The Rules that follow are adopted as the Local Rules to govern procedure of the Bankruptcy Court until further order, and shall be cited as the "Bankruptcy Local Rules" or "L. Rule."
(b) Scope and Effective Date of Rules
(1) These Rules supplement or, as permitted, modify the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure, and shall be construed consistently with those Rules and to promote the just, efficient and economical determination of every action and proceeding. These Rules are effective as of November 7, 2005.
(2) On motion or on the Court's own initiative, a Judge may waive the provisions of these Rules in any case for the convenience of the parties in interest or in the interest of justice. The Appendices may be supplemented or modified from time to time.
(3) These Rules shall govern all actions and proceedings pending or commenced after the effective date cited above.
(c) Adoption of Certain Local Rules of the United States District Court
The Local Rules of the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas shall not apply to any proceedings in the United States Bankruptcy Court, except as hereinafter adopted. In the event of a conflict between the Local Rules of the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas and these Rules, these Rules shall control.
Except when a matter is pending before a District Court Judge, the references in the Local Rules of the United States District Court to "Court" and "Judge" shall be read as the "United States Bankruptcy Court" and "bankruptcy judge." Except where specifically designated as "U.S. Trustee," trustee means the trustee appointed in a Chapter 7, 11, 12 or 13 case.
The Local Rules of the United States District Court shall be referenced as "District Court Local Rules" when referred to in these Rules. The Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure are referenced as “FRBP” and the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure are referenced as “FRCP.”
For purposes of these Local Rules, “Interim Rule” refers to the Interim Rules approved by the Judicial Conference of the United States for the purpose of implementing the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005, adopted as additional Local Rules by standing order dated October 21, 2005.
(e) Admission Pro Hac Vice
(1) An attorney not admitted to practice in the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas must request permission of the Bankruptcy Court to appear for or represent a party in a particular case or proceeding pending before the Court. The motion to be admitted pro hac vice shall be filed with the Clerk's Office in the division in which the particular case or proceeding is pending. The motion may be filed ex parte and shall include the following:
(A) The attorney’s (i) name, (ii) law firm, (iii) office address, office telephone number, fax number and email address, and (v) relevant State Bar Number.
(B) The names of the party or parties the attorney represents in the particular case or proceeding.
(C) A list of the state and federal court(s) in which the attorney is currently admitted to practice, the date of each admission, and whether the attorney is or is not in good standing in each such court.
(D) A statement that the attorney is eligible to practice in the Bankruptcy Court and agrees to familiarize him/herself with the Local Bankruptcy Court Rules.
(E) A statement that the attorney is not currently suspended or disbarred in any other court, or a disclosure of any suspensions or disbarments.
(F) A disclosure of any formal grievance procedures pending against the attorney, and the status of such proceedings.
(G) Either (i) a statement that the attorney has not requested admission pro hac vice in the Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Texas in the preceding twelve months, or (ii) a list of motions for admission pro hac vice filed by the attorney with the Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Texas in the preceding twelve months, which list shall include the title and case number of each case in which admission was sought, the date the motion was filed, and the disposition of such motion.
(2) In addition to the requirements of this rule, an attorney admitted pro hac vice is also subject to all rules of practice of the U.S. District Court of the Western District of Texas.
(3) The attorney shall submit a proposed form of Order with the motion granting the admission for appearance in the captioned case, adversary or specifically referenced matter. The order shall contain the following statement: "This order shall not be considered admission to practice generally before this Court or the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas."
(4) An attorney who has been admitted to practice pursuant to the provisions of this Rule shall promptly notify the Court of any change in status which would make applicant ineligible for membership in the Bar of this Court.
(5) An attorney may not be admitted by the Bankruptcy Court to practice pro hac vice in this District in more than three (3) cases in any twelve (12) month period without making application for admission to the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas.
By standing order of the District Court, all cases under Title 11, and all proceedings and matters arising in, arising under or related to a case under Title 11 are referred to the Bankruptcy Court for this District. (See Appendix L-1001-f).
(g) Standards of Litigation Conduct
The provisions of Rule AT 4-1 of the U.S. District Court Local Rules, which govern Standards of Professional Conduct, are adopted.
(h) Standing Orders and Interim Rules
(1) Standing orders of the Bankruptcy Court apply to practice before and procedures in the Bankruptcy Court for this District, including procedures relating to Chapter 13 practices in the various divisions thereof. These orders may be modified from time to time, and are available on PACER, at each divisional office, and at the Court’s website.
(2) In the event of a conflict between a standing order of this Court and these Rules, the standing order shall prevail.
(3) This Court has adopted the Interim Rules by standing order dated October 21, 2005. In the event of a conflict between the Interim Rules and these Rules, the Interim Rules shall prevail.
(i) Mediation and ADR Provisions
(1) The Court on its own motion or upon the motion of any party or party-in-interest may order parties to participate in mediation and may order the parties to bear expenses in such proportion as the Court finds appropriate.
(2) The ADR provisions found at Appendix L-1001-i are adopted.
(j) Court’s Website
The URL for the Court’s official website is http://www.txwb.uscourts.gov. The most current Local Rules and appendices thereto, standing orders and forms may be found at this website.
All debtors, other than individuals, must be represented by counsel as of the date of commencement of a case with regard to all pleadings and hearings (including the bankruptcy petition itself). Petitions filed pro se by entities other than individuals may be dismissed sua sponte.
If a partnership case is commenced by the filing of an involuntary petition by its partner(s) and an order for relief is entered by default, the petitioning partner(s) shall be responsible for timely filing the schedules and statements of affairs for the debtor entity. If schedules are not timely filed, the petition may be dismissed sua sponte.
In addition to the requirements of Bankruptcy Rule 1005, the caption of the petition and all other pleadings and papers accompanying the petition shall include the division in which it is filed (Austin, El Paso, Midland, San Antonio, or Waco) and a space for the Clerk to insert the case number. The caption shall also include, under the space for the case number, the Chapter of Title 11 under which the petition is being filed.
(a) Creditor List
(1) General Requirements
(A) The master creditor list shall include those agencies and offices of the United States required to receive notice in FRBP 2002. Addresses for proper notice to major United States Government agencies are indicated in Appendix L-1007-a-1.
(B) Where a federal tax debt is owed, all lists shall include the address of the Internal Revenue Service office having responsibility for monitoring the case. Cases filed in the Midland/Odessa Division are the responsibility of the Dallas District Director. Cases filed in all other divisions, including Pecos, are the responsibility of the Austin District Director. The addresses for both offices are located in Appendix L-1007-a-1.
(2) Form of Creditor List
The creditor list shall be in such form as prescribed from time to time by the Clerk of the Court. The format may be found at the Court’s website.
(b) Payment Advices
Effective as to cases filed on or after October 17, 2005, copies of all payment advices or other evidence of payment received by individual debtors within 60 days before the date of the filing of the petition from any employer of the debtor (1) shall not be filed with the Court unless otherwise ordered, and (2) shall be provided to the trustee (or U.S. Trustee in Chapter 11 cases) at the same time the petition is filed or within fifteen (15) days thereafter. Such materials may be redacted in accordance with L. Rule 4002(a)(1).
(c) Monthly Net Income Statements
Effective as to cases filed on or after October 17, 2005, individual debtors shall not file a statement of monthly net income specified in § 521(a)(1)(B)(v) unless otherwise ordered by the Court. Legal persons other than individuals whose cases are filed on or after October 17, 2005, shall file the statement of monthly net income specified in § 521(a)(1)(B)(v) at the same time as the petition is filed or within fifteen (15) days thereafter.
Any creditor desiring to review copies of payment advices or other evidence of payment submitted to the trustee pursuant to this Rule must follow the procedures set out in L. Rule 4002(b)(3).
(e) Counseling Certificate Required Under § 521(b)(1)
If an individual debtor fails to file with the petition commencing the case the certificate, required under 11 U.S.C. § 521(b)(1), from an approved nonprofit budget and credit counseling agency, the Clerk of the Court shall refer the case to the presiding judge for action, which may include dismissal without further notice or hearing.
(f) Small Business Financial Report (Monthly Operating Report)
Unless the Court orders otherwise, the filing of a completed Monthly Operating Report in the form required by the Office of the United States Trustee shall be deemed to satisfy the small business debtor’s obligation under 11 U.S.C. § 308(b) to file periodic financial and other reports as described therein.
