Chapter 7

News & Analysis as of

Abandonment: When Property Drops Out of the Bankruptcy Estate

In re Rich, 510 B.R. 366 (Bankr. D. Utah 2014) – In a case that was converted from a chapter 11 reorganization to a chapter 7 liquidation, the debtor sought an order directing the trustee to abandon certain real...more

How Prior Bankruptcy Filings Can Impact Your Current Bankruptcy

If you have read much at all on my bankruptcy blog you will no doubt be familiar with my mantra – “no one wants to file for bankruptcy”. And while I believe that to be true, some people find themselves in a situation where...more

Improperly Indexed Mortgage: How Far Does Your Record Review Need to Go to Be Safe?

Albert v. Green Tree Servicing, LLC (In re El Erian), 512 B.R. 391 (Bankr. D. D.C. 2014) – A chapter 7 trustee sought to avoid the lien of a recorded deed of trust because (1) it contained both correct and incorrect...more

Catching Judge Sontchi’s “Flurry of Opinions” Part 1 of 3

In This Issue: - In re: Energy Future Holdings Corp., et al, 14 -10979 (CSS) (CSC Trust Company of Delaware, as Indenture Trustee, v. Energy Future Intermediate Holdings Company LLC and EFIH Finance, Inc., Adv. Pro No:...more

LLC Managers Beware: Get Involved With Member Distributions By an Insolvent LLC and You May Be Personally Liable

A chapter 7 trustee sued a manager of three limited liability company (LLC) debtors for breach of fiduciary duty and to hold the manager personally liable for distributions made to members, including himself....more

Ninth Circuit: Banks Can Freeze Chapter 7 Debtors’ Accounts

Banks have long taken comfort in knowing that if one of their customers files for bankruptcy, the bank can freeze the debtor’s account to preserve the bank’s ability to assert a setoff against the account where the bank has a...more

Even a Tax Authority May Sometimes Have to Pay

In Clinton County Treasurer v. Wolinsky, 511 B.R. 34 (N.D.N.Y. 2014), a Chapter 7 trustee sought to avoid a property tax foreclosure as a fraudulent transfer and then to recover damages from the foreclosing county. The...more

Property Tax Foreclosure: Tax Authority May Have to Pay for Equity in Property

A chapter 7 trustee sought to avoid a property tax foreclosure as a fraudulent transfer and then to recover damages from the foreclosing county. The bankruptcy court agreed that the transfer was a fraudulent conveyance, but...more

The “B” Word – Asserting Your Claim in the Wake of a Bankruptcy Filing: Proof of Claim Basics

The word “bankruptcy” often strikes dread in the hearts of creditors. To some, when they hear that someone who owes them money has filed bankruptcy, they envision writing off the debt and never receiving a cent. However,...more

Affiliate Transfer: Fraudulent Conveyance or Unwinding Resulting Trust?

A chapter 7 trustee sought to set aside as a debtor’s transfer of her interest in property held jointly with her husband to her husband’s corporation as a constructive fraudulent conveyance. The bankruptcy court agreed that...more

CFPB, State AGs Announce Joint Enforcement Action Against Military Consumer Lender

On July 29, the CFPB and 13 state AGs announced a consent order that requires a consumer lender currently in Chapter 7 bankruptcy to provide $92 million in debt relief for about 17,000 U.S. servicemembers and other consumers...more

July 2014: Bankruptcy and Restructuring Update

Intellectual Property Licenses in Bankruptcy—Uncertainties Remain Following the Eighth Circuit’s En Banc Decision in Interstate Bakeries. The bankruptcy of a party to an intellectual property license presents serious...more

Valuing a Secured Creditors Collateral: A Time Frame

Section 506(a)(1) of the Bankruptcy Code provides common-sense instruction that the allowed amount of a secured claim is equal to the value of the collateral securing the claim and that a claim is unsecured to the extent the...more

In re Brown: Replacement Value Applies Even When Debtor Surrenders Property

The recent Eleventh Circuit case of In re Brown, 746 F.3d 1236 (2014) held that 11 U.S.C. § 506(a)(2)'s replacement value standard applies even when a Chapter 7 or 13 debtor surrenders collateral under 11 U.S.C. §...more

How much money can I keep in my checking account when filing bankruptcy?

I'll soon be filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. How much money can I keep in my checking account without losing it? Here's the deal. The trustee assigned to your bankruptcy gets to take your property, including money, for the...more

The totem pole in Bankruptcy. Who gets paid first?

Chapter 7 bankruptcies have a hierarchy of creditor claims that is the result of the legislative process. The totem pole was carved with an attempt at fairness and common sense, but naturally has politics painted on it. ...more

Are Inherited IRAs Exempt Property in California Bankruptcy?

The law says that retirement funds are exempt property in bankruptcy, but the Supreme Court has held that this exemption doesn’t apply to inherited IRAs. End of story? Not quite....more

Polsinelli Podcasts - Supreme Court Closes Gap on Bankruptcy Issue [Video]

The United States Supreme Court decided in Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkison that while bankruptcy courts do not have the power to make final decisions on so-called “Stern claims,” they can try or “hear” those...more

Bankruptcy Beat: The US Supreme Court Clarifies the Role of the Bankruptcy Court in Stern v. Marshall-Type Proceedings

On June 19, 2014 the Supreme Court of the United States in Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkison, 134 S. Ct. 2165 (2014) affirmed and clarified its prior decision in Stern v. Marshall, 131 S. Ct. 2594 (2011) which...more

Bankruptcy Beat: Credibility of the Parties is Key Component In Objection To Discharge Proceedings

On June 6, 2014, the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut affirmed the Bankruptcy Court’s (Weil, J.) decision overruling a pro se creditor’s objections to the debtor’s discharge under 11 U.S.C....more

The Jewel Unfinished Business Doctrine Loses its Luster

On November 15 and December 2, 2013, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, in In re Thelen LLP and In re Coudert Brothers LLP, certified to the New York Court of Appeals the question of whether a client matter, billed on an...more

The Supreme Court Continues to Limit Bankruptcy Court Powers: The Constitutional Powers of a Bankruptcy Judge: Why it Matters

On June 9, 2014, the United States Supreme Court issued the decision Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkinson, Trustee of the Estate of Bellingham Insurance Agency, Inc., which deals with the constitutional limits on...more

Supreme Court Clarifies Procedure for Deciding Stern Claims in Bankruptcy Courts, But Leaves Big Questions Unresolved

Bankruptcy courts have jurisdiction over "core" and "non-core" proceedings. See 28 U.S.C. § 157. In "core" proceedings, bankruptcy courts can enter final judgments. See 28 U.S.C. § 157(b). In "non-core" proceedings, however,...more

Eleventh Circuit Doubles Down on Lien Stripping

When the Fourth Circuit handed down its opinion in the case of In re Davis, which permitted lien stripping in “Chapter 20” proceedings, the stage was set for the Eleventh Circuit to expand debtor’s ability to escape from...more

Bankruptcy Protection for Inherited IRA

The already complicated subject of how to handle Individual Retirement Accounts following the death of an IRA holder just got a little more complicated with the recent Supreme Court decision in Clark v. Rameker. The issue in...more

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