Thank You For Submiting Feedback!
United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York
February 15, 2022, Decided
Chapter 11, Case No. 17-10751 (MEW)
DECISION DENYING MOTION OF TIMOTHY ELLIS TO ALLOW LATE FILING OF ADMINISTRATIVE CLAIM
HONORABLE MICHAEL E. WILES
UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY JUDGE
Before the Court is the motion by Timothy Ellis seeking entry of an order granting him permission to file a tardy administrative expense claim. As set forth below, the motion was filed on November 2, 2021, which was more than three years after the August 31, 2018 deadline that this Court set for the filing of administrative claims. More importantly, the motion was filed almost two years after Mr. Ellis was clearly notified (in connection with court proceedings in Pennsylvania) that he had missed the administrative claims deadline and that if he wished to pursue a late claim he needed permission from this Court.
The record shows that Mr. Ellis and his Pennsylvania counsel made a deliberate tactical decision not to proceed in this Court and instead [*2] to argue, in Pennsylvania, that Mr. Ellis's claim had not been discharged and that Mr. Ellis was entitled to pursue that claim against the reorganized company that had emerged from the Westinghouse bankruptcy. His decision, though erroneous, was knowing and deliberate, and there is no just cause to grant the relief he now seeks.
On March 29, 2017, Westinghouse Electric Company LLC and certain of its affiliates filed voluntary chapter 11 bankruptcy petitions before this Court. Mr. Ellis had begun working for Westinghouse in 2010 and he was still employed when the bankruptcy began. Mr. Ellis acknowledges that he knew of the bankruptcy filing and that he received certain notices from the court. Mr. Ellis contends that he spoke to a Human Resources Director at Westinghouse in March 2018 and that he was told that the bankruptcy notices he had previously received did not apply to him. Apparently that advice was correct at the time: Mr. Ellis was still employed, and there is no indication that he had a pre-bankruptcy claim to be asserted against Westinghouse or that the bankruptcy had affected his rights as of March 2018.
On March 28, 2018, this Court entered an order (ECF No. 2988) [*3] (the "Confirmation Order") confirming the Modified Second Amended Joint Chapter 11 Plan of Reorganization (ECF No. 2986) (the "Plan") in Westinghouse's chapter 11 case. As often happens in chapter 11, certain other events (particularly regulatory approvals) needed to occur before the Plan could take effect. As a result, the actual effective date of the Plan did not occur until August 1, 2018 (the "Effective Date"). It was known, at the time of the confirmation hearing, that there would be a delay before the Plan would be effective. As a result, the provisions of the Plan and the Confirmation Order made clear that the transactions that were contemplated by the Plan, and the discharges of the Debtors' liabilities, would occur as of the Effective Date of the Plan and not as of the date on which the Confirmation Order was entered.
Full case includes Shepard's, Headnotes, Legal Analytics from Lex Machina, and more.
2022 Bankr. LEXIS 391 *; 2022 WL 467797
In re WESTINGHOUSE ELECTRIC COMPANY, LLC, et al., Debtors.
notice, administrative expense, excusable neglect, effective date, Confirmation, administrative claim, deadline, discharged, summary judgment motion, bankruptcy court, file a claim, termination, factors, proceedings, untimely, reasons, delays, missed, good faith, conscious, late claim, neglect, movant, rights, bankruptcy case, make clear, reorganized, omission, tactical, parties
Civil Procedure, Relief From Judgments, Excusable Mistakes & Neglect, Excusable Neglect, Pleadings, Time Limitations, Extension of Time, Bankruptcy Law, Unsecured Priority Claims, Administrative Expenses, Miscellaneous Expenses, Priority, Professional Services, Evidence, Burdens of Proof, Allocation, Governments, Legislation, Statute of Limitations, Time Limitations, Preliminary Considerations, Equity, Relief, Pleading & Practice, Motion Practice, Content & Form, Types of Claims, Administrative Expenses, Courts, Authority to Adjudicate