(a) Required Service
Any amended petition, creditor list, list of twenty (20) largest creditors, or amended or late-filed Schedules or Statements, shall be served by the party filing same on the parties listed in L. Rule 9013(c)(1) and as provided below.
(b) Notice to Newly Scheduled or Added Entities
Copies of amended or late-filed Schedules or Statements shall be served within three (3) days of filing, on each entity newly scheduled, newly added, or newly affected. The entity filing same shall also attach a copy of the "Order For and Notice of § 341(a) Meeting," "Discharge of Debtor," "Order Confirming Plan," and "Order Fixing Date for Filing Claims" to the extent such orders have been entered in the case to date.
(c) Amendment of Creditor Lists
Whenever schedules or amendments add new entities or make corrections to the mailing addresses, the debtor shall file with the document an amended creditor list which shall include only the names and addresses of the entities added, deleted or corrected.
(d) Notice of Amendment of Exemptions and Deadline for Objections
If a debtor's schedule of exemptions is amended, notice of such amendment shall be sent by the debtor to all creditors and to any trustee appointed in the case. Objections to the amended schedule must be filed within thirty (30) days from the date of service of such notice.
(e) Proofs of Service
Whenever notice of any amendment is required by this Rule, proof of service shall be filed. L. Rule 9013(b) governs the form of proof of service.
If service of the summons is not filed by the petitioning entity within the time allowed by FRBP 7004, the Court may dismiss the case sua sponte.
Upon motion by any party-in-interest or upon the Court's own motion, the Court may, for cause, transfer venue to another division within the District.
To request joint administration of two or more pending bankruptcy cases, a motion setting out the following shall be filed in each case:
(1) the name and case number of each case sought to be jointly administered;
(2) the proposed style and case number to be used on subsequent pleadings if joint administration is ordered;
(3) a summary of any administrative or scheduling orders previously entered in the affected cases which may require modification; and
(4) the need to propose amendments or consolidation of mailing lists in the affected cases for future noticing requirements.
(a) Any motion to dismiss or convert shall state whether the case has been previously converted from another Chapter of Title 11.
(b) A motion to convert a case filed pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 1112(a) shall state whether (1) the debtor is a debtor-in-possession, (2) whether the case was commenced by an involuntary petition, and (3) whether the case was previously converted to Chapter 11 other than on the debtor’s request.
(c) A motion to dismiss or to convert a case filed pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 1112(b) must
comply with L. Rule 9014(e)(1).
(d) Section 521(i)(1) Dismissals
The Court will enter an order dismissing a case voluntarily filed by an individual debtor under Chapter 7 or 13 under § 521(i)(1) only upon motion of a creditor or party in interest. If no motion is filed, the case will be deemed not to have been dismissed. A motion seeking an order of dismissal under § 521(i)(1) must be filed no later than the 65th day after the date of filing of the case in order for the case to be deemed to have been dismissed effective on the 46th day after the date of filing of the petition. A motion filed later than the 65th day, if granted, will result in a dismissal effective the date of entry of the order dismissing the case. A motion filed pursuant to this Local Rule shall be served on the debtor, the trustee, the United States Trustee, and all creditors and parties in interest.
(e) Section 521(e)(2)(A) Dismissals
A party in interest seeking dismissal of a case for failure to comply with § 521(e)(2)(A) must do so by motion. Such motion must be served upon the trustee, the debtor, and the United States Trustee.
Within fifteen (15) days of the effective date of conversion, the debtor shall file a supplemental schedule indicating any changes, by way of addition or deletion, to its creditor list, Schedules, and/or Statement of Financial Affairs, as may be applicable, or amend such items to reflect any changes, including but not limited to the inclusion of any property acquired or disposed of since the entry of the order for relief under the previous Chapter. If no amendments are necessary, debtor shall file a certificate to that effect within the fifteen (15) day period.
Procedures for the administration of complex Chapter 11 cases are governed by the Texas Procedures for Complex Chapter 11 Cases. A copy of the Procedures is attached to these Local Rules as Appendix L-1020.1 and is also available on the Court’s website.
(a) Returned Notices
Notices of the First Meeting of Creditors and Orders of Discharge which are undelivered shall be returned to the debtor or debtor's counsel. The debtor shall be responsible for re-serving such notices and is responsible for attempting to determine the correct address for each returned notice. The debtor shall file a certificate of service and file an amended creditor list with the Clerk, adding corrected addresses for the entities for whom notice was returned. If corrected addresses are unavailable, debtor or debtor’s counsel shall file an amended list of creditors with the Clerk, who is then authorized to remove from the mailing list on file any such address.
(b) Section 342(b) Notice to Individual Consumer Debtors
The notice required under 11 U.S.C. § 342(b) to given by the Clerk is hereby delegated, and it shall be debtor’s counsel’s responsibility to give such notice in cases where the debtor is represented by counsel prior to filing the petition commencing the bankruptcy case.
(a) Inapplicable to Adversary Proceedings
The provisions for examination under FRBP 2004 shall be inapplicable to adversary proceedings.
Not less than fifteen (15) days written notice of a proposed examination shall be given to the entity to be examined, and its counsel. The notice shall have a certificate of conference attached indicating what efforts were made to obtain an agreeable date, time and place for the 2004 examination. The entity to be examined shall have five (5) calendar days after receipt of the notice within which to respond or object to the proposed examination. The notice shall advise the entity to be examined of the scope of the examination and describe any documents requested.
(c) No Order Required
Unless a motion to quash is timely filed and served by a party in interest, the noticed examination shall be, by this Local Rule, deemed ordered by the Court. The notice of intent to conduct Rule 2004 Examination need not be filed. Attendance and production of documentary evidence requested of an entity other than the debtor shall be in compliance with FRBP 9016.
(d) Motions to Quash
If an entity objects to the examination for any reason, it must file a motion to quash, and request and obtain an expedited hearing on such motion prior to the scheduled date and time of the examination. Notwithstanding the filing of a motion to quash, the party to be examined must appear for the noticed examination unless otherwise excused by the Court, or if the notice provides less than fifteen (15) days notice.
If it appears that any entity or counsel has been unreasonable in seeking or in resisting discovery under FRBP 2004, the Court may impose appropriate sanctions. The Court may condition the taking of any examination on such terms as are just.
(a) If a request has been made for the election of a trustee in a Chapter 11 case, pursuant to § 1104(b), the United States Trustee shall schedule a meeting for the purposes of the election.
(b) The party requesting the election shall be responsible for notice.
(c) A creditor may vote for a candidate for trustee in a Chapter 11 case only if such creditor would qualify for voting under 11 U.S.C. § 702(a), or such creditor's claims have been temporarily allowed for purposes of voting.
(d) An application for approval of the election results or, in the event of a dispute, a report summarizing the election and any disputes regarding the validity thereof shall be filed within ten (10) days of the conclusion of the election.
(a) By Whom Application Made
An application to approve the employment of a professional person shall be made and signed by the entity seeking to employ that person.
(b) Content of Application
(1) In addition to the information required by FRBP 2014, the application must also contain the following:
(A) the date of the filing of the petition, the Chapter under which the petition was filed, and (if applicable) the date the case was converted and the Chapter under which the application is currently pending;
(B) the mailing address, telephone number, fax number and email address (if available) of the professional person to be employed;
(C) a disclosure of other persons in the same profession who are already or are also to be employed by the applicant, and an explanation of the reason an additional professional is required; and
(D) the verified statement required by FRBP Rule 2014.
(2) An application to employ any professional under 11 U.S.C. § 327, 1103, or 1114 shall include a copy of the contract setting forth the terms of compensation and, when applicable, the FRBP 2016(b) disclosure of compensation. This provision also applies to special counsel under any Chapter.
(c) Nunc Pro Tunc Application
An application filed within thirty (30) days of the professional's commencing services is deemed contemporaneous. Any later application is deemed nunc pro tunc and may be granted only for cause shown, and after notice and an opportunity for hearing.
An application to employ a professional person is a contested matter. The application or a summary of the application in the form of Appendix L-2014 must be served on entities pursuant to L. Rule 9013(c). The application may be granted by the Court without hearing. A party in interest who opposes an application for retention may file an objection within twenty (20) days of the date of service of the application summary, and such objection shall be set for hearing notwithstanding the Court's order granting the application to retain.
