March 23, 2015
Archives
jbledsoe

Under § 1329 the ‘Disposable Income Test’ Applies In A Post-Confirmation Plan Modification – Doesn’t It?

By Joseph A. Bledsoe, III, Chapter 13 Standing Trustee for the Eastern District of North Carolina
“. . . I know this topic is old news for most of you, and that courts have been considering this issue since before I got my law license, but please stay with me. . . .”After reading Trustee Bledsoe’s article, please feel free to leave a comment in the newly formatted Comment Section at the bottom of each article. No sign-up, no logging in, no password – type your comment and hit ‘Submit Comment’ – easy easy.

tonycoy

Bankruptcy 101: Suggestions for Efficiently Handling Chapter 13s and Increasing Profitability – Part 1 of 3

By Tony Coy, Staff Attorney to Chapter 13 Standing Trustee Camille Hope, Macon, GA
“Individuals may disagree about what constitutes a successful Chapter 13 case; however, this discussion is about efficiently handling a case.”Although titled “Bankruptcy 101” this series is hardly for the novice. Rather, it serves as a checklist to debtors’ counsel.

wbrown

From the Editor’s Desk – Eligibility and Debtor’s Standing

By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired)
hildebrand
HOTTEST ITEM FROM LAST WEEK

Critical Case Comment

By Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Chapter 13 Trustee for the Middle District of Tennessee (Nashville)
“Modification of a confirmed Chapter 13 plan under § 1329 can only be effected based upon changes in the debtor’s circumstances which were not known or not virtually certain; when a plan is modified, the “best interest of creditors test” is applicable as of the date of the modified plan.”
March 16, 2015
Archives
hildebrand

Critical Case Comment

By Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Chapter 13 Trustee for the Middle District of Tennessee (Nashville)
“Modification of a confirmed Chapter 13 plan under § 1329 can only be effected based upon changes in the debtor’s circumstances which were not known or not virtually certain; when a plan is modified, the “best interest of creditors test” is applicable as of the date of the modified plan.”
rapoport

Ask Ms. Ps & Qs

By Professor Nancy Rapoport
$200,000 Sanctions Order for Vexatious Litigation Gets Affirmed . . . and that’s real money! And it happened in a bankruptcy case.
wbrown

From the Editor’s Desk – Plan Modification

By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired)
jbledsoe

Meet Another New Trustee

(Not password protected)
“Joseph A. Bledsoe, III (“Jody”) was appointed as a Chapter 13 Standing Trustee for the Eastern District of North Carolina on April 4, 2014, where he is the Trustee for the New Bern and Fayetteville Divisions. He replaces retiring Interim Trustee Robert R. Browning, and Standing Trustee Trawick H. “Buzzy” Stubbs.” Click here for more . . .
creditrpt

Equifax, Experian and TransUnion Honing Focus On Enhanced Dispute Resolution and More

(Not password protected)
caution

Sanctions and Irony and Fraud, Oh My!

(Not password protected)
siomos
HOTTEST ITEM FROM LAST WEEK

The Marital Deduction: Returning to Common Sense and Eliminating the “Contractual Liability” Test under § 101(10A)(B)

By Kenneth Siomos, Attorney Representing Chapter 13 Trustee John H. Germeraad, Petersburg, IL
“Common sense would seem to dictate that the cost of maintaining the roof over your head is a ‘household expense’ even if you are not the one paying for it.”
March 9, 2015
Archives
siomos

The Marital Deduction: Returning to Common Sense and Eliminating the “Contractual Liability” Test under § 101(10A)(B)

By Kenneth Siomos, Attorney Representing Chapter 13 Trustee John H. Germeraad, Petersburg, IL
“Common sense would seem to dictate that the cost of maintaining the roof over your head is a ‘household expense’ even if you are not the one paying for it.”
hayes

The Supreme Court and Stripping Liens, Part 1

By M. Jonathan Hayes, Certified Bankruptcy Specialist with Simon Resnik Hayes LLP (Sherman Oaks, CA)
“The resolution of the issue depends, in part, on whether Congress can ever take away a lien (and give it to the debtor essentially) without compensation. That issue is discussed in Radford and Wright . . . .”
wbrown

Supreme Court’s Certiorari

By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired)
Judge Brown has prepared a quick synopsis of the six cases quickly headed to the Supreme Court.
wiles

New York’s Bankruptcy Bench Is Expanding Again

(Not password protected)
Michael Wiles is newest New York Bankruptcy Judge . . .
webinar

Save the Date – Friday, April 10th – Free Webinar

Emerging Tax Issues: Tolling the 2-year Period and What’s Up With McCoy 
Join expert Morgan King and Chapter 13 Trustee Al Russo for a 60 minute discussion of changes in how taxes are dealt with in some bankruptcy cases.
Click here for an advanced sneak peak at the Tolling outline.
davidpeake

