Opinions

The Middle District of Georgia offers opinions in PDF format, listed by year and judge. For a more detailed search, enter the keyword or case number in the search box above.

Please note: These opinions are not a complete inventory of all judges' decisions and are not documents of record. Official court records are available at the clerk's office.

Judge James D. Walker Jr. (Retired)

Court found that Chapter 7 Debtor was reckless in his actions but did not intend to deceive creditor and thereby denied creditor’s objection to discharge under 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(2)(A) and 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(2)(B).

Secondary lien holder filed a complaint against the primary lien holder of land owned by Chapter 7 Debtor alleging that primary lien holder was only allowed to seek reasonable attorney fees in its foreclosure sale of the land under 11 U.S.C. § 506(b) instead of under Ga. Code Ann. § 13-1-11, however Court determined that it lacked jurisdiction to hear the case because Trustee had abandoned the land and Debtor no longer had any remaining interest in the land.

Creditor objected to discharge under Section 523(a)(2)(B) of two debts. Court granted creditor’s request as to a $70,000 debt because debtor recklessly provided materially false financial information with the intent to deceive creditor. The Court denied creditor’s request as to a $30,000 debt because creditor’s reliance on debtor’s financial disclosures was not reasonable when the loan application was submitted more than three months after the date it was filled out and when creditor had a prior relationship with debtor that should have alerted creditor to possible inaccuracies on the application.

In a Chapter 13 case, the Court found that debtor’s attorney’s request for $1,150 in fees was unreasonably high and not made in good faith when debtor listed two creditors totaling less than $6,000, and the apparent sole purpose of filing was to seek shelter in the automatic stay from an aggressive creditor that posed no real threat to the debtor.

Robert F. Hershner, Jr. (Retired)

The Chapter 7 trustee sought the statutory maximum allowance, $52,591.52, authorized by section 326(a) of the Bankruptcy Code for services of the trustee. The Court noted that all applications for compensation by trustees must be based upon the criteria set forth in section 330 of the Bankruptcy Code and that section 326 simply fixes the maximum compensation that a trustee can recover. The Court awarded the trustee $20,000 in compensation.

Clinical psychologist provided counseling services to debtor's children and testified at child custody hearing. The Court held that debtor's obligation to pay for the services of the psychologist was a nondischargeable support obligation under 11 U.S.C.A. § 523(a)(5)(B).

Wife authorized her husband to sign her name to financial statement. Husband misrepresented wife's income and assets. Creditor contended that wife's debt was nondischargeable under 11 U.S.C.A. § 523(a)(2)(B). The Court held that the wife had not intended to deceive because she had reasonably believed that her husband knew her financial condition and that he would truthfully report that information on the financial statement.

Chief Judge John T. Laney, III

Granting Defendant’s motion for summary judgment and denying Plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment in an adversary proceeding to recover post-petition transfers under §§ 549 and 550, the court held that plaintiff would not be allowed to recover post-petition transfers. In a case of first impression, the court held that lottery funds collected by a lottery retailer under the Georgia Lottery for Education Act constitute trust property and therefore, are excluded from property of the bankruptcy estate.

In cross motions for summary judgment in a preference action filed by the Chapter 13 Trustee, the court granted Defendant’s motion and denied Trustee’s motion. In a case of first impression under Alabama law, the court held that Defendant did not effectuate a lien release. Therefore, Trustee could not avoid the lien under § 547 or § 544.

The court denied Debtors’ motion for contempt to compel Respondent to pay Debtor’s attorney’s fees. Explaining that the court’s prior order awarding Debtors attorney’s fees was a money judgment, the court held that a money judgment is not enforcement by contempt. Therefore, the court concluded that Debtors’ counsel recourse was filing a fi. fa rather than obtaining a contempt order.

Pages