(e) Withdrawal and Substitution of Counsel
(1) Withdrawal from representation of, or substitution as, counsel for the debtor, an official creditors’ committee or the trustee must be done upon motion with notice pursuant to L. Rule 9013(c) and opportunity for hearing. Such motion may be filed with 20 day negative notice as provided in L. Rule 9014(a).
(2) Withdrawal from representation of, or substitution as, counsel for parties other than those set forth in subparagraph (1) immediately above may be accomplished by notice filed with the Clerk and served pursuant to L. Rule 9013(c).
(3) In Chapter 13 cases, the trustee shall terminate payments to former counsel for the debtor(s) upon entry of an order allowing withdrawal of counsel until such time as former counsel obtains Court approval of a final fee application.
(a) Maintenance and Disposition of Records
Unless otherwise ordered by the Court on notice and hearing, a debtor shall maintain all books and records until the entry of an order closing the case. A trustee who is in possession of books and records of the debtor may, on notice and hearing, destroy, abandon, store or return to the debtor all or a portion of those books and records. Such notice shall include a detailed description of the books and records and the objection period language as provided in L. Rule 9014(a). Notice shall be given to the United States Attorney, the United States Trustee, and the Special Procedures Office for the Internal Revenue Service, in addition to those persons otherwise entitled to notice under L. Rule 9013.
(b) Debtor's Duty to Report
In a Chapter 11 case, and in an operating Chapter 7 case, the debtor-in-possession or the trustee shall file a Monthly Operating Report, in the form prescribed by the United States Trustee. The Monthly Operating Report shall be filed on or before the 20th day of each month following the month the subject of the report until a plan is confirmed, or the case is converted or dismissed. A signed copy of the Monthly Operating Report shall be furnished to the United States Trustee.
(a) Form of Application
Unless otherwise ordered by the Court, an application for compensation and reimbursement for a professional retained pursuant to Court approval shall also include:
(1) A Fee Application Summary in the form of Appendix L-2016-a-2; the Summary must include a summary description of the services rendered by category, reflecting the total cost of each category of services and summarizing the nature and purpose of each category of services rendered, and the results obtained;
(2) A Compensation Support Exhibit reflecting contemporaneous time records itemizing services rendered by category, in a format which reflects a description of each service entry, the amount of time spent rendering that service, the date the service was performed, who performed that service, and the hourly rate of the person performing that service.
(3) A Reimbursement Support Exhibit, reflecting invoices, records and/or receipts for expenses incurred. The date, time, and amount of each expense shall be shown. Any single expense in excess of $100.00 shall be supported by a receipt or invoice, except for in-house postage, telephone, and photocopying charges.
(b) Procedure for Applying for Compensation in Chapter 11 and Chapter 7 Cases
(1) The Fee Application Summary must be served pursuant to L. Rule 9013 upon any secured creditor whose cash collateral is used by the estate (and such creditor’s counsel), any committee appointed in the case (and such committee’s counsel), the twenty largest unsecured creditors, any trustee appointed in the case (and such trustee’s counsel), the debtor (and debtor’s counsel), and the United States Trustee.
(2) Any party in interest may obtain a copy of the Compensation Support Exhibit and Reimbursement Support Exhibit at no charge by requesting a copy of same from the professional seeking compensation.
(3) In cases which have been jointly administered (other than Chapter 13 cases), a separate application must be filed for each estate in which services were performed, unless the Court orders otherwise. The applications shall disclose how services and charges have been allocated among the various estates.
(c) Procedure for Compensation in Chapter 13 Cases
(1) The Chapter 13 trustee shall review the attorney’s fee charged in each case and shall make a recommendation concerning the reasonableness of the compensation requested. If the Court agrees with the trustee’s recommendation, then confirmation of the Chapter 13 plan shall also constitute Court approval of the fees requested. The Court may, on its own motion, set a hearing to review the attorney’s fee requested, which hearing may be conducted at the same time as the confirmation hearing scheduled in the case. The Court in each division may set a flat fee for routine non-business Chapter 13 cases, and a flat fee for routine business Chapter 13 cases. Notwithstanding said flat fee, an attorney may, for cause shown, request a higher fee.
(2) An attorney representing a debtor under Chapter 13 shall be the attorney of record from the filing of the petition for relief under Chapter 13, if signed by the attorney, or from the filing of a notice of appearance until the close or dismissal of the case (including disposition of motions to reinstate), unless relieved from representation by order of the Court.
(a) Service of Claim
A copy of every proof of claim or interest in all cases shall be served with any attachments on the debtor' s attorney (or on the debtor, if the debtor is pro se) and any trustee appointed in the case.
(b) Secured Proofs of Claim
A secured creditor (or the debtor) in Chapter 12 and Chapter 13 must file a proof of claim or interest for the claim or interest to be allowed. Such proof of claim must be filed within the time frame set forth in FRBP 3002(c).
(a) Bar Date for Proof of Claim or Interest in Notice of First Meeting
Proofs of claim or interests in Chapter 11 cases shall be filed by the date established in the Notice of the Meeting of Creditors pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 341, unless the Court, upon motion and after notice and an opportunity for hearing, orders otherwise.
(b) Bar Date for Administrative Claims
The Court, after notice and an opportunity for hearing, may establish a bar date for filing an application for allowance and payment of an administrative claim, either on its own motion or on motion of a party in interest, filed pursuant to L. Rules 9013 and 9014.
Objections to claims are contested matters and may be made on negative notice as set forth in L. Rule 9014. If negative notice is not used or if a timely response to the objection is filed, a hearing on the objection will be set in accordance with FRBP 3007.
(a) Procedure for Withdrawal of Unclaimed Funds.
An application for withdrawal of unclaimed funds shall contain the claimant's full name, address, telephone number, and social security number or employer identification number. Individual claimants not represented by an attorney must present photo identification or other appropriate positive identification credentials to the Clerk upon filing. Anyone filing an application on behalf of a claimant shall attach an original Power of Attorney showing the authority to represent the claimant in seeking disbursement of the unclaimed funds. Disbursement checks will always be made payable to the claimant only.
All applications to disburse unclaimed funds shall contain a certificate of service showing that notice has been given to the United States Attorney pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2042.
All motions for valuation must be in a verified pleading or accompanied by an affidavit which discloses:
(a) the date of purchase and the purchase price of the item(s) sought to be valued;
(b) a description of the condition of the item(s);
(c) the movant's opinion of the value of the item(s); and
(d) the basis for that opinion.
(a) Timely Filing of Plan
If the plan is not timely filed, the Court may summarily dismiss the case without further notice or hearing. A motion to extend the time for filing the plan must be filed before the expiration of the time provided in FRBP 3015(b).
Unless provided otherwise by standing order, the debtor shall serve a copy of the plan and any amended plan on the Trustee, all creditors and all parties requesting notice.
(c) Pay Orders and Waivers of Pay Orders
Pay orders are required in all Chapter 13 cases, except as provided herein or as otherwise ordered by the Court. The Chapter 13 trustee may waive the requirement of a pay order at the First Meeting of Creditors on request of the debtor. If the Chapter 13 trustee declines to waive the requirement of a pay order, then the debtor may request a waiver of the pay order from the Court on motion and notice to the trustee and with opportunity for a hearing.
(d) Modification of Plan After Confirmation
Any modification to a plan after confirmation shall be upon motion and shall comply with the provisions of L. Rule 9014 and the requirements imposed by any applicable standing order affecting Chapter 13 practice in the division in which the case is pending.
(e) Excused Attendance at Confirmation Hearings
If all of the following conditions are met, the debtor and the debtor’s attorney are excused from attending the scheduled Chapter 13 plan confirmation hearing:
(1) the plan has been filed and requirements imposed by any applicable standing order affecting Chapter 13 practice in the division in which the case is pending have been complied with;
(2) no party in interest has timely filed an objection or any such objection has been resolved prior to confirmation; and
(3) the Chapter 13 trustee has recommended confirmation.
Upon motion and cause shown, the Court may use FRBP 3017.1, as amended by Interim Rule 3017.1, to conditionally approve a disclosure statement in any Chapter 11 case.
Unless otherwise ordered by the Court, any objection to a disclosure statement shall be filed and served not less than three (3) days prior to the hearing on the disclosure statement.
