In re: Nicodemus, No. 12-8050 (6th Cir. 2013)Annotate this Case
Debtor was married to Plaintiff’s son, John. Plaintiff and John had an extensive model train collection. After John died, Plaintiff sued, seeking $25,000 for Debtor’s alleged conversion of the collection. Debtor was appointed administratrix of John’s probate estate. After completion of an inventory, Plaintiff and Debtor, individually and as administratrix, entered into a settlement resolving the state court litigation and matters in Probate Court, identifying parts of the collection as belonging to Plaintiff and requiring Debtor to surrender possession of those parts. The remainder of the collection was to be sold at auction and the proceeds were to be split. The court subsequently entered multiple orders directing Debtor to turn over certain trains and accessories to Plaintiff and imposed penalty of $100.00 per day. Finally, the court entered judgment in the amount of $32,186.90 plus interest based on Debtor’s “willful contempt.” Debtor then filed a bankruptcy petition and Plaintiff sought to except from discharge the entire debt owed to him pursuant to 11 U.S.C. 523(a)(2)(A) and (a)(7). The bankruptcy court held that the entire amount ($32,186), not just $9,386.90, was nondischargeable under 523(a)(2)(A). The bankruptcy appellate panel affirmed.