2008 Chief Judge Burns - Opinions

Chief Judge Gloria Burns -- Opinions signed in 2008

Kim v. Upper Darby Township (In re Kim), Case No. 02-20654, Adv. No. 06-2005, 2008 WL 442120, at *1 (Bankr. D.N.J. Feb. 14, 2008)

The court found that creditors violated the automatic stay when they carried out a judicial sale of the debtor's property. These violations of the stay were not ratified by a retroactive annulment of the automatic stay because the creditors did not satisfy their burden of proving the debtor had no equity in the property as required by 11 U.S.C. § 362(d)(2)(A). Because the creditors had actual notice of the debtor's bankruptcy prior to the judicial sale, a retroactive stay annulment was not justified to balance the equities. Thus, the judicial sale constituted a willful violation of the automatic stay, and summary judgment was granted in part. The debtor was entitled to damages and therefore summary judgment was denied in part because there were factual disputes as to the amount of damages owed for the stay violation.