Except as provided by this Rule or order of the Court, no ballots shall be filed with the Clerk of the Court. The notice which is required by FRBP 3017(d) shall direct that all ballots be submitted to the plan proponent at a specified mailing address.
(b) Ballot Summary
For all confirmation hearings the plan proponent must prepare a written ballot summary in substantially the same form as Appendix L-3018-b. In addition to indicating how each class and each claimant voted, the original summary shall also have each original ballot attached. At the confirmation hearing the original ballot summary and one copy will be submitted to the Court for filing. The plan proponent shall make available upon request a copy of the ballot summary three (3) calendar days prior to the confirmation hearing to any party objecting to the confirmation of the plan and to the proponent of any competing plan and its counsel.
Motions requesting the entry of a final decree in Chapter 11 cases may be filed using the negative notice language set forth in L. Rule 9014(a). Such motions must be served as required under L. Rule 9013.
(a) Except as may be provided by standing order, any tax refund not necessary to pay tax obligations may be first applied to cure any delinquency in the Chapter 13 plan, and the balance of the refund shall be remitted to the debtor.
(b) With respect to all pending Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases:
(1) the Internal Revenue Service is authorized to apply any tax refunds of debtors to the payment of any tax obligations due and owing by the debtors, regardless of whether such tax obligations or tax refunds arose before or after the filing of the case, so long as such tax claims are entitled to priority status under § 507(a);
(2) the terms “taxes” and “refunds” include all penalties and interest associated with taxes and refunds; and
(3) the Internal Revenue Service shall be entitled to charge its normal rate of interest and penalties for tax obligations arising after the filing of the Chapter 13 petition.
(a) Motions for Relief from Stay under 11 U.S.C. § 362(d)
(1) Motion and Response: Contents
(i) Motions seeking relief from automatic stay shall state the specific relief requested and the provision of § 362(d) under which relief is sought. The motion shall state with specificity the facts that support the relief requested.
(ii) If the motion is filed in a Chapter 11 or Chapter 13 case with respect to residential real property and if non-payment of any post-petition payment is a ground for relief, at the time the motion is filed the movant shall serve the debtor and debtor’s counsel with an affidavit and a pay history showing, at a minimum, the months in which the default was alleged to have occurred and the amount and character of the default, in a form substantially in compliance with Appendix L-4001.
(iii) By signing the certificate of service on the motion, the movant certifies that the affidavit and pay history were served on the debtor and debtor’s counsel in accordance with this Rule. Failure to serve the affidavit and pay history in accordance with this Rule may be grounds for the denial of the relief requested in the motion.
(iv) A creditor moving for relief from stay under § 362(d)(1) in a case shall file with the motion, where applicable, an affidavit specifying the month or months in which the debtor failed to make a payment, any failure to satisfy an escrow shortage (including the amount of the shortage and the period of time involved), and any failure to maintain insurance (including the amount of shortage and the period of time involved).
(v) Motions for relief from stay shall not be combined with other forms of relief except those allowed by §§ 362 and 1205. Movants wishing to waive the thirty (30) day hearing requirement of § 362(e) must include such waiver in the caption of the motion.
(B) Form of Motion; Negative Notice
A movant may file a motion seeking relief from stay employing the following 15 day negative notice language:
THIS PLEADING REQUESTS RELIEF THAT MAY BE ADVERSE TO YOUR INTERESTS.
IF NO TIMELY RESPONSE IS FILED WITHIN FIFTEEN (15) DAYS FROM THE DATE OF SERVICE, THE RELIEF REQUESTED HEREIN MAY BE GRANTED WITHOUT A HEARING BEING HELD.
A TIMELY FILED RESPONSE IS NECESSARY FOR A HEARING TO BE HELD.
If this negative notice language is used, the movant will be deemed to have waived entitlement to an initial hearing within thirty (30) days. If negative notice language is not used, then the motion will be set within thirty (30) days of its filing, as provided in § 362(e), unless the movant waives the thirty day hearing requirement in the caption of the motion.
Any response (if required under L. Rule 9014(b)) must specifically contest one or more of the substantive grounds pled in support of the motion.
(D) Use of Affidavits
(i) Pursuant to FRCP 43(e), a movant may use affidavits as evidence at the hearing in support of the factual allegations in the motion. The affidavits should not be filed with the Clerk, but must be served pursuant to L. Rule 9013 at the same time the motion is filed.
(ii) A respondent may also use affidavits as evidence at the hearing. The affidavits should not be filed with the Clerk, but must be served pursuant to L. Rule 9013 either (i) at the same time the response is filed, if one is required under this Rule or (ii) within 15 days of the date of service of the motion, if no response is required under this Rule.
(iii) The use of affidavits does not preclude the use of witnesses at the hearing.
A § 362(e) hearing on a motion for relief from automatic stay shall be consolidated with the § 362(d) final hearing unless the Court, for cause, rules otherwise at the time of the hearing.
(b) Motions for Extensions of Stay under § 362(c)(3)(B)
A party in interest seeking relief under § 362(c)(3)(B) shall file a motion styled “Motion for Extension of Stay Pursuant to § 362(c)(3)(B).” To be timely considered, the motion must be accompanied by a separate motion for expedited hearing.
(c) Motions for Imposition of Stay under § 362(c)(4)(B)
A party in interest seeking relief under § 362(c)(4)(B) shall file a motion styled “Motion for Imposition of Stay Pursuant to § 362(c)(4)(B).” To be timely considered, the motion must be accompanied by a separate motion for expedited hearing.
(d) Motions for Orders Confirming Termination of Automatic Stay under § 362(c)
A party in interest requesting an order under § 362(j) shall file a verified motion styled “Motion for Order Confirming Termination of Automatic Stay Under § 362(c).” The verified motion shall specifically allege the grounds for contending that the stay has terminated under the provisions of § 362(c). The motion shall be served on the debtor, the trustee, the United States Trustee, and all creditors and parties in interest.
(e) Incurring Debt in a Chapter 13 Case
(1) A motion by a debtor in a Chapter 13 case to incur debt shall include the following information:
(A) the amount of debt sought to be incurred, and the reasons why the debtor believes it necessary;
(B) the percentage to be paid to unsecured creditors under the plan before and after the proposed debt to be incurred; and
(C) a copy of the debtor’s Schedules I and J, before and after the debt incurrence.
(2) The motion shall be served upon all creditors and parties in interest and may, upon a showing of need, be served on ten (10) days negative notice.
(1) Debtors complying with the disclosure requirements of Interim Rule 4002, or of 11 U.S.C. §§ 521 and 1308, are authorized to redact personal information from the documents to be produced to the trustee, filed with the Court, or given to any creditor, consistent with the Guidelines for Safeguarding Confidentiality established by the Director of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts, as they may be amended from time to time. The Guidelines for Privacy are available at http://www.uscourts.gov/bankruptcycourts/ DirTaxGuidanceJCUSapproved905.pdf or at the divisional offices of the Clerk of Court.
(2) A trustee or the United States Trustee may request authority to review the unredacted versions of any such documents, upon motion setting forth the grounds therefore, and notice to the debtor. The debtor may submit such documents to the Court for in camera inspection.
(b) Access to Debtor’s Tax and Other Personal Information
(1) A creditor or other party in interest desiring access to any tax information filed by the debtor pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 521(f) must file a motion with the Court, served upon the trustee, the debtor, and the United States Trustee. The motion must state why such information is needed, why such information is not otherwise available to the creditor, and how the movant proposes to protect the privacy of the debtor and others consistent with the Guidelines for Safeguarding Confidentiality established by the Director of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts. Any motion filed pursuant to this subparagraph must be set for hearing.
(2) A creditor or other party in interest may not directly request from a trustee copies of any materials submitted to the trustee pursuant to the debtor’s duties under 11 U.S.C. § 521 or § 1308 or under Interim Rule 4002(b), and all such materials are privileged from discovery in any court proceeding. A trustee may not produce such documents to any creditor or party in interest except on order of the Court. A trustee may produce such documents or materials to any law enforcement officer as part of any criminal investigation.
