Judge Jacqueline P. Cox - Opinions

Judge Jacqueline P. Cox

15 B 43653, 16 A 206
The court denied the Debtor a discharge of her student loan debts, finding that she can maintain more than a minimal standard of living if forced to repay them.

17 B 36587, 17 A 00594
The Debtors took out a $2,200,000 loan from America's Wholesale Lender in 2006 to purchase real estate.  They executed both a note and a mortgage in connection therewith.  They failed to make payments starting in 2008.  The lender filed a mortgage foreclosure case against them in 2009 in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois.  In October, 2017 the state court entered a judgment of foreclosure in that case, ruling in favor of the lender on its motion for summary judgment, rejecting the Debtors' claim that because America's Wholesale Lender had not been incorporated before the documents were executed, the note and mortgage were null and void. The Debtors filed this chapter 11 bankruptcy case 7 weeks later on December 11, 2017.

The Debtors filed this adversary proceeding seeking to have the note and mortgage declared invalid for the same reasons asserted without success in state court.

The Lender filed a Motion to Dismiss the Adversary Proceeding which this court has granted with prejudice, applying the Rooker-Feldman doctrine and the court's authority to abstain as explained by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in In re Jepson, 816 F.3d 942 , 948 (2016).

17 B 25141
In this case, the City of Chicago refused to turn over the debtor’s vehicle unless their claim was paid in full. The City’s claim was treated as unsecured in the confirmed plan; the City did not object to this treatment of its claim. The Debtor filed a motion to modify his confirmed plan to pay the City of Chicago in full as a compromise to get the City to release the vehicle. In this opinion, the court denied the motion to modify the plan and sanctioned the City for violating the automatic stay in violation of Thompson v. GMAC.The court ruled that the City did not have a possessory lien as provided for in its ordinance because the ordinance was inconsistent with Illinois law.

16 B 14713 Consolidated with 16 B 23020, 16 A 00707
The court found several debts nondischargeable where the debtor, an attorney, lied about and failed to repay clients' loans from settlement proceeds.

17 B 22517
The movants sought dismissal of this Chapter 11 case for cause alleging that the Debtor is an instrumentality of the Village of Lombard, and as such is not allowed to seek bankruptcy relief as a governmental unit.  The Debtor was incorporated by Lombard to construct and operate a hotel and convention center which has been managed under the Westin flag for several years. The court denied the motions to dismiss finding that Lombard did not control the Debtor and that the Debtor did not perform municipal functions, relying in part on an Illinois Appellate Court ruling denying the Debtor’s efforts seeking a tax exemption as a governmental body.

In re Demetrius Adger
September 20, 2017

17 B 20163
The issue was whether Debtor Adger's filing of a Chapter 13 case on July 5, 2017 at 6:26 p.m., rather than before 5 p.m. when the Cook County Clerk's office closed was filed timely  for purposes of allowing the debtor to treat a tax purchaser's claim over the life of a Chapter 13 plan.   The court analyzed  the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure, the Illinois Supreme Court's Electronic Filing Standards and Principles and our local Bankruptcy Court's Administrative Procedures for CM/ECF  that govern electronic filing. Generally those Rules and Standards provide that a document filed on the due date before midnight is timely filed.  The Amended Motion to Modify Automatic Stay was denied.

09 B 49112, 17 A 00280
The Debtor sued Wells Fargo Home Mortgage alleging that it violated the discharge injunction when it sent her three informational letters concerning its lien. The court found that the creditor did no more than what Bankruptcy Code Section 524(j) allows mortgagees to do post-discharge: communicate with debtors to maintain periodic payments on residential property in lieu of the creditor pursuing in rem relief to enforce the lien.

16 B 8776, 16 A 00356
Debtor Erin V. McDougal defaulted on rent payments under an apartment lease.  Her lessor asked that the debt owed be found to be non-dischargeable due to representations made by the Debtor alleged to be false. During the period the representations were being made the Debtor paid $35,000 to the lessor in an effort to satisfy her obligations.  The court found (1) that the representations were promises to become current, not false representations made with intent to deceive and  (2) that her failure to become current  was a contract breach because the statements could not be held to be false representations where the creditor can not prove that a debtor never intended to make payments.

In re EHC, LCC
April 25, 2017

15 B 40866
In this ruling the court sanctioned an attorney pursuant to Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 9011 for pursuing a bankruptcy case solely to delay a foreclosure case, to avoid the lawful appointment of a receiver and to needlessly increase a secured creditor's legal fees and costs.

In re Richard Sharif
February 16, 2017

09 B 5868
The Court sanctioned Attorney Maurice James Salem and his clients Ragda Sharifeh and Haifa Sharifeh for violating Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 9011 for filing several motions and pleadings in an attempt to gain access to trust assets held to be property of the Debtor's bankruptcy estate in 2010.  The 2010 Order where the trust assets were found to be the Debtor's alter ego and thus property of the bankruptcy estate as of February 24, 2009 was affirmed by the District Court in 2012.  The Seventh Circuit affirmed the District Court in 2015 after the U.S. Supreme Court reversed the Seventh Circuit's earlier ruling limiting the bankruptcy court's jurisdiction.
Mr. Salem has been ordered to pay a $20,000 fine. He and his clients have been ordered to never again file pleadings in this bankruptcy case and its related adversary proceedings.
Should Mr. Salem need to file something in these cases in the future he has to first obtain leave of this Court to do so.

Pages