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Sixth Circuit Holds Notice to Creditor’s Attorney Insufficient to Allow Discharge of Debt

A debtor in bankruptcy is required to submit a list of his or her creditors with the creditors’ names and addresses under Fed. R. Bankr. P. 1007(a). In Lampe v. Kash , 2013 U.S. App. Lexis 22704 (6th Cir 2013), the debtor (Kash) filed his bankruptcy schedules listing the notice address of a creditor (Lampe) as the creditor’s former attorney. Lampe’s attorney had stopped working for her eight years before Kash filed his bankruptcy. Lampe did not participate in Kash’s bankruptcy case and Lampe’s $25,000 judgment against Kash was discharged in the bankruptcy. Lampe appealed to the Sixth Circuit, arguing that the notice sent to her former attorney was not reasonably calculated to reach her and deprived her of her due process rights. The Sixth Circuit agreed, holding that a search for Lampe’s residential address to include on Kash’s list of creditors did not present an undue burden, and that the bankruptcy court could not discharge Lampe’s judgment because she never received adequate notice of Kash’s bankruptcy.

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