Debtors' post-confirmation inheritance and business income is property of the Chapter 13 estate, and proper subject of Trustee's modification of plan to increase payments.
Swanson v. Green (In re Green), 2007 WL 4570590 (December 2007) -- Chief Judge S.V. Kelley
Debtors' discharge was denied based on § 727(a)(2) and (a)(4), when debtors failed to list personal property (Beanie Babies and Disney memorabilia) collected over many years and which debtors believed did not have value to anyone else. Court held that debtors should have listed property in general terms and given its value as unknown.
In re Luckett, 2007 Bankr. LEXIS 3638 (October 2007) -- Chief Judge S.V. Kelley
Court interprets equal monthly payments provision of § 1325(a)(5)(B)(iii) to allow lump sum payment only if made on the effective date of the plan.
In re McPike, 2007 WL 2317420 (August 2007) -- Chief Judge S.V. Kelley
Trustee's Objection to Plan Modification based on disposable income was overruled. Debtor's modification was approved as having been filed in good faith.
In re FV Steel & Wire Co., 372 B.R. 446 (July 2007) -- Chief Judge S.V. Kelley
Analyzing CERCLA's provisions for the cost of recovery and removal of environmental hazards at a contaminated site, there was no clear proof that the EPA viewed the site as an imminent threat, and the Court valued a claim filed by a co-debtor on behalf of the EPA in the amount of $75,000.
In re Brandenburg, No. 07-20244-svk (May 2007) -- Chief Judge S.V. Kelley
Debtor's mortgage payments on a Minnesota condominium that had been sold at a foreclosure sale two days before the petition could not be deducted on Line 42 of Form B22A as "scheduled as contractually due," due to the provisions of Minnesota foreclosure law. The same result may not occur under Wisconsin Law.
In re Stimac, 366 B.R. 889 (March 2007) -- Chief Judge S.V. Kelley
For purposes of Form B22C, above-median debtors may deduct expenses for both their "basic home telephone service" (Line 25A) as well as cell phones and other telecommunications expenses (Line 37), as long as these other expenses are necessary for the health and welfare of the debtor or for the production of income. With respect to the Line 30 deduction for taxes, an above-median debtor may simply deduct the amount withheld from the debtor's paycheck as long as the debtor dedicates 50% of any tax refunds to the plan. If the debtor chooses not to dedicate 50% of the tax refunds, the correct Line 30 tax deduction will be presumed to be the amount actually paid in taxes as evidenced by the most recent tax return filed. The debtor may rebut this presumption by showing that the taxes paid in the most recent year would constitute an inaccurate deduction due to a change in circumstances; the trustee will then have the opportunity to challenge the accuracy or reasonableness of the debtor's calculations.
In re Cline, No. 06-25495-svk (March 2007) -- Chief Judge S.V. Kelley
In Chapter 7 Cases, the U.S. Trustee must file his statement of presumed abuse under § 704(b) within 10 days of the first date set for the meeting of creditors rather than the conclusion of the meeting of creditors. Although Bankruptcy Rule 9006 does not permit extension of this deadline, the Court may use its power under § 105(a) to extend the deadline if it appears that the debtor is attempting to abuse the bankruptcy process.
In re Gilbertson, 340 B.R. 618, vacated by 2007 WL 433096 (February 2007) -- Chief Judge S.V. Kelley
Compensation for professionals retained under § 328 cannot be reviewed for reasonableness.
In re Nockerts, 357 B.R. 497 (December 2006) -- Chief Judge S.V. Kelley
"Scheduled as contractually due" for purposes of § 707(b)(2)(A)(iii) means due under the contract between the debtor and secured creditor. The determination is to be made as of the date of the Chapter 7 petition, for purposes of the "presumption of abuse" in § 707(b)(2)(A)(i), and debtor's intent not to reaffirm is not relevant, as long as debtor is contractually obligated to make the payments on the date of the petition. For purposes of § 707(b)(3), more than the ability to pay some of the debt in a chapter 13 plan is needed to show an abuse under the "totality of the circumstances" test.