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In re Romanzi

United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division

August 15, 2017

In re Craig S. Romanzi, Debtor.
v.
Fieger & Fieger P.C., et al., Appellees. Kenneth A. Nathan Appellant,

          United States Magistrate Judge R. Steven Whalen

          OPINION AND ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT'S APPLICATION FOR LEAVE TO APPEAL [1]

          Gershwin A. Drain United States District Court Judge

         I. Introduction

         This case stems from an involuntary bankruptcy proceeding filed against Craig S. Romanzi (“Debtor”) on March 16, 2016. The bankruptcy trustee of Romanzi, Kenneth A. Nathan (“Plaintiff-Appellant” or “Trustee”) seeks recovery of an attorney fee that he alleges Fieger & Fieger, P.C. and Geoffrey N. Fieger (“Defendants-Appellees”) wrongfully retained. Plaintiff-Appellant claims the attorney fee is an asset of the bankruptcy estate.

         Plaintiff-Appellant filed a notice of appeal with the Bankruptcy Court on July 13, 2017. Dkt. No. 1, p. 1 (Pg. ID 1). Plaintiff-Appellant's appeal concerns the Bankruptcy Court's June 29, 2017 order denying Plaintiff-Appellant's Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment.[1]

         As a preliminary matter, the Court must rule on Plaintiff-Appellant's Motion for Leave to Appeal the Bankruptcy Court's interlocutory order. Dkt. No. 1, pp. 7- 34 (Pg. ID 7-34). Upon review of the pleadings, the Court finds that oral argument will not aid in the disposition of this matter. Accordingly, the Court will decide the matter on the submitted brief. See E.D. Mich. L.R. 7.1(f)(2). For the reasons stated below, the Court DENIES Plaintiff-Appellant's Motion for Leave to Appeal [1], and DISMISSES and REMANDS these proceedings to the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.

         II. Factual And Procedural Background

         The Court previously recited the facts pertinent to this case in the several other appeals brought by parties in this bankruptcy proceeding. See In re Romanzi, No. 16-CV-13986, 2017 WL 395289, at *1-2 (E.D. Mich. Jan. 30, 2017), reconsideration denied, No. 16-CV-13986, 2017 WL 1130091 (E.D. Mich. Mar. 27, 2017). For the sake of brevity, the Court will not repeat them again here.

         III. Legal Standard

         The jurisdiction of a district court to hear appeals from bankruptcy courts is conferred by 28 U.S.C. § 158(a), which provides:

(a) The district courts of the United States shall have jurisdiction to hear appeals
(1) from final judgments, orders, and decrees;
(2) from interlocutory orders and decrees issued under section 1121(d) of title 11 increasing or reducing the time periods referred to ...

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