HOTTEST ITEM FROM LAST WEEK

An Alternative to One Size Fits All

By David Peake, Chapter 13 Standing Trustee for the Southern District of Texas (Houston)
“There was an interesting development recently in the ongoing topic of the wisdom of adopting a mandatory national form plan (Official Form 113). . . .”Click here for Letter Supporting Compromise
Click here for Draft of Form Compromise
Click here for Transcript of 1/23/15 Hearing
March 2, 2015
Archives
davidpeake

An Alternative to One Size Fits All

By David Peake, Chapter 13 Standing Trustee for the Southern District of Texas (Houston)
“There was an interesting development recently in the ongoing topic of the wisdom of adopting a mandatory national form plan (Official Form 113). . . .”
wbrown

From the Editor’s Desk – Attorney Actions

By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired)

This week Judge Brown takes a look at two cases involving actions taken (or not) by attorneys representing debtors.

lauracorcoran

Getting Started With Google Scholar

By Laura Corcoran, Staff Attorney for Chapter 13 Trustee Dianne Kerns, Tucson AZ
Google Scholar is a fast and easy way to access case law and articles for free. There are many features available if you are willing to create an account, including email alerts and storage for documents of interest.
karawest

Meet the New Trustee

(Not password protected)STILL1
At a mere 37 years old, Kara Luana West was appointed Chapter 13 and Chapter 12 Standing Trustee for the Southern Division of the Eastern District of Tennessee on January 1, 2015. Ms. West has very large shoes to fill as she is replacing long-standing, retiring Trustee C. Kenneth Still.

 

amazon

The Academy Needs Your Help

moneycartoonAs you may or may not be aware, the Academy is a non-profit in every sense of the word. The Academy operates on a shoe-string budget so every little bit of income helps.Through Amazon, there are 2 ways you can help:

  • Register as an Academy supporter. Click here and set up an account. Each time you make an Amazon purchase, Amazon will automatically donate .5% of your purchase price. (No extra cost to you.)
  • Access Amazon by clicking through any Amazon ad found in the right-hand column of this page. Once you are on Amazon’s site, you can maneuver to whatever product you want (your purchase does not have to be the advertised product). By accessing Amazon via ConsiderChapter13.org, Amazon will pay the Academy a commission of between 2-6% on every purchase. (Again, no extra cost to you.)
changeahead

New Archived Webinar

Means Test Forms B22C 1 & 2: What’s Changed?  The Academy’s latest webinar is now available – free to members or pay per view for non-members. This 60 minute presentation on the changes to the bifurcated form was attended by over 380 bankruptcy professionals and/or staff. Comments include:

  • “Thank you for the seminar! It was very helpful to myself and my staff.”
  • “The material and presentation were very helpful to us. Thank you for providing the webinar!!”
  • “The seminar was presented very well. It was practical and informative.”
keyboard

Be Smart About Abbreviations

(Not password protected)
The over-40-set in the legal world are accustomed to using acronyms – lots of them. Today’s acronyms don’t mean the same things. Learning the new lingo is like learning a new language. For example, to anyone in the bankruptcy world DIP is a common term – Debtor in Possession, of course. Today, DIP means leave.

Click here

for a tutorial on other writing style changes you may want to consider.And click here (password protected) for a helpful article on writing . . . and not the way your English professor taught you.

karinbruce

HOTTEST ITEM FROM LAST WEEK

Current Monthly Income, Applicable Commitment Period and Business Expenses

By Karin M. Bruce, Attorney Representing Chapter 13 Trustee Jan P. Johnson (Sacramento, CA)
. . . “Form 22C or the Means Test, is an Official Bankruptcy Form. It is designed to determine whether a debtor’s plan must provide for payments over a period of three years or five years (the applicable commitment period) and the minimum amount that must be paid to general unsecured creditors.”
February 23, 2015
Archives
berger

Bankruptcy, Divorce and the Former Spouse: A Marriage of Inconvenience Part 2 of 2

By Honorable Robert D. Berger, United States Bankruptcy Judge for the District of Kansas

“It is prudent for a bankruptcy attorney to review a marital settlement agreement and a proposed decree of divorce prior to effectuation by the client and entry by the divorce court.”

