David S. Adams
Nebraska Furniture Mart (NFM) and Pain and Suffering Cap Removed
In Kansas, a debtor's household goods and furnishings are exempt, and will not be lost in a bankruptcy. The only possible exceptions are 1) if a debtor has a valuable collectible (usually worth a lot more than $1,000.00), or 2) if the item was purchased on a Nebraska Furniture Mart credit card. NFM is one of the only credit cards that actually claims a security interest in items purchased at their store. If an item is not fully paid for at the time of filing, then NFM might (might) still try to recover the item(s) later - generally only if the items are larger items and the remaining balance is several thousand dollars. If NFM comes after any items post-bankruptcy, Debtors are always advised to just let the items go, rather than pay NFM 80% of the purchase value of the items to keep them.
Personal Injury -
In Hilburn v Enerpipe the Kansas Supreme Court recently struck down the statutory limit to pain and suffering recoveries in Kansas. The prior limit was $325,000. It has been hard for the past decade to imagine how a person horrifically injured by another's negligence, could be limited to such a number, but the court finally has come to its senses and said that an artificial limit is not constitutional. In an attempt to limit personal injury lawsuits, the answer should never be to limit recoveries for the truly injured.