(3) A creditor or other party in interest may request from the Court permission to obtain access to materials submitted to a trustee pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 521 or § 1308 or pursuant to the duties imposed by Interim Rule 4002(b) or these Local Rules. Any such motion must set forth why such information is needed, why such information is not otherwise available to the creditor, and how the movant proposes to protect the privacy of the debtor and others, consistent with the Guidelines for Safeguarding Confidentiality established by the Director of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts.
(4) If the Court grants a creditor’s request made pursuant to subparagraph (b)(3) of this Rule, then the debtor in responding to the order may redact such materials in accordance with subparagraph (a)(1) of this Rule, unless the Court orders otherwise.
(a) Chapter 7
In a Chapter 7 case, a motion to delay or postpone discharge under § 727(a)(12) must be filed not later than 30 days prior to the time fixed for filing a complaint objecting to discharge, and must be served on the debtor, any trustee serving in the case, and on the United States Trustee. An untimely motion will not be deemed to be pending, for purposes of Interim Rule 4004(c)(1)(I), unless the Court orders otherwise prior to the entry of the discharge. To be timely considered the motion must be accompanied by a separate motion to expedite the hearing in accordance with L. Rule 9014(e).
(b) Chapter 12 or 13
In a Chapter 12 or 13 case, a debtor who completes and timely submits to the Chapter 13 trustee a pre-discharge questionnaire in the form specified by the trustee will be deemed to have complied with the filing requirements of Interim Rule 1007(b)(8). The trustee’s motion to enter discharge shall be deemed to be notice under Interim Rule 2002(f)(11) of the time to request delay in the entry of discharge under § 1228(f) or § 1328(h).
(c) Chapter 11
(1) An individual debtor in a Chapter 11 case, in order to receive a discharge, must file a motion requesting entry of a discharge. The motion must contain a verified statement addressing the requirements of § 1141(d)(5)(A) and (B). The motion must also include the statements specified in Interim Rule 4004(c)(1)(H) and (I). The motion (and all attachments) must be served on all creditors and parties in interest, and must include a conspicuous notice that any objections to the entry of discharge, or any request to delay entry of the discharge under § 1141(d)(5)(C) must be filed with the Clerk and served on the debtor within twenty days of the date of service of the statement. Service of the motion with the required notice in accordance with this Rule shall satisfy the requirements of Interim Rule 2002(f)(11).
(2) If an objection to the entry of discharge, or a request to delay entry of discharge is timely filed, then no discharge will be entered until a hearing has been held under § 1141(d)(5)(C). If no such objection or request is timely filed, then a discharge may be entered without further hearing, unless the Court orders otherwise.
By standing order, the Court has adopted administrative procedures for electronic filing, which are posted on the Court’s website.
A motion to withdraw the reference and any responses thereto shall be filed under the style and number of the bankruptcy case or adversary proceeding in which reference is sought to be withdrawn and shall be filed with the Clerk of the Bankruptcy Court. The Clerk of the Bankruptcy Court will transmit the motion to withdraw the reference and timely filed responses to the District Court.
(b) Contents of Motion
The motion shall list all pleadings which may be relevant to the Court's disposition of the motion, including docket entry numbers. The motion shall be accompanied by a form of order for entry by the District Court.
Any response or objection to a motion for withdrawal of the reference shall be filed within ten (10) days of the date of service.
(a) Trustee’s Use of Estate Funds
A Chapter 7 trustee may, without prior approval of the Court, pay from funds of the estate routine expenses for preservation of the estate, such as insurance premiums on property, locksmith charges, storage space rental, filing fees for adversary proceedings and other routine charges made by third parties. Expenses included within this provision do not include reimbursement of internal operating expenses of the trustee. Payments made under this provision in each case shall not exceed an aggregate of one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) in any twelve month period.
(b) Notice of Proposed Use, Sale or Lease of Property
Notice of a motion to use, sell or lease property shall contain the negative notice language set forth in L. Rule 9014(a). In addition to the requirements of Rule 2002(c)(1), the notice shall contain:
(1) The name and address of the proposed buyer or lessee;
(2) The proposed consideration to be received by the estate, including estimated costs of the sale or lease, including commissions, auctioneer's fees, costs of document preparation and recording and any other customary closing costs; and
(3) A description of the estimated or possible tax consequences to the estate, if known, and how any tax liability generated by the use, sale or lease of such property will be paid.
(c) Motions in Chapter 12 and 13 Cases
In Chapter 12 and Chapter 13 cases, a motion for proposed use, sale or lease of property shall indicate consent or lack of consent of the trustee and of any affected secured creditor.
All motions seeking redemption of property under 11 U.S.C. § 722 must be verified or accompanied by an affidavit of the debtor which discloses:
(a) the purchase price of the item(s) sought to be valued;
(b) a description of the condition of the item(s);
(c) the movant's opinion of the value of the item(s);
(d) the basis for that opinion; and
(e) the last four (4) digits of the account number by which the creditor can identify the loan transaction.
A response to a motion under FRBP 7012 must be filed within 20 days of service of the motion. The Court may set the matter for hearing or may rule on the motion without a hearing.
(a) Form; Attachments
Any motions to amend or to supplement pleadings must contain as an attachment a complete copy of the amended or supplemental pleading the movant proposes to file.
(b) Filing of Allowed Amendments
Once an order is entered which allows the amendment, the complete copy of the amended or supplemental pleading must be filed by the movant within ten (10) days of the entry of the order.
(a) Scheduling Order
Following the filing of an answer or upon motion of a party, the Court shall issue its scheduling order, which will set forth deadlines, hearing dates, and limitations on discovery. Other pre-trial requirements are found in the addendum to the scheduling order located in Appendix L-7016-a of these Rules. The scheduling order may not be amended without permission of the Court, but any extension of the discovery deadline up until ten (10) days before the deadline for filing pre-trial orders will be deemed granted upon filing of a statement of consent signed by all parties.
(b) Motion Practice in Adversary Proceedings
Except as otherwise provided in L. Rules 7012 and 7056, L. Rules 9013 and 9014 apply to non-dispositive motion practice in adversary proceedings except that (i) the deadline for filing a response is reduced to ten (10) days, and (ii) service of the motion is limited to all counsel and pro se parties in the adversary proceeding. If a response is not timely filed, the relief requested may be granted without further notice and hearing.
Discovery conducted in adversary proceedings shall not be filed with the Clerk.
(d) Pre-Trial Conferences
Unless otherwise provided in the scheduling order, a pre-trial conference will not be held. A pre-trial conference may be scheduled upon written motion or upon the Court's own motion.
Unless otherwise provided in the scheduling order, any legal briefs to be considered by the Court at the trial on the merits of an adversary complaint shall be filed contemporaneously with the pre-trial order, but as a separate document with service on all counsel and pro se parties.
(f) Exhibits and Number of Copies Required
(1) All exhibits that are to be used in a hearing on the merits shall bear an exhibit marker, and be bound in booklet form which will lay flat when opened. Exhibits shall be separately tabbed and identified by a numerical sequence, and shall be indexed at the front of each exhibit book or books.
(2) Plaintiff’s (or movant’s) exhibits shall be marked with the letter “P,” followed by a dash, followed by a number; for example, Exhibit P-3. If there are multiple plaintiffs, then each exhibit shall be marked with the letter “P,” followed by the specific plaintiff’s name, followed by a dash, followed by a number; for example, Exhibit P Jones-3, Exhibit P Smith, Inc.-1. Defendant’s (or respondent’s) exhibits shall be marked with the letter “D,” followed by a dash, followed by a number; for example, Exhibit D-2. If there are multiple defendants, then the system for multiple plaintiffs shall apply. The letter "G" shall in all cases be assigned to the Government for identification purposes. The letter “I” shall be used to designate the exhibits of any intervenor.
(3) Copies of the exhibits, bound, tabbed, and marked, shall be provided to each party not less than five (5) calendar days prior to trial.
(4) Exhibits shall not be filed with the Clerk prior to trial. Counsel will provide no fewer than five exhibit books at the time of trial: one each for the Judge, the Clerk, the witness stand, and one for each party's counsel.
(5) Failure to comply with the exhibit form and exchange requirements may result in the refusal of the Court to admit exhibits into evidence, or in sanctions.
(a) The initial disclosures required by FRCP 26(a) shall be provided to parties within twenty (20) days after entry of a scheduling order, unless otherwise ordered by the Court. The disclosures shall not be filed with the Clerk.
