New bankruptcy law ruled invalid in previous claims

The Supreme Court ruled 9 to 0 Tuesday that a person who claimed bankruptcy before the enactment of a revised bankruptcy law cannot bar some personal property from being divided among creditors.

The case affects thousands of individual bankruptcy proceedings. The exemptions at issue cover items such as a person's home and tools of trade. The new bankruptcy law specifies that creditors may not obtain liens on certain items, including up to $500 in jewelry and $750 in professional books and other personal items.

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