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Showing 24 posts in 6th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Reserve it or Lose it: Sixth Circuit BAP Reverses Bankruptcy Court on Issue of Whether Trustee Abandoned Asset in Chapter 7 Case

In a recent decision, the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel of the Sixth Circuit (the “Court”) considered the issue of asset “abandonment” in a Chapter 7 case[1]. The Court reversed the bankruptcy court’s decision to allow the Chapter 7 trustee to compromise a claim that the debtor argued the trustee had abandoned.

[1] In re: Wayne L. Wright, Docket No. 16-8019 (6th Cir. BAP, April 17, 2017). Read More ›

Categories: 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Chapter 7

Sixth Circuit Affirms Decision to Deny Chapter 7 Debtor’s Proposed Exemption Because She Lacked Equity in Property After a Sale

In the case of Susan G. Brown v. Douglas Ellmann [1], the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (the “Sixth Circuit”) recently affirmed a bankruptcy court’s decision to deny a Chapter 7 debtor’s proposed exemptions for the value of redemption rights she enjoyed under Michigan law related to the sale of a property she surrendered to the bankruptcy estate.

[1] Case No. 16-1967 (6th Cir., March 20, 2017). Read More ›

Categories: 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Chapter 7

Bankruptcy Court Decision to Allow Late-Filed Claim in Chapter 13 Case Reversed on Appeal

Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows debtors to confirm plans that provide for the payment of their debts through future earnings while, at the same time, retaining their assets. If a creditor wishes to receive payments pursuant to a debtor’s plan, the creditor must file a proof of claim. And it must do so timely. Read More ›

Categories: 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Chapter 13

Bankruptcy Court Sanctions Lawyer, But Appeals Court Reverses and Rules that Lawyer’s Aggressive Advocacy Did Not Cross the Line

In a recent case, a lawyer was sanctioned by an Ohio bankruptcy judge for his conduct in connection with an adversary proceeding he brought on behalf of a client against a Chapter 7 debtor. The lawyer was vindicated, though, after the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel of the Sixth Circuit (the “BAP”) reversed the bankruptcy court on appeal. Read More ›

Categories: 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Chapter 7

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

Act in Good Faith or Else: The Limits of the Automatic Stay

Upon the filing of a bankruptcy petition, an automatic stay goes into effect which provides a debtor with immediate protection from collection efforts by creditors. But the automatic stay is not without limitations.

In a recent opinion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit recently considered whether the automatic stay should apply to prevent a foreclosure sale in a case in which the debtor’s good faith, actions and credibility in filing for Chapter 13 were called into question.[1] The Sixth Circuit ruled against the debtor, affirming the bankruptcy court’s earlier findings that the debtor’s actions were “outrageous.” Read More ›

Categories: 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Chapter 13

Sixth Circuit Reverses Bankruptcy Court Decision to Disallow Chapter 7 Debtor's Amendment to Exemptions

While Chapter 7 bankruptcy offers individuals a fresh start and discharge from many debts, it doesn't come without a price. Property of the debtor becomes property of the estate and is used to pay creditors.

But not all of it. Section 522 of the Bankruptcy Code lists exemptions that debtors can use to exempt property - up to a certain dollar amount in value - from the estate. The purpose of exemptions is to ensure that the individual debtor is able to maintain a basic standard of living post-bankruptcy. But because there are very few assets available for creditor recovery beyond exempt property in many bankruptcy cases, the propriety of a debtor's claimed exemptions is an issue that is oft-litigated.

Such was the case in an appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (the "Sixth Circuit") arising from a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case that was filed in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. Read More ›

Categories: 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Chapter 7

Sixth Circuit Rules that In Pari Delicto May Not Bar Trustee’s Conversion Claim

From Ponzi schemes to fraudulent transfers, many Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases involve allegations of wrongdoing. Bankruptcy trustees, who stand in the shoes of the bankrupt entity in asserting claims, often bring actions against third parties alleging participation in, and orchestration of, fraudulent schemes. Because the alleged wrongdoing many times involves actions or transactions in which the debtor took part, defendants in such lawsuits frequently raise a defense based on the doctrine of in pari delictoRead More ›

Categories: 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Chapter 7, Western District of Michigan

Sixth Circuit Sorts Out Bankruptcy Slugfest Between Friends

It has often been said that you should never do business with friends or family. A bankruptcy court decision that was recently affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit is further evidence of this proposition.  Read More ›

Categories: 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Chapter 11

Foreclosure Without Closure: Sixth Circuit Analyzes Claims Asserted by Borrower Following State Court Foreclosure Proceedings

The financial and housing crisis that began in 2008 led to a huge wave of foreclosures and foreclosure-related litigation. While foreclosure is rooted in state law, the initiation of a foreclosure proceeding by a lender often leads to federal bankruptcy proceedings initiated by a borrower, giving rise to interesting legal issues involving the interplay of state foreclosure law and federal bankruptcy law. Recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (the "Sixth Circuit") considered the implications of a foreclosure on a residence following the borrowers' Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding.[1] Read More ›

Categories: 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Chapter 7, Eastern District of Michigan