(b) A party may not seek discovery from any source until a scheduling order is entered by the Court, unless otherwise authorized.
(c) FRCP 26(f) requires that parties shall confer to consider the nature and basis of their claims and defenses and the possibilities for a prompt settlement or resolution of the case, to make or arrange for the disclosures required by FRCP 26(a)(1), and to develop a proposed discovery plan. Parties may agree to waive this requirement and follow the terms and deadlines in the scheduling order and addendum issued by the Court and found at Appendix 7016-a. If the parties do not agree to waive the provisions of FRCP 26(f), upon request the Court will schedule a pre-trial conference to discuss the provisions and deadlines of a scheduling order. Parties who anticipate the use of expert witnesses at trial must request a pre-trial conference.
Applications to compromise and settle are governed by L. Rule 9019.
a) Contents of Motions
Any motion for an award of attorney’s fees shall be filed and served no later than fourteen (14) days after entry of judgment pursuant to FRCP 54. L. Rule 7016(b) applies. Counsel for the parties shall confer for the purpose of resolving all disputed issues relating to attorney’s fees prior to making application. The application shall certify that such a conference has occurred. If no agreement is reached, the applicant shall certify the specific reason(s) why the matter could not be resolved by agreement. The motion shall include a supporting document organized chronologically and by activity or project, listing attorney name, date, and hours expended on the particular activity or project. The application shall also set forth the method by which the amount of fees was computed, with sufficient citation of authority to permit the Court the opportunity to determine whether such computation is correct. The request shall include reference to the statutory authorization or other authority for the request. Detailed time sheets for each attorney for whom fees are claimed may be required to be submitted upon further order of the Court. Nothing in this Rule prohibits the parties from requesting an award and presenting evidence related to the request at the time of the trial.
Objections to any motion for attorney’s fees shall be filed on or before ten (10) days after the date of service of the motion. If there is no timely objection, the Court may grant the motion as unopposed.
The motion shall be resolved without further hearing, unless an evidentiary hearing is requested, reasons therefor presented, and good cause shown.
Motions for award of attorney’s fees filed beyond the fourteen (14) day period may be deemed untimely and a waiver of entitlement to fees.
Motions under FRCP 56 do not require negative notice. However, responses and responsive affidavits must be filed no later than twenty (20) days after the date of service, unless the Court, for cause, extends the time. The Court may rule on the motion with or without a hearing.
Except for motions which may be filed directly with the District Court pursuant to FRBP 8005, until an appeal is docketed by the District Clerk all pleadings shall be filed with the Bankruptcy Clerk and acted upon by the Bankruptcy Judge.
(a) Number of Copies
Except as otherwise provided by applicable rules, whenever any pleading is offered for filing, only the original shall be tendered to the Clerk.
Form 16 is modified to include the division where the case is pending (Austin, E1 Paso, Midland, San Antonio, or Waco) and the case number, including the initials of the judge assigned to the case.
(c) Titles of Pleadings and Orders
All pleadings and orders shall, within the title, designate the specific relief sought or granted. Orders shall contain within the title a reference to the motion or application to be granted.
(d) Non-Conforming Pleadings
Any pleading that fails to conform to the requirements of this or any other applicable rule may be dismissed by the Court sua sponte.
All pleadings must be signed and shall include the signer's name, mailing address, email address, telephone and fax numbers including area code and, if the signer is an attorney, the attorney's State Bar Number (and the state from which the bar number is issued, if other than Texas). The Court may waive the requirement of a physical, original signature to implement alternative signing methodologies.
(a) Forms of Orders
A form of proposed order must be submitted at the time of filing a request for relief, with the following exceptions:
(1) plans and objections to plans under Chapter 11 and Chapter 13;
(2) Chapter 11 disclosure statements; and
(3) motions requesting omnibus relief, such as an omnibus objection to claims.
A form of proposed order must be submitted as a separate document for consideration by the Court and should not be attached to the motion as an exhibit.
(b) Certificates of Service
All motions, applications and objections to claims, and all responses to same must contain a certificate of service reflecting service on affected entities, as specified in paragraph (c) of this Local Rule.
(1) The certificate of service must be signed by an attorney or party (if appearing pro se), certifying that service has been accomplished in the manner and on the date stated in the certificate and upon the parties required to be served.
(2) The certificate of service must list each of the entities served and their addresses.
(3) With Court approval, a party may serve a summary of a pleading where the pleading is voluminous, or the number of parties to be served is excessively large. In such cases, the summary shall be filed, and the certificate of service shall be appended to the summary.
(c) Entities to Be Served
(1) When a pleading is filed, the following entities at a minimum shall be served unless otherwise specifically provided by these Rules, by the FRBP, by standing order, or by order of the Court.
(A) In a Chapter 7 case (except the Chapter 7 trustee’s final reports before and after distribution and reports of sale): the debtor, the trustee, any court-approved committees, the counsel for each of the foregoing entities, and any other entities affected by the relief requested.
(B) In a Chapter 11 case (except the plan and disclosure statement): the debtor, any court-approved committee, any Chapter 11 trustee, the counsel for each of the foregoing entities, the twenty largest unsecured creditors, parties who have filed a notice of appearance, the United States Trustee, and any other entities affected by the relief requested.
(C) In a Chapter 12 or 13 case: the debtor, debtor’s counsel, the Chapter 13 trustee and any other entities affected by the relief requested.
(2) In an adversary proceeding, service shall be made upon all counsel and pro se parties, unless otherwise specifically provided by these rules, the FRBP, by standing order, or by order of the Court.
(3) Whenever a pleading governed by this Local Rule is to be served on the United States, or an officer or agency thereof, the service provisions of FRBP 7004(b)(4) apply.
(4) If a movant wishes to use the negative notice language of L. Rule 9014(a), the following motions require service upon all creditors and parties in interest:
(A) motions to dismiss in Chapters 7, 9, and 11;
(B) motions to modify plans in Chapters 11, 12, and 13; and
(C) motions to incur debt in Chapters 11, 12, and 13.
(a) Negative Notice Language
Notice and an opportunity for hearing may be accomplished by the inclusion of the following form language presented conspicuously, fully capitalized in bold faced type (at least 12 pt.) and placed immediately below the caption and before the body of the pleading. This language should not be used for (1) matters granted without a hearing as set forth herein, (2) matters set forth in Appendix L-9014, (3) matters upon which a hearing is specifically required by the Bankruptcy Code or by applicable rules, or (4) matters that require the Court to act within a shortened time frame.
THIS PLEADING REQUESTS RELIEF THAT MAY BE ADVERSE TO YOUR INTERESTS.
IF NO TIMELY RESPONSE IS FILED WITHIN TWENTY (20) DAYS FROM THE DATE OF SERVICE, THE RELIEF REQUESTED HEREIN MAY BE GRANTED WITHOUT A HEARING BEING HELD.
A TIMELY FILED RESPONSE IS NECESSARY FOR A HEARING TO BE HELD.
(b) Responses to Motions, Applications, and Objections to Claims
(1) Time of Filing. A party who opposes the relief requested must file a responsive pleading within the time set out in the negative notice (if applicable). If negative notice language is not used, a response is not required unless the Court or these rules direct.
(2) Format. Responses to motions, applications, and other requests for relief shall comply with L. Rule 9004, except that no proposed form of order is required. Responses shall also comply with L. Rule 9011.
If a matter requires hearing, notice of the setting shall be accomplished by the Clerk, unless otherwise directed by the Court. Any contested matter may be set for hearing by the Court even if negative notice language has been used and even if no party has requested a hearing.
(d) Matters Granted Without Hearing
The Court may rule, without further notice or hearing, on certain matters including the following:
(1) motions for admission pro hac vice, pursuant to L. Rule 1001(e);
(2) motions to shorten notice pursuant to FRBP 2002;
(3) motions to enlarge time pursuant to FRBP 9006;
(4) motions to expedite hearings;
(5) motions for new trial pursuant to FRBP 9023;
(6) motions for reconsideration pursuant to FRBP 9024; and
(7) motions for continuance.
(e) Expedited Hearing or Consideration
(1) Except as otherwise provided by standing order, a motion for expedited hearing of a matter, or to expedite consideration of any matter, shall be filed as a separate pleading. Such motions may be granted only for good cause stated in the pleading and shall contain a certificate of conference reflecting efforts to confer with affected parties regarding the relief requested or the reasons why conferring was not possible or practical.
