Attorney-at-Law

“EVEN IF WE HAD BILLS”

In Uncategorized on 03/20/2020 at 13:11

Remember Judge Vasquez’s statement that we don’t need no bills? Well, see my blogpost “We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Bills,” 11/18/19. OK, but now, even if he had bills, Lior Blas, Docket No. 1031-17, filed 3/20/20,. is off the hook because 11USC§362(a)(8).

Ya see, before Lior went on trial in June, 2018, he filed Chapter 13 the previous November, which was rolled into a 7, and had neither been discharged nor dismissed from USBCDAK (that’s United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Alaska) when trial took place. Lior, being pro se (natch), never disclosed same.

Lior got discharged before Judge Vasquez issued the opinion and decision more particularly bounded and described in my blogpost hereinabove set forth, as my lunching-at-home-with-two-Grey-Goose-martinis colleagues would say.

But IRS somehow got the word of the foregoing, and now moves to vacate the decision. Lior agrees.

“According to respondent, the automatic stay under 11 U.S.C. sec. 362(a)(8) commenced on November 30, 2017, and was in effect during the June 19, 2018, trial of this case. Respondent asserts that the automatic stay ended when petitioner received a discharge on May 31, 2019. Respondent also asserts that the Memorandum Opinion and Decision are void because they were based on evidence from a trial that occurred in violation of the automatic stay.

“Petitioner agrees with respondent that the Decision is void. However, petitioner maintains that his bankruptcy proceeding remains active and that the automatic stay remains in effect.” Order, at pp. 1-2. (Footnote omitted, but it says IRS never heard about Lior’s bankruptcy until this past January).

Golsenizing to 9 Cir, Judge Vasquez finds that any part of any Tax Court case carried on after the filing of the petition is void, not voidable, so his carefully crafted T. C. Memo. and Decision are void. Happily, my blogpost remains.

It doesn’t matter that said T. C. Memo. and Decision came after discharge, the trial was between petition and discharge and taints the whole shebang.

“Regardless of whether the automatic stay remained in effect after the discharge, our Memorandum Opinion and Decision are void. Assuming the automatic stay terminated when petitioner received a discharge on May 31, 2019 (as respondent contends), the Memorandum Opinion and Decision are based on factual findings from a trial held in violation of the stay and are therefore void. See Trustees of the United Health and Welfare Fund v. N. Kofsky & Son, Inc., No. 8 Civ. 11219, 2015 WL 59173, at *2 (S.D.N.Y. Jan. 5, 2015) (stating that bench trial ‘was void and without vitality because it occurred while the * * * stay was in effect.’); Cramer v. Grover, 7 B.R. 133, 135 (Bankr. D. Col. 1980) (holding that a State court judgment was void because it was based on evidence from the continuation of a trial in violation of the automatic stay). Conversely, assuming the automatic stay was in effect when we issued the Memorandum Opinion and entered the Decision (as petitioner contends), these actions violated the stay and are void. See Shutts v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 2010-160 (voiding a Tax Court decision because it was entered while the automatic stay was in effect).” Order, at pp. 2-3.

So vacation.

But where do we go from here? Remember 11USC§105: Bankruptcy Court can order reimposition of the 11USC§362 automatic stay. So let IRS and Lior make up for their previous nondisclosures by letting Judge Vasquez know what, if anything, USBCDAK did to that effect that is still in effect now.

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