Judge Frank

In re Falch

In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case, two creditors filed a motion to dismiss under 11 U.S.C.S. § 707(a).
Ruling: 
Case dismissed due to debtor's ability to live extravagant lifestyle.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on May 18,2011, LexisNexis #0611-060

Laurer v. St. Edmonds Federal Savings Bank (In re Laurer)

Plaintiff debtors initiated an adversary proceeding by filing a complaint requesting that the court determine defendant creditor's second mortgage to be wholly unsecured. The creditor filed an answer to the complaint denying that the balance due on its senior mortgage exceeded the fair market value of debtors' residence. Judgment was pending following a trial.
Ruling: 
Second mortgage was protected from modification where debtor could not establish that unpaid balance exceeded the value of debtor's primary residence.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on May 09,2011, LexisNexis #0611-048

In re Gronczewski

Debtor filed a Motion to Enjoin Continuing Violation of the Automatic Stay and for Assessment of Fees and Damages (the Motion). Debtor requested the court enjoin respondents from further prosecuting a State Court Action to the extent it was on account of an Amended Complaint filed in violation of the automatic stay. Respondents filed a response to the Motion. Debtor also sought an award of counsel fees. A hearing was held.
Ruling: 
Creditor's filing of amended complaint in state court action against debtor did not violate stay.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on February 28,2011, LexisNexis #0311-110

In re Harmon

Movant, the U.S. Trustee (UST), sought dismissal of a Chapter 7 filed by debtor on the ground that a grant of relief would be an "abuse" under 11 U.S.C.S. § 707(b)(1) based on debtor's having claimed, as a monthly expense, the debt service required on her student loan. The key issue was whether debtor's obligation to repay that loan constituted "special circumstances" under § 707(b)(2)(B).
Ruling: 
Student loan obligation was not a "special circumstance" that would allow a deduction, so that case was ordered converted or dismissed for abuse.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on February 16,2011, LexisNexis #0311-060

Theokary v. Abbatiello (In re Theokary)

Plaintiff debtor brought an adversary complaint against four defendants, two individual horse trainers who foreclosed liens against the debtor's horses under the New Jersey Stableman's Lien Act, N.J. Stat. Ann. §§ 2A:44-51 to 2A:44-52, and two stables where the horses had been kept, asserting they willfully violated the automatic stay under 11 U.S.C.S. § 362(a)(3), during the course of the no-asset bankruptcy case.
Ruling: 
Lienors' attorneys violated stay by completing foreclosure sales of debtor's horses.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on February 14,2011, LexisNexis #0311-040

Schnable v. Reinford (In re Reinford)

Plaintiff filed an adversary proceeding against defendant Chapter 7 debtors, claiming that the male debtor fraudulently deprived plaintiff of his interest in real property. The court dismissed plaintiff's complaint, and plaintiff filed an amended complaint. The debtors filed a motion to dismiss the amended complaint.
Ruling: 
Adversary proceeding seeking recovery for fraud dismissed as creditor should properly have filed a proof of claim.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on January 11,2011, LexisNexis #0211-043

In re Express Car & Truck Rental Inc.

After the court dismissed involuntary chapter 7 petitions filed against debtors by a creditor, the former debtors, pursuant to 11 U.S.C.S. § 303(i), filed a motion seeking an award of attorney's fees in the amount of $34,524.
Ruling: 
Debtors' attorneys' fees awarded after dismissal of meritless involuntary petition.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on November 09,2010, LexisNexis #1210-001

Olick v. Northampton County (In re Olick)

Plaintiff Chapter 13 debtor filed an amended complaint against defendants, a county and a school district, asserting various claims arising from the county's acceptance of a payment from the debtor's mortgage lender to satisfy unpaid real estate tax obligations, including the pre-petition real estate taxes provided for in the confirmed plan. All three parties filed motions for summary judgment.
Ruling: 
County's acceptance of tax payments from mortgagee did not violate stay.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on November 09,2010, LexisNexis #1210-040

Monastra v. Monastra (In re Monastra)

In an adversary proceeding, plaintiff ex-wife sued defendant chapter 7 debtor objecting to the debtor's discharge under 11 U.S.C.S. § 727(a)(2) and (4) and , alternatively, requesting a determination that certain debts owed to her were nondischargeable under either 11 U.S.C.S. § 523(a)(5) or (15). The ex-wife filed a motion for judgment on the pleadings.
Ruling: 
Obligation to former spouse pursuant to divorce proceeding was nondischargeable.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on October 06,2010, LexisNexis #1110-090

In re OBrien

Before the court was the debtors' objection to a proof of claim filed by a creditor asserting that it held a claim of $13,024 as an assignee of a credit card account.
Ruling: 
Proof of claim disallowed due to inadequate documentation of creditor's assignee status.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on September 30,2010, LexisNexis #1010-132

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