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Ransom v. FIA Card Services

United States Supreme Court
131 S. Ct. 716 (2011)


Ransom (defendant) filed a Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition, listing approximately $82,500 in unsecured debt. He reported monthly income of $4,248.56 and expenses of $4,038.01. Included among his reported expenses were a car-ownership deduction of $471 and a car-operating-costs deduction of $338. Ransom owned his car, a Toyota Camry valued at $14,000, outright. He proposed a repayment plan under which he would pay his creditors approximately 25 percent of the debt over five years. Creditor FIA Card Services, N.A. (plaintiff) (FIA) objected to the proposed plan on the grounds that Ransom was not applying all of his disposable income to repayment. FIA objected in particular to the car-ownership deduction, arguing that it should not be allowed because Ransom was not making loan or lease payments on the vehicle. The bankruptcy court refused to confirm Ransom’s plan. The Bankruptcy Appellate Panel of the Ninth Circuit affirmed, as did the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Ransom petitioned the Supreme Court for certiorari.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Kagan, J.)

Dissent (Scalia, J.)

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