Smith v. State of Maine Bureau of Revenue Services, No. 18-1573 (1st Cir. 2018)Annotate this Case
At issue was whether 11 U.S.C. 362(c)(3)(A) terminates the automatic stay as to actions against property of the bankruptcy estate.
Maine’s Bureau of Revenue Services (MRS) had a claim for a tax debt owed by Leland Smith, a repeat Chapter 13 bankruptcy filer. At issue int his appeal was the scope of the termination of the Bankruptcy Code’s automatic stay for repeat filers like Smith who file a second petition for bankruptcy within a year of the dismissal of a prior bankruptcy case. Thirty days after the filing of his bankruptcy petition, some part of the stay had terminated under section 362(c)(3)(A). Smith argued that the stay only terminated as to actions against the debtor and the debtor’s property, not as to actions against the property of the bankruptcy estate. The bankruptcy court ruled that the automatic stay had terminated in full, including as to property of the estate, and the district court affirmed. The First Circuit affirmed, holding that section 362(c)(3)(A) terminates the entire stay thirty days after the filing of a second petition.