Michigan Bankruptcy Blog

Supreme Court Refuses to Review Student Loan Bankruptcy Case

Students have taken on more than $1 trillion in debt to pay for the relentlessly rising costs of higher education. With that much debt outstanding, it’s no surprise that there are increasing numbers of borrowers defaulting on student loan debt, and seeking to discharge that debt by filing for bankruptcy protection. But, as a Wisconsin man recently learned, discharging student loan debt in bankruptcy is no easy feat. Read More ›

Categories: Chapter 7, U.S. Supreme Court

Changes to Bankruptcy Forms To Be Effective December 1st

As part of a modernization effort that began in 2008 that is being spearheaded by the Advisory Committee on Bankruptcy Rules, most official bankruptcy forms are being replaced with revised, reformatted and renumbered versions, effective December 1, 2015. Read More ›

Categories: Did you Know?

Collect Your Money in Bankruptcy: Chapter 13

All is not lost when a debtor files Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. In addition to teaching the ins and outs of how to collect money and assets in a Chapter 13, the video below discusses the basics of a Chapter 13, motions for relief from stay, co-debtor stay, non-dischargeable claims, and other topics to efficiently and effectively obtain what is rightfully yours in a bankruptcy. View the video below to learn more about Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Categories: Chapter 13

Penalty Owed to a Governmental Unit is Dischargeable in Chapter 13 - But Not Chapter 7 - Bankruptcy, Even if it Arises from Fraud

The scope and extent of debts that may be discharged is an often litigated issue in bankruptcy. In a recent Chapter 13 case in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, the bankruptcy court considered whether an otherwise dischargeable government penalty debt is nondischargeable if the debt arises from fraud.[1] Read More ›

Categories: Chapter 13, Chapter 7, Eastern District of Michigan

Collect Your Money in Bankruptcy: Chapter 7

All is not lost when a debtor files Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. On September 22, attorneys Patricia Scott and Scott Chernich presented a webinar titled "Collect Your Money in Bankruptcy: Chapter 7." In addition to teaching the ins and outs of how to collect money and assets in a Chapter 7, they discussed the basics of a Chapter 7, motions for relief from stay, co-debtor stay, non-dischargeable claims, and other topics to efficiently and effectively obtain what is rightfully yours in a bankruptcy.

To watch this webinar view the recording on our YouTube channel here.

Are you interested in learning about collecting your money in a Chapter 11 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy? Sign up to attend these two webinars below.

Categories: Chapter 7

Do People Owe You Money?

Upcoming Webinar Series: Collect Your Money in Bankruptcy

Attorneys Scott Chernich and Patricia Scott will be presenting a FREE webinar series this fall titled “Collect Your Money in Bankruptcy.” This three-part series will cover what to do as a creditor if you receive a bankruptcy notice in a Chapter 7, Chapter 11 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Read More ›

Categories: Chapter 11, Chapter 13, Chapter 7

Can Filing a Claim in a Debtor’s Bankruptcy be a Violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act? Maybe, But in this Case the Bankruptcy Court Rules in Creditor’s Favor

The Bankruptcy Code is federal law. It affords debtors protections - including the automatic stay and debt discharge injunction - that hold creditors at bay.

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) is also federal law. It contains limitations on what a debt collector can do when attempting to collect a debt.

Because debts - and more particularly attempts to collect those debts - drive people into bankruptcy, bankruptcy courts are sometimes forced to grapple with questions of how the Bankruptcy Code and FDCPA interact and impact each other. Read More ›

Categories: Chapter 13, Western District of Michigan

Open Case or Re-Opened Case: A Distinction Without a Difference

Sixth Circuit Affirms Bankruptcy Court Order Allowing Amended Exemptions Following Re-Opening of Case

In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case, a debtor is required to file a schedule listing all of the debtor’s property. This includes cash, hard assets such as furniture and cars, as well as intangibles such as causes of action or potential causes of action. The Bankruptcy Code allows debtors to “exempt” certain types of property from the estate, enabling them to retain exempted assets post-bankruptcy.

In a recent opinion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit analyzed the limits of a bankruptcy court’s authority to disallow claimed exemptions.  Read More ›

Categories: 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Chapter 13, Chapter 7

No Stripping Allowed: Supreme Court Rules that Chapter 7 Debtor Cannot Strip Off a Junior Lien

On June 1, 2015, the United States Supreme Court decided Bank of America v. Caulkett, No. 13-1421, together with Bank of America v. Toledo-Cardona, No. 14-163, holding unanimously that a Chapter 7 bankruptcy debtor cannot “strip off” a junior lien.

Lien stripping takes place when there are two or more liens on a property, and the senior lien is “underwater” in that the amount owed on the senior lien is greater than the value of the property. In a Chapter 13 case a property owner can strip off the junior lien, resulting in it being treated as unsecured debt in the bankruptcy.

In these cases, the Court held that a Chapter 7 debtor may not void a junior lien under 11 U.S.C. § 506(d) when the debt owed on a senior lien exceeds the current value of the collateral if the junior creditor’s claim is both secured by a lien and allowed under § 502 of the Bankruptcy Code. Read More ›

Categories: Chapter 13, Chapter 7, U.S. Supreme Court

Supreme Court Decides Bullard v. Blue Hills Bank and Rules That an Order Denying a Chapter 13 Plan is not Appealable

On May 4, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Bullard v. Blue Hills Bank, No. 14-116, a case which deals with issues of finality and appealability of orders in bankruptcy proceedings. In a unanimous opinion written by Chief Justice Roberts, the Court held that a bankruptcy court’s order denying confirmation of a Chapter 13 debtor’s proposed repayment plan is not a final order and thus is not immediately appealable. Read More ›

Categories: Chapter 13, U.S. Supreme Court