A proposed form of order shall accompany the motion for expedited hearing and the order shall contain a paragraph in substantially the following format (including blanks):
“The [name of underlying pleading] is scheduled for expedited hearing on the ____ day of ___________, _____, at ________ __.m., in [name and address of court, including courtroom if applicable]. Notice of the hearing shall be given by movant/applicant.”
The moving party is responsible for notice of hearing on expedited matters. Movant shall file a certificate of notice listing persons served. The certificate should be filed within five (5) days of such service but in no event later than the date and time of the hearing.
(1) Time for filing. No continuance of any hearing will be granted except upon motion filed no later than three (3) calendar days prior to the scheduled hearing and upon good cause shown on the face of the pleading. The Court may consider such a motion filed less than three (3) calendar days prior, but only if the motion sets forth the emergency that explains why it was not timely filed. The motion shall contain a certificate of conference reflecting efforts to confer with affected parties regarding the relief requested or the reasons why conferring was not possible or practical.
(2) Agreement to continue insufficient. The agreement of the parties to a continuance is not, of itself, good cause for granting a continuance.
(3) Appearance required. Unless the Court grants the motion for continuance prior to the hearing, the parties are required to appear at the scheduled hearing. The filing of a motion for continuance of itself does not excuse appearance.
(4) Certificate. The moving party shall file a certificate signed by the party or the party’s attorney reflecting the date of any hearing reset by the Court, and reflecting service of notice that reset hearing, within five (5) days of such service.
(g) Exhibits For Hearings in Contested Matters
L. Rule 7016(f) applies in contested matters.
(h) FRBP 7015, to the extent that it adopts FRCP 15(c), applies in contested matters.
(i) FRCP 26(b) and (c), as implemented by FRBP 7026, apply in contested matters and the remainder of FRCP 26 does not apply unless the Court orders otherwise.
(a) Consent to Jury Trial Before Bankruptcy Court
(1) By the Party Demanding Jury Trial. If a jury trial is requested in a matter pending before the Bankruptcy Court, the requesting party shall file with the Court, in a separate pleading and contemporaneously with the jury demand, a separate pleading entitled "Statement Regarding Consent," setting forth the following:
(A) whether the requesting party consents to the conduct of the jury trial by the Bankruptcy Court;
(B) whether the matter is one to which the Seventh Amendment right to jury trial attaches, and the grounds therefore;
(C) whether the matter is a core or non-core proceeding, and the grounds therefore; and
(D) if the matter is a non-core proceeding, whether the party consents to the entry of a final order by the Bankruptcy Court.
(2) By the Parties to the Litigation in Response to a Jury Demand. Within fifteen (15) days after the filing of a jury demand and the Statement Regarding Consent required under paragraph (a)(1) of this Rule, each party to the litigation shall file with the Court in a separate contemporaneous pleading, a "Response Regarding Consent," addressing each of the four matters referenced above.
(b) Withdrawal of the Reference in the Event of Non-Consent
If the Court grants the jury demand and a party has refused to consent to the Bankruptcy Court's conduct of the jury trial, then any party may, within fifteen (15) days, file a motion to withdraw the reference, attaching a copy of the Court' s order and a copy of the party’s refusal to consent. If no party timely files such a motion, the Court shall strike the jury demand.
(c) Application of the District Court Local Rules Relating to Jury Trials
All rules relating to the conduct of a jury trial in the District Court shall apply to the conduct of such trials in Bankruptcy Court.
(1) Documents or proceedings may be sealed only by order of the Court, and on motion with notice to parties in interest.
(2) Documents to be sealed shall be presented to the Clerk after the order has been entered. The documents shall be contained in an envelope or other secure device, with the initials or signature of the submitting party or attorney written across the edge of the closure, and transparent tape placed on top of the mark for security. The envelope (or other secure device) shall have affixed to it a letter-size sheet of paper bearing the style and caption of the matter with reference to which the documents are being filed.
(3) The form of order submitted with the motion requesting a matter be sealed shall contain the following recitations:
(A) The matter shall remain under seal for no longer than one year from the date of entry of the order, unless the Court orders otherwise.
(B) The only entities permitted to review documents or transcripts of proceedings placed under seal are those entities specified in the order, except that the following entities shall also have access to matters placed under seal unless the Court specifically rules otherwise: (1) the judge presiding over the case, (2) the law clerk to whom the matter is assigned internally by the presiding judge, (3) the courtroom deputy responsible for the matter, (4) the Clerk of the Court, and (5) the presiding judge and staff of any appellate tribunal.
(b) Disposition of Sealed Documents
(1) Documents or transcripts of proceedings under seal may be forwarded to an appellate court without the necessity of unsealing the matter. The matter so forwarded shall be accompanied by a true copy of the order placing the matter under seal. Further motions with regard to the sealing or unsealing of a matter shall be filed with the Court that entered the original order sealing the matter, notwithstanding the pendency of an appeal.
(2) Upon the entry of an order unsealing a matter (or upon the expiration of the time period specified in paragraph (a)(3)(A), supra), the Clerk (or other person responsible for the maintenance of the matter) shall place the document or transcript of proceedings in the file of the case or adversary proceeding.
(1) An application to compromise an adversary proceeding shall be filed in the main bankruptcy case, not in the adversary proceeding. It shall bear the style of the main bankruptcy case, not the adversary proceeding.
(2) An application to compromise an adversary proceeding shall, within the body of the application, set out the style and number of the adversary proceeding.
(3) No application to compromise an adversary proceeding need be filed in order to settle a nondischargeability action filed pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 523.
(1) Applications to compromise adversary proceedings are governed by L. Rule 9014, and may include the negative notice language there specified.
(2) Applications to compromise and motions to dismiss an objection to discharge under 11 U.S.C. § 727 must identify the cause of action and any consideration paid or agreed to be paid.
(c) Order and Judgment
An application to compromise an adversary proceeding shall be accompanied by two forms of order. The first form of order shall be one to approve the application to compromise, bearing the style of the main bankruptcy case. The second form of order shall be a proposed agreed judgment or order of dismissal, bearing the style of the adversary proceeding, for entry in the underlying adversary proceeding.
Order Submission Form. Agreed Orders submitted other than by electronic means must have a cover sheet in conformity with the standard form attached as Appendix L-9022.
A motion to abstain is filed with the Clerk of the Bankruptcy Court.
(1) Filing. A notice of removal pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1452(a) shall be filed with the Clerk of the Bankruptcy Court. A notice of removal grounded on any other federal provision (e.g., diversity of citizenship) shall be filed with the Clerk of the District Court.
(2) Attachments. A notice of removal pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1452(a) shall include a copy of the docket sheet and all pleadings, orders, and writs.
(3) Motion for Remand; Time for Filing. Any motion for remand must be filed no later than thirty (30) days after the date of filing of the notice of removal.
DISTRICT COURT STANDING ORDERS OF REFERENCE
#1 Order of reference of bankruptcy cases and proceeding nunc pro tunc 08/13/84
#2 General order regarding removals of bankruptcy related proceedings from state court 06/27/86
ALTERNATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION
It is the intent of the Court to facilitate the use of alternative dispute resolution (“ADR”)
in all matters, including specifically contested matters and adversary proceedings, to the
extent practicable, helpful and appropriate.
(a) ADR REPORT
Upon order of the Court entered in any contested matter or adversary proceeding, the
Debtor and/or Trustee, and all parties (as well as all parties-in-interest affected thereby,
including official Committees(s)) shall submit a report addressing the status of settlement
negotiations, disclosing the identity of the person responsible for settlement negotiations
for each party, and truthfully, candidly and realistically evaluating whether alternative
dispute resolution is appropriate in the contested matter or adversary proceeding.
Counsel shall certify in the report that their clients have been informed of the ADR
procedures available in this district. In the event the parties conclude that ADR is
appropriate and agree upon a method of ADR and a neutral, they should identify both the
method of ADR and the neutral they have selected, the method by which the neutral was
selected, and how the neutral will be compensated. If the parties agree upon an ADR
method and neutral, the Court will defer to the parties' agreement, unless the Court finds
that another ADR method or neutral is better suited to the contested matter, adversary
proceeding or the parties.
