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Judge Walrath

In re Weber

The debtor claimed as an exemption to her chapter 7 bankruptcy estate her interest in her residence pursuant to former 11 U.S.C. § 522(b)(2)(B). Objector, the chapter 7 trustee, took issue with the exemption.
Ruling: 
Court overruled trustee's objections and determined that debtor's exemption in property was presumed to be valid.
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Golden v. The Guardian (In re Lenox Healthcare Inc.)

Adversary plaintiff chapter 11 trustee sought to avoid and recover transfers of funds from debtor health care facility to defendant insurance company, pursuant to 11 U.S.C. §§ 547, 548, 549 and 550. The insurance company moved for summary judgment, asserting the transfers consisted solely of contributions to health and benefits plans of debtor's employees.
Ruling: 
Trustee was allowed to avoid employer debtor's contributions to employee benefit plans but was not allowed to avoid employee contributions to plans.
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In re Michener

After debtors filed a chapter 7 bankruptcy petition, movant trustee objected to the debtors'exemptions and moved for an order compelling turnover of property of the debtors'estate pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 542 and an order declaring employee stock options ("ESOs") to be property of the debtors'estate.
Ruling: 
Employee stock options were property of the estate whether or not exercisable on filing date.
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In re Bernard Techs. Inc.

The debtor's chief executive officer ("CEO") filed a request for allowance of an administrative expense pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 503(b). Both the U.S. trustee and the chapter 7 trustee opposed the request.
Ruling: 
Debtor's CEO did not meet burden of establishing entitlement to administrative expense claim.
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In re Hayes Lemmerz Intl Inc.

A chapter 11 matter was before the court for decision following trial and briefing on the applications of a lessor for allowance and payment of an administrative expense for damages allegedly sustained to machines it leased to debtor.
Ruling: 
Court granted lessor part of its administrative expense application since lessor showed damages within the allowed time period.
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In re Women First Healthcare Inc.

Movant creditor filed a motion to compel payment of escrow funds from debtor's chapter 11 estate. The motion was opposed by debtor and the trustee for a liquidating trust that held all of debtor's assets, pursuant to a reorganization plan approved by the court.
Ruling: 
Creditor's motion to compel payment of escrow funds was denied since debtor had setoff rights.
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Giuliano v. U.S. Nursing Corp. (In re Lexington Healthcare Group Inc.)

Plaintiff chapter 7 trustee filed an adversary proceeding against defendant creditor asserting avoidance of fraudulent transfers, unjust enrichment, and disallowance of the creditor's claim pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 502(b) and (d). The debtors had hired the creditor to provide temporary nursing staff for its facilities. The trustee alleged, inter alia, that the creditor overcharged the debtors. The creditor moved to dismiss.
Ruling: 
Court dismissed (with leave to amend) trustee's section 502(d) claim since the trustee had not sufficiently pled the related fraudulent transfer claims.
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In re FLYi Inc.

The debtors filed a motion for the court to approve the sale of a portion of the debtors' assets, located at an airport, to the purchaser. The sale included the transfer of a use agreement and premises lease at the airport and related equipment. The court issued findings of fact and conclusions of law on the sale motion.
Ruling: 
Court granted the debtor's motion to approve the sale of certain assets and assign a lease to the purchaser since the sale was in the best interests of all.
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In re Nobex Corp.

A bankruptcy debtor in possession, a development stage biopharmaceuticals company, sought to preserve its assets while pursuing a sale of substantially all of its assets pursuant to an orderly sale process. The debtor moved for authorization to pay sale-related incentives to senior management officials.
Ruling: 
Sale-related incentive pay met Code requirements.
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In re eToys Inc.

The debtors filed voluntary chapter 11 petitions for relief. The shareholder and the corporation filed post-confirmation motions for removal, disgorgement of fees, and sanctions for retained professionals contravening the disclosure requirements of Fed. R. Bankr. P. 2014, and the conflict of interest prohibitions of 11 U.S.C. § 327(a). The trustee and a committee filed motions for approval of settlements.
Ruling: 
Fees for debtor's counsel were disgorged for failing to disclose conflict of interest as to counsel's representation of two parties involved in the bankruptcy.
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