Judge Frank

In re Berkman

Debtor filed a petition under chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code, and he asked the court for an order authorizing the release of real estate brokers' commissions that had been placed in escrow. The Acting United States Trustee (UST) filed an objection to the motion.
Ruling: 
Escrowed commission for real estate broker in postpetition sale could not be released as retention had not been approved by court.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on March 10,2010, LexisNexis #0510-073

In re Berkman

Debtor filed a petition under chapter 11, and a person (joint owner) who owned real property with the debtor filed a motion seeking permission under 11 U.S.C.S. § 363(e), or alternatively under 11 U.S.C.S. § 362(d), to collect rents and pay expenses. The Acting U.S. Trustee (UST) filed a motion seeking an order appointing a chapter 11 trustee or converting the case to one under chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code.
Ruling: 
Motion by joint owner of debtor's property for permission to collect rents granted after conversion to chapter 7.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on March 10,2010, LexisNexis #0510-079

Taylor v. Fechnay (In re Fechnay)

Plaintiff judgment creditor filed an adversary proceeding against defendant chapter 7 debtor, seeking a determination that a default judgment she obtained against the debtor in the Court of Common Pleas, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, was nondischargeable under 11 U.S.C.S. § 523(a)(6). The case was tried to the court.
Ruling: 
Default judgment for sexual battery by debtor psychiatrist was nondischargeable.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on March 05,2010, LexisNexis #0610-053

Fowler v. Rauso (In re Fowler)

The debtor and her husband, brought a claim to invalidate and rescind a transaction whereby defendants, an interloper, his transferees, and their new mortgagee, obtained title to the plaintiffs' real property, pursuant to 73 Pa. Stat. Ann. §§ 201-7 and 201-9.2 of the Pennsylvania Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law (UTPCPL), 11 U.S.C.S. §§ 544, 522(h), and (g)(1). They also sought damages, attorneys' fees, and costs.
Ruling: 
Transfer effectuated by third party who falsely offered to help debtor avert foreclosure avoided.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on March 03,2010, LexisNexis #0410-092

Morrison v. Harrsch (In re Harrsch)

Plaintiff creditor brought an adversary proceeding against defendant bankruptcy debtor seeking a determination that her pending tort claim against the debtor for personal injury was not dischargeable under 11 U.S.C.S. § 1328(a)(4) based on willful or malicious conduct of the debtor. The debtor moved to dismiss the complaint for failure to state a claim.
Ruling: 
Creditor could seek nondischargeability of damages for willful and malicious injury awarded after commencement of debtor's case.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on January 19,2010, LexisNexis #0210-129

Janssen v. Chase Home Fin. LLC (In re Jannsen)

In this adversary proceeding, plaintiff debtor alleged that defendant mortgage creditor failed to abide by the terms of his confirmed chapter 13 plan and requested that the court fashion a remedy to enforce the confirmed plan. The creditor filed a Motion to Enforce and Approve Settlement Agreement and for Imposing Fees and Costs Against the Amount of the Settlement.
Ruling: 
Oral settlement of dispute over creditor's compliance with plan was enforceable.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on December 29,2009, LexisNexis #0210-140

Saxbys Coffee Worldwide LLC v. Larson (In re Saxbys Coffee Worldwide LLC)

Plaintiff limited liability company (LLC), filed a petition under chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code and an adversary proceeding against defendants, parties who had sued two people (owners) who owned the LLC and others, seeking an injunction under 11 U.S.C.S. § 105(a) which restrained defendants from prosecuting their actions against the owners and other non-debtors. The debtor requested an expedited hearing on its motion.
Ruling: 
Injunction issued to bar actions against owners of debtor LLC.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on December 04,2009, LexisNexis #1209-108

In re Ramreddy Inc.

A debtor entered into a franchise agreement, station lease, and other ancillary agreements with a corporation. The debtor sought relief under chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code. The corporation filed a motion to dismiss the case for cause under 11 U.S.C.S. § 1112(b)(1) or for relief from the automatic stay under 11 U.S.C.S. § 362(d).
Ruling: 
Chapter 11 case dismissed due to debtor's failure to maintain insurance and absence of reasonable likelihood of reorganization.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on November 09,2009, LexisNexis #1209-093

In re Nixon

Debtors asserted that creditor utility willfully violated the automatic stay under 11 U.S.C.S. § 362(a)(6), by misapplying their postpetition payment to their prepetition account, and by terminating their residential gas service. They sought an award of damages pursuant to 11 U.S.C.S. § 362(k).
Ruling: 
Creditor utility violated stay by misapplying postpetition payments to prepetition debt and terminating residential service.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on October 26,2009, LexisNexis #1209-039

In re Ketterer

Prior to the time debtors filed their bankruptcy petition, the debtors' lessor obtained a judgment evicting the debtors and awarding money damages, and the lessor purchased personal property of the debtors which remained in the leased premises after the eviction in an execution sale of the property. The debtors moved pursuant to 11 U.S.C.S. § 522(f) to avoid the lessor's judgment lien as impairing exemptions to which they were entitled.
Ruling: 
Prepetition judgment for eviction and damages was not avoidable.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on September 18,2009, LexisNexis #1109-017

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