Rule Changes for the Central District of CA: New Signature Requirements

Effective tomorrow, the Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California has implemented a significant change in its signature requirements for documents filed through CM/ECF.

Documents requiring the signature of a debtor or any other party (with the exception of registered CM/ECF filers) must bear a holographic signature.  And the familiar Electronic Filing Declaration will no longer be accepted.  

Legal nerds and insomniacs can click on the following links to view the changes:

A complete list of new, revised, and retired local rules and forms for the Central District of California, effective as of December 1, 2017, can be found here.  Local forms are available here.  The changes include the following:

  • LBR 1002-1(f)): deleted and superseded by new LBR 9011-1.
  • LBR 1017-2(f): amended to specify that the Court retains jurisdiction in dismissed cases to enforce issues listed in LBR 1017-2(f).
  • LBR 3015-1: the national rules addressing chapter 13 were updated, effective 12/1/17, which necessitated a comprehensive update to this LBR.  Amendments also encourage uniformity and clarity in chapter 13 practice.
  • LBR 3020-1: amended to clarify the requirement for certain language to be included in a Chapter 13 plan confirmation order and specify the effect of conversion from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7.
  • LBR 7055-1(b): amended to reflect a change in the renumbering of 50 U.S.C. Chapter 50.
  • LBR 7064-1: amended to specify that bankruptcy evictions are handled by the U.S. Marshals Service and the exact language to be included in an eviction order.
  • LBR 7067-1: amended to reflect changes in the national registry fund fee structure and add a requirement to use a local form order.
  • LBR 9011-1: new LBR specifies signature requirements for electronically filed documents.

Mette K.

Epic Food Adventures: Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia

During our move, our broker eagerly rattled off Delaware’s virtues.  “The best thing,” she effused, “is it’s only 30 minutes from Philadelphia, 90 minutes from New York, and 2 hours from DC!”  We hear this a lot.  (So…. the best thing about Delaware is it’s easy to leave?)  But now that we’ve started to settle in, it is time to explore!

Earlier this month, my husband and I took my youngest – a high school sophomore playing for the St. Mark’s football team – to Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia for a food adventure. On an empty stomach.

Reading Terminal: A Historic Landmark

Being a mom, I began with a history and cultural lesson.  Established in 1892, Reading Terminal is the nation’s oldest continuously operating farmers’ market. Today, the market offers a colorful selection of local produce, fresh eggs, milk, meats, poultry, seafood, handmade crafts, jewelry, and clothing from more than 80 merchants. With 100,000 Philadelphians and tourists passing through every week, it is LA’s Grand Central and Farmer’s Market all rolled into one spectacular foodie mecca.




None of this impressed my teenager. Then we arrived, let him loose, and ran amuck until, like Templeton at the fair, we collapsed into a food coma.

Appetizers: Fried Mac & Cheese Balls.

To stave off hunger pangs before jumping into the serious food, we started with the fried mac & cheese balls at Beck’s Cajun Cafe.  I was expecting something more akin to a risotto ball, dried and bland.  But these scrumptious balls of mac & cheese are gooey, melt-in-your month deliciousness. The are ginormous, and served with a spicy creole tomato sauce for dipping. Yum!

Adult Beverages: Evil Genius on Draft

As we scanned the cacophony of food surrounding us, it was obvious that my husband and I were going to need more fortification for the adventure.  So off to Molly Malloy’s for one of two dozen local brews on tap — how can you say no to the Evil Genius on draft?  As a bonus, Molly’s will conveniently provide your beer in a to-go cup so you can continue to wander the market.

A Brief Detour:  Whoopie Pies

While searching for sandwiches, we discovered that Spencer had never had a whoopee pie before.  Clearly that needed to corrected, so we detoured by the Flying Monkey for  two classic whoopee pies.  The pumpple –  a cake that combines chocolate cake, vanilla cake, pumpkin pie, and apple pie into a single mega-dessert – was tempting.  But it was important not to loose focus here.

Doughnuts… So Close, Yet So Far!

After jumping back into the fray, we found ourselves at Beiler’s on a quest for their famous, maple bacon, yeast-risen doughnuts.  Sadly, they were closed. We left empty handed.

Lunch! An Italian Roast Pork Sandwich


By now, we had really worked up an appetite. So what better place to stop than DiNic’s for the roast pork Italiano, voted “Best Sandwich in America” by the Travel Channel?  Thinly sliced, juicy roast pork, a long roll with sliced sharp provolone, and bright green chopped broccoli rabe to top it all off.  We had two.  Heaven!

