Judge Friedman

Patchett v. Marsh (In re Marsh)

Plaintiff creditor filed a complaint objecting to a discharge for defendant debtor and objecting to the dischargeability of a debt. The creditor alleged, in part, that a discharge should be denied pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 727(a)(2), (3) and (4). The court held a hearing and issued findings of fact and conclusions of law.
Ruling: 
Debtor's concealment of proprietary interest in optical company resulted in denial of discharge.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on October 29,2007, LexisNexis #1107-117

Bakst v. Reis (In re Reis)

The debtors, a husband and wife, filed for relief under chapter 7. Plaintiff trustee sought to deny a discharge, pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 727(a)(4), to defendant debtor husband because of the husband's failure to disclose on his financial statements that the husband had a potential right of inheritance. The trustee sought summary judgment.
Ruling: 
Discharge denied due to debtor's failure to disclose right of inheritance and false testimony that father was still alive.
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United States v. Naegele

Defendant, an attorney licensed to practice law in California and the District of Columbia, moved to dismiss Count 7 of an indictment, which charged him with making false declarations or statements under penalty of perjury with respect to documents he filed in a chapter 7 petition in bankruptcy court in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 152(3).
Ruling: 
False sworn statements by debtor's attorney that were never filed with the court were not grounds for perjury charge.
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Straney v. GMC

Plaintiff retiree sued defendant former employer seeking benefits under section 502 of ERISA, alleging breach of fiduciary duty under sections 404 and 406 of ERISA, and asserting estoppel, breach of contract, fraud, and innocent misrepresentations. He sought past retirement benefits and an order requiring payment of them in the future, plus damages, costs and fees. The employer moved for a stay of all proceedings.
Ruling: 
Bankruptcy of successor did not bar ERISA action by former employee.
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In re Hughes

The chapter 7 trustee filed a motion for approval of the sale of certain real property, free and clear of any liens, encumbrances or mortgages against the property, and also sought to impose against the proceeds of sale, his fees and expenses, as well as the fees and expenses of his attorney and his real estate broker.
Ruling: 
Trustee was denied motion to impose fee on creditor mortgagee for sale of property since trustee's efforts did not bestow benefit on creditor.
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In re Wagstaff

The debtor filed a proceeding for relief under chapter 7 and claimed a homestead exemption and a tenancy by the entireties exemption. The trustee objected to the claimed property exemptions.
Ruling: 
Trustee's objection to debtor's claimed exemption in residence held as tenancy by entirety was sustained since section 522(p)(1)'s $125,000 limitation applied and one creditor's claim was against both debtor and debtor's husband.
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In re Farkas

A chapter 7 matter was before the court upon the Amended Motion to Dismiss Bankruptcy Proceeding filed by movants, two creditors, and upon the Joinder to the Creditors'Motion to Dismiss filed by movant, a third individual who had also filed a proof of claim.
Ruling: 
Motions to dismiss were denied since "for cause" grounds for dismissal under section 707(a) were not present.
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In re Isham

A creditor filed a motion to dismiss the debtors'chapter 7 bankruptcy case for lack of good faith, pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 707(a).
Ruling: 
Court denied motion to dismiss debtor's chapter 7 case since "for cause" grounds for dismissal were not present.
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In re Kane

In a proceeding asserted under chapter 7, the trustee objected to amended claimed exemptions that the debtor asserted to the funds maintained by the debtor in an individual retirement account ("IRA") and the trustee sought a turnover of the funds to the estate.
Ruling: 
Debtor was granted an exemption from estate property for an IRA created from a rolled over exempt employee stock ownership plan.
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In re Salazar

The chapter 7 trustee and the attorney for the trustee both filed applications for fees.
Ruling: 
Court compensated trustee and trustee's attorney based on funds actually distributed from the estate and rejected their "constructive disbursement"theory.
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