(b) REFERRAL TO ADR
The Court on its own motion or upon the motion of any party or party-in-interest may
order the participation in a non-binding alternative dispute resolution proceeding,
including non-binding arbitration, early neutral evaluation, mediation, or mini-trial in
accordance with Local Rule 1001(i). The order may further direct the parties to bear all
expenses relating to alternative dispute resolution proceedings in such proportions as the
Court finds appropriate, and may direct that portions thereof be allowed as an
administrative expense entitled to priority in the case, but in no event should
apportioning of costs constitute a penalty for failing to arrive at a settlement. The
alternative dispute resolution proceeding shall begin at a date and time selected by the
parties, subject to the schedule of the neutral or neutrals, but in no event later than fortyfive
(45) days after the entry of the order compelling participation in the proceeding.
Party representatives with authority to negotiate a settlement and all other persons
necessary to negotiate a settlement must attend and participate in good faith in the
alternative dispute proceeding, subject to the Court’s power to assess appropriate
(d) SELECTION OF NEUTRAL
Upon entry of an order compelling participation in alternative dispute resolution, or upon
agreement of the parties where they have not selected a neutral or neutrals from the
roster, the Clerk shall forthwith furnish to each party a list of neutrals. If the compelled
procedure is non-binding arbitration or moderated settlement conference, the list shall
include five neutrals whose names have been selected from the roster of arbitrators
maintained in the District Clerk's Office. If the compelled procedure is other than nonbinding
arbitration or moderated settlement conference the list shall include three
neutrals selected from general neutral roster. The parties shall then confer with each side
entitled to strike one name from the three neutral list (two names from the five neutrals
list). The person remaining shall be designated the neutral. The parties may by
agreement reject the list furnished by the Clerk and instead unanimously select a neutral
or neutrals from either roster. Failure of counsel to timely notify the Clerk of their strikes
or selection shall result in the selection of the neutral or neutrals by the Clerk. The Clerk
shall promptly notify the neutral or neutrals selected. If any person selected is unable or
unwilling to serve the Clerk shall submit an additional list of names to the parties until a
neutral or complete panel of neutrals is selected. When a neutral or full panel of neutrals
have been selected and have agreed to serve, the Clerk shall promptly notify the neutral
or neutrals and the parties of the selection. No person shall serve as a neutral if any of
the circumstances specified in 28 U.S.C. § 455 of the Judicial Code of Conduct exist, or
if the neutral believes in good faith that such circumstances exist. Any person whose
name appears on the roster maintained in the Clerk's Office may ask at any time to have
his or her name removed, or, if selected to serve in any case, decline to serve but remain
on the roster.
Upon its own motion or upon motion and showing of good cause by any party, the Court
may order appointment of a neutral or neutrals from outside the roster of qualified
neutrals maintained by the Clerk's Office.
Except as otherwise provided herein, a communication relating to the subject matter of
any case under Title 11, contested matter or adversary proceeding made by a participant
in an alternative dispute resolution procedure, whether before or after the institution of
formal judicial proceedings, is confidential, is not subject to disclosure, and may not be
used as evidence against the participant in any judicial or administrative proceeding.
(1) Any record made at an alternative dispute resolution procedure is confidential,
and the participants or the third party neutral(s) facilitating the procedure may not
testify, or be required to testify, in any proceedings relating to or arising out of the
matter in dispute or be subject to process requiring the disclosure of confidential
information or data relating to or arising out of the matter in dispute.
(2) An oral communication or written material used in or made a part of an
alternative dispute resolution procedure is only admissible or discoverable if it is
admissible or discoverable independent of the procedure.
(3) If this section conflicts with other legal requirements for disclosure of
communications or materials, the issue of confidentiality may be presented to any
Court having jurisdiction of the proceedings to determine, in camera, whether the
facts, circumstances, and context of the communications or materials sought to be
disclosed warrant a protective order of the Court or whether the communications
or materials are subject to disclosure.
(f) SUMMARY TRIAL OR JURY TRIAL
In cases where other alternative dispute resolution procedures have proved unsuccessful
and a complex and lengthy trial is anticipated, the Court may conduct a summary trial or
jury trial, provided that the Court finds that a summary trial or jury trial may produce
settlement of all or a significant part of the issues and thereby effect a saving in time,
effort and expense for all concerned. The Court should develop procedures, which may
include referral to one or more neutrals on the roster of arbitrators (for report and
recommendation), for such summary trial or jury trial with the advice of counsel.
At the conclusion of each ADR proceeding, the neutral or panel of neutrals shall submit
to the Court a notice of outcome, including the style and number of the case, the date(s)
of the ADR proceeding, the names of the participants and only whether the case has
settled or not.
All sanctions available under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 16(f), Federal Rule of
Bankruptcy Procedure 7016 and/or any Local Rule or previous Order of the Court shall
apply to any violation of this rule.
(i) COURT AUTHORIZATION NOT REQUIRED
Nothing in this rule should be interpreted as limiting parties’ ability to agree to a form of
alternative dispute resolution or the selection of a neutral without a court order, through
mutual consent. In fact, consent is preferred.
GOVERNMENT ENTITIES ADDRESS LIST
Addresses for notice to major agencies of the United States government are as follows:
1. Small Business Administration (SBA)
a. San Antonio, Austin, Del Rio Division cases:
17319 San Pedro, Suite 200
San Antonio, Texas 78232
b. Waco Division:
4300 Amon Carter Blvd, Suite 114
Fort Worth, Texas 76155
c. El Paso and Pecos Divisions:
211 N. Florence Street, Suite 201
El Paso, Texas 79901
d. Midland Division:
1205 Texas Avenue, Room 408
Lubbock, Texas 79401
2. Veterans Administration (VA)
a. San Antonio and Del Rio Divisions:
VA Regional Office
Office of District Counsel
2515 Murworth Drive
Houston, Texas 77054
b. Waco, Austin, El Paso, Midland and Pecos Divisions:
VA Regional Office
Office of District Counsel (02)
1400 N. Valley Mills Drive
Waco, Texas 76799
3. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD;FHA)
a. San Antonio, Austin, Del Rio Divisions
800 Dolorosa Street
San Antonio, Texas 78207-4563
b. El Paso, Waco, Pecos and Midland Divisions
P.O. Box 2905
Ft. Worth, Texas 76113-2905
4. Department of Agriculture
a. Farmers Home Administration (FHA) - all Divisions:
101 South Main, Suite 102
Temple, Texas 76501
b. Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service (ASCS) and Commodity
Credit Corporation (CCC) - all Divisions:
Texas State ASCS/CCC
P.O. Box 2900
College Station, Texas 77841
5. Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
a. All Divisions:
Internal Revenue Service (eff. 1/1/11) (replaces PO Box 21126)
Special Procedures Staff - Insolvency
P. O. Box 7346
Philadelphia, PA 19101-7346
6. United States Department of Justice - All Divisions:
United States Attorney
[designate creditor agency if other than Dept. of Justice]
601 N. W. Loop 410, Suite 600
San Antonio, Texas 78216
United States Attorney General
Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20530
a. For San Antonio, El Paso and Midland cases:
United States Trustee
615 E. Houston, Suite 533 P.O. Box 1539
San Antonio, Texas 78205 San Antonio, Texas 78295-1539
b. For Austin and Waco cases:
United States Trustee
903 San Jacinto, Suite 230
Austin, Texas 78701
7. State Taxing Authorities
State Comptroller of Public Accounts
Revenue Accounting Division - Bankruptcy Section
P.O. Box 13528
Austin, Texas 78711
Texas Employment Commission
TEC Building - Bankruptcy
101 East 15th Street
Austin, Texas 78778
Texas Alcohol Beverage Commission
Licenses and Permits Division
P. O. Box 13127
Austin, Texas 78711-3127
MATTERS DEEMED CONTESTED
Hearings must be held on the following matters:
1. Reaffirmation Agreements.- (if court deems necessary to set)
2. Disclosure statement and confirmation proceedings under Chapters 9, 11 and 12.
3. Adversary proceedings generally, except as provided in Local District Rules or the
4. Motions for contempt or sanctions, including Motions under Rule 9011.
5. Objections to confirmation in Chapters 9, 11, 12, & 13.
6. Motions to appoint a Trustee or examiner in Chapter 11 cases.