Tag: chapter 13

Bankr. M.D.N.C.: In re Calloway- Domestic Support Obligations and Good Faith in Chapter 13

Summary:

Ms. Calloway divorced Mr. Bowles and shortly before a final judgment was entered in their equitable distribution proceeding, she filed Chapter 13. Just prior to Ms. Calloway’s bankruptcy filing, the state court judge circulated a preliminary ruling to the parties via email, stating that he believed an unequal distribution of the marital assets in favor of Mr. Bowles would be equitable and that Ms. Calloway would be required was to pay a total of $50,514 by means of monthly payments of $300, due to the her liquidation of two retirement accounts, which had a total value of roughly $31,000. Additionally, since their separation, Ms.… Read More

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Bankr.  M.D.N.C.: In re Price- Separate Classification of Student Loans in Chapter 13Bankr.  M.D.N.C.: In re Price- Separate Classification of Student Loans in Chapter 13

Summary:

The Prices, who are above median income debtors, but nonetheless have negative projected disposable monthly and no non-exempt assets, proposed an estimated 15% dividend to the class of dischargeable general unsecured creditors, which totaled $11,728.38.  They also proposed to separately classify the  $10,463.48 claim by Navient for non-dischargeable student loans.  The Chapter 13 Trustee supported confirmation, but the Bankruptcy Administrator filed a limited objection to such treatment.
The bankruptcy court first addressed whether the prohibition in  §1322(b)(1) against “unfair discrimination” in favor of one class of unsecured creditors was applicable as  §1322(b)(5) allows the a plan to cure and maintain payments on “any unsecured claim … on which the last payment is due after the date on which the final payment under the plan is due.”  While recognizing a split in opinions on this question, the court held that since §1322(b)(5) specifically applies despite the limitations in §1322(b)(2), it does not similarly explicitly override the “unfair discrimination” restrictions in §1322(b)(1). … Read More

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Law Review: Cohen, Lawless and Shin- Opposite of Correct: Inverted Insider Perceptions of Race and Bankruptcy

Abstract:

Previous data collected during the 2007 meltdown of the subprime mortgage market showed that African Americans were approximately twice as likely to file chapter 13 bankruptcy than persons of other races, a significant policy issue given the generally less generous rules in chapter 13. We first update and replicate these findings with new data collected during 2013 2014 as the housing market recovered. Results of the original study were not specific to the subprime crisis as the new data showed the same 2:1 racial disparity as the older data, suggesting that this disparity may be a relatively enduring part of the U.S.… Read More

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Law Review: Eraslan, Hulya et al.- The Anatomy of U.S. Personal Bankruptcy Under Chapter 13

Abstract:

By compiling a novel data set from bankruptcy court dockets recorded in Delaware between 2001 and 2002, the authors build and estimate a structural model of Chapter 13 bankruptcy. This allows them to quantify how key debtor characteristics, including whether they are experiencing bankruptcy for the first time, their past-due secured debt at the time of filing, and income in excess of that required for basic maintenance, affect the distribution of creditor recovery rates. The analysis further reveals that changes in debtors’ conditions during bankruptcy play a nontrivial role in governing Chapter 13 outcomes, including their ability to obtain a financial fresh start.… Read More

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Bankr.  W.D.N.C.: In re Leviner- Characterization of Claim as Domestic Support Obligation

Summary:

After nearly 35 years of marriage,  Thomas Leviner and Kathy Leviner divorced and negotiated a Settlement where the parties prior marital residence was retained jointly for their children to inherit,  but with Mr.  Leviner to make the mortgage payments and Ms.  Leviner to retain the property during her lifetime (unless she remarried.)  Mr.  Leviner was also pay alimony of $300 a week until Ms.  Leviner turned 67 years old.  In 2015, after refinancing the house, Mr.  Leviner sought to offset the mortgage payments from the alimony being paid.  This was rejected by Ms.  Leviner, through her domestic attorney, and Mr.  … Read More

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Bankr. E.D.N.C.: In re Alomia – Denial of Motion to Incur Debt

Summary:

The bankruptcy court denied Mr. Alomia’s motion to incur student loan debt to attend the Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas as he was delinquent on his plan, which was not yet confirmed.

