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Henry Sommer
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As someone (or maybe more than one person) said at his funeral, Alan was a mensch in the truest sense of the word. When I was asked whom I would like as Co-Editor in Chief of Collier on Bankruptcy, I did not hesitate for a second before naming Alan. Having worked closely with him in various capacities for almost 30 years, I can say he is simply irreplaceable. No bankruptcy scholar could write more clearly, none could better analyze the law, no professor could better teach and explain bankruptcy, and no one had a bigger heart. He was a great friend and I will miss him every day. He has left a tremendous legacy in his body of work and also in his wonderful family, in whom he took so much pride.
Toggle Commented Aug 1, 2016 on Remembering Alan Resnick at Credit Slips
A few weeks ago, Bob Lawless called the Supreme Court’s decision in Schwab v. Reilly a non-event. Some commenters expressed the view that it was a victory for trustees. I have to disagree. I think it settled a very important... Continue reading
Posted Jul 8, 2010 at Credit Slips
Brian - The overcharges range from property inspections to unnecessary broker price opinions to forced placed insurance to improper late charges, "bankruptcy monitoring fees", and attorney's fees to file a proof of claim (which should be a ministerial task, but for the servicers' accounting deficiencies) all of which in turn lead to unfounded motions that add attorney's fees. There is often double-counting of escrow deficiencies (including them in the arrears and also adjusting current payments to add them in.) In chapter 7 cases, mortgage servicers file motions for relief from an automatic stay that will end shortly as a matter of course, in order to churn more attorney's fees. (The attorney's fees have their own dimension of abuse - often the work is subcontracted by large national firms to local counsel who are paid less than the fee being charged to the debtor.) Many cases involve thousands of dollars in improper charges. What often happens in these cases is that debtors complete their chapter 13 plans, thinking they have cured their mortgage defaults, and then receive a foreclosure notice soon afterward saying they are several payments behind. The proposed Bankruptcy Rule 3002.1 is an attempt to deal with this problem, at least by providing notice and an opportunity to contest the charges during the bankruptcy case. Judge Elizabeth Magner in New Orleans has written some great opinions about this where she has done the painstaking work to unravel some of these accounts. In Jones v. Wells Fargo Home Mortg. (In re Jones), 366 B.R. 584 (Bankr. E.D. La. 2007), aff'd Wells Fargo v. Jones, 391 B.R. 577, she found $24,450 in illegal fees and interest and explained the accounting well. This case included a property inspection charge for September 2005, when access to the property was impossible because of Hurricane Katrina. If you have the National Consumer Law Center consumer law manuals, you can find many more cases in my book, Consumer Bankruptcy Law and Practice, sections, 12.11nn.521-23, and (9th edition. The corresponding section for was in chapter 13 in earlier editions.)
In my last post I noted the beginnings of some positive movement by consumer protection agencies that have been largely dormant and, in some cases like the United States Trustee program, actively anti-consumer. A few weeks ago, as Katie Porter... Continue reading
Posted Jul 2, 2010 at Credit Slips
Many years ago, in the mid 1970's, when I began my career as a legal services lawyer practicing consumer law, it seemed that we were on a roll. Congress and state legislatures were passing a bevy of laws to protect... Continue reading
Posted Jun 30, 2010 at Credit Slips
First of all, thanks to the Credit Slips gang for giving me a chance to venture into blogging on their site. I hope people find my posts to be of interest. Most of us are all too familiar with the... Continue reading
Posted Jun 28, 2010 at Credit Slips
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Jun 24, 2010