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New York Bankruptcy Law Blog

Social Research for Legal Research Examining a Judicial Assumption

Social Research for Legal Research Examining a Judicial Assumption by Wayne Greenwald

The Scenario

In 2010, you won a state court judgment against "Joe" for breach of contract. In 2017, "Joe" filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Should you be allowed to object to Joe discharging your judgment by now asserting that Joe's debt to you arose from a fraud? 

An Unappealable Contempt Decision Providing Rachmones[1]

Thumbnail image for An Unappealable Contempt Decision Providing Rachmones by Wayne Greenwald

The American Bankruptcy Institute's ("ABI") VOLO Project had me synopsize the Second Circuit Court of Appeals' decision in U.S.A. v. Kerr-McGee Corp. (In re Tronox Inc.).[2]

The sixty-two-page opinion boiled down to two "holdings."[3] They are:

a.) Claims derived through a debtor are bankruptcy estate property which only a trustee can assert;

b.) A District Court order on a contempt motion which:

1.) enforced an existing injunction; and

2.) made no contempt finding nor sanctions award was not a "final order"[4] subject to immediate appeal. 

Debt Cancellation - From the Frying Pan to the Fire?

Debt Cancellation From the Frying Pan to the Fire by Wayne Greenwald

When you're floundering in debt, having some of it cancelled or forgiven sounds great. Be careful. You may be trading a junk-yard dog for Godzilla.

To the Internal Revenue Service (the "IRS") forgiven debt creates Cancellation of Debt Income ("CODI").1

CODI is taxable unless the discharge:

(A) occurs in a bankruptcy case;

(B) occurs when the taxpayer is insolvent;

(C) is of qualified farm indebtedness;

(D) is of qualified real property business debt of anyone other than a C corporation; or      

(E) is of debt from a qualified principal residence which occurred-

(i) before January 1, 2017; or

(ii) subject to a written agreement before January 1, 2017.

Bankruptcy Case Dismissals Negating Bankruptcy Stipulations

Bankruptcy Case Dismissals Negating Bankruptcy Stipulations by Wayne Greenwald

Over one month ago, we had a big hearing in a big fight over the following facts:

A.) There was an adversary proceeding in a chapter 11 case ("Case 1").

B.) The adversary proceeding was settled during the chapter 11 case.1

C.) The non-debtor party defaulted under the stipulation.

D.) The chapter 11 case was dismissed without preserving any entered orders.2

E.) Two years later, the same debtor filed a chapter 7 case ("Case 2").

F.) The Case 2 chapter 7 trustee is suing for the debtor's rights under the Case 1        


We say, "No way!"


Chapter 7s for Entities?

Thumbnail image for Chapter 7s for Entities by Wayne Greenwald

Imagine thinking you've put a bad business experience behind you, only to learn its ghost is attacking you. That's the specter of poorly planned entity chapter 7 bankruptcies. Unfortunately, most bankruptcy cases for entities which start as Chapter 7 cases suffer from this. 

Debtor-Creditor Survival in 7 Minutes or So

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Debtor-Creditor Survival in 7 Minutes or So by Wayne Greenwald

Last week, I was given seven minutes for a presentation to some smaller business owners. Wondering what wisdom I could impart in that brief period, I created the following outline. They thought I should share it with the blogosphere. Hope you find it helpful.


Avoiding Clouds on Homestead Exemptions[1]

Thumbnail image for Avoiding Clouds on Homestead Exemptions

We represent a debtor with a substantially younger, non-debtor spouse and equity in their home, exceeding the debtor's homestead exemption. The home is owned as tenants in the entireties. This means that the surviving spouse inherits the property free and clear of the deceased spouse's creditors. The spouse's youth dissuaded the chapter 7 trustee from trying to sell the home free and clear of both owner's interests.[2]

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