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In re Life Partners Holdings, Inc.

United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas, Fort Worth Division

August 22, 2019, Decided

Case No. 15-40289-mxm-11 Jointly Administered, Chapter 11

Opinion

 [*279]  MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER REGARDING POST-CONFIRMATION UNITED STATES TRUSTEE'S QUARTERLY FEES

Relates to ECF No. 4307, 4346

On July 17, 2019, the Court held a hearing on two motions dealing with a statutory  [*280]  amendment to 28 U.S.C. § 1930(a)(6), which increased the United States Trustee quarterly fee schedule effective January 1, 2018. In the first motion,1 the Life Partners Position Holder Trust ("PHT") requests an order finding that the amendment (a) does not apply to Chapter 11 cases that were filed prior to the effective date of the amendment, or (b) is unconstitutional. In the second motion,2 the U.S. Trustee asks for an order granting [**4]  summary judgment and dismissing the PHT's motion, arguing that the PHT motion seeks relief that can be sought only through an adversary proceeding.

For the reasons explained below, the Court grants the PHT's motion because the statutory amendment does not apply to these Life Partners Chapter 11 cases, and even if the amendment does apply, it is unenforceable because it is unconstitutional. The Court also grants the U.S. Trustee's motion in part and converts this contested matter to an adversary proceeding for the balance of the contested issues.

I. JURISDICTION AND VENUE

The Court has jurisdiction over this matter pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1334(b) and 157(a). This matter is a core proceeding pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 157(b). Venue is proper pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1409(a).

II. BACKGROUND FACTS

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606 B.R. 277 *; 2019 Bankr. LEXIS 2675 **; 67 Bankr. Ct. Dec. 171

In re: Life Partners Holdings, Inc. et al., Debtors.

CORE TERMS

cases, quarterly, districts, confirmed, adversary proceedings, increased fee, pending case, argues, converted, contested matter, bankruptcy case, Reorganization, disbursements, contested, parties

Bankruptcy Law, Case Administration, Examiners, Officers & Trustees, United States Trustee, Constitutional Law, Congressional Duties & Powers, Bankruptcy Clause, Spending & Taxation, Fundamental Rights, Procedural Due Process, Scope of Protection