Click here for Part I

See also: Who Wins: A Chapter 13 Trustee or an Unrecorded Divorce Decree?

wbrown

From the Editor’s Desk – Eligibility

By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired)

Judge Brown’s focus this week is eligibility. Click below for two synopsis of important eligibility cases.

karinbruce

Current Monthly Income, Applicable Commitment Period and Business Expenses

By Karin M. Bruce, Attorney Representing Chapter 13 Trustee Jan P. Johnson (Sacramento, CA)
. . . “Form 22C or the Means Test, is an Official Bankruptcy Form. It is designed to determine whether a debtor’s plan must provide for payments over a period of three years or five years (the applicable commitment period) and the minimum amount that must be paid to general unsecured creditors.”
judge_patton_cropped

Shout-Out to the Attendees and Speakers of the 30th Annual Advanced

Consumer Bankruptcy Course in Houston

Lots of great speakers including Academy members Kristina Gonzales, The Honorable Richard Schmidt (a/k/a General George S. Patton), Dinorah Gonzalez, David Peake, Stuart Cox, Mary Viegelahn, Ray Hendren and Eddie Rodriguez.
changeahead

REGISTER . . . NOW

* * * February 25th * * *

2 p.m. eastern

Free Webinar: B22C 1 & 2: What’s Changed?

NalikoMarkel

eugeneoregonDistrict of Oregon Welcomes New Trustee

(Not password protected)
rapoport

HOTTEST ITEM FROM LAST WEEK

Ask Ms. Ps & Qs

By Professor Nancy Rapoport

You do realize that this is a Federal court, right? We use the Federal Rules of Evidence.

— Pretty much every Bankruptcy Judge, everywhere, at least once, whether or not the judge is using his or her “outside the head” voice.

February 16, 2015
Archives
presidentsday
rapoport

Ask Ms. Ps & Qs

By Professor Nancy Rapoport

You do realize that this is a Federal court, right? We use the Federal Rules of Evidence.

— Pretty much every Bankruptcy Judge, everywhere, at least once, whether or not the judge is using his or her “outside the head” voice.

berger

Bankruptcy, Divorce and the Former Spouse: A Marriage of Inconvenience Part 1 of 2

By Honorable Robert D. Berger, United States Bankruptcy Judge for the District of Kansas
“Bankruptcy frequently intersects with other areas of the law, and one of the most prominent areas is family law. Of course, family law frequently includes divorce proceedings. In this article, we focus on debts for a domestic support obligation (“DSO”)—i.e., debts arising from divorce proceedings that are in the nature of support—which are not dischargeable under 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(5).”See also: Who Wins: A Chapter 13 Trustee or an Unrecorded Divorce Decree?
wbrown

From the Editor’s Desk – Conversion and Dismissal

By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired)
nclc

New Award from NCLC!

(Not password protected)
Nominate a Rising Star Today! Click here for details.
hehtalking

Big Shout-Out to Attendees of the Northern California
14th Annual Bankruptcy Conference in Sacramento

Lots of great speakers including Academy favorites Hank Hildebrand and Nancy Rapoport. Welcome new member Harold Comanse.

photo

changeahead

REGISTER . . . NOW * * * February 25th * * *
2 eastern/1 central/12 mtn/11 pacific
Free Webinar: B22C 1 & 2: What’s Different

rebeccagarcia

Welcome New Trustee

(Not password protected)
Garcia-KingEastern District of Wisconsin welcomes new trustee, replacing retiring Tom King.
kevinanderson

HOTTEST ITEM FROM LAST WEEK

Critical Case Comment

By Kevin R. Anderson, Chapter 13 Trustee for the District of Utah (Salt Lake City)
hazard“First, it is never a good idea to send your bankruptcy trustee a letter alleging a “Hazmat” threat. Second, a criminal conviction for perjury arising from testimony at a 341 Meeting requires: (1) near absolute clarity from the questioner; and (2) evidence as to how the debtor understood the question at the time it was answered.”
February 9, 2015
Archives
kevinanderson

Critical Case Comment

By Kevin R. Anderson, Chapter 13 Trustee for the District of Utah (Salt Lake City)
hazard“First, it is never a good idea to send your bankruptcy trustee a letter alleging a ‘Hazmat’ threat. Second, a criminal conviction for perjury arising from testimony at a 341 Meeting requires: (1) near absolute clarity from the questioner; and (2) evidence as to how the debtor understood the question at the time it was answered.”
officesecurity

Office Security

Trustee Anderson’s analysis of the Hale case brings to mind the issue of security procedures in the workplace.The NACTT, in partnership with the Academy, offers a series of staff training tools.

In one, Trustees Deb Miller and Debbie Langehennig present a 42 minute training designed for the entire office – both professionals and support staff.  This webinar teaches the importance of having office procedures in place for all types of breach in security such as intruders, workplace violence and receipt of suspicious packages.

sdart

Chapter 13 Community Suffers Loss

Janna Countryman 7/18/62-2/1/15 – A Very Special Trustee Remembered
megancraig

Academy Writing Contest Winners

The Academy sponsored its first law student writing contest in 2014. The contest is an annual event so please share this information with any law student, professor, or law school you come in contact with. Spread the word!

