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The Delaware Bankruptcy Insider is a premier blog designed to bring its readers a comprehensive analysis of the latest Delaware corporate bankruptcy news and rulings.  Brought to you by Ashby & Geddes, P.A.

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Third Circuit’s Hypothetical Test Wins The Day As Bankruptcy Court Grants Donald And Ivanka Trump Relief From The Automatic Stay

In re Trump Entm’t Resorts, Inc., No. 14-12103 (KG), WL (Bankr. D. Del. Feb. 20, 2015)

On February 20, 2015, the Honorable Kevin Gross granted relief from the automatic stay so that Donald and Ivanka Trump (the “Trumps”) may continue their action against Trump Entertainment Resorts, Inc. and certain affiliated debtors (the “Debtors”) seeking to terminate a trademark license agreement (the “Trademark License Agreement”) and remove, among other things, the “Trump” name from the Debtors’ buildings.  Following Third Circuit precedent, Judge Gross ruled that under the “hypothetical test” the Trademark License Agreement could not be assumed or assigned by… Read More

9019 Settlement Constituted Plan Modification; Third Circuit Remands to Bankruptcy Court For Consideration Under Section 1127

In re SCH Corp., No. 14-2888, 2015 WL 756552 (3d Cir. Feb. 24, 2015)

In April, the District Court affirmed an oral ruling of the Bankruptcy Court issued in the In re SCH Corp. post-confirmation bankruptcy proceedings, approving under Bankruptcy Rule 9019 and the Martin factors a post-confirmation settlement (the “Settlement”) reached between the debtors’ post-confirmation “Responsible Officer” and a subsidiary (“NCG”) of the debtors’ plan proponent and sponsor, secured lender, and asset acquirer (“LLCP”).  Our analysis of that ruling can be found here.  In this recent Opinion of the Third Circuit, the Court of Appeals vacated the District… Read More

Should Administrative Expense Claims Be Valued by the Contract Rate or the Actual Use of the Service?

In re Highway Techs., Inc., No. 13-11326 (KJC) (Bankr. D. Del. Jan. 30, 2015)

In this Memorandum, the Honorable Kevin Carey determined whether to value an administrative expense claim at the full contract rate or the actual use of the goods and services provided to the debtor.  The Court held that the creditor, Wynne Systems (“Wynne”), is entitled to an administrative claim for only the debtor’s actual use.  In doing so, the Court also denied Wynne’s request for attorney’s fees as an administrative claim, holding that those fees are not an actual and necessary cost of preserving the… Read More

Practice Point: District Court Weighs in on Submission of Orders Under Certification of Counsel

Burtch v. Avnet, Inc., No. 13-060-LPS, 2015 WL 24318  (D. Del. Jan. 16, 2015)

This District Court Memorandum Order offers a cautionary tale to practitioners as to the proper—and often improper—use of certifications of counsel.

Avnet, Inc. (“Avnet”) filed a motion to enforce a stipulation whereby the Debtors would segregate Avnet’s purchase-money collateral in a sale of assets to Laurus Master, Ltd. (“Laurus”).  A Notice of Agenda of Matters was circulated two days before a scheduled hearing, indicating that the enforcement motion was the only contested matter going forward but Avnet, Laurus and the Debtors were actively attempting to resolve… Read More

Walking the Fine Line Between “Legitimate Zeal of Attorneys Representing their Client” and “Dilatory or Aggressive Litigation Practices” That May Lead to Sanctions

In re Prosser, No. 14-1633, 2015 WL 305523 (3d Cir. Jan. 26, 2015)

This precedential Opinion should serve as a warning to practitioners—a bankruptcy court can (and will) impose sanctions under 28 U.S.C. § 1927 for litigation tactics that rise to the level of bad faith.  On appeal, the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit (the “Third Circuit”) reversed an order entered by the District Court of the Virgin Islands (the “District Court”) vacating the imposition of sanctions by the District Court of the Virgin Islands, Division of St. Thomas and St. John, Bankruptcy Division (the… Read More

Delaware Bankruptcy Court’s Local Rules For 2015 Effective February 1st

The Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware’s Local Rules for 2015 went effective February 1, 2015.  A copy of the 2015 Local Rules can be found here and a redline of the 2015 Local Rules against the 2014 Local Rules can be found here.

Of particular note, the procedures for filing documents under seal have been altered.  Previously, counsel filed a blank cover sheet electronically, indicating a document to be filed under seal and then sent a hard-copy of the sealed document directly to chambers.  Under the new procedures, the proposed sealed documents must be filed on… Read More