Chapter 7

News & Analysis as of

Credit Bidding: Not An Absolute Right (And What Does That Mean?)

In re RML Dev., Inc., 528 B.R. 150 (Bankr. W.D. Tenn. 2014) – A mortgagee sought to modify a sale order to (1) modify the bid procedures and (2) confirm that it had a right to credit bid. The debtor obtained a court...more

New York Appellate Court Confers Standing on Assignee of Note Previously Discharged in Bankruptcy

A mortgage lender has standing to foreclose even when it obtains assignment of the underlying promissory note after the note has been discharged in bankruptcy, a New York appellate court has ruled. The case arose after the...more

Naked Liens – Stripping Prohibited

In June, the US Supreme Court decided the case of debtors in bankruptcy desirous of stripping off a lender’s real estate lien that was fully in excess of the fair market value of the real estate. The Supreme Court unanimously...more

Reversing the Trend: Will Congress Act to Except College Tuition Payments from Clawback in Bankruptcy? - Congress Weighs...

A trend emerging in consumer bankruptcy cases around the U.S. is causing concern for many parents, students and undergraduate schools. As was reported by The Wall Street Journal in an article published on May 5, 2015, an...more

Florida Court Rules Borrowers Who Surrender Property in Bankruptcy Can't Later Take it Back

Thanks to several recent United States Bankruptcy Court decisions in Florida, mortgage servicers should now expect borrowers who surrender their real property in bankruptcy to not contest foreclosure later. Since the...more

Good Faith Deposit: Who Gets To Keep the Cash?

Lawrence v. Commonwealth of Ky. Transportation Cabinet (In re Shelbyville Road Shoppes, LLC), 775 F.3d 789 (6th Cir. 2015) – A chapter 7 trustee sought return of a “good faith” deposit made prior to bankruptcy in connection...more

U.S. Supreme Court Resolves Uncertainty Regarding Junior Mortgage Liens in Chapter 7 Proceedings

A recent U.S. Supreme Court case resolves uncertainty as to whether Bankruptcy Code Section 506(d) allows Chapter 7 Bankruptcy debtors to "strip off" (void) junior mortgage liens that are wholly underwater. That uncertainty...more

US Supreme Court Decision in Bank of America, N.A. v. Caulkett

In a 9-0 decision released on June 1, 2015, the US Supreme Court ruled, in Bank of America, N.A. v. Caulkett, 135 S. Ct. 1995 (2015), that a debtor in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding may not void a junior mortgage lien...more

Third Circuit Approves Use Of Structured Dismissals Of Chapter 11 Bankruptcies, but Rarely

On May 21, 2015, the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit approved the settlement and dismissal of chapter 11 bankruptcy cases through a structured dismissal in rare instances. See Official Committee of...more

Bankruptcy Beat: Bankruptcy Court Finds Debt To Third Party To Be A Non-Dischargable Debt Incurred In Connection With a Divorce

Bankruptcy Judge Albert Dabrowski was faced with a unique set of circumstances arising as a result of the intersection of a state court divorce action and a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case. In the matter of Corrine Sawyer v. Scott...more

Debt Free in 2016? Now is the Time to File Your Bankruptcy

It is hard to believe we are getting ready to head into the July 4th weekend! 2015 is almost half-way over and I have started to plan out the remainder of the year andit is crazy to think if you are thinking of filing...more

Recent Unanimous Supreme Court Decision Holds That Underwater Mortgages in a Chapter 7 Cannot be “Stripped off"

The Issue and Background - Debtors David Caulkett and Edelmiro Toledo-Cardona (“Debtors”) each filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy relief with “underwater” junior mortgages held by Bank of America, N.A. (“Bank”). In other...more

Becoming a Creditor in a Bankruptcy Case Triggers a Duty to Preserve Documents

A litigator in bankruptcy court is challenged with mastery of a trial lawyer’s skills as well as the developing substantive law, jurisdictional and otherwise, governed by the Bankruptcy Code. Who hasn’t heard of Stern v....more

The Road Ahead for TransVantage Solutions, Inc.

The Chapter 7 Trustee appointed in the TransVantage Solutions, Inc. bankruptcy case ground the gears of the nation’s trucking industry this past April when he filed over 500 adversary complaints against common carriers,...more

Bankruptcy Beat: Former NFL Player Defeats Fraud Allegations Which Results In Discharge Of Debt

On March 31, 2015, the Honorable Albert S. Dabrowski issued a decision in Hamrah v. Coulette (In re Coulette), Adv. Pro. No. 13-2039, concerning the issue of whether an obligation created by a failed business investment gives...more

Seventh Circuit Says Violations of Wisconsin’s Theft-by-Contractor Statute Are Not Dischargeable in Bankruptcy

The Bankruptcy Code prevents an individual debtor from discharging certain debts, including, upon request of the creditor, debts for “fraud or defalcation while acting in a fiduciary capacity.” 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(4). The...more

"Strip, Strip Hooray!" - Supreme Court Settles Chapter 7 Lien-Stripping Debate

Twenty-three years after initially visiting the issue, the United States Supreme Court has recently settled what some would call “the single most important unresolved issue in consumer bankruptcy” - whether Chapter 7 permits...more

4 Reasons Bankruptcy Might Be a Very Bad Idea

For some filing for bankruptcy will not only bring a lot of much needed relief it is actually a smart financial step. Bankruptcy can clear away a lot of debt and truly provide a fresh start. However there are situations where...more

Supreme Court Reaffirms a Chapter 7 Debtor's Inability to Strip a Lien Against Real Property

Reaffirming its 1992 decision in Dewsnup v. Timm, on June 1, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court in Bank of America v. Caulkett, No. 13-1421, once again ruled that a chapter 7 debtor may not void a junior lien under Bankruptcy Code...more

Orrick's Financial Industry Week in Review

SEC Provides Additional Analysis Related to Proposed Pay Ratio Disclosure Rules - On June 4, the Securities and Exchange Commission provided additional analysis related to its proposed rules for pay ratio disclosure. The...more

Security Agreement: When Drafting You Better Say What You Mean

State Bank of Toulon v. Covey (In re Duckworth), 776 F.3d 453 (7th Cir. 2014) – A chapter 7 trustee sought to treat a secured lender as unsecured based on an error in the security agreement. The lender argued that the...more

U.S. Supreme Court Holds that Out of the Money Mortgages Cannot be Stripped Off in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Cases

The U.S. Supreme Court held that a secured creditor in a chapter 7 bankruptcy case is protected from having its lien “stripped off” even if the collateral securing its claim is worth less than the claims asserted by a senior...more

The Supremes Tell the Eleventh Circuit: No Lien Stripping

On June 1, 2015, the United States Supreme Court issued a unanimous ruling resolving a split amongst circuit courts in which the 11th circuit was the singular minority, addressing the permissibility of “lien-stripping” in...more

Supreme Court Update: Elonis V. United States (13-983), Taylor V. Barkes (14-939) And Bank Of America V. Caulkett (13-1421)

The Court handed down four opinions and a summary reversal to kick off the busiest month of the term. This update will cover Elonis v. United States (13-983), the much anticipated "Facebook threats" case, along with Taylor v....more

Supreme Court Affirms Bankruptcy Court Jurisdiction and 3rd Circuit Approves Structured Dismissals

Jurisdiction of Bankruptcy Courts to Enter Final Judgment on “Stern Claims” Based on Consent of Parties Affirmed - The U.S. Supreme Court in Wellness Int’l Network, Ltd. v. Sharif explicitly affirmed the jurisdiction of...more

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