Opinions

The District of Northern Illinois offers a database of opinions for the years 1999 to 2013, listed by year and judge. For a more detailed search, enter the keyword or case number in the search box above.

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Judge Jacqueline P. Cox

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.

Judge Timothy A. Barnes

15 B 32968,16 A 00019

Upon the “no evidence” motion for summary judgment brought by Associated Bank, National Association, held: The movant has not established grounds for summary judgment under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56 as it has not established the absence of genuine issue of material fact in dispute.  There is a genuine issue of material fact concerning the debtors’ solvency on the date they closed a loan with the movant, and movant is therefore not entitled to judgment as a matter of law.  The motion is, therefore, DENIED.

14 B 14023, 16 A 00387
The matter before the court is whether, at the request of the debtor, the court should stay an adversary proceeding, brought by the United States Trustee, seeking a denial of discharge under 11 U.S.C. § 727. The debtor argues that the existence of parallel criminal investigations means that continuing the adversary is imprudent, as that might subject her to conflicting choices—namely to invoke a Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination and face possible negative inferences arising therefrom, or to defend the adversary complaint and risk information therein being used in a criminal indictment. Held: In light of there being no actual pending criminal proceeding, the relevant standards as applied to the facts herein as they presently exist weigh in favor of continuing with the adversary. The motion to stay is, therefore, DENIED without prejudice.

Chief Judge Pamela S. Hollis

15 B 39945
The City of Chicago sought administrative expense priority for parking, standing and compliance violations incurred post-petition in this Chapter 13 case. City asserted that the appropriate test for administrative expense priority was set forth in Reading Co. v. Brown, 391 U.S. 471 (1968). Court denied City's motion, holding that: (1) Reading v. Brown did not apply; (2) Under first part of test set forth in Matter of Jartran, Inc., 732 F. 2d 584, these violations were not transactions with the estate; and (3) Under second part of Jartran test, these violations did not provide a benefit to the estate.

Judge Janet S. Baer

15 B 35358, 16 A 00727
The Debtor filed an adversary complaint against Walsh Construction Company (“Walsh”), seeking to avoid and recover certain funds deposited with the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County (the “Deposited Funds”) pursuant to 11 U.S.C. §§ 547(b), 548(a), 550(a), and 553(b).  Walsh filed a motion to dismiss the complaint, arguing that under the doctrine of res judicata, the dismissal of the Debtor’s prior adversary complaint seeking a declaratory judgment that the Deposited Funds were property of the bankruptcy estate and turnover of those Funds barred any further litigation arising from a judgment order (the “Judgment Order”) entered by the Circuit Court.  In the alternative, Walsh asked the Court to abstain from making a decision because the appeal of the Judgment Order is pending in the Circuit Court.  The Court found that, although the three elements required for res judicata had been met, the “Statutory Scheme Exception” to claim splitting in § 26(1)(d) of the Restatement (Second) of Judgments precluded the application of res judicata to bar the Debtor’s adversary proceeding, and, thus, Walsh’s motion to dismiss was denied.  In its discretion, the Court abstained from conducting further proceedings in connection with the adversary until the state court renders its decision on the related appeal of the Judgment Order.

16 B 31591
The Debtor, appearing pro se, proposed to pay Hale Gardens Condominium Association (the “Association”) $857 through her chapter 13 plan. The Association objected to confirmation of the Debtor’s plan because it did not provide for full payment of the Association’s alleged $14,938.25 secured claim, which claim was comprised mostly of attorneys’ fees related to the Association’s pre-petition attempts to collect assessments and fees from the Debtor. The Debtor argued that she owed the Association only $602, which the Court considered as an objection to the Association’s claim. The Court sustained in part both parties’ objections, finding that the Association had not applied the Debtor’s payments appropriately and that most of the attorneys’ fees were unreasonably incurred by the Association. The Court allowed the Association’s secured claim in the amount of $1,303.49 and held that the Debtor’s chapter 13 plan must provide for the payment of such claim in full pursuant to 11 U.S.C. §§ 1322(b)(2) and 1325(a)(5).

Judge Deborah L. Thorne

16 B 39654

Judge A. Benjamin Goldgar

In re Scott N. Jaffe
June 7, 2017

15 B 39490

Judge Jack B. Schmetterer

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