In a bankruptcy adversary proceeding, a judgment in the gross amount of $500,000 based upon the wrongful foreclosure of the debtor’s home. After getting relief from the stay, the trustee accepted the amount needed to bring the 2nd lien current, but claimed other defaults and foreclosed. Timely filing the complaint and a Notice of Pending Action, the third party buyers were part of the suit.
After three days of trial, the court found the foreclosure wrongful and ordered a judgment of over $320,000 after giving credit for the over $170,000 already received. The Bankruptcy Appellate Panel of the Ninth Circuit affirmed, and the case settled prior to hearing by the Ninth Circuit itself.
SALE OF 55 ACRES OF CONTAMINATED LAND
A Chapter 11 debtor owned a large tract of land which had been used as a oil refinery dating back to the 1920's. The land was contaminated with numerous hydrocarbon pollutants, and underground contamination threatened aquifers.
The buyer found two buyers of separated parcels which sales were approved by the court, bringing in over $38-million to the estate and its creditors.
WRONGFUL CLAIM OF DEFAULT AFTER FULL PLAN PAYMENT
A Chapter 13 debtor completed all of her payments under the plan, including all direct payments to the first lender on her home. The Chapter 13 trustee sent a notice of cure, and the lender acknowledged that the pre-petition default was cured, but claimed a $19,700 post-petition default despite holding over $23,000 “in suspense.”
After discovery and far-reaching discovery orders, the lender agreed to credit the suspense account to the debtor, thereby curing the post-petition “default”, and paying over $49,000 in attorney’s fees and costs.
The First Meeting of Creditors (aka 341(a)) had just concluded when the young woman client turned to me and said, “Thank you. I hope I never see you again.”
Her thanks was sincere, and so was her hope that bankruptcy would give her a fresh start so she would not repeat the experience she had just undergone. Most clients express the same thoughts.