Commentary:

While delinquency on plan payments would indicate that a debtor would be unable to presently carry a greater debt burden, federal student loans as sought here would not become repayable for 6 months following the borrower’s completion of school, so it is not clear how these loans would impair his ability to perform under the plan.

Further, Mr. Alomia appears to have relocated to Houston and one might suspect that the recent Hurricane Harvey may have impeded is ability to both make his most recent plan payment and also participate in the confirmation of his plan.… Read More

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Bankr. E.D.N.C.: In re Green – Determination of Noncontingent and Liquidated Debts for Eligibility under 11 U.S.C. § 109(e)

Summary:

In determining whether Mr. Green was eligible, under 11 U.S.C. § 109(e), to be a Chapter 13 debtor due to debt limitations, the bankruptcy court reviewed several types of claims to determine whether each was “noncontingent” or “liquidated”.

While determination of whether a debt is “noncontingent” or “liquidated” is a question of law, See In re Goralnick, 81 B.R. 570, 571 (9th Cir. BAP 1987) the amount of a debt is a question of fact. “[A] debt is noncontingent if all of the events necessary to give rise to liability for it take place prior to the filing of the petition.” In re Sappah, No.… Read More

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Bankr. E.D.N.C.: In re Hurlburt- Anti-Deficiency Mortgage Statute does not Circumvent Anti-Modification Provisions

Summary:

Mr. Hurlburt sought to cram down the claim of a seller-financed purchase money deed to the value of his principal residence. While this would have been impermissible under 11 U.S.C. § 1322(b)(2), because the note was due, Mr. Hurlburt argued that 11 U.S.C. § 1322(c)(2) allowed such treatment even though Witt v. United Companies Lending Corp., 113 F.3d 508 (4th Cir. 1997) interpreted that section to allow only modification of the payment and not cram down. As this was a seller-financed purchase money deed, the anti-deficiency provisions of N.C.G.S. § 45-21.28, limited the lien-holder to only collect against the collateral.… Read More

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Bankr. E.D.N.C.: In re Smith- Requirements of a Plan Modification

Summary:

After the sale of her home, Ms. Smith sought a plan modification to discontinue disbursements on the mortgage, which had until that point been paid as a conduit. The Chapter 13 Trustee requested that Ms. Smith provided amended Schedules I and J or other evidence of current income and expenses. This request was refused and the Trustee objected to the modification.

Starting from In re Arnold, 869 F.2d 240 (4th Cir. 1989) the bankruptcy court held that a post-confirmation required the following:

1. A showing of a “substantial and unanticipated change in circumstances”;
2. That the modification was for one of the purposes allowed under 11 U.S.C.… Read More

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Bankr. M.D.N.C.: In re Martin- Confirmation Vacated Pursuant to Rule 60(b) due to Mistake

Summary:

Debtor’s Chapter 13 plan was confirmed cramming down the claim of Greater Piedmont Credit Union against mobile home and land, prior to the filing of the Proof of Claim by GPCU showing that title to the mobile home had been cancelled, affixing it to the real property. Within thirty days of confirmation and before the passing of the bar date for filing claims, GPCU filed a Motion pursuant to Rule 60(b) for relief from the Confirmation Order based on mistake.

The bankruptcy court held that to obtain relief under Rule 60(b)(1), GPCU was required to show:

(1) That the underlying motion was filed within one year of the date the Confirmation Order;
(2) That GFCU had a meritorious defense;
(3) That the Debtor would not be unfairly prejudiced by having the judgment set aside; and
(4) The existence of mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect as a ground for relief.… Read More

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