Our 3rd place winner is from Southwestern Law School in Los Angeles. Megan E. Craig is a 3L with a true passion for bankruptcy law. Her strong work ethic has earned her academic achievements as a dean’s merit scholar and externships with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court Central District Rules Committee and former Chief Judge Vincent P. Zurzolo.

Is the Chapter 13 “Super Discharge” Still Super?

By Megan E. Craig, Southwestern Law School, J.D. Candidate 2015

“Indeed, the super discharge still has some life left despite the passage of the 2005 Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention Consumer Protection Act that narrowed its scope.”

wbrown

From the Editor’s Desk – Administrative Expenses

By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired)

From the Editor’s Desk is back.  This week Judge Brown brings two cases regarding administrative expenses:

February 2, 2015
Archives
hildebrand

Critical Case Comment

By Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Chapter 13 Trustee for the Middle District of Tennessee (Nashville)
Above-median debtor is only entitled to deduct from Current Monthly Income the lesser of actual home and vehicle payments or the corresponding standards promulgated by the IRS.

Sadly, this week’s Critical Case Comment analyzes a case decided by Judge Doub shortly before his untimely passing.  Please see below.

cmoran

Content Marketing: Sharing – Part 5 of 5

By Cathy Moran, Certified Bankruptcy Specialist, Mountain View, CA

shareYour content is now created, embellished and published. Now What? The final installment of this 5 part series offers step by step instructions on how to get the most from your efforts.Thank you to Ms. Moran for sharing this series with us. During this time while filings are down for most of the country, marketing is more important than ever. Following the steps in this Content Marketing series, can give your practice a much needed booster shot!

garettfranklyn

Academy Writing Contest Winners

In the Fall of 2014, the Academy was honored to sponsor its first law student writing contest. The contest is an annual event so please share this information with any law student, professor, or school you come in contact with. Spread the word!Placing a very close second, Garett Franklyn, is a 2nd year law student at the University of Tennessee (Go Vols). Mr. Franklyn currently serves as a second year editor of the Tennessee Law Review. The summer of 2014 was spent in a clerkship for Honorable David M. Bragg in Tennessee’s 16th Judicial District.

Due Course for Undue Hardship? How Chapter 13 Could Alleviate a Possible Student Debt Crisis

By Garett Franklyn, 2016 J.D. Candidate

Mr. Franklyn takes a look at the hardship of proving hardship: “Courts generally rely on four key tests to determine undue hardship.”

briefbank

Brief Bank Additions

The Academy maintains a small, but growing, library of briefs for reference by Academy members.Here, we add two briefs regarding, in the most simplistic of terms, “Who Gets the Money.”

  • Click here for Petition for Writ of Certiorari (Harris)
  • Click here for Brief in Opposition (Harris)

If you have a brief or briefs to share, please send them here.

gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 18 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
The Academy hopes you have enjoyed this series directed to attorneys who represent Chapter 13 Trustees. A fitting end to this 18 part series: Bankruptcy and Death.
socialsecurity

No Social Security Number???

SS # May Be Mark of the Beast But That Will Not Save Your Job

  • Click here for the Sixth Circuit’s decision in favor of employer – not directly on point for bankruptcy, but may still be helpful.
doud

Greenville-Based Bankruptcy Judge Passes Away

“As good a judge and leader as Judge Doub proved to be, he was an even better man of character, loving and devoted husband and father, a steadfast, loyal friend, and an engaged and involved member of his community and his church. He was kind, compassionate, and caring to all, and worked diligently to improve himself and the world around him every single day. He’s the only judge who ever visited our office, and he made it a point to talk with everyone here. Every year he wrote a personal letter thanking everyone here for their hard work and dedication. He will be sorely missed.” John Logan, Chapter 13 Trustee.
lap

Chemerinsky: It’s shaping up to be a momentous term for SCOTUS

From the Academy – A Must Have Supreme Court ResourceDean and Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of California’s Irvine School of Law, Erwin Chemerinsky, offered a clear and precise tutorial on the Supreme Court at the 2014 NACTT Conference in Chicago. Comments included:

  • “very knowledgeable and engaging speaker”
  • “gave me a better understanding of the ideology of the Supreme Court”
  • “very in depth and relevant”
  • “made me think carefully about how our laws are amended by individual judges w/individual biases”
  • “one of the best speakers I’ve ever heard”

lapYour choice of CD or DVD $29.99.

