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Notice: Not all of the Judges Opinions will be made available on this site. Individual Judges have the option of specifying that all, some or none of their opinions be posted.

Chief Judge Phyllis M. Jones

State court judgment for past-due child support was a prepetition domestic support obligation, notwithstanding language in the judgment allowing payment over a term of years.  OCSE’s proof of claim was allowed. 

The terms of the debtor’s confirmed plan, when reviewed as a whole, required payment of the full amount of the claim over the life of the plan.  A second proof of claim filed by OCSE for postpetition child support payments, however, was disallowed.

Summary judgment granted in part and denied in part on Trustee’s fraudulent transfer claims.  Summary judgment granted in favor of the Trustee as to whether the Debtors had an interest in the Property, whether the Debtors voluntarily transferred their interest, and whether the Transfer occurred within two years of the petition date.  Summary judgment denied as to whether the Debtors received less than reasonably equivalent value for the Transfer, whether the Debtors were insolvent at the relevant time, and whether the Debtors made the Transfer with actual intent to hinder, delay, or defraud any creditor.

Judge Bianca M. Rucker

In this subchapter v chapter 11 case, the debtor in possession filed an application to employ an accountant pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 327.  The application requested that the accountant’s employment be approved with an effective date “nunc pro tunc” to the date of the filing of the debtor’s bankruptcy petition.  The Court found that nunc pro tunc relief was inapplicable in this instance because there was no court error or delay to correct for the record.  However, the Court found that it was authorized to approve a pre-application employment date under § 327 because Congress included no temporal limitation in that code section.  As a result, the Court approved the employment of the accountant effective as of the date the debtor filed his petition on the condition that the debtor file an amended affidavit of disinterestedness executed by the accountant that fully complied with the disclosure requirements stated in Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 2014(a).

Judge Richard D. Taylor

Motion to set aside default judgment denied on basis that service was proper per information supplied on filed proof of claim and at the corresponding secretary of state’s office.

Cumulative omissions, misstatements, and inaccuracies on a debtor’s schedules sufficient for the court to conclude that the debtor’s discharge should be denied pursuant to section 727(a)(4) as a false oath or account.

Judge Ben T. Barry

The Court granted in part and denied in part the chapter 7 trustee’s motion for partial summary judgment, finding that the trustee’s designated “triggering creditor” held an allowed unsecured claim on the date of the debtor’s petition but that factual issues remained for trial regarding whether the trustee’s proffered “triggering creditor” had a viable pre-petition cause of action against the debtor that would enable the trustee to step into the creditor’s shoes under 11 U.S.C. § 544(b) for the purpose of pursuing an avoidance action to recover the debtor’s allegedly fraudulent transfers of real property for the benefit of the estate. 

Here, the Court conditionally overruled several objections to the debtor’s exemptions, finding that if the debtor’s plan was ultimately confirmed under 11 U.S.C. § 1191(b), property of the debtor’s estate would include eighty acres of property that the debtor had acquired after filing his chapter 13 petition but before converting his case to subchapter V of chapter 11.  The Court also held that the eighty acres was rural rather than urban and found that the property qualified as the debtor’s homestead under Arkansas law.

In this chapter 13 case, the Court denied the debtor’s attorney’s additional application for compensation because the application was not filed until three days after the case was dismissed and property of the estate had revested in the debtor upon dismissal pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 349(b)(3).

Here, the court sustained a judgment creditor’s objection to the debtor’s homestead exemption based on the court’s finding that the debtor had not established the subject property as his homestead under  Arkansas law because the debtor had not resided on the property while married or the head of a household.  The court also denied the creditor’s motion for relief from stay because the creditor did not establish a prima facie case that there was cause to do so under 11 U.S.C. § 362(d)(1).

In this involuntary chapter 7 case, a creditor and the chapter 7 trustee objected to the debtor’s claim of Florida exemptions, alleging that Florida was not the debtor’s domicile during the relevant look-back periods under 11 U.S.C. § 522(b)(3)(A).  The court overruled the objections, finding that the fact that the debtor intermittently resided in Tennessee, where he also owned or leased property, did not defeat the debtor’s claim that Florida was his domicile during the 910 days prior to the filing of his involuntary petition.  In making its decision, the court looked to objective indicators that the debtor intended to make Florida, rather than Tennessee, his domicile, including: the debtor’s ownership of property and physical presence in Florida, Florida voter registration, Florida driver’s license, Florida utility payments, and application for a Florida homestead exemption.