In re Beath

(Bankr. S.D. Ind. July 29, 2016)

The bankruptcy court denies the debtor’s motion to transfer venue of his chapter 7 bankruptcy case from the Terra Haute Division to the Evansville Division. The debtor failed to satisfy the standard set forth in 28 U.S.C. § 1412 for venue transfer. The debtor’s travel time to each court location was virtually the same, and thus Evansville was no more convenient than Terra Haute. Further, there was no showing that the interests of justice would be better served by the transfer. Opinion below.

Judge: Graham

Attorney for Debtor: M. Brian Jeffries

2016-07-29 – in re beath

Author: Matt Lindblom

Sutherland v. DCC Litigation Facility, Inc. (In re Dow Corning Corporation)

(Sixth Circuit Feb. 20, 2015)

The Sixth Circuit reverses the district court’s dismissal of the plaintiff’s claims based on a Michigan statute of limitations. The plaintiff’s claims were originally filed in federal court in North Carolina, and was then transferred to an Alabama federal court to join a multidistrict litigation panel (Dow Corning silicone breast implant litigation). The plaintiff opted out of the class settlement, and her claims were then transferred to Michigan when Dow Corning filed bankruptcy there, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 157(b)(5). When her claims were eventually set for trial, the defendant filed a motion to dismiss the claims under Michigan’s statute of limitations, because the plaintiff had failed to file the original case within three years of her surgery. The district court granted that motion and dismissed the claims. The Sixth Circuit holds that the venue transfer should not alter which state law applies, and North Carolina’s statute of limitations arguably was satisfied. While an issue of first impression in the Sixth Circuit, the court relies on a Second Circuit opinion with a similar holding—a transfer of venue should not change the applicable state law, whether the transfer is of a case filed pursuant to diversity jurisdiction or resting on “related to” bankruptcy jurisdiction. Opinion below.

2015-02-20 – sutherland v dcc litigation facility

Author: Matt Lindblom

Suesz v. Med-1 Solutions, LLC

(Seventh Circuit July 2, 2014)

The Seventh Circuit issues a significant opinion on the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act’s requirement that a debt collector file its collection suit in the “judicial district or similar legal entity” where the contract was signed or where the debtor resides. The court concludes that this term means the smallest geographic area that is relevant for determining venue in the court system in which the case is filed, which may be a township or other smaller geographic area in the applicable county. The Court overturns its 1996 opinion in Newsome v. Friedman. Opinion below.

2014-07-02 – suesz v med-1 solutions