Consumer Bankruptcy Journal Spring 2017 - Page 38

CASES IN REVIEW

to pay the redemption amount over the term of the plan . Any alleged injury to the city , due to either a decline in tax revenue as a result of damage to the sheriff ' s sale process or the debtor ' s failure to pay property taxes in the future , was purely speculative . In re Wilson , --- B . R . ---- , 2016 WL 7450468 ( E . D . Pa ., Dec . 28 , 2016 ) ( case no . 2:15-cv-6385 ).
Chapter 13 — Confirmation of plan — Treatment of secured claims — Mortgage creditor provisions : A Chapter 13 plan may require a mortgage creditor to send periodic loan statements to the debtor . Such a requirement does not modify the creditor ' s rights in violation of the anti-modification provision in Code § 1322 ( b )( 2 ), as requiring a creditor to send monthly statements is not a right but an obligation , and one that is inextricably bound to a debtor ' s ability to cure mortgage defaults , one of the primary objectives of Chapter 13 . And even if the obligation could somehow be stretched to qualify as a right , its ministerial or procedural nature would exclude it from qualifying as the kind of right the statute was intended to protect from modification . In re Sperry , 562 B . R . 1 ( Bankr . D . Mass ., Dec . 8 , 2016 ) ( case no . 1:15-bk- 14583 ).
Chapter 13 — Confirmation of plan — Treatment of unsecured claims — Unfair discrimination — Student loan debt : In a long opinion stressing that student loan debt in the U . S . had tripled to more than $ 1.3 trillion , the court declared that student loans were unique and should be separately classified as the Bankruptcy Code permits . Accordingly , the court confirmed a Chapter 13 plan providing that the debtors ' student loan claims would be paid in full without postpetition interest before payment of other general unsecured claims , where prior to filing bankruptcy the debtors had paid down their non-student loan unsecured debts from $ 73,885 to $ 12,192 over 47 months , while not paying down their student loan debts . Declaring that Chapter 13 debtors with student loan obligations faced a quagmire , the court said that , without separate classification , debtors might face a higher debt burden after bankruptcy than before . The court also respectfully disagreed with other courts ' holdings that , without more , the nondischargeability of student loans was an insufficient reason for discriminating in favor of student loan claims . In re Engen , 561 B . R . 523 ( Bankr . D . Kan ., Dec . 13 , 2016 ) ( case no . 2:15-bk-20184 ).
Chapter 13 — Entitlement to discharge : Granting the Chapter 13 debtor ' s discharge , the court said that it would be inequitable to deny discharge in this unique situation , where , although the debtor failed to make all postpetition direct payments to her mortgage creditor , the creditor had agreed to a mortgage modification and subsequently reported to the bankruptcy court that the loan modification had been finalized , and that the creditor agreed that the debtor was " otherwise current on all
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38 CONSUMER BANKRUPTCY JOURNAL Spring 2017 National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys