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Ask WALLSTREETESQ Your Own Question
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 17223
Experience:  14 years exp., CH 7 AND 13 Bankruptcy cases, AFL-CIO UNION PLUS, UFT NYSID AND ALL MAJOR UNIONS
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How do I reopen a bankruptcy case (CH 7) to remove a lien

Resolved Question:

How do I reopen a bankruptcy case (CH 7) to remove a lien? This step was over looked before the case was discharged and closed. I filed pro se due to finances and need to know if there is a way to have the associated fees waived. Any help you can give would be greatly appreciated.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  WALLSTREETESQ replied 7 years ago.
you need to file a motion to reopen to add the creditor that has put the lien on your property, the best way to do this is, go to the bankruptcy court directly, and ask the court clerk if they can give you a sample motion to reopen, they should have a sample, and then you serve the trustee also. Their is a fee waiver form at the court house to use. They may also have free attorneys who can do this for you.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
The creditor was a part of the bankruptcy, however, I did not file a motion to avoid / remove the lien in time.
Expert:  WALLSTREETESQ replied 7 years ago.
If their was a lien when you filed, after you filed it has to be removed automatically, you do not need to file a motion for that.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I thought all liens survived bankruptcy when no action to remove the lien was taken prior to discharge? Should I call the trustee to see if the lien has been removed?
Expert:  WALLSTREETESQ replied 7 years ago.
if you listed the lien holder on your bankruptcy, by federal law they have to have it removed, what you can do is call the creditor, and advise them you listed them in the bankruptcy, and to remove the lien. Give the creditor a copy of your bankruptcy filing.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Is this a new provision to the bankruptcy code? I clearly read that liens survive bankruptcy.
Expert:  WALLSTREETESQ replied 7 years ago.

I will clarify, If their is a lien on your personal residence, The court will have to enter an order providing that the lien is avoided. You can in your motion to repon ask the Court to "avoid" the lien on your home, after you file the motion to reopen The result is you avoid all of the problems discussed above. Your property is no longer saddled with the judicial lien.




The Bankruptcy Code provides that, to the extent the judicial lien impairs your exemption in your property; you may "avoid" the lien. Exempt property is property which, by law, you are allowed to keep.

For example, if you have a home worth $200,000 and a mortgage for $170,000, you have $30,000 in equity. In New Mexico you can exempt-retain- $60,000 in equity in your home ($120,000 for married debtors). If your credit card company sues you and gets a judgment against you for $20,000, that judicial lien "impairs" your exemption.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Does the same apply to a car title held by a car title loan theif?
Expert:  WALLSTREETESQ replied 7 years ago.
the same rule applies.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
To reiterate, I need to file a motion to reopen the case to request a lien avoidance as well as a fee waiver request. Correct?
Expert:  WALLSTREETESQ replied 7 years ago.
yes. The Court Clerk should have a sample motion to use.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Thank You!
Expert:  WALLSTREETESQ replied 7 years ago.
good luck.
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