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In re Wilkinson

United States Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Texas
402 B.R. 756 (2009)


Facts

Tolbert Wilkinson (plaintiff) filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Wilkinson filed schedules of property with the bankruptcy court and listed all of his possessions. In an attempt to prevent his property from falling into the hands of creditors, Wilkinson listed numerous firearms as exempt from execution. About six guns were classified by Wilkinson as sporting goods and equipment, while another 17 various guns were classified as home furnishings. The bankruptcy trustee objected to the exemptions for all of the guns listed on Wilkinson’s schedules. The trustee claimed that the Texas exemption statute only allowed for a total of two guns to be exempted. On November 14, 2008, Wilkinson amended a schedule of exemptions to include seven different guns, all of which were used in battles prior to the twentieth century. These antique guns were displayed on wooden plaques with descriptive metal plates and hung on the walls of Wilkinson’s home. Wilkinson claimed that the age of the guns meant that the guns were not classified as firearms under Texas law. The bankruptcy court considered the trustee’s objection.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Clark, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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