U.S. Small Business Administration v. Bensal

Under 28 USC § 3304(a), the federal government may void as fraudulent any transfer made by a debtor who does not receive equivalent value, and a judgment debtor’s disclaimer of an inheritance fits that definition.  Defendant obtained and then defaulted on an SBA-guaranteed loan.  The lender obtained judgment against defendant, after which it assigned the loan to the SBA.  Defendant’s father died leaving him a $150,000 bequest, which defendant promptly disclaimed.  Held, the SBA can recover the disclaimed inheritance. Under 28 USC 3304(a), the federal government may void as a fraudulent transfer any transfer made by a debtor who does not receive equivalent value.  Disclaimer of an inheritance fits that definition.  And federal law preempts state law with respect to the SBA’s claim for repayment on its guarantee.  13 CFR 101.106(d).  So the fact that disclaimer of an inheritance is not treated as a fraudulent conveyance under California law (Prob. Code 283) didn’t help defendant.

Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (Murguia, J.); April 4, 2017;  2017 WL 1228572

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