Gregory Napier

“I’ve Changed My Mind – I Want to Surrender My House”: What Effect Does Post-Confirmation Surrender Have on the Debtor’s Discharge?

The debtor's attorney needs to take the time to discuss the probability of maintaining house and other secure debt payments over the course of the Chapter 13 - 3 or 5 years. A vehicle that may not survive the life of the bankruptcy but with significant debt may need to be surrendered at the outset. Changing one's mind about surrendering a house within a confirmed Chapter 13 could be a huge issue unless the debtor was eligible for a Chapter 7 at the inception of the Chapter 13. If they were eligible, but chose a 13 for other reasons, then ...
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MEDIATION is a COST SAVER

I recently published an article detailing some of the impending budget cuts for the Kentucky courts entitled "Mediaiton is the Future". As the cost of litigating conflicts rise ever higher to society and litigants, mediation offers substantial cost savings in resolving those very same conflicts. Mediation makes the resolution of disputes among individuals, within families, within businesses and organizations, between businesses, and with employees within financial reach. I am doing my part in the cost savings offered by mediating conflicts. It is important to me that even people with tight finances are able to access mediation. Therefore, I offer a sliding ...
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MEDIATION is the FUTURE

The Kentucky court system experienced substantial funding cuts back in 2008. According to Chief Justice Minton, those cuts dramatically reduce the overall budget of the court system by 49% since that time. Despite this, Kentucky courts continued on with minimal staffing. In some counties, court dockets are so backed up that it takes several months for a trial to be set. No wonder judges routine order parties into mediation! The budget from the Kentucky House of Representatives proposes cutting an additional $36.3 million dollars next year and $40.6 million for the year after that. Those are huge cuts that will only ...
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Mediating Rather than Litigating

In my prior post, The Myth of "Uncontested Divorce", I introduced the concept of entering into mediation well before a divorce or separation action is filed with the courts. In fact, mediating rather than litigating can be both a cost saving and relationship preserving process before anyone hires a lawyer. I will not reiterate those points again so I encourage you to go back and read that post if you have not already done so. The process of mediating rather than litigating is simple. Instead of running out and hiring a lawyer right away, one or both spouses run out and ...
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The Myth of “Uncontested Divorce”

This post's title is a bit of an overstatement, and so I want to acknowledge that right at the start. There are a few people who enter into the process of separating or ending a marriage where they are in agreement on all matters. But, my observation time and again is that a divorce involves the tearing apart of two people who have been joined in some way that defies understanding, and that nearly always means conflict. After awhile, an "uncontested divorce" appears mythical. Despite the prevalence of contention when people separate, mediation prior to litigation offers the best chance ...
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MEDIATION is not LITIGATION

Perhaps the most common misunderstanding about mediation is that it is only a part of the litigation process. In fact, many attorneys see it as a necessary nuisance that is commonly court ordered by a judge in a lawsuit before that judge will schedule a trial. This perspective becomes quite apparent in the mediation session when the attorney seems more intent on issuing ultimatums and threatening to just end the session than on getting at the issues and possible resolutions.  However, mediation is not litigation. Litigation is the formalized process of putting claims for various sorts of relief, usually monetary, ...
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