January 26, 2015
Archives
sdart

A Brief Guide to Analyzing the Fairness of Student Loan Discrimination

By Samuel Dart, Attorney Representing Chapter 13 Trustee David M. Howe, Tacoma, Washington
“Other articles aptly explain the mechanics of classification but how does one know if the proposed treatment will pass this test? This article discusses a few principles to guide the determination of whether a proposed classification is indeed “unfair.”
cmoran

Content Marketing: How To Embellish Your Content to Catch Attention – Part 4 of 5

By Cathy Moran, Certified Bankruptcy Specialist, Mountain View, CA
spiderIf you aren’t following Specialist Moran’s series on marketing via your website, you are missing out. This entire series is a fantastic tutorial. And now is the time to employ her suggestions.Part 4 is a little more ‘techie’ and gets into the nitty-gritty of how to make sure your content gets picked up by a web search. A MUST read.
msullivan

Academy Writing Contest Winners

In the Fall of 2014, the Academy was honored to have sponsored its first law student writing contest. The contest is an annual event. Please share the 2015 information with any law student, professor, or school you come in contact with. Spread the word!Our first place contest winner, Michael Sullivan, is a 3rd year law student at the University of Georgia (Go Dawgs). Mr. Sullivan currently serves as the Senior Managing Editor of the Georgia Law Review and will be clerking for the Honorable Wendy Hagenau.

The Effect of Surrender of Collateral on Valuation Under 11 U.S.C. § 506(a)(2) after Santander Consumer USA v. Brown

By Michael Sullivan, 2015 J.D. Candidate

“The Eleventh Circuit’s recent decision in Santander Consumer USA v. Brown challenges this approach with respect to personal property, and invites a reconsideration of how secured claims should be treated in Chapter 13 plans.”

See also, Critical Case Comment by Hildebrand

gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 17 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Two more parts to go . . . Post-Petition Causes of Action, Inheritances and Windfalls Are Property of the Estate and Must Be Reported to the Trustee.
saltlake

Plan Your Family Vacation NOW – Salt Lake City – Family Fun for Everyone

Check with your significant other and mark your calendar NOW for a family vacation during the NACTT annual conference in Salt Lake City, July 1-4.
nclc

From the NCLC

(Not password protected)

TAX PREP SERVICES: BUYER BEWAREConsumer Advocates Warn of Risks from Incompetent and Unscrupulous Tax PreparersTax prep services . . . don’t use them and advise your clients not to use them.Free or inexpensive alternative for low-income taxpayers:

Choosing a VITA or AARP Tax-Aide site saves eligible taxpayers the cost of a tax preparation fee. Many VITA sites can also help taxpayers open a bank account or get a low-cost prepaid card, which enables taxpayers to get fast refunds without paying a fee.

rapoport

In Case You Missed It . . .

Ask Ms. Ps & Qs

By Professor Nancy Rapoport
Expert Prof. Nancy Rapoport provides Academy members with a monthly dose of ethics. These articles are wise yet very practical and address issues you have, will or are currently facing. “. . . this month’s topic is our use of technology.”
January 19, 2015
Archives
rapoport

Ask Ms. Ps & Qs

By Professor Nancy Rapoport
Ethics expert Prof. Nancy Rapoport provides Academy members a monthly dose of wise yet practical ethical advice.  She addresses issues you have, will or are currently facing.   “. . . this month’s topic is our use of technology.”
cmoran

Content Marketing: How to Write Content For Online Use – Part 3 of 5

By Cathy Moran, Certified Bankruptcy Specialist, Mountain View, CA
Now we know why to market on the web. And we know where to find ideas for content.This week’s article on marketing via the web offers a step by step instruction sheet on how to create content intended for your website.
greenburg

Loan Modifications And Foreclosure Statistics – Are Loan Modifications An Exit Strategy For Foreclosures Or Band Aids Applied To A More Serious Wound?

By Marie-Ann Greenberg, Chapter 13 Trustee District of New Jersey (Fairfield)
The final installment of Trustee Greenberg’s series on loan modifications. “A properly constructed plan can often result in a very positive outcome for both the lender and the debtor.”
gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 16 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing Gustafson’s series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees. This week’s installment is for EVERYONE in the Chapter 13 community. It is a quick read on criminal referrals.
bentz

Bankruptcy Community Suffers Loss

(Not password protected)
Judge Warren Bentz, who passed away on December 31st, was remembered as ‘hard working and practical’.
bankrisks

Banks Take A Risk

(Not password protected)
Freezing Debtor’s Account During Chapter 7 Proceedings
sixthcircuit

