NJ Bankruptcy Law Firms

66 East Main Street, 3rd Floor
Little Falls, NJ 07424
NJ Bankruptcy Law Office Logo (Transparent) dictating Ralph A. Ferro Jr., Esq's Law Practice

Bankruptcy Creditor – Claim for Lawn Mower

New Jersey Bankruptcy Lawyer!

With 30 Years of Proven results!
"I personally meet with You and represent You!"
"I have never Lost a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Case"
"Experience = Results"
About Ralph A. Ferro Bankruptcy Lawyer

Bankruptcy Creditor – Claim for Lawn Mower

Chapter 13 Claim on Mower

Written and Verified by Ralph A. Ferro, Jr., Esq.

Bankruptcy Creditor’s Proof of Claim that a Lawn Mower is considered a motor vehicle/tractor did not hold up.    Proof of Claims are tricky, at times, in bankruptcy. 

Bankruptcy Asset is a John Deere Riding Mower  https://www.deere.com/en/mowers/lawn-tractors/:

  • Debtors borrowed money from a creditor to purchase a 41” John Deere Riding Lawn Mower.
  • The Debtors file for a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy and wanted to file a Motion to Avoid the Lien on the John Deere Mower.
  • The lien on the mower impairs their exemptions.
  • It is personal property not a recreational vehicle, motor vehicle, or tractor.
  • The Bankruptcy Creditor presents that the John Deere Riding Lawn Mower was a motorized vehicle which attachments could be placed on the mower and thus is a motor vehicle/tractor which cannot be exempted.
  • The creditor also stated that it was not a personal item that could be used only for cutting grass.
  • The bankruptcy asset had another use to haul or power implements.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Court Ruling on Bankruptcy Creditor’s Position.

  • The court notes that the John Deere in question has one main function – to cut grass.  Any other function would be a secondary, less efficient use of the machine.
  • As such, it was a lawnmower, not a lawn tractor.
  • The Court rules that the John Deere is primarily used to cut grass not for short trips/transportation by the Debtors.
  • The court disagrees with Bankruptcy Creditor’s position.
  • The asset could not be considered a motor vehicle/tractor.
  • The debtor was able to keep the mower and avoid the lien because it was a mower and not a vehicle or tractor.
  • Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Creditor’s claim on this asset was denied.

Bankruptcy can be complicated and technical,  Bankruptcy Creditor’s Proof of Claims must be evaluated carefully.   They have a major impact on a Debtor’s case.

Seek the advice or representation by a Certified Bankruptcy Attorney when filing a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy.