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 Hall

A debtor filed a renewed motion for an exemption from the requirement of 11 U.S.C. § 727(a)(11) that he participate in the instructional course concerning personal financial management before being entitled to a chapter 7 discharge.
Ruling: 
Eighty-one-year-old debtor with severe physical impairment and health issues granted disability waiver of personal financial management course.
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Hosack v. IRS (In re Hosack)

Defendant United States filed a motion for summary judgment in a post- discharge adversary proceeding brought by chapter 7 debtor against the IRS, alleging that certain debts that the IRS viewed as still owing by debtor had been discharged.
Ruling: 
Tax debt based on income not assessed prepetition but assessable postpetition was nondischargeable.
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In re Kobus

The debtor filed a motion to convert her chapter 7 case to a chapter 13. The chapter 7 trustee objected. He alleges that the debtor failed to disclose that she transferred property to her father within one year of filing for bankruptcy relief. The debtor's motion followed the trustee's discovery of the transfer.
Ruling: 
Conversion to chapter 13 denied for lack of good faith.
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In re Lewis

Debtors proposed a chapter 13 plan under which they would have paid the creditor the value of a van they purchased for their daughter as determined by 11 U.S.C. § 506(a), with the balance of the loan treated as a general unsecured claim. The creditor objected to the plan, arguing that the debtors had to pay the full amount of the debt. The creditor filed a motion for stay relief.
Ruling: 
Plan was not confirmed since debtors did not propose it in good faith where only personal benefit for debtors was to secure van for their adult daughter.
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Ransom-Jones v. Cordray (In re Cordray)

Plaintiff, an ex-husband of debtor, filed a complaint against defendant debtor (1) opposing her discharge; (2) alternatively, seeking a determination that her alleged debt to him was nondischargeable; and (3) asking that debtor's bankruptcy case be dismissed. The matter was pending findings of fact and conclusions of law.
Ruling: 
Debtor received discharge, and debt owed to ex-husband was deemed dischargeable.
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In re Ermi

Bankruptcy debtors identified their interest in a vehicle lease on their schedules and subsequently amended their schedules to indicate their intention to assume the unexpired lease. A creditor with a security interest in the vehicle moved for a comfort order pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 362(j) confirming that the automatic stay terminated with regard to the vehicle based on the lack of a timely indication of intent and/or assumption of the lease.
Ruling: 
Creditor was not entitled to comfort order where debtors failed to timely assume vehicle lease but had not previously filed for bankruptcy.
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Schoppe v. Schoppe (In re Schoppe)

Plaintiff former husband sought a determination that debts owed by defendant debtor were nondischargeable pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(15).
Ruling: 
Debtor's share of marital debt pursuant to divorce decree was excepted from discharge as detriment to former spouse outweighed benefit of discharge to debtor.
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In re Cain

A creditor filed a motion for relief from a co-debtor stay under 11 U.S.C. § 1301(a) in a debtor's chapter 13 bankruptcy proceeding.
Ruling: 
Co-debtor stay did not apply to creditor's efforts to collect balance of debt from husband since debtor was no longer liable to creditor for that additional amount on confirmation of plan.
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Schlarman v. SunTrust Mortg. Inc. (In re Helvey)

Plaintiff bankruptcy trustee filed a motion for summary judgment in a core proceeding brought against defendant mortgage company in which the trustee sought to avoid the company's mortgage pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 544(a)(3).
Ruling: 
Trustee's status as bona fide purchaser for value allowed trustee to avoid defectively acknowledged mortgage.
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Turner v. Burnworth (In re Carrier)

Plaintiff United States Trustee brought a complaint asserting multiple violations of 11 U.S.C. § 110 against defendants, a nonattorney preparer of bankruptcy petitions and related documents who did not operate as a paralegal under the supervision or control of an attorney, and her business entity. The trustee sought monetary and injunctive relief.
Ruling: 
Permanent injunction and fines issued against ankruptcy petition preparer engaged in unauthorized practice of law.
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Simons v. Hart (In re Hart)

Plaintiffs, an individual hurt in an automobile accident and his family, filed an adversary proceeding against defendants, husband and wife debtors, seeking a determination that their debt was nondischargeable pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(6) and (a)(9). The husband (debtor) had been involved in the automobile accident; he had been drinking.
Ruling: 
Debt resulting from intoxicated operation of motor vehicle was nondischargeable reagardless of degree of intoxication.
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In re Nettles

Movant, a creditor, sought orders of the court replacing the trustee who had previously been appointed in an involuntary bankruptcy proceeding instituted by other creditors of debtor. Movant also asked the court to determine who was "in charge" of certain trusts. The trustee opposed the motions and cross-moved for sanctions.
Ruling: 
Creditor's motion for replacement of trustee in involuntary case brought by the creditors denied.
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Doolittle v. County of Santa Cruz (In re Metzger)

Plaintiff property owner sued defendants, a county, debtor, a development company, et al. The county and the State of California cross-complained. The owner sought a declaration that a 1992 Sale Order divested the property of the county's interest. The county sought a declaration that the Sale Order did not divest the property of its interest and an order remanding the matter to state court. Pending were cross-motions for summary judgment.
Ruling: 
Sale order issued without proper notice to county did not strip county of its interest.
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In re Martinez

After the debtor filed a pro se petition under chapter 7, the United States Trustee filed a motion to dismiss. The court granted the motion. The debtor filed a motion for reconsideration of the dismissal order, which the court treated as a motion to alter or amend judgment.
Ruling: 
Case dismissed due to debtor's failure to file credit counseling certificate.
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Cardiello v. Seaton (In re Seaton)

Movant chapter 7 trustee objected to respondent debtor's claim that his interest in a 401(k) plan was excluded from his bankruptcy estate or exempted.
Ruling: 
Debtor's interest in 401(k) plan was deemed not excluded from estate unless exempted as reasonably necessary for support of debtor and debtor's dependents.
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