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Judge's Procedures: Judge Brenda Moody Whinery
Information to schedule a hearing in Prescott, AZ

GENERAL ITEMS OF INTEREST

COMPLIANCE WITH LOCAL RULES

Counsel are expected to comply with all applicable local rules. Particular attention should be paid to the following Local Rules:

ACCELERATED OR EMERGENCY MOTIONS

The court does not attempt to “second guess” an attorney’s decision to move for an emergency hearing. In such an instance, the court will almost always set the matter promptly.

However, the court may, after review of the request, deem the matter to be routine and set it for a normal hearing within 15-30 days.

Counsel are requested to consider the totality of the circumstances before filing such a request.

BAR DATE/NEGATIVE NOTICE

In addition to the bar date procedures established by the Local Rules, unless the Court orders otherwise, the moving party may use a twenty-one (21) day bar date notice for any matter. Some typical examples are:

  • § 363 sales other than real property (and other than pursuant to Code § 363(h);
  • approvals of compromises and settlements pursuant to Bankr. R. 9019;
  • debtor’s objection to claims;
  • applications for professional fees;
  • objections to exemptions.

The party using the negative notice/bar date procedure must give detailed notice of the proposed motion or application and clearly state the requirement to respond within the time allowed. The moving party may file a certificate of service and of no objection and lodge an appropriate order granting the relief requested. The lodged order should conform to the relief requested in the motion or application.

If an objection to the motion or application is filed, the MOVANT is responsible for lodging a notice of hearing with the Court, and upon receiving a hearing date, shall give notice to all interested parties of the hearing and file a certificate of mailing. In the alternative, and particularly if an objection is anticipated, a hearing date may be obtained for any such motion or application by lodging a form of notice of hearing with such motion or application.

LAST MINUTE FILINGS

Where time is short, i.e., less than 48 hours, the parties can fax chambers’ copies at our fax number, 520-202-7985.  However, all original documents must be filed with the Clerk of the Bankruptcy Court. The privilege to fax documents to chambers should be used sparingly. Counsel should ordinarily allow themselves sufficient time to submit documents through the normal process, and all faxes should be received no later than 4:00 p.m. on the business day prior to the hearing.

CONTINUANCES & RESOLUTION OF MATTERS SET FOR HEARING

Requests for continuances should be filed as soon as the parties feel the need for such request. Parties should be prepared to appear at any scheduled hearing until receiving notice that the motion has been granted. Appearances by telephone are permitted. A resolved matter that is set for hearing may be taken off calendar by a telephone call from the moving party to the Courtroom Deputy at any time. The parties are encouraged to inform the Courtroom Deputy as soon as the matter has been resolved. Appropriate paperwork can then be filed thereafter.

Parties should contact the Courtroom Deputy to obtain a continued hearing date prior to uploading a continuance order, and include the date and time in the order. Proposed orders with blank hearing dates will be deleted and the requesting party informed. If granted, the requesting party shall either serve the signed order and/or file a new form of notice for the continued hearing and notice it out. A copy of the signed continuance order and/or notice of hearing is to be sent to the Courtroom Deputy for calendaring.

CONTESTED MOTIONS OR APPLICATIONS EXCEEDING 50 PAGES, INCLUDING MOTIONS FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT

If a motion, pleading or application and its exhibits exceed 50 pages, including motions for summary judgment, the Court requests that a courtesy copy be provided to chambers at least 10 days prior the hearing date, if non-emergency, and as soon as possible before an accelerated or emergency hearing. If there are voluminous exhibits, the Court also prefers that chambers’ copy be provided in a tabbed, three-ring binder. (See separate instructions below for First Day Motions in chapter 11 cases.)

COURT MINUTE ENTRIES

All court hearing minutes are posted to ECF. Counsel who do not appear for hearings before Judge Whinery can monitor what happens in their cases by viewing ECF. Courtesy paper copies of minute entries will no longer be sent to those parties not in attendance, unless ordered by the Court. Parties who did not attend a hearing may review the minutes through ECF.

LODGING ORDERS

Uploaded orders should relate to the initiating motion or stipulation and not the notice of lodging or the certificate of service and no objection.

VIDEO

Routine video calendars are arranged monthly with all venues (Phoenix, Tucson and Yuma). Please contact the courtroom deputies to arrange a video appearance. Video calendars save money for both the courts and counsel, and allow the court to hear more matters each month.

SUGGESTION BOX

The Court needs your feedback. If we can improve our responsiveness in any way, please let us know. We are anxious to become as efficient as possible, and we welcome your suggestions.

CHAPTER 11 CASES

CHAPTER 11 FIRST DAY MOTIONS POLICIES

The Court requests that two copies of first day motions and orders, including all exhibits, be provided to chambers. When first day motions are numerous, the Court prefers that the chambers’ copies be provided in tabbed three-ring binders with a table of contents. The Court will make every effort to promptly review all motions and forms of order and arrange a timely hearing.

CHAPTER 11 CASE MANAGEMENT ORDER

Immediately upon filing of a new Chapter 11 case, the Court issues a “Case Management Order” setting a date for the filing of a plan and disclosure statement, usually required 120 days after filing.

