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Access to opinions from 1997 to present, that are PDF searchable, unrestricted & unsealed, are also available through the Government Printing Office using the Advanced Search for Government Publications. There is no login required and publications are available free of charge.

Court's Web Site Opinions Database

The court's web site provides free access of some opinions, at the discretion of the judges, for the years 1998 to present. The results shown below are automatically displayed for all years, all judges, and all keywords/topics.

A search may be performed using the Search box above, or filtering by year, judge, and/or keyword/topic. To search for more than one judge and/or keywords/topics simultaneously, hold down the Ctrl key (or Command key) and select each item.

Keywords/Topic Date Title Description Judge
Avoidance Actions, Fraudulent Transfers, Ponzi Scheme Issues     10/25/2013     Wagner v. Valencia, et al.     

In a case involving a Ponzi scheme, the Court concluded that the Trustee had established most of the prima facie elements of her preference claim.  More specifically, the Court found that: (1) payments to net losers were made on account of an antecedent debt; and (2) each investor received more than they would have in a Chapter 7 case.   Misc. Case No. 12-0006 (Bankr.D.N.M. Oct. 25, 2013).

Chief Judge Robert H. Jacobvitz
Avoidance Actions, Fraudulent Transfers, Ponzi Scheme Issues, Summary Judgment     10/23/2013     Wagner v. Oliva, et. al.,     

In a case involving a Ponzi scheme, the Court concluded that the Trustee had established most of the prima facie elements of her fraudulent transfer claims.  More specifically, the Court found that: (1) Douglas Vaughan’s plea agreement would be admissible at trial; (2) VCR operated as Ponzi scheme, meaning that the transfers were made with the actual intent to defraud creditors; (3) VCR was insolvent during the relevant time periods; (4) VCR received less than reasonably equivalent value for the payment of net winnings; and (5) VCR had an interest in the transferred funds.  Misc. Case No. 12-0006 (Bankr.D.N.M. Oct. 23, 2013).

Chief Judge Robert H. Jacobvitz
Collateral Estoppel, Nondischargeability, Summary Judgment     10/15/2013     Sierra Chemicals, LLC v. Mosley     

Plaintiff's motion for partial summary judgment based on issue preclusion denied; federal arbitration findings are entitled to preclusive effect, but a key finding of "willfulness" under Sec. 523(a)(6) was not made by the arbitrator.

Judge David T. Thuma
Compromise, Settlement, Standing     10/15/2013     Ralph Leo Brutsche     

To have standing to object to a proposed settlement agreement, the debtor must show a reasonable possibility of surplus after satisfying all debts.  Settlement agreements must be fair, reasonable, and in the best interests of the estate.  Such agreements need not represent the best possible outcome; the Court will generally approve a compromise or settlement if it falls within the range of reasonable outcomes.  Adv. No. 11-13326 (Bkrtcy.D.N.M., October 15, 2013).

Chief Judge Robert H. Jacobvitz
Collateral Estoppel, Judicial Estoppel, Limitation of Actions, Res Judicata, Standing     10/04/2013     Baker v. Bank of New York, et. al.     

Debtor sued mortgage company over mis-handling of mortgage loan default and foreclosure.  Court found that Debtors had valid claims at one time, but lost the claims through failure to defend the foreclosure action, schedule the claims in their bankruptcy case, or pursue the claims before the statute of limitations expired.

Judge David T. Thuma
Collateral Estoppel     09/25/2013     Brown v. Brown     

On motion for summary judgment, court could not determine whether a debt arising from a  judgment entered in a state court dissolution of marriage proceeding was a domestic support obligation under 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(5)--which is not dischargeable in a Chapter 13 case-- or a debt of the type referenced in 11 U.S.C.  § 523(a)(15)--which is dischargeable. (2013 WL 5376541(Bankr. D.N.M.  Sept. 25, 2013; Case No. 13-13-10538; Adversary No. 13-1025J – Docket No. 13)

Chief Judge Robert H. Jacobvitz
Dismissal or Conversion     09/23/2013     Pettingill Enterprises, Inc.,     

The Court found that, based on a variety of factors, conversion of the jointly administered case from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7 was in the best interest of creditors and the estate.  Adv. No. 12-10515 (Bkrtcy.D.N.M., September 23, 2013).

Chief Judge Robert H. Jacobvitz
Chapter 13, Res Judicata     09/20/2013     Cory Don Campbell and Leah Jill Campbell     

Court grants Chapter 13 debtors' motion to modify plan to eliminate a balloon payment requirement, because (i) debtors were never told about the balloon payment and (ii)  the payment requirement was the result of counsel's errors in calculating the means test; done properly the means test would have allowed debtors to file chapter 7, and make no payments to creditors.

Judge David T. Thuma
Fraudulent Transfers, Jurisdiction     09/17/2013     Bloom v. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation     

On FDIC’s motion to dismiss trustee’s fraudulent transfer claim based on bank holding company’s obligations under capital maintenance guaranty of failed bank, court determined that 1) the capital maintenance guaranty was an asset of the failed bank under FIRREA; 2) there is no bankruptcy exception to FIRREA’s administrative claims process; 3) FIRREA’s jurisdictional bar did not divest the bankruptcy court of jurisdiction over trustee’s defensive constructive fraudulent transfer claim; and 3) FDIC’s compliance with the statutory requirements did not conclusively establish reasonably equivalent value for purposes of defeating the trustee’s claim.  498 B.R. 322 (Bankr.D.N.M. 2013);  Case No. 7-11-11916;  Adversary Njurisjuro. 13-1033 – Docket No. 17

Chief Judge Robert H. Jacobvitz
Automatic Stay, Discharge, Limitation of Actions, Nondischargeability     09/16/2013     Boydstun v. Galey     

Court declined to revoke debtor's discharge or declare creditor's debt nondischargeable, based on untimeliness of the complaint, creditor's knowledge of the facts prior to entry of discharge, and failure of proof on the merits.  Court found that creditor violated the automatic stay, but awarded no damages because of a failure of proof of damages.

Judge David T. Thuma