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Violation of Automatic Stay in C13 Bankruptcy

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I am involved in a situation whereby a Condo Association passed a $10K Special Assessment after my Chapter 13 was initiated, then about a year later and without first going to the court and motioning to lift the automatic stay went to Superior Court and obtained a default judgment thereby also ruining my credit situation with a post-petition judgment. Shortly thereafter my property was scheduled for Sherriff sale, but was removed from the sale when a copy of the bankruptcy petition was presented to the Sherriff. Now, the Condo Association has motioned the bankruptcy court to bless what they did and officially lift the automatic stay so that they can once again initiate proceeedings including foreclosure of the property if they choose that remedy. The Motion surprisingly makes no mention of a Chapter 13 Entry of Appearance and Demand for Service of Papers that their law firm made prior to the filing of the case, nor mention of a previous Chapter #7 case of which this Chapter #13 is a follow-on to. The Attorney is asking for over $6K to file the Motion and the Condo Association has tacked on interest at what computes to 60%! Anyone have any ideas on what to tell the judge at an upcoming Hearing on the Motion this week? BTW, I am a Pro Se debtor. The Condo Association claims they first became aware of the bankruptcy stay after the petition was presented to the Sherriff's department removing the property from the sale listing. I believe my rights have been trampled on to stay the least. Any attorney comments from the Forum? Thanks!

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I recently had a high powered lawyer, that I reccomended, have is A** handed to him on a creditor petitioning for release of the Ch. 13 stay over a lease situation. (It was for a friend of mine in the same business franchise chain)

I'd advise you to see an attorney, but most bankruptcy attorneys suck!

Is conveting the whole nonsense to a Ch. 7 out of the question?

(If you are protecting assets with the 13, then it is.)

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Thanks for your response, however I am not sure what you were communicating. Interestingly, while going through some documents, I discovered while reading the copy of the title search provided to the court and copied to myself from the attorney, that my Chapter 13 case information was on that document when the attorney ran that report in April, 2007 and then sued me the very next month in effect violating the Stay. Attorney claims in documents to the court he was never aware of the case until September, 2007 when I presented a copy of the originally filed petition to Stay a Sheriff sale. (It's a total lie, btw!) If this isn't pathetic, I don't what is! Now the attorney has Motioned the court for official permission to come after me. I am going to have a lot to say to the judge at the Hearing tomorrow. Anyone have any comments on this? LadynRed, are you out there?

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I never got the chance to tell the case to the judge. The opposing lawyer showed up after I was seated, then went up and down the aisles looking for me. During a brief discussion outside the court room the attorney wanted to discuss my reply and then expressed interest in a compromise. Then after briefly attacking my response, he explained the document he filed had a typo, and I agreed. However, I informed him that that wasn't where I planning to go at the podium. Then pulling out proof of the Stay violation which I never disclosed in the Response, he came to the realization that I wasn't just another dumb stupid debtor, but someone who was pretty damned organized. The proof was on a title seach that he had run and copied to myself and the court, and that title search contained all of the details of the Chapter 13 case and when I pointed out that I was going to tell the judge about the continued collection activity and eventually the scheduling of a Sheriff sale with the intention of seizing the property in my bankruptcy estate, etc. , I think at that point a rather bright bulb went off in his head telling him he had now had an issue to contend with. He was perfectly clear he had violated big time and now wanted to make damn sure I wasn't going to be sticking around for the judge. We decided to continue the issue and work-out a compromise, only this time I will be retaining an attorney to be sure all legal options with regard to the case will weighed. The bottom line is the judge after hearing something of this magnitude would have dismissed the Motion because in the end I would have been able to prove not only did the attorney have knowledge aforethought, but that he had acted vindictively and maliciously for months afterward. Going to Superior Court and winning a default judgment months after his own title search revealed the case w/o first Motioning the court is a major Violation of the Automatic Stay and when such events inflict harm on the debtor, lawyers can be sanctioned or disbarred. (He even sent me a copy of that title search report showing that he knew!) So, to those of you reading this post, be aware that if you go to court prepared with a valid argument based on law, you will likely prevail. Before that even happens, the opposing lawyer will probably hunt you down for a little sidebar before you even get your foot in the court room door!

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