Judge Kelley

In re Evenson

Debtors filed a petition under chapter 12 and voluntarily converted their case to one under chapter 7. A trustee was appointed to administer the debtor's chapter 7 bankruptcy case, and he filed a motion seeking permission to abandon a farm the debtors owned. An unsecured creditor filed an objection to the trustee's motion.
Ruling: 
Trustee could not abandon family farm that was property of the estate and in which equity remained for creditors.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on November 03,2010, LexisNexis #1210-103

Estate of Sustache v. Mathews (In re Mathews)

Creditors, the estate and parents of a young man who was punched by the 16 year old debtor at a party, fell down, struck his head, and died, filed a complaint alleging their claim against the debtor was nondischargeable as a willful and malicious injury under 11 U.S.C.S. § 523(a)(6). The parties stipulated the bankruptcy court would determine dischargeability and if necessary, the case would return to state court as to damages. A trial was held.
Ruling: 
Debtor's actions in self-defense, leading to death of a fellow teenager, were not malicious and did not result in nondischargeable debt.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on August 20,2010, LexisNexis #1010-050

Classman v. OBrian (In re Valley Bldg. & Constr. Corp.)

Chapter 7 trustee filed an adversary proceeding against defendant attorney, seeking a determination that payments a corporate debtor made to the attorney were fraudulent transfers that could be avoided under 11 U.S.C.S. § 548 and the Pennsylvania Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act, 12 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 5104. The case was tried to the court.
Ruling: 
Payments by debtor to attorney in four years prior to petition date were not avoidable absent intent to hinder, delay or defraud creditor.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on August 05,2010, LexisNexis #0910-088

In re Meyers

Bankruptcy debtors amended their schedules to include an income tax refund after the bankruptcy trustee intercepted and disclosed the refund. The debtors claimed an exemption in the refund and the trustee objected to the exemption based on the debtors' alleged bad faith.
Ruling: 
Objection to late disclosure of and exemption in tax refund overruled where initial failure to disclose and exempt was involuntary and not in bad faith.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on July 08,2010, LexisNexis #0910-137

In re Anderson

A creditor with a construction lien and judgment against the debtors objected to confirmation of their amended chapter 13 plan on the grounds that their failure to schedule and pursue a malpractice claim against their former attorney violated the best interest of creditors test of 11 U.S.C.S. § 1325(a)(4) and demonstrated the debtors' lack of good faith.
Ruling: 
Objection to confirmation based on debtor's failure to schedule and pursue malpractice claim overruled.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on June 03,2010, LexisNexis #0810-065

In re Lucio

Debtors filed a petition under chapter 13 and a plan for repaying their creditors. A trustee who was appointed to administer the debtors' bankruptcy estate filed an objection to the debtors' plan, claiming that it did not meet the best interest of creditors test required by 11 U.S.C.S. § 1325(a)(4).
Ruling: 
Confirmation denied where plan did not meet the best interests of creditors test.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on February 08,2010, LexisNexis #0410-063

GD Deal Holdings LLC v. Sharma (In re Sharma)

Creditor filed a complaint objecting to the discharge and dischargeability of a debt owed by debtors. Among other things, the complaint charged that debts were non-dischargeable under 11 U.S.C.S. § 727(a)(3) and (a)(4) due to insufficient disclosure of records and false oaths by the debtors, as well as under 11 U.S.C.S. § 523(a)(2) due to alleged false representations regarding the debtors' financial condition.
Ruling: 
Objection to discharge dismissed as debtors made sufficient disclosures which were not fraudulent.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on February 03,2010, LexisNexis #0410-095

Ortiz v. Aurora Health Care Inc. (In re Ortiz)

Plaintiff debtors alleged that defendant creditor attached invoices containing confidential medical records to its proofs of claim, asserting that the creditor exceeded the extent needed for billing, collection, and payment of the claims under Wis. Stat. § 146.82. The debtors moved for abstention, arguing that, since the only remaining claim was grounded in unsettled state law, the issue should be determined in a state court.
Ruling: 
Court refused to abstain from dispute over alleged confidential medical records attached to proof of claim.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on January 05,2010, LexisNexis #0210-101

In re Netwurx Inc.

Creditor filed an objection to the timeliness of the debtor's chapter 11 reorganization plan and argued that the plan could not be confirmed because the debtor failed to obtain an extension of the strict deadlines imposed on small business cases under 11 U.S.C.S. §§ 1129(e) and 1121(e)(3).
Ruling: 
Objection to plan based on alleged failures to meet small business deadlines overruled where confirmable plan was always likely and final plan proposed immediate payment of unsecured creditors in full.
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Commercial case opionion summary, case decided on September 25,2009, LexisNexis #1109-062

Christenson v. Lee (In re Lee)

Plaintiff gun buyer filed this adversary proceeding claiming that defendant debtor's debt to the gun buyer arose from fraud and therefore was non-dischargeable under 11 U.S.C.S. § 523(a)(2)(A). He also contended that the debtor withheld information on his schedules and that the entire discharge should be denied.
Ruling: 
Claim of gun buyer was nondischargeable due to debtor seller's misrepresentations.
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Consumer case opionion summary, case decided on September 02,2009, LexisNexis #1009-081

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