Dessert: Leave the Gun, Take the Cannoli

After a quick recap of the Godfather for Spencer (more cultural history!), it was time for dessert.  Because how could we possibly leave without getting some of the best cannoli in Philly?  That required a stop by Termini Bros for fresh made cannoli — the shells stuffed individually as they fill each order ensuring a perfect, crunchy exterior, and the interior packed with creamy, sweet, chocolate chip ricotta filling.  Perfection.

A Snack for the Road: Peking Duck & Roasted Pork Noodle Platter


At this point, a lesser family would have given up.  But, undeterred, we pressed on and picked up a light snack for the trip back home.  The roast duck and roasted pork noodle platter (because, really, who can choose between the gorgeously burnished Peking duck and the deeply flavored roasted pork hanging on display?) at Sang Kee Peking Duck House.  Although Jeff kept holding out for the Muffaletta back at Beck’s Cajun Cafe, it was here that we finally tapped out.

Stay tuned for my review of the Hockessin Athletic Club, where we will be spending the rest of the month recovering…!

Mette K.



ABI Winter Leadership: Mamma’s Home!

Can’t wait to get to the ABI Winter Leadership Conference in sunny Palm Springs next week to catch up with all my bankruptcy peeps…. and to thaw out!

After decades in California learning how to cook a Thanksgiving meal with Santa Ana winds blowing like an oven fan, I’m learning to re-acclimate to traditional Thanksgiving weather. Yesterday’s high in New Jersey: 44 degrees!  (I keep repeating to myself: “Not cold, seasonally appropriate!”) The high in Palms Springs?  94 degrees!

Of course, with nine joint ABI committee sessions provided by ABI’s committees, along with ABI’s newest trend, ABI Talks, and 13 topical sessions, the conference also offers plenty of learning opportunities. Check out the program here.

Looking forward to seeing all of you in Palm Springs!  If you have time to catch up, let me know.


Mette K.

It’s Black Friday, and FTI’s 2017 U.S. Holiday Retail Forecast Is Here

One of the perks of working in the restructuring space is the wealth of industry information and forecasting available from the many talented financial advisors who I work with.  FTI Consulting’s Retail & Consumer Products Practice, for one, is heavily involved with the issues and challenges facing retailers today, and I look forward to receiving a copy of their retail report at the end of each year.

The mood this year?  Guarded optimism.  But equally significant, one of this year’s take aways, according to FTI’s 2017 retail forecast, is that now, more than ever, how specific large retailers fare during the holiday season may be mostly or entirely divorced from the broader performance of the season.  You can download the full report here.

Mette K.



Bankruptcy Judges, Fish & Farmers

Fourteen temporary bankruptcy judgeships have been extended and four new ones have been authorized nationwide.  This is at least one piece of generally positive legislative news that bankruptcy practitioners should be able to agree on!

Temporary Judges Added to Delaware, Florida, and Michigan

The legislation, H.R. 2266, was included in the $36.5 billion disaster aid bill signed into law on October 26th. It incorporated a version of the Bankruptcy Judgeship Act of 2017 introduced by Rep. John Conyers (D) and Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R).

The bill, as enacted, reauthorizes 14 temporary bankruptcy judgeships in Delaware, Florida, Puerto Rico, Maryland, Michigan, Virginia, Nevada, and North, and authorizes the appointment of four additional temporary bankruptcy judges in Delaware, Florida, and Michigan.

While bankruptcy filings have declined nationwide in recent years, the effected districts have seen a 55% weighted increase in case filings since 2005. The federal Judicial Conference wrote to congressional leaders in April saying that federal bankruptcy courts in Delaware and eight other districts would face a ‘debilitating workload crisis” if lawmakers didn’t add judgeships and permitted the 14 temporary judgeships to lapse. (Original versions of the legislation had hoped not only to add four new, permanent judgeships but also to make the temporary judgeships permanent.)

Quarterly Fees to Increase to Fund the Judgeships

The measure increases the U.S. Trustee’s quarterly fees for large Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases to pay for the additional judgeships.  Specifically, if the balance in the U.S. Trustee System Fund is less than $200 million, then a debtor with total quarterly disbursements of $1 million or more must pay a quarterly fee equal to $250,000 or 1% of disbursements, whichever is less.

What About those Fish and Farm Tax Claims?!

The legislation also amends Bankruptcy Code § 1232 to add tax claims by the IRS resulting from the sale, transfer, exchange, or disposition of farming property in cases under Chapter 12 (e.g., family farmer or fisherman reorganizations). Such a claim that arises before a debtor’s discharge, regardless of whether the claim is pre-petition or post-petition, must be treated as a pre-petition claim, is not entitled to priority status, must be provided for under the bankruptcy plan, and is dischargeable.

Trivia Quiz… This $20 Cabela’s Gift Card Could Be Yours!

I’m offering a $20 Cabel’as gift card to the first person who can explain the connection between the fish and farming amendment and the rest of the bill!

Mette K.