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Chambers' Bulletins

Thu, 9/29/2016 - 5:00 am

Operating Order 16-03, governing the conduit mortgage payment procedures for Columbia and Spartanburg cases pending before Judge Burris, has been amended. A copy of the amended order is found here. A draft noting significant changes in redline is found here. Other than paragraphs I and II, this amended order is substantially consistent with Operating Order 16-02 for Judges Duncan and Waites.

To continue the discussion regarding successful use of the conduit mortgage payment procedures, a follow-up, informal bar meeting will be held at the Spartanburg courthouse on Thursday, October 13th immediately following completion of the Chapter 13 Dispute calendar.

Wed, 9/28/2016 - 5:00 am

Judges Waites and Duncan have revised Operating Order 16-02. The revisions are to Exhibit A, the language to be used in a chapter 13 plan when conduit payments are being made. First, the reference to a specific operating order was eliminated so that the software providers will be able to use the same language for all three judges. Second, the paragraph on the timing of plan payments by the debtor was removed as unnecessary. Section 1326 of the bankruptcy code governs.

Tue, 9/27/2016 - 5:00 am

The Operating Order which governs the Conduit Mortgage Payment Procedures in cases before Judges Duncan and Waites has been entered and a copy is available on the court's website. Questions regarding specific procedures should be directed to the applicable Chapter 13 Trustee.

Mon, 9/26/2016 - 5:00 am

The court has made a new CMECF event available for use in cases assigned to Judges Burris and Duncan.  The “Default of 362 Settlement Order” event requests an order granting stay relief after a debtor has defaulted under the terms of a settlement order resolving a motion for relief from stay.  The event is a text event, similar to the “Certification of No Response and Request for 362 Default Order” and “Request for Settlement Order on Motion for Relief from Stay” events already in use for motions for relief from stay.  No separate affidavit of default is required.  Copies of the proposed order generated by the event will be added to the “Locally Maintained Court Forms” section of the court’s webpage.

Fri, 9/02/2016 - 5:00 am

New Chambers Guidelines are posted for Judge Burris to include reference to Operating Order 16-03 for procedures for litigants to request or propose conduit payments in Chapter 13 plans, to update the scheduling chart for self-scheduled Chapter 13 matters to include the Trustee's event for Request for Mortgage Report, and to add new law clerk contact information. Judge Burris' revised Chambers Guidelines are available on the Court's website.

Thu, 8/25/2016 - 5:00 am

The Bankruptcy Judges, with the assistance of the Chapter 13 Trustees, have agreed upon district wide conduit mortgage payment procedures to be implemented in Chapter 13 cases filed on or after October 1, 2016. The procedures are set forth in the Operating Orders attached. The procedures are required under certain conditions in cases presided over by Judges Duncan and Waites and are voluntary in cases presided over by Judge Burris. 

In order to review the procedures with members of the Bar prior to the effective date, meetings will be held in the courthouses in each division as follows: 

Charleston on September 1, 2016, immediately after the conclusion of court hearing which is expected to be by 11:00 a.m.; 
Columbia on September 8; 2016, immediately after the conclusion of court hearings which is expected to be by 10:30 a.m.; 
Spartanburg on September 15, 2016; immediately after the conclusion of court hearings. 

Telephone attendance will be available in the Charleston and Columbia meetings. If interested, contact a courtroom deputy for Judges Duncan or Waites.

Thu, 7/14/2016 - 5:00 am

In order to enable further consideration by all Judges of a district- wide conduit procedure, Judge Waites has delayed until September 1, 2016 implementation of the procedure in his cases (as described here on June 17, 2016). The Court will continue to provide further updates to the Bar on the conduit procedure and any Bar meetings related thereto.

Tue, 7/12/2016 - 5:00 am

Kate Laffitte will soon leave her position as law clerk to Judge Burris to join the Commercial Real Estate team at Smith Moore Leatherwood in Greenville. We certainly hate to see Kate go, but congratulate her on this exciting next step in her career. Kate’s departure creates an opening in the Spartanburg chambers for a term law clerk. The vacancy announcement can be viewed here.

Wed, 7/06/2016 - 5:00 am

Debtor's counsel filing bankruptcy cases in Aiken, Barnwell, Chester, Edgefield, and Lancaster counties should make a hearing location election for cases filed on or after June 27, 2016, and assigned to Judge Burris. This election allows debtor's counsel to choose the hearing location (Spartanburg or Columbia) for all hearings to be held in that case, excluding the 11 U.S.C. § 341 meeting (to conclusion, all chapters) and the INITIAL confirmation hearing in Chapter 13 cases. Thank you to all attorneys that have promptly made the election upon filing. Please note that if no election has been made by debtor's counsel at the time any motion is filed, movants may schedule the hearing at the location of movant's choice (Columbia or Spartanburg).

More information concerning this election and the location of hearings can be found in Judge Burris' chamber guidelines.

Fri, 6/17/2016 - 5:00 am

Judge Waites is considering allowing a conduit mortgage payment procedure in the Chapter 13 cases assigned to him as a means of improving debtors retention of their homes by ensuring payments of mortgage payments during the bankruptcy case. The procedure is described in the attached explanation and Operating Order (click here to view).

The attached proposed Operating Order is in draft form and will be refined and therefore the Judge invites comments, questions, or suggestions be sent to on or before July 8, 2016.

This proposal has been shared with Judges Duncan and Burris for comment and suggestions. To the extent a district-wide procedure can be established, these procedures may change.


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