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I had the pleasure of attending the Nebraska Association of Trial Attorneys seminar held at the Nebraska College of Law a week ago, and it got me thinking about how much trial attorneys need to understand about the bankruptcy process.  In a nutshell, here are seven things every trial attorney should understand about bankruptcy.

1. Injury

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The United States Supreme Court has ruled that inherited Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) are not protected under federal exemption laws.   Clark  v. Ramekers, 573 U.S. ____ (2014).  Even though inherited IRAs are exempt under federal income tax laws, the court said they are not really “retirement funds” under Section 522(b)(3)(C) of the Bankruptcy

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In a few weeks taxpayers will begin filing their 2012 tax returns, and for those taxpayers who are also filing bankruptcy at the same time a large number of them will forfeit the refund to the Chapter 7 Trustee. For nearly 20 years I have witnessed the Chapter 7 Trustee seize tax refunds from unsuspecting debtors.