Amusements Off the Bench: The Hobbies of Judge Clarkson

This is a pretty fun article by Scott Bovitz on the photography antics of Judge Scott Clarkson.  You can access the article here.  Bovitz Article on Clarkson – American Bankruptcy Institute Journal – Dec 2016

I have a copy of Judge Clarkson’s book Windows to Vietnam: A Journey in Pictures and Verse sitting on my desk.

Case Brief – In re Diaz, a different view of the homestead exemption

The Diaz case (In re Diaz, 547 B.R. 329, 9th Cir. BAP), has not received enough love but I find it to be too fascinating not to write about because of its potential for so much advantage!

There were essentially two holdings in the case:

  1. The California homestead exemption contains a “residence” requirement which includes an “intent” component; and
  2. The burden is on the Debtor to prove intent.

The intent component of the residence requirement requires that debtors have a bona fide intention to make the premises their home or residence.

Read more…

Judge William Lasarow RIP

Image result for william lasarowWith a heavy heart, I am sad to report to my colleagues that our friend retired Bankruptcy Judge William Lasarow passed away this morning [Thanksgiving Day].  I don’t have any more details yet. The Court will be sending out a statement shortly. 

Keith Higginbotham Read more…

My Alma Mater – Serra High

13 guys from my Alma Mater, Serra High School in Gardena, played in the USC-UCLA football game on Saturday.  This is from the Serra Newsletter:

“From the opening drive, you saw USC #2 (Adoree Jackson) line up against UCLA #2 (Jordan Lasley).  Old teammates trying to best each other from start to finish. Jordan came out on top first, but Adoree was lights out after that.  You saw Cavalier after Cavalier make his mark on the game. Deontay Burnett (USC), Jalen Greene (USC) and Caleb Wilson (UCLA) combined for 8 receptions and 1 carry. Rasheem Green (USC) and John Houston Jr. (USC) combined for 5 total tackles.”

FBA Program on Unbundling and Limited Scope Representation

I had a great time on Friday doing a program for the Federal Bar Assn with Judge Sandra Klein.  We tried to summarize the various code sections and rules that circumscribe unbundling and limited scope representation, at least in the central district.   The point was to show that there are really not very many black-letter rules. The point also is that attys may enter into agreements with persons which limit the efforts the atty will make on behalf of the person – subject to only a few rules.

I will summarize the rules.  It helps me get it clear in my head.

United State Constitution – nothing (tongue firmly in cheek). Read more…

Los Angeles Superior Court – Unbelievable Delays

I am going to sub into a bankruptcy case soon.  The debtor is a defendant in a state court action pending in Santa Monica.  I just looked at the docket.  One of the defendants filed a Motion to Strike on September 16, 2016.  The hearing is set for July 25, 2017.  TEN MONTHS!!!  That is inexcusable.  A Motion to Strike is rarely complicated.

ABI Consumer Connect December 2, 2016, Palos Verdes

This is an all day program called Consumer Connect aimed at consumer bankruptcy lawyers.  There are great speakers including Judge Martin Barash and Prof. Erwin Chemerinsky who will give the keynote address at the luncheon (which is included with the admission).  I will be doing two programs, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, called Consumer Law Update with Chapter 7 Trustee Wes Avery and UST attorney Jennifer Braun.

Here is the info and the website where you can sign up.  See you there.  Jon  Read more…

Nice Post by Cathy Moran on Hamp

Last Call For Loan Modifications Under HAMP


By Cathy Moran, Certified Consumer Bankruptcy Specialist, Mountain View, CA

HAMP, the government program incentivizing home loan modifications, ends in 2016. Read more…

SFVBA Program: Ten Recent 9th Circuit Cases, Give or Take – This Friday

Email from Steve Fox:

To All:

We have a killer of a program for you this time around.  Here are the participants:

Honorable Maureen Tighe, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge

Christopher Wong, law clerk to the Honorable Maureen Tighe

Andrew Goodman (yes, Macky’s back)

Steven Fox Read more…

Volunteers Needed for Reaffs Tomorrow in Woodland Hills

Email from Maggie Bordeaux:

Hi everyone,

We still need volunteers for the reaffirmation hearings scheduled for tomorrow morning, 11/15 at: Read more…