Recent Opinions

ABI's Bankruptcy case opinion summaries website provides summaries of bankruptcy-related opinions issued by U.S. Bankruptcy Courts, District Courts and Circuit Courts of Appeal since 2005. Search almost 20,000 opinion summaries by keyword, relevant code section, court and judge. Opinion summaries are provided by our partner LexisNexis® Collier and are updated weekly.

In re Sledge

Debtors filed a motion for an order requiring defendant, debtor's former counsel, to disgorge fees paid to him. At issue was whether the fees as paid exceeded the reasonable value of the services rendered as described in 11 U.S.C. § 329(b) and whether defendant violated his duties under North Carolina's rules governing professional responsibility of counsel.
Ruling: 
Debtor's attorney ordered to disgorge fees in full due to professional misconduct.
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In re Rucker Furniture Gallery Inc.

A law firm filed an application for compensation and reimbursement of expenses for legal services provided to the debtor in connection with a chapter 11 case. The bankruptcy administrator filed a response to the request, contending that the fee application should have been denied in toto because of the law firm's failure to disclose that it had previously represented a creditor.
Ruling: 
Debtor's attorneys'fees approved despite failure to disclose prior representation of creditor.
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Master-Halco Inc. v. Richard DAngelo & Rickster Assocs. LLC

Plaintiff company sued defendants, a limited liability company and a member, in which it asserted multiple claims alleging defendants and another company and its principle (debtors) created various companies and trusts to transfer the debtors'assets out of the reach of creditors. Defendants removed the action and moved to refer the case to the bankruptcy court. The company moved to remand.
Ruling: 
Litigation that sought to recover estate assets was a core proceeding.
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In re Tara Sheet Metal Inc.

Movant creditor filed a motion under 11 U.S.C. § 362(i) confirming that the automatic stay terminated as a matter of law with regard to a debtor's personal property.
Ruling: 
Corporate debtor was not required to file statement of intent to reaffirm debt or redeem motor vehicle.
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Enron Corp. v. Citigroup Inc. (In re Enron Corp.)

Plaintiff debtors filed an adversary against defendant banks, seeking, inter alia, the avoidance of preferential transfers and the equitable subordination of claims. In addition, debtors alleged common law claims. The banks brought a Third-Party Complaint ("TPC") against third-party defendant auditing firm, asserting their right to contribution in the event they were held liable to debtor on the common law claims. The auditing firm moved to dismiss.
Ruling: 
Third party complaint for contribution by defendants in adversary proceeding was not related to bankruptcy.
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Stoe v. Flaherty

The Third Circuit reversed the instant court's previous opinion and order denying plaintiff's motion to abstain under 28 U.S.C. § 1334 and remanded the action for further consideration. The Third Circuit directed the instant court to consider whether, under section 1334(c)(2), the proceeding on plaintiff's state claim could be timely adjudicated in a state forum of appropriate jurisdiction.
Ruling: 
Bankruptcy court should have abstained from hearing claims under state wage payment and collection law.
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Colorado Constr. Co. v. United States HUD (In re Platte View Farm LLC)

Plaintiff creditor filed an adversary proceeding against defendant debtor. The creditor also filed a complaint in district court against defendants, second creditor and Department of Housing and Urban Development. The district court matter was related to the bankruptcy and was removed to the bankruptcy court. The creditor and debtor settled their dispute. The issue was whether the bankruptcy court had jurisdiction over the non-debtor defendants.
Ruling: 
Bankruptcy court lacked jurisdiction over dispute between creditor and thrid parties after primary realted dispute with debtor had been settled.
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In re Tagt LP

A recalcitrant manager of debtors, a limited partnership and a limited liability company that was the general partner of the former, filed bankruptcy petitions on behalf of the debtors. Movants, the principal owners of the debtors, sought sanctions against the recalcitrant manager and his attorneys. The central issue was whether the bankruptcy petitions were filed in bad faith and sanctions were warranted under Fed. R. Bankr. P. 9011.
Ruling: 
Manager of two debtors sanctioned for filing petitions in bad faith with intent to injure debtors'owners.
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United States v. White

Plaintiff United States appealed from the District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, challenging the invalidation of its assessment of a tax liability against defendant debtor following confirmation of the taxpayer's chapter 11 bankruptcy plan.
Ruling: 
Post-confirmation assessment of tax liability was erroneously invalidated by district court.
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In re West

The chapter 13 trustee objected to confirmation of the debtor's proposed chapter 13 plan. The issue raised by the objection was the proper interpretation of 11 U.S.C. § 1328(f), specifically, whether the time period was measured from the date the discharge was received in the prior case, or from the date the prior case was filed.
Ruling: 
Debtor was eligible for chapter 13 discharge where prior chapter 13 case was filed more than two years earlier.
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In re Salem

A chapter 13 debtor appealed after a Northern District of Illinois bankruptcy court denied his proposed chapter 13 plan and dismissed his bankruptcy case. The debtor sought further review after the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois affirmed the bankruptcy court's dismissal order and other interlocutory orders. The debtor raised error claims regarding the handling of his chapter 13 case.
Ruling: 
Debtor could not convert chapter 7 case filed in one district court to a chapter 13 case filed in another district court.
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McDow v. Sours (In re Sours)

Chapter 13 trustee filed a motion pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(c), as incorporated into bankruptcy proceedings through Fed. R. Bankr. P. 7012, for judgment on the pleadings in his complaint, which objected to debtors'discharge pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 1328(f).
Ruling: 
Objection to discharge sustained as chapter 13 case was filed less than four years after discharge in converted chapter 7 case.
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In re Premiere Entertainment Biloxi LLC

Chapter 11 debtors filed a motion pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 363(c) and Fed. R. Bankr. P. 4001(b) for an order authorizing the use of cash collateral on an interim basis. Creditors filed objections to the motion.
Ruling: 
Debtor allowed to use insurance proceeds to rebuild casino resort damaged by Hurrican Katrina.
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In re Allied Holdings Inc.

Creditor, a motorist injured in an accident by one of debtors'employees, obtained a $1.5 million default judgment before learning of debtors'pending bankruptcy case. He then moved for relief in the form of an annulment of the automatic stay. Debtors filed a motion for contempt against the creditor and his attorneys for refusing to vacate the judgment, and sought an award of damages, pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 105(a).
Ruling: 
Creditor held in contempt for failing to vacate postpetition default judgment for prepetition debt upon notice of bankruptcy.
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Paris v. United States (In re Paris)

The bankruptcy court granted summary judgment in favor of the creditor, the United States, in the debtor's adversary proceeding seeking a determination that he was not liable for trust fund penalties under I.R.C. 6672 and that any such liability was dischargeable under 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(1)(A). The debtor appealed.
Ruling: 
Nondischargeability of debtor's liability for trust fund taxes upheld.
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