Category Archives: current-events

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John Bryson – Commerce Secretary Nominee

To bankrupt or not to bankrupt…  Yes, it is a little cliché, but that was the question faced by CEO of Edison International, John Bryson, during the California electricity debacle.  Now Bryson, has been nominated for the Secretary of Commerce.  The full LA Times article can be found here.

TowneSquare Media, LLC v. Brill (7th Cir.)

Justia.com Opinion Summary

Defendant owned companies forced into Chapter 11 bankruptcy, but was not a debtor in the proceedings. The plan was confirmed and prohibited suits against the bankruptcy professionals and certain litigation against pre-bankruptcy creditors. Years later defendant sued plaintiff, pre-judgment creditors, and the bankruptcy professionals in an Indiana state court, based on Indiana law. The creditors removed the suit to bankruptcy court (28 U.S.C. 1452(a)) rather than asking the bankruptcy judge to enforce his order. The statute authorizes removal of any claim of which that court would have jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. 1334, which confers on the district courts original jurisdiction of all civil proceedings arising under the Bankruptcy Code, or “arising in or related to cases under” the Code. The bankruptcy judge determined that the suit against the bankruptcy professionals was barred. Defendant filed an amended complaint eliminating all defendants except plaintiff and stating that the only claims arose from alleged violations of confidentiality agreements. The bankruptcy judge ruled that, as amended, the complaint was unrelated to the bankruptcy and ordered the suit remanded to the state court. The district judge affirmed. The Seventh Circuit concluded that the dismissal was not subject to review.

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Illinois Foreclosure Statistics

7th Cir. Opinions

7th Circuit Opinion Summaries courtesy of Justia.com

United States v. Rogan

Bankruptcy, Criminal Law, Government, White Collar Crime

River Road Hotel Partners, LLC v. Amalgamated Bank

Bankruptcy

Bloomfield State Bank v. United States

Bankruptcy, Real Estate & Property Law, Tax Law

Costello v. Grundon

Bankruptcy, Commercial Law, Securities Law

CDX Liquidating Trust v. Venrock Assocs., et al

Bankruptcy, Business Law, Securities Law

Reedsburg Util. Comm’n v. Grede Foundries, Inc.

Bankruptcy, Utilities Law

Kimbrell v. Brown

Bankruptcy, Injury Law

Reedsburg Util. Comm’n v. Grede Foundries (7th Cir.)

Justia Case Summaries

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Justia.com Opinion Summary:

Wisconsin smelting plant owed more than $1.3 million in delinquent utility charges to the local municipal utility when it filed for Chapter 11. Months later, despite the Automatic Stay, a utility company implemented a process pursuant to Wisconsin Statutes and Local Ordinances 66.0809 and 66.0627 by which the plant’s unpaid utility bills became a lien against the Debtor‘s property. Both the Bankruptcy and District Courts found that none of the exceptions to the Automatic Stay applied to make their actions. They were, in fact, a violation of the Stay.  The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed, holding that no exception to the Stay applied and the offending utility company creditor did not obtain a pre-petition security interest in the plant’s property by providing services or by giving notice in the form of billing. Finally, the 7th Circuit agreed with the District Court that the utility bills produced did not amount to a “tax or special assessment” that would have exempted them from the operation of the Stay.

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Stern v. Marshall (US S.Ct.)

Seal_of_the_supreme_court

Stern, Executor for Est. of Marshall v. Marshall, Executrix for Est. of MarshallSupreme Court of United States   Decided June 23
Click here to view and download the opinion in .pdf format.
The Question: Whether a bankruptcy court judge hadauthority under 28 U. S. C. §157 and Article III of the US Constitution to enter final judgment on a counterclaim filed by Vickie Lynn Marshall a/k/a Anna Nicole Smith (whose Estate is Petitioner) against Pierce Marshall (whose Estate is Respondent) in her bankruptcy proceedings.
The Upshot: As set forth in §157(a) Congress divided bankruptcy proceedings into 3 categories:
  1. Cases under Title 11;
  2. Cases arising in a Title 11 case; and
  3. Cases related to a case under Title 11.
With respect to the first 2 categories, “core proceedings arising under title 11, or arising in a case under title 11,” District courts refer proceedings to bankruptcy judges, who intern are empowered to enter a final judgment. §§157(a), (b). Pierce argued that the bankruptcy court lacked jurisdiction to resolve Vickie’s counterclaim because his own initial defamation claim against her was a “personal injury tort” – that is, the kind of thing that the bankruptcy court lacked jurisdiction to hear under §157(b) because it did not arise under title 11 or arise in a title 11 case.
The Decision: A majority of the Supreme Court agreed with Pierce and rejected the claim made by the estate of Anna Nicole that the bankruptcy court legitimately exercised jurisdiction over the counterclaim as an adjunct of the District Court or Court of Appeals. Instead the Court held that the 1984 Bankruptcy Act and §§157(c) and 1334(c) required that some matters be sent to the State or District courts for resolution, and nothing about this situation changed that basic division of labor.