- Since no final judgment or appealable order was entered by the Bankruptcy Court, the Court of Appeals lacks appellate jurisdiction to review the District Court’s decision.
- Procedural context:
- The Bankruptcy Appeals Statute authorizes appeals "as of right" from final judgments, orders, and decrees. 28 U.S.C. §158(a). The parties’ jurisdictional statements claimed jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. §158(d)(1), which gives the Court jurisdiction over decisions under §158(a) and (b). So the Court of Appeals only has jurisdiction if both the Bankruptcy Court’s and the District Court’s Order are final. In determining finality, the Court looks at whether the Bankruptcy and District Courts’ decisions fully dispose of a dispute. This case did not satisfy that standard, so there was no "final decision" from the Bankruptcy Court for the Appellate Court to review.
- The Debtor filed Chapter 11 and the case was eventually converted to a Chapter 7 liquidation. After conversion the Chapter 7 Trustee learned that checks meant for the Debtor had been negotiated to another person and brought an Adversary Action to recover those amounts. A settlement ensued. At the same time, Schaumburg Bank & Trust sought a modification of the Automatic Stay in order to execute its security interest in assets of the Debtor. The modification was granted. When it got to the State Court, the Bank discovered the improper checks (separately) and secured an Order from the State Court permitting it to recover those funds. This brought the Bank and Trustee (State Court and Bankruptcy Court) into conflict. The Bankruptcy Court ultimately resolved the matter, but the Bank appealed to the District Court and eventually to the 7th Circuit.
- WOOD, Chief Judge, EASTERBROOK, Circuit Judge, and BRUCE, District Judge
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