Category Archives: Practice Area Corner

Child Support Arrears May Add Up to Felony Time? You Betcha, Levi!

The Palin family is never far from the headlines and now it is Bristol Palin’s turn. In November, it was reported that her baby daddy, Levi Johnston, had filed for joint custody of the couple’s child, Tripp. Palin responded by requesting payment of child support arrears in the amount of $67,000, a finding that Johnston is underemployed and, of course, requesting the court deny Johnston’s request to increase his custody share. Palin is further requesting that the court find that, under Alaskan law, Johnston has committed a felony by owing so much in child support arrears.

Obama Administration Recognizes Utah Same-Sex Marriages Under Federal Law

The Obama Administration announced Friday that the federal government will recognize approximately 1,360 same-sex marriages performed in Utah since December 2013, despite the state’s refusal to acknowledge these marriages.

Social Security Cannot Be Attached to Reimburse Insurer

In Bilyeu v. Morgan Stanley, 683 F.3d 1083 (9th Cir. 2012), the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit rules that an insurer cannot impose a lien upon the proceeds of Social Security benefits in the possession of the insured in order to recover overpayment of long-term disability benefits.

Partnership That Never Existed Cannot Create Nondischargeable Debt

In Utnehmer v. Crull (In re Utnehmer), 2013 Bankr. LEXIS 4482, NC-12-1362-PaDJu (9th Cir. BAP Oct. 10, 2013), the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (“BAP”) ruled that Bankrupcty Code Section 523(a)(4) did not apply to render a debt nondischargeable in relation to a partnership that was never formed. Specifically, an agreement to re-characterize debt as profit-sharing equity was conditional upon events that did not occur.

Trapped in Marriage: Potential Pitfalls of Same-Sex Marriages in Non-Recognition States

When they decided to end their marriage, Mississippi residents Lauren Beth Czekala-Chatham and Dana Ann Melancon faced an unusual hurdle: the court refused to grant them a divorce.

The New Law Practice of Dispute Resolution

The role of the civil litigation advocate is changing from an advocate in the adversarial process to a leader in the dispute resolution process. Without compromising the lawyer’s role as an advocate and salesman for the client’s cause, the emphasis is more on resolution than contentious advocacy.

Family Law Corner: Bode Miller Case Raises Question of Rights of Pregnant Women

Winning is on U.S. Olympic skier Bode Miller’s mind — not just going for gold in Sochi but also in the courtroom against baby-mama Sarah McKenna.

Interesting News from the World of Estate Planning

Elizabeth Sue Sleasman recently died in Bellingham, Washington at age 37. What makes her death notable, besides her young age, is the statement she left about her life, which was published in her online obituary.

Know Your Local Rules: Court Reporters in Contra Costa County

Don’t be caught unawares by Contra Costa County local rule 24 requiring a stipulation as to the selection of the court reporter when you are bringing your own court reporter to court….

Junior Mortgage Discharged Notwithstanding Fraud Allegations

Reno F.R. Fernandez III This article was first published on the California Bankruptcy Blog at http://calbk.blogspot.com/2013/12/ninth-circuit-bap-rules-california-law.html In Heritage Pacific Financial, LLC v. Montano (In re Montano), 13 C.D.O.S. 12820, NC-12-1579-PaDJu (9th…