U.S. Supreme Court: Stale Claims, Attorneys and Trustees in Chapter 13 & Dissent’s Call for Congress to Overrule (Midland Funding v. Johnson)

By Donald L. Swanson The case is Midland Funding, LLC v. Johnson, Supreme Court Case No. 16-348 (decided May 15, 2017).   It’s about creditors filing proofs of stale claims (i.e., claims barred by statute of limitations) in Chapter 13 cases. The Facts Aleida Johnson files Chapter 13 bankruptcy.  Then, Midland files a proof of claim... Continue Reading →

Student Loan Crisis: High-Priced Colleges Support Beautiful Campuses (and Other Luxuries) on the Backs of their Students

By:  Donald L. Swanson “Back when I was in school . . .” This is a tired-old phrase, usually followed by tales of hardship. The Olden Days But here’s an opposite twist:  Back when I was in college (during the 1970s), you could actually pay your way through, with little-to-no debt, by working part-time jobs... Continue Reading →

Why Don’t Consumer Cases Mediate?

By: Donald L. Swanson Mediation is firmly entrenched as a dispute resolution tool in bankruptcy.  Mediation is commonly and regularly used throughout the bankruptcy system.  And mediation’s value in bankruptcy is almost-universally recognized. A Mediation Gap But there are wide gaps in bankruptcy where mediation is still under-utilized.  One of the gaps is consumer cases. ... Continue Reading →

Mortgage Modification Mediation (“MMM”) . . . A Program Worth Adopting

By: Matthew Gillespie For many, if not most of us, our homes are our biggest assets. The inverse of this is also true – our mortgages are often our biggest liabilities. It makes sense, then, that in Chapter 13 consumer bankruptcies, a debtor’s mortgage can have a major impact on the success (or lack thereof)... Continue Reading →

Bankruptcy Mediation for the Little Guy – Part 2: Nebraska in the Lead

By Matthew Gillespie In my previous post, I discussed the Nebraska’s Federal Practice Fund: a fund based on attorney admission fees that, inter alia, allows parties in bankruptcy proceedings to apply for funds to pay their portion of mediation fees when they’re unable to pay themselves. Nebraska’s District Court adopted this measure under the umbrella... Continue Reading →

Bankruptcy Mediation for the Little Guy – Part 1: Financial Assistance

By Matthew Gillespie Of all the benefits mediation provides, the perennial favorite is this: it saves money! Not only can a successful mediation conclude a dispute without the rigmarole and expense of a hearing (or worse, trial), but even unsuccessful mediations can bring the parties closer to resolution of the dispute another time. But what... Continue Reading →

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