M.D.N.C.: In re Washabaugh- Denial of Interlocutory Appeal

Summary:

Following the re-opening of Ms. Washabaugh’s Chapter 7, the Bankruptcy Administrator sought revocation of her discharge. Ms. ’s motion to dismiss that complaint, alleging that the Bankruptcy Administrator lacked standing for such action, was denied by the bankruptcy court and Ms. Washabaugh sought leave to bring an interlocutory appeal to the district court.

The district court began with 28 U.S.C. § 158, which allows “with leave from the court” appeal of interlocutory orders based on the following factors:

(1) the appeal involves a controlling question of pure law, the resolution of which will completely determine the outcome of the litigation;
(2) as to which there is a substantial ground for difference of opinion between courts; and
(3) the resolution of the question as a whole would materially advance the termination of the litigation.
See In re Biltmore Invs., Ltd, 538 B.R. 706 (Bankr. W.D.N.C. 2015), appeal dismissed (4th Cir. 15-2313) (Feb. 5, 2016).

Commentary:

While not squarely on same specific issue as Bullard v. Blue Hills Bank, 135 S. Ct. 1686 (2015), which involved whether the denial of confirmation was a final, appealable order, the Supreme Court there did recently address interlocutory appeals in bankruptcy. While not giving carte blanche to such, it the unanimous opinion did discuss the “several mechanisms for interlocutory review” available and also expressed its “expectation that lower courts will certify and accept interlocutory appeals from plan denials in appropriate cases.”

For a copy of the opinion, please see:

Washabaugh- Denial of Interlocutory Appeal

About

1. Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature from Washington University, 1993.

2. Juris Doctor degree from George Washington University, 1996.

Admissions to Practice of Law:

North Carolina Bar, 1996.
Federal District Courts for the Eastern and Middle Districts of North Carolina.

Specialty Certification:

North Carolina State Bar: Certified as a Specialist in Consumer Bankruptcy.

Areas of Practice:

Practice limited to consumer and business debtor bankruptcy law, 1998 to present.

Memberships:

National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys (NACBA).
North Carolina Academy of Trial Lawyers (NCATL).
North Carolina Bar Association, Bankruptcy Section.

Lectures prepared and presented:

North Carolina Academy of Trial Lawyers seminar on bankruptcy; Topic: Counseling the Consumer Debtor Prior to Court – C.Y.A. Forms to Help ‘Gird They Loins’; 2001.
Middle District Bankruptcy Seminar; Topic: Preparing Chapter 13 Plans; 2002.
NACBA National Convention; Topic: Efficient Office Practices; 2003.
NACBA National Convention; Topic: Chapter 7 vs. Chapter 13 Debates; 2004.
Middle District Bankruptcy Seminar; Topic: Chapter 7 & 13 Hot Issues; 2004.

Positions held:

NACBA National Convention; Convention Chair; 2008.
NACBA National Convention; Panel Moderator: Topic: Basic Bankruptcy Issues; 2008.
NACBA National Convention; Panel Moderator; Topic: Chapter 13-Disposable Income and Other Issues; 2007.
NACBA National Convention; Panel Moderator; Topic: Representing Members of the Military and Their Families; 2007.
NACBA, Member of National Board of Directors, 2006 to present.
NCATL, Chair of the Bankruptcy Section, 2003 to 2007.
NACBA, Chair of the North Carolina Section, 2003 to 2007.
NC Bar Association, Bankruptcy Section, Bankruptcy Council Member, 2004 to present.

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