Sixth Circuit Rules Against Collection Agency

Court reverses district court decision in Buchanan holding that an offer to settle a stale debt may misleadingly imply a threat of litigation in violation of the FDCPA.See also: Crawford Critical Case Comment
January 12, 2015
Archives
hildebrand

Critical Case Comment

By Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Chapter 13 Trustee for the Middle District of Tennessee (Nashville)
In re Rosa: Totally unsecured second mortgage, discharged in a prior Chapter 7 case, does not create an unsecured claim in a subsequent Chapter 13 even where the debtor is not entitled to a discharge.
cmoran

Content Marketing: What to Write – Part 2 of 5

By Cathy Moran, Certified Bankruptcy Specialist, Mountain View, CA
Continuing Attorney Moran’s series on utilizing your website to promote your business, she discusses what to write about.If filings are down in your area, now is the perfect season to spend time updating your website and adding content that will bring in business.
knapp

One District’s Response To The Influx Of Loan Modifications In Bankruptcy Cases: District Of New Jersey

By Brian Knapp, Attorney Representing the Chapter 13 Trustee District of New Jersey (Fairfield)
Continuing the series started by Trustee Greenberg, Staff Attorney Brian Knapp continues with a look at how New Jersey is dealing with the onslaught of mortgage modifications.
gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 15 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing the very popular series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees. This week’s installment is for EVERYONE in the Chapter 13 community.Part 15 is entitled The Top Thirteen Supreme Court Decisions (Plus Six New Ones!) That Every Chapter 13 Practitioner Should Know By Name.
ethics

Ethics and Betrayal

(Not password protected)

The following links deal with an interesting ethical issue raised in a new law related novel:

irs

Trustee Burks Named Co-Chair

(Not password protected)
The Consumer Bankruptcy Committee of the ABI is pleased to welcome Margaret A. Burks as a Co-Chair! Marge is a chapter 13 trustee for the Southern District of Ohio in Cincinnati, appointed in July 1992. Marge has served in other roles within the committee, most recently as Education Director. She joins current Co-Chairs, Caralyce Lassner and Richard Thomson.
January 5, 2015
Archives
cmoran

Marketing Via Content – Part 1 of 5

By Cathy Moran, Certified Bankruptcy Specialist, Mountain View, CA
“Say what? Why create content for the web to market your bankruptcy law practice? It won’t make you rich, famous or thin. But it will make you friends, clients, referral sources, and better at what you do.”During this time when filings are down for most of the country, marketing is more important than ever. Veteran consumer attorney, Cathy Moran, shares with us a five part series on marketing your practice in a classy yet very inexpensive way.
siomos

In re Traverse and the Chapter 7 Trustee’s Power to Sell Property

By Kenneth Siomos, Attorney Representing Chapter 13 Trustee John H. Germeraad, Petersburg, IL
“The First Circuit decision has practical implications for many cases because it does not just apply to a debtor’s personal residence or exempt property.”
gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 14 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing the very popular series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees.Part 14: A Few Words About Expense Issues
confusion

Denman Creates Confusion

(Not password protected)
Not in every case but sometimes LLC issues crop up in Chapter 13 cases. Denman, a Chapter 13 case, addresses several issues involving LLCs.
circuitct

En Banc Rehearing of Debtor’s Award of Fees

(Not password protected)

The 9th Circuit called for an en banc rehearing Friday of the attorneys’ fees that a bankruptcy court awarded against a creditor that appealed after it was found to have violated an automatic stay.

irs

From the IRS

The IRS will begin accepting tax returns electronically on January 20th. Paper tax returns will begin processing at the same time.
December 29, 2014
Archives
hildebrand

Critical Case Comment

By Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Chapter 13 Trustee for the Middle District of Tennessee (Nashville)
Failure of a creditor to comply with the requirements of Rule 3002.1 can state a cause of action under a state’s Unfair Competition Law, common law claim for negligence, and a state Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
hayes

Supreme Court Corner

SCOTUS granted cert in not one but two bankruptcy cases. See below for a synopsis of each case.

 

Final Order and Thus Appealable or Not So Much

By M. Jonathan Hayes, Certified Bankruptcy Specialist, Northridge, CA
The Supreme Court will review whether or not denial of a Chapter 13 Plan is a final order and thus appealable.

 

Who Gets the Money?

