guide – Bankruptcy

The good news out of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Oregon is that overall bankruptcy filings for the district were down in 2011 compared to 2010.  There were 17,151 cases filed in 2011, compared with 19,741 in 2010.  If you compare the 2011 numbers with the total case filings from 2005 (32,168 total case filings), the 2011 statistics appear promising.  However, we still receive many questions about filing for bankruptcy.  So, we’ve created a new legal research guide on bankruptcy, available on the Washington County Law Library’s website.  As usual, if you can’t find a document on our website, check out our handy, alphabetical document index.    

Transferring Ownership (title) of Vehicles in Oregon in Divorce, Bankruptcy, or Estate

The Oregon State Bar (OSB) Bulletin, June 2011, has a useful article in their Legal Practice Tips column: “Get it Right the First Time: Settling Ownership of Vehicles,” by William Leslie.
Excerpt: “Handling a titled vehicle in a divorce, bankruptcy or estate doesn’t have to be hard, but simple mistakes are made by new and experienced attorneys alike….
Here are some common mistakes made by attorneys in handling vehicles. The concepts apply equally well to boats, airplanes and anything else with a title issued by a state agency….” [Link to full article.]