CHAPTER 11 CASH COLLATERAL

Cash collateral matters are the most critical “first day” or early motions. The Court will set these matters as quickly as it can, sometimes on the same day. The moving party should provide a proposed BUDGET (short-term) for the secured creditor’s review. The parties should confer on the budget, if possible, prior to the hearing. Orders concerning cash collateral will be promptly entered.

CHAPTER 11 ORDERS FOR EMPLOYMENT OF PROFESSIONALS

Please include the following language on employment orders:

Approval of employment of a professional person DOES NOT automatically approve any fee arrangement set forth in the application or any attachments thereto. No fees are pre-approved by the court. Any request for a professional fee must be made separately, by a detailed application supporting the request, notice must be given to creditors and other parties-in-interest, and the court must have an opportunity to review any objections which any party may have. The court may also consider the application in the absence of any objections, and may adjust the fees according to the merits of the particular case. 11 U.S.C. §§ 327, 328, 329, 330, and 331.

CHAPTER 11 CLAIMS BAR DATE

The court requires 60 days notice of claims bar dates in Chapter 11 cases. This is important in connection with orders for hearings on disclosure statements if that is how the debtor will notice out the claims bar date. Alternatively, the debtor can request a separate claims bar date by ex parte motion and order, without the need for a hearing, but creditors will need at least 60 days notice to file their claims. Proof of service of the order upon all creditors and interested parties must be filed with the court.

CHAPTER 13 CASES

CHAPTER 13 AVOID/STRIP LIENS

Please use JudgeWhinery's preferred form of order (or a version with all the specifics included), which is located as the last item on this procedure page.

CHAPTER 13 ATTORNEY'S FEES ORDERS

Please use Judge Whinery's preferred form of order (or a version with all the specifics included), which is located under Files for Download (at the bottom of this page).

CHAPTER 13 STIPULATED ORDERS CONFIRMING PLANS; ATTORNEY'S FEES PROVISIONS

It would be helpful to the attorneys, the chapter 13 trustees and the court if you could please include the specific provisions of Judge Whinery's preferred form of order on chapter 13 attorney's fees in stipulated orders confirming plan, either as a part of the order or as exhibit.  The preferred form of order is located under Files for Download (at the bottom of this page).  Edits or language may be added to the order to address particular circumstances.  The more clear information the court has on fees will ensure that the process runs smoothly.

SPECIFIC VENUES’ CALENDARING AND APPEARANCE INFORMATION

TUCSON (Courtroom #446)

Setting a Matter for Hearing on the Court’s Calendar

To set a matter for hearing, the moving party should contact Cindy Turnbull, Courtroom Deputy, by telephone at 520-202-7988. If leaving a message please include: case name, case number, nature of hearing, and name and phone number of person to call. Once a hearing date is given to the moving party, the moving party MUST give notice to all interested parties and file a certificate of service, and give the Courtroom Deputy a copy of the hearing notice and ECF receipt for calendaring purposes. To set a preliminary hearing on a motion for relief from stay, see the special procedures stated in the Preliminary Hearings / Lift Stay section below.

Preliminary Hearings / Lift Stays

Once a response has been filed, the moving party is responsible for scheduling a preliminary hearing on the lift stay motion (See Order re: Procedures in Stay Relief Matters) from the dates listed below, provided seven (7) days' notice of such hearing can be given to the debtor, debtor's counsel, and any other respondents and their counsel. The movant is responsible for noticing and sending the Courtroom Deputy a copy of the notice and ECF receipt for calendaring. The Tucson dates are as follows (Room 446 unless otherwise stated): 

At the Preliminary Hearing it is generally the Court’s practice to set a “1 Minute” Final Hearing to allow the parties to negotiate a settlement. If the matter is not resolved by the time of the “1 Minute” Final, the Court will promptly set an evidentiary hearing.

If a party defaults, the creditor may lodge a form of order. However, please do not include excessive “self-serving” language which is intended to deprive other interested parties of valuable rights. Examples of such overreaching language are:

  • Waivers of the automatic 14-day stay of Rule 4001;
  • Abandonment language (abandonment requests require notice on the entire creditor body. See 11 U.S.C. § 554);
  • Orders that require the debtors to surrender the collateral to the creditor (this is what state law provisional remedies are for!);
  • Annulment of the stay (unless this remedy actually applies);
  • Voluminous findings of fact (if you desire an evidentiary hearing, then the court can prepare findings).

Telephonic and Video Appearances

Telephonic and video appearances may be arranged two business days in advance by contacting Cindy Turnbull, Courtroom Deputy, by telephone at 520-202-7988. On routine matters, the Court encourages telephonic appearances, even of attorneys local to the venue. In that way, attorneys can save their clients the costs of an actual appearance.

Obtaining Transcripts

In order to obtain a transcript from a Tucson hearing, contact Alicia Johns, ECR Operator, 520-202-7556 or e-mail at Alicia_Johns@azb.uscourts.gov

CONTACT INFORMATION

Mail:
Hon. Brenda Moody Whinery
United States Bankruptcy Court
38 S. Scott Avenue, Room 100
Tucson, AZ 85701-1608
Brenda_Whinery@azb.uscourts.gov

Chambers Staff:
Sherry Leavitt, Judicial Assistant
520-202-7984
Sherry_Leavitt@azb.uscourts.gov

Brad Terry, Law Clerk
520-202-7966