By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired)
Bill-Brown-colorPresumably, we will once and for all know the appropriate distribution process for funds on hand with the trustee at conversion or dismissal.
gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 13 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing the very popular series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees.Part 13: Exemptions vs. Income – A Caged Death Match
bluebond

From the Ninth Circuit

(Not password protected)
cfpb

News From the CFPB

(Not password protected)
December 15, 2014
Archives
tree

Ask Ms. Ps & Qs

By Professor Nancy Rapoport
rapoport“. . . on the theory that the “Twelve Days” song is being played incessantly in every store in the U.S., I’m going to steal that theme for this month’s column. In 2015, let’s all hope that bankruptcy law gives us . . .”
greenburg

Impact of Loan Modifications On A Chapter 13 Case: A Trustee’s Perspective

By Marie-Ann Greenberg, Chapter 13 Trustee District of New Jersey (Fairfield)
In a follow-up to the very popular What Is A Chapter 13 Trustee’s Responsibility In Reviewing Motions To Approve A Loan Modification? Trustee Greenberg looks at loan modifications from the perspective of the trusteeship.
gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 12 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing the very popular series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees.Part 12: Income. Gustafson looks at what it is, what it’s not and how to verify.
ncis

NCIS, e-Cigarettes and Malware

(Not password protected)

NCIS fans will remember the season opener and the great lengths Abby went to in guarding against potential hazards from inserting a drive (recovered from a dead body!) into the NCIS computer system.We should all take a lesson from this. Be aware of ANYTHING you insert into your computer’s drive(s) including chargers:

cfpb

News From the CFPB

(Not password protected)
December 8, 2014
Archives
greenburg

What Is A Chapter 13 Trustee’s Responsibility In Reviewing Motions To Approve A Loan Modification?

By Marie Ann Greenberg

“ . . . as trustees, do we object if it will negatively impact the creditors in the case or if it will negatively impact the debtor, whether during the pendency of the bankruptcy or years later? Do we object across the board or give it our blessing across the board?” Trustee Greenberg gives us a go-to, step-by-step resource for reviewing loan modifications.See other loan modification resources:

waldron

Attorney For Debtor Fees In Consumer Cases: How To Not Get Paid

By Hon. Thomas F. Waldron, Bankr. S.D. Ohio (Retired)
This article from Academy favorite Tom Waldron, reviews published decisions discussing attorney for debtor fees in consumer bankruptcy cases, in a variety of circumstances – all with negative results for the attorney.
badhire

14 Ways to Identify a Toxic Employee During the Interview

  • Click here for an Academy resource on terminating an employee.
gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 11 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing the very popular series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees.
gavel

Otte Hanging Up His Gavel

“After 28 years of service as a United States Bankruptcy Judge, including two years in recall status, and a 48 year career in the law, the Honorable Frank J. Otte will retire on December 31, 2014.”
jamesdavis

New Bankruptcy Forms: 22C-1 AND 22C-2 – EFFECTIVE AS OF DECEMBER 1ST

By James M. Davis, Attorney Representing Chapter 13 Trustee Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Nashville, TN

In this article, Attorney Davis has done an outstanding job of outlining the changes to Form 22C which is now two forms. Use of these forms is effective December 1st. For ease of printing, click here for a PDF of this article. This article is an excellent resource for para professionals who work with this, now these, forms every day.

December 1, 2014
Archives
hildebrand

Critical Case Comment

By Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Chapter 13 Trustee, Nashville, TN
Where the grace period to redeem pawned property expired prior to the filing of the Chapter 13 petition, the property was not property of the estate and the debtor could not treat this claim as a secured claim.
hayes

Supreme Court Corner

By M. Jonathan Hayes, Certified Bankruptcy Specialist, Northridge, CA
supremecourtA second look at cases headed to the Supremes from Academy Supreme Court expert Jonathan Hayes.
gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 10 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing the series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees.Part 10 entitled The Lightning Round is a collection of totally random concepts, terms, laws and doctrines! Included are simple definitions of complicated concepts heard regularly in a bankruptcy context and some broader explanations on stays.
kilborn

Some Bibles Are More Exemptable Than Others

(Not password protected)
Click here for an interesting Credit Slips post by Jason Kilborn. Sometimes a Bible is more than a Bible.
November 24, 2014
Archives
rapoport

Ask Ms. Ps & Qs

By Professor Nancy Rapoport
“You and I understand that affidavits are a way to provide written testimony and that swearing to an affidavit puts a person’s reputation for veracity on the line. But non-law-trained people might not understand that point.”
kiskin

I’m So Much Cooler Online: Using Social Media In Bankruptcy

By Katherine Iskin, Staff Attorney to Debra Miller, Trustee for South Bend and Fort Wayne, IN

A gem you will want to have for future reference. Attorney Iskin, expertly and concisely, outlines benefits and potential pitfalls in utilizing social media in your practice.

