Pending cases throughout the country to watch for …

As a bankruptcy attorney in Mount Vernon, IL for over 20 years, I read through and analyze court rulings throughout the country, and pay particular attention to cases close to home!

It is brought to you by Consumer Bankruptcy Abstracts & Research ( and the National Consumer Bankruptcy Rights Center (


Consumer debts: The Chapter 7 debtor’s student loan debt, incurred in undertaking a doctorate program in business administration, was not consumer debt, although the debtor’s employer did not require that he take the courses and did not pay for the program, where the debtor undertook the program with a profit motive, in that his personal goal in undertaking the program was to advance his business knowledge and, ultimately, own and run a profitable business. The debtor’s education could properly be characterized as a business investment in himself. Palmer v. Laying, 559 B.R. 746 (D. Colo. Nov. 15, 2016) (case no. 1:15-cv-2856).

Dischargeability of debt—Student loan debt under Code § 523(a)(8)—Establishing undue hardship: The debtor showed, under the Brunner test, that repayment of the non-Stafford portion of her student loan debt would impose an undue hardship on her and her family, warranting the discharge of that portion of her debt under Code § 523(a)(8). The debtor, a 36-year-old single mother of two daughters, was in her fourth year as an elementary school teacher and earned $35,300 annually. Unless she returned to school for graduate classes (an expense her budget showed no ability to fund), her salary was capped by her school district’s pay scale, and the debtor’s realistic budget demonstrated that it was difficult for her to cover her reasonable living expenses, leaving her without funds to make any payments to her student loan creditor. And, while the debtor admittedly had not made any payments on the loans in the last six years, the debtor demonstrated to the court’s satisfaction that she was really unable to make anything but a de minimis payment, if at all, on her student loans during those years. In re Edwards, 2016 WL 7451337 (Bankr. D. Kan. Nov. 22, 2016) (adv. proc. no. 2:15-ap-6100).

Dischargeability of debt—Student loan debt under Code § 523(a)(8)—Status of obligation as encompassed by provision: The debtor’s obligation under a “Financial Agreement” between the debtor and a college, requiring the debtor to pay for tuition, fees and other registration costs at some unspecified future time, did not come within Code § 523(a)(8). Because no “loan” existed, neither § 523(a)(8)(A)(i) nor § 523(a)(8)(B) applied, and, given that no funds were received by the debtor, § 523(a)(8)(A)(ii) had no application either. In re Tucker, 560 B.R. 206 (Bankr. W.D. N.Y. Nov. 1, 2016) (adv. proc. no. 1:16-ap-1001).


About the blogger:

Michael Curry of Curry Law Office in Mount Vernon, Illinois ( has helped thousands of individuals, family and small businesses in southern Illinois find protection under the Bankruptcy Code for almost twenty-five years. He is also available to help individuals and families with their estate planning (wills, power-of-attorney) and real estate and other sales transactions.

He is also the author of books on finance and bankruptcy available on Kindle through Amazon!

Whether you live in Mount Vernon, Salem, Waltonville, Woodlawn, Lawrenceville, Centralia, Louisville, Xenia, Grayville, Effingham, Dieterich, Vandalia, McLeansboro, Dahlgren, Albion, Flora, Clay City, Kinmundy, Chester, Sparta, Olney, Mount Carmel, Nashville, Fairfield, Cisne, Wayne City, Carmi, Grayville, or anywhere in Southern Illinois call Curry Law Office today at (618) 246-0993 and Finally Be Financially Free!

You can also find his website at


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