Judge Stocks

In re Friday

A debtor filed a motion requesting that the court enjoin the padlocking of an apartment, which was done pursuant to a state court judgment obtained by a landlord before the chapter 7 proceeding was commenced.
Ruling: 
Stay did not preclude landlord from proceeding with prepetition eviction action.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on December 12,2007, LexisNexis #0208-037

In re Cutting Edge Enters.

A corporate debtor filed a petition under chapter 11, and various U.S. states and a U.S. territory filed a motion for relief relating to the automatic stay that was imposed under 11 U.S.C. § 362, seeking an order lifting the stay so that actions the State of Maryland filed against the debtor could proceed.
Ruling: 
Lawsuits by state against tobacco company for violations of Master Settlement Agreement were not subject to stay.
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In re McCormick

A chapter 7 trustee objected to the request of the North Carolina State Bar for reimbursement, as an administrative expense under 11 U.S.C. § 503, for the expenditures it made to wind down a debtor's law practice.
Ruling: 
State bar not entitled to administrative expense claim for costs of winding down law practice of involuntary debtor who disappeared.
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In re Walker

Movants, chapter 7 debtors, sought an order from the court approving their assumption of an automobile lease and adjudging that they had waived their discharge as to that lease. At issue was whether such an order was properly issued under 11 U.S.C. § 365(p).
Ruling: 
BAPCPA does not provide for court approval of assumption of lease between debtor and creditor.
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Spell v. Longenecker (In re Longenecker)

Plaintiff creditor filed an adversary proceeding, which sought to have a state court punitive damages award against defendant debtor excepted from discharge under 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(6).
Ruling: 
Judgment for sexual exploitation of patient by debtor psychotherapist was based on willful and malicious injury and nondischargeable.
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In re Strickland

Pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 1325(b), the trustee objected to the confirmation of the debtors'proposed chapter 13 plan of reorganization on the ground that one debtor was an above- median-income debtor and the length of the plan period was 55 months rather 60 months.
Ruling: 
60 month minimum plan period required for above median debtors where trustee objected to confirmation despite lack of disposable income.
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In re Crews

The chapter 13 trustee objected, pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 1325(b)(1)(B), to confirmation of the debtors'proposed plan on the ground that it did not apply their projected disposable income to make payments to unsecured creditors.
Ruling: 
Car payments not required for debtors to claim ownership allowance in chapter 13 plan.
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In re Johnson

A creditor filed a motion to reopen the debtors'chapter 7 case in order to obtain an order requiring the debtors to surrender the title and to execute such documents as were necessary for the creditor to perfect a lien on the title to a motor vehicle.
Ruling: 
Bankruptcy court lacked jurisdiction to reopen case for determination of dispute arising from postpetition loan.
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Spell v. Longenecker (In re Longenecker)

In an adversary proceeding in bankruptcy, plaintiff judgment creditor moved for summary judgment, alleging that a punitive damages award entered in her favor against defendant debtor fell within the discharge exception of 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(6) for indebtedness resulting from a willful and malicious injury by the debtor.
Ruling: 
Creditor was denied summary judgment on debt dischargeability claim since intent had not been decided by jury that awarded creditor punitive damages.
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In re Barr

Debtor moved for confirmation of her chapter 13 plan and the chapter 13 trustee objected. The trustee contended that the debtor's plan did not comply with the good faith requirement of 11 U.S.C. § 1325(a)(3) based on the amount of the proposed plan payment. The trustee argued that the debtor failed to propose a plan in good faith because, based on her actual income and actual expenses, she had the ability to pay more than proposed in the plan.
Ruling: 
Objection to plan confirmation was denied since a determination of an above-median-income chapter 13 debtor's ability to pay and whether debtor's plan committed all of debtor's disposable income is determined under section 1325(b) not under section 1325(a)(3)'s good faith requirement.
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