Bankruptcy docket roundup – December 9, 2021

Apologies to my dear readers for falling behind on these posts! Will try to do better. Real life sometimes intrudes on my precious blogging time. Hope you’ve been doing well, or at least making do, without me.

Let’s start with an appeal to the Fourth Circuit. The panel looks into complex procedural issue related to a dispute over a condominium complex and, despite the condo association’s trial court loss for physical damages and Fair Housing Act issues, the association still wanted to collect its assessments against a condo owner. Clark v. Almy (19-2181) Judges Wilkinson, King, Diaz.

In the Central District of Illinois, there’s a cautionary case for practitioners to look into. Court grants US trustee’s request for attorney to disgorge $365 in filing fees over insufficient verification practices by the firm. In re Kincaid (19-70433), Judge Gorman.

In the District of Connecticut, section 523 defendant is a former financial advisor to the plaintiffs who lost a FINRA arbitration brought by the Ahuja’s based on negligent investment advice as a fiduciary. Summary judgement in favor of creditors because the debtor’s case falls under the securities subsection of 523(a)(19). Ahuja v. Fleming (19-51611), Judge Manning.

Staying in the cold country before moving south, in the Eastern District of Michigan, court sides with the debtor and dismisses a trustee’s 727 complaint because there was no allegation of fraud when the debtor transferred her exempt home six months after discharge. However, there is more to the case that may give the trustee avenues to move against the debtor. Lim v. Stewart (20-48595), Judge Tucker.

Moving down to sunnier and warmer District of Southern Florida, order granting motion to avoid liens under 522(f)(1)(A) over creditor’s objection that its lien does not actually “impair” the debtor’s exemption. Pretty interesting case in the context of Florida’s broad homestead exemptions and a split in the state on whether unenforceable recorded judgment liens impair the exemption. In re Pettengill (21-11326), Judge Russin.

Given how far Judge Russin dives into the nature or liens, I’d love to cover this one on the next podcast.

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