11/13/2012 10:05:00 AM EST
Johnson v. Magee Rentals, Inc. (In re Johnson), 478 B.R. 235 (Bankr. S.D. Miss. 2012)
Collier on Bankruptcy was cited in this recent decision:
Collier on Bankruptcy section cited: 3 Collier on Bankruptcy ¶ 362.02 (accessible by lexis.com subscribers)
Lexis.com subscribers can view the enhanced version of In re Johnson.
LexisNexis Overview: After the debtor filed her bankruptcy petition, she orally informed the creditor's store manager and provided her with her bankruptcy attorney's name and telephone number. On three occasions after receiving oral notice, the debtor hung a door hanger on the debtor's front door, which listed the amount due under a rental contract. The court held that oral notice of the debtor's bankruptcy case was sufficient to satisfy the "knowledge" element of § 362(k). The debtor was awarded actual damages for lost wages and was also awarded travel expenses incurred during the litigation of the adversary and to meet with her attorney. The court awarded her damages for emotional distress, as her distress went beyond hurt feelings because it interfered with her ability to perform her job. The attorney's fees sought by the debtor were reasonable and fair. However, the court found that she failed to make reasonable efforts to mitigate her damages. Her attorney did not contact the creditor until after the third door hanger appeared. Because the adversary presented a novel question of law not yet answered by the Fifth Circuit - whether oral notice was sufficient - punitive damages were not warranted [an annotated version of 11 U.S.C.S. § 362 is available to lexis.com subscribers].
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