foyle

Supreme Court Grants Cert

By Larry Foyle, Kass Shuler, P.A., Tampa, Florida
supremecourt“The 11th Circuit determined . . . that because Dewsnup v. Timm only prohibited a Chapter 7 lien strip down situation and did not expressly involve a Chapter 7 lien strip off situation, that the 11th Circuit was not bound by the Supreme Court’s reasoning used in Dewsnup v. Timm . . .”Although a Chapter 7 issue, there are sexy chapter 20 lien strip implications.
gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 9 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing the series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees.Part 9 is entitled: Update On Some Hot §109(e) Debt Limit Issues
training

Staff Training

Staff training and development is an ongoing issue faced by law and trustee offices alike. Click here for an article recently run by Monster.com you may want to share with your staff – People You Shouldn’t Get Close To At Work.The Academy also offers staff development resources in its Staff Training Webinar Library. Topics for every office such as:

caution

Sanctions and Irony and Fraud, Oh My!

(Not password protected)
jamesdavis

New Bankruptcy Forms: 22C-1 AND 22C-2

By James M. Davis, Attorney Representing Chapter 13 Trustee Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Nashville, TN

In this article, Attorney Davis has done an outstanding job of outlining the changes to Form 22C which is now two forms. Use of these forms is effective December 1st. For ease of printing, click here for a PDF of this article. This article is an excellent resource for para professionals who work with this, now these, forms every day.

November 17, 2014
Archives
hildebrand

Critical Case Comment

By Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Chapter 13 Trustee for the Middle District of Tennessee

Trustee Hildebrand has outdone himself – this week we have a duo of CCCs. Two cases, same issue, two outcomes.

Case No. 1: A Chapter 13 trustee is entitled to calculate her commission based on receipts which include payments made toward the trustee’s own commission; the Chapter 13 trustee is entitled to the percentage fee commission on all receipts even when the case is subsequently dismissed.

Case No. 2: A Chapter 13 trustee is not entitled to collect a percentage fee on funds deposited with the trustee where the case is not confirmed and funds are returned to the debtor.

gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 8 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing the series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees. Part 8 is entitled: If You Think You May Be Appealing, Or Appealed….
wbrown

From the Editor – Reopening Closed Case

By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired)

This week Judge Brown explores another new topic not previously covered here: Reopening Closed Cases. He looks at one Chapter 7 case and one Chapter 13 Case:

caution

Sanctions and Irony and Fraud, Oh My!

(Not password protected)
jamesdavis

New Bankruptcy Forms: 22C-1 AND 22C-2

By James M. Davis, Attorney Representing Chapter 13 Trustee Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Nashville, TN

In this article, Attorney Davis has done an outstanding job of outlining the changes to Form 22C which is now two forms. Use of these forms is effective December 1st. For ease of printing, click here for a PDF of this article. This article is an excellent resource for para professionals who work with this, now these, forms every day.

November 10, 2014
Archives

gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 7 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing a bankruptcy primer series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees. Although developed for staff attorneys, this outline serves as a valuable resource for anyone entering the bankruptcy environment or those exposed on a limited basis.Part 7 is entitled: In Chapter 13, Pioneer is Dead of Dysentery.
ted

The Language of Lying

by Noah Zadan for TEDEd
This five and a half minute YouTube video is well worth your time. Mr. Zadan offers a quick overview of behaviors indicative of lying.
 socialsecurity

From the Social Security Administration

(Not password protected)
numbers

The Numbers, They Are a Changin’ . . . EFFECTIVE NOVEMBER 1st

The U.S. Trustee Program has updated the Census Bureau’s Median Family Income Data and will apply the updated data to cases filed on or after Nov. 1. Click here for Data Required for Completing Form 22A and Form 22C.
November 3, 2014
Archives
hildebrand

Critical Case Comment

By Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Chapter 13 Trustee for the Middle District of Tennessee
dollarsignAnother offering from the ‘King of Critical Case Comments’ . . . The Federal government’s power to enforce the collection of fines and restitution trumps the statutory protections found in the automatic stay as to both the debtor’s property and property of the estate.
gustafson

The Toolbox 2.1 – Basics For Chapter 13 Staff Attorneys – Part 6 of 18

Developed by John Gustafson Prior to Judicial Appointment
Continuing a bankruptcy primer series developed for attorneys who represent Chapter 13 trustees. Although developed for staff attorneys, this outline serves as a valuable resource for anyone entering the bankruptcy environment or those exposed on a limited basis.Another self-explanatory section title, Part 6 is OH NO! NOT A SECTION ON ETHICS! BLEH! But the good news is that it is only 10 pages!!
wbrown

From the Editor – Lien Stripping

By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired)

Lien stripping caught Judge Brown’s attention this week. He reviews 2 cases – one from the Sixth Circuit and one from the Eighth:

socialsecurity

From the Social Security Administration

(Not password protected)