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california map with roadsWhat do you do when creditors from your spouse’s past threaten?

Chances are your first reaction is to put the title to your biggest assets in just your name.

Whew! Safe.

Not.

Just because  the deed to the house now reads Jane Doe instead of John Doe and Jane Doe it’s easy to think the house is Jane’s separate property and  the operation of California community property law has been beaten back.

Wrong.

Character matters, even for property

Why does it matter whether the house or a business is community property?  Because the character of the property determines which creditors of the married couple can levy on the asset to pay a debt.

Community property is available to creditors of either spouse, for debts incurred during their marriage and before marriage.

Ouch!

Registered domestic partners are also presumed to have community property and are subject to the benefits and burdens of community property.

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Los Angeles County Treasurer v. Mainline Equipment, Inc. (In re Mainline Equipment, Inc.), 865 F.3d 1179 (9th Cir. 2017) – A Chapter 11 debtor sought to avoid a county’s prepetition personal property tax liens pursuant to section 545 of the Bankruptcy … Continue reading

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The fourth quarter of 2017 was another slow period for Fifth Circuit opinions dealing with bankruptcy.  There was only one published opinion and there were several opinions that I found on the Fifth Circuit's page but were not in LEXIS.  Nevertheless, here they are for your consideration.   The cases cover mootness, standing, and verbal statements about financial condition.
 
Dick v. Colo Hous. Enters., LLC, 872 F.3d 709 (5th Cir. 10/4/17)
Debtor sought to prevent a foreclosure sale including filing several bankruptcies.  Two years after the last bankruptcy was dismissed, the substitute trustee posted the property for foreclosure.   The Debtor obtained a TRO in state court.  The Defendants removed the case to federal court.  The U.S. District Judge denied the request for a preliminary injunction.   The Debtor appealed and requested a stay pending appeal in the Fifth Circuit.   The stay was requested the day before the foreclosure sale and was approved the next day.  However, by this time, the substitute trustee had already conducted the foreclosure sale and sold the property to the lender.


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