Judge Houser

Morton v. Kievit (In re Vallecito Gas LLC)

Chapter 11 trustee filed an adversary proceeding against defendants, individuals and entities that purchased overriding royalty interests ("ORRIs") in an oil and gas lease that was located on Navajo Nation land, seeking a determination that the ORRIs were void or voidable and could be recovered for a gas company's bankruptcy estate pursuant to 11 U.S.C.S. §§ 362, 549, and 550.
Ruling: 
Postpetition assignments of overriding royalty interests in oil and gas leases could be recovered provided amounts paid by assignees were refunded.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on July 19,2011, LexisNexis #0911-127

Ward Family Fund v. Arnette (In re Arnette)

In this adversary proceeding, plaintiff investor sought to liquidate its claim against the debtor and have its claim determined to be nondischargeable under 11 U.S.C.S. § 523 in the bankruptcy case.
Ruling: 
Debt to investor was nondischargeable due to debtor's false representations regarding experience and use of funds.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on June 07,2011, LexisNexis #0711-089

Faulkner v. Wyndham Jade LLC (in re Home Interiors & Gifts Inc.)

Plaintiff creditor trust trustee filed an amended complaint against defendant creditor seeking to avoid a transfer and recover the same from the creditor pursuant to 11 U.S.C.S. §§ 549 and 550.
Ruling: 
Check issued prior to petition date for prepetition invoices, which cleared after petition date, could be avoided.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on March 24,2011, LexisNexis #0411-124

Posey v. Kinkaid (In re Kinkaid)

Plaintiff creditor objected to (i) dischargeability of her debt, and (ii) defendant debtor receiving a discharge in the underlying bankruptcy. Also, the creditor sought a determination that her lien on certain real property owned by debtor was the first lien. Alternatively, to the extent that the court concluded that defendants' lien on that property was the senior lien, she sought subordination under 11 U.S.C.S. § 510(c). A trial was held.
Ruling: 
Divorce decree did not extinguish prior lien on debtor's property or entitle former spouse holding second lien to equitable subordination of the prior lien.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on February 18,2011, LexisNexis #0311-118

In re W.R. Grace & Co.

Chapter 11 debtors' first amended joint plan of reorganization as modified was before the court for a recommendation as to confirmation.
Ruling: 
Plan of debtor formerly engaged in asbestos related activities proposing asbestos trust to assume liabilities confirmed.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on January 31,2011, LexisNexis #0211-140

Kimpel v. Meyrowitz (In re Meyrowitz)

Defendants, a company allegedly owned by debtor's brother and a non- debtor individual, moved to dismiss plaintiffs' complaint, alleging that plaintiffs went into business with the debtor and the individual and that defendants failed to perform in accordance with their alleged agreements, converted cash and other items, and engaged in various conspiracies and other fraudulent conduct. The individual also sought abstention in the alternative.
Ruling: 
Bankruptcy court abstained from hearing contract and fraud based action against debtor despite having "related to" jurisdiction.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on December 20,2010, LexisNexis #0111-137

In re Briggs-Cockerman LLC

A chapter 11 trustee in another chapter 11 case filed a motion to dismiss the instant chapter 11 case pursuant to 11 U.S.C.S. § 1112(b).
Ruling: 
Case dismissed for bad faith where debtor owned 100 percent of membership interests in debtor in another case and no "hard" assets.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on November 23,2010, LexisNexis #1210-129

In re Oceanaire Tex. Rest. Co. LP

The court conducted a hearing to consider the confirmation of the First Amended Joint Plan of Reorganization Proposed by the Debtors and Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors Under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code.
Ruling: 
Debtor restaurant's plan confirmed as in best interests of estate, creditors and equity interest holders.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on April 29,2010, LexisNexis #0710-129

Kollmeyer v. Aetna Life Ins. Co. (In re Heritage Southwest Med. Group PA)

Plaintiff providers filed a complaint against defendant insurer asserting state law claims. The debtor had contracted with the insurer to act as a third party administrator. The case was removed to the bankruptcy court, where the providers' motion for remand/abstention was denied and the adversary proceeding was closed pending exhaustion of administrative remedies. The providers filed a motion to reopen and a reurged motion for abstention/remand.
Ruling: 
Remand warranted where state law insurance action involved only non-debtor parties.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on February 09,2010, LexisNexis #0410-034

In re Texans CUSO Ins. Group LLC

At a hearing held on November 11, 2009, the court granted debtor's motion to estimate the amount of a claimant's claims under 11 U.S.C.S. § 502(c). Pursuant to the estimation procedures ultimately agreed upon by the parties, the claimant filed a Response to Debtor's Application to Vacate or Modify the Accounting Arbitration Award on December 3, 2009, to which debtor filed a Reply on December 7, 2009.
Ruling: 
Arbitration award confirmed as determined according to claim estimation procedure agreed to by parties.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on December 30,2009, LexisNexis #0110-110

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