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In re Bruce K. Propst

Following the debtor’s reopening of a discharged, no asset chapter 7 case nearly six years after the case’s first closure and on the debtor’s motion seeking avoidance of a previously unavoided judgment lien, held:  While the avoidance of a lien might be considered ordinary under other circumstances of another case, under the circumstances of this case, the relief is both extraordinary and problematic.  The debtor previously reopened the case and sought avoidance of the same lien four years after the case first closed.  Though that motion went through a complicated procedure in part due to the debtor’s previous counsel’s errors, it was ultimately heard on its merits and denied.  No reconsideration was sought or appeal taken.  It is now nearly two years later and too late under Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(c)(1) to seek relief under Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(b)(1), which rule appears to otherwise apply.  Because Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(b)(1) applies, relief under Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(b)(6) is also unavailable.  While the court might be able to entertain the request as an independent action under Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(d)(1), the debtor has failed to demonstrate that the court should ignore the law of this case to do so.  As a result, the motion to avoid the lien is DENIED.

Friday, March 4, 2022