Wendy Owens v. Randy Royal, Chapter 7 Trustee

Case Type:
Case Status:
BAP No. WY-19-027 (10th Circuit, Jan 29,2020) Not Published
BAP for 10th Cir. affirmed ruling of bankruptcy court (D. Wyo.) denying chapter 7 debtor attorney's claim of "tools of the trade" exemption in her car. Wyoming exemptions provided for separate exemption for car. After debtor attorney claimed exemption for one car under motor vehicle exemption, she could not claim separate exemption in tools of the trade for other car, notwithstanding using car to commute to work as attorney, including to remote, rural locations. Because work duties did not involve car, e.g., a taxi driver, debtor could not claim exempt as tool of trade.
Procedural context:
Chapter 7 trustee objected to debtor's claim of exemption. Bankruptcy court (D. Wyo.) sustained objection, disallowed exemption, and denied debtor's motion to reconsider. Debtor appealed order denying objection and order denying motion for reconsideration to BAP for 10th Cir. (D. Wyo.).
Chapter 7 debtor, an attorney at Legal Aid of Wyoming, claimed an exemption in her car under Wyoming's "tools of the trade" exemption. Lawyer used vehicle to commute to work, including to remote rural locations.
Nugent, Michael, Mosier

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