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    Ramos v. Lieske, No. 22-cv-1266-BHL, 2022 WL 17581830 (E.D. Wis. December 12, 2022) (December 2022) -- District Court
    The debtor sought the bankruptcy court's permission to modify the monthly payment amount of a chapter 13 repayment plan while maintaining the extended repayment period previously approved under the now-repealed Section 1329(d). The district certified the matter for direct appeal to the Seventh Circuit.

    Layng v. Aydt, No. 22-cv-0096-LA (E.D. Wis. December 5, 2022) (December 2022) -- District Court
    The district court affirmed the bankruptcy court's order denying debtor his discharge under 11 U.S.C. § 727(a)(4)(A).

    Marty v. Mohela, No. 19-cv-1263-PP, 2022 WL 17092076 (E.D. Wis. November 21, 2022) (November 2022) -- District Court
    The debtor filed an appeal from the bankruptcy court's judgment granting the University Accounting Service, LLC's and the United States Department of Education's motions for summary judgment. The debtor alleged that his student loans subjected him to undue hardship and asked the court to declare his student loan debt to be dischargeable under 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(8). The bankruptcy court dismissed the appellants claims. Affirmed.

    Reinhart Foodservice LLC v. Schlundt, 646 B.R. 478 (E.D. Wis. 2022) (October 2022) -- District Court
    The district court held that under the plain terms of the Bankruptcy Code, as well as the "conduct test", debtor's liability under a prepetition personal guaranty for debt arising from postpetition transactions was a postpetition liability that was not discharged in the debtor's bankruptcy. Reversed and remanded.

    In re Greenpoint Tactical Income Fund LLC, Case No. 19-29613 (October 2022) -- Chief Judge G.M. Halfenger
    Freeborn & Peters LLP represented the Official Committee of Equity Security Holders for Greenpoint Tactical Income Fund LLC in these jointly-administered case. After plan confirmation Freeborn requested approval of its fees and expenses and the debtors filed a limited objection, which the court overruled.

    In re Lewis, Case. No. 18-26550-BEH, 2022 WL 7171238 (October 2022) -- Judge B.E. Hanan
    The Chapter 13 debtor sought to amend two prior court orders: (1) the order confirming his most recent Chapter 13 plan—which provided for a plan payment period of 84 months, under now-expired 11 U.S.C. section 1329(d)—and (2) a “doomsday” order requiring him to make timely plan payments to the trustee for six months. The debtor sought to amend the prior confirmation order to change the amount of his required plan payments for a several-month period, and also sought relief from the doomsday order by asking that the trustee’s ability to seek immediate dismissal of his case be predicated on whether he made payments under his proposed revised payment schedule, rather than the payment schedule imposed by his confirmed plan.

    Although the debtor avoided describing his first request as a plan modification under 11 U.S.C. section 1329, the Court considered that the substance of the relief sought appeared to qualify as a modification of the type described in section 1329(a). To the extent the debtor's request to amend the confirmation order was the equivalent of a plan modification, it would result in a plan payment period exceeding 60 months, in contravention of the plain language of 11 U.S.C. § 1329(c), and could not be granted. Alternately, if the debtor’s request to amend the confirmation order were viewed solely as a motion for relief under Civil Rule of Federal Procedure 60(b)(1) or (6), it did not establish excusable neglect or any extraordinary circumstances sufficient to warrant relief from a final order. As for the debtor's companion request for relief from the prior “doomsday” order, the Court found that the moving papers appeared to state a basis for relief, but held its ruling an abeyance to allow the debtor an opportunity to supply evidence—rather than counsel argument—to convince the court that there was a compelling reason to reconsider its prior non-final order.

    In re Nelson, Case No. 19-24458-beh, and In re Ramos, Case No. 20-21169-beh, 646 B.R. 810 (on appeal) (October 2022) -- Judge B.E. Hanan
    Chapter 13 debtors who previously extended their plan payment periods beyond 60 months under now-expired 11 U.S.C. section 1329(d) could not modify another aspect of their plans (such as the amount of plan payments) while retaining the extended payment period. Under the plain language of 11 U.S.C. section 1329(c), a court cannot confirm a plan that expressly provides for payments over a period that exceeds 60 months.

    Smith v. Kleynerman, 647 B.R. 196 (E.D. Wis. 2022) (September 2022) -- District Court
    Chapter 7 debtor moved to reopen his case and to avoid, on exemption-impairment grounds, a judicial lien that was placed on his interest in limited liability company (LLC) through charging order requiring him to turn over his future distributions and interest in LLC to judgment creditor, his former business partner. The bankruptcy court granted the motion to reopen and conditionally granted the motion for avoidance, provided that debtor reimburse judgment creditor for costs and fees incurred in the relevant state-court litigation. Affirmed.

    In re Egerson, No. 21-22557 (Bankr. E.D. Wis. Sept. 30, 2022) (September 2022) -- Judge K.M. Perhach
    A debtor proposed a Chapter 13 plan providing for payment of 12% interest on tax principal amounts included in the proof of claim filed by the Racine County Treasurer, but providing for payment of 3.25% interest on accrued interest and penalties. The County objected to confirmation of the plan, asserting that the debtor should pay 12% interest on the entire amount of its claim. The court overruled the objection. Section 511 of the Bankruptcy Code establishes the rate of interest to be paid on tax claims and requires courts to look to “applicable nonbankruptcy law” to determine the appropriate interest rate. In Wisconsin, interest accrues at the rate of 12% per year on “delinquent general property taxes, special charges, special assessments and special taxes.” Wis. Stat. § 74.47(1). The statute does not provide for 12% interest on accrued interest or 12% interest on accrued tax penalties. Notably, the court’s reading of the Wisconsin statute corresponded to the method the County used to calculate interest before the debtor filed the bankruptcy case.

    In re Hannon, Case No. 21-26050 (September 2022) -- Judge R.M. Blise
    The United States Trustee filed a motion to dismiss seeking a one-year bar on future filings and a dismissal with prejudice under 11 U.S.C. § 349(a). A dismissal with prejudice would have the effect of prohibiting the debtor from ever discharging the debts that existed on the petition date. The debtor had filed seven bankruptcy cases in 11 years and made only one plan payment in the present case. The UST alleged the debtor abused the bankruptcy system with her repeated filings and that she acted in bad faith when she failed to disclose her interest in a business and a loan she received in 2021. The court determined the debtor's lack of good faith constituted cause to dismiss the case and bar the debtor from filing another petition for one year. The court found, however, that the debtor’s abuse of the bankruptcy system was not so egregious to warrant dismissal with prejudice under § 349(a). The court further concluded that, unlike the remedies provided in 11 U.S.C. § 727(a)(4), Congress did not intend to bar the discharge of debts for chapter 13 debtors whose only offense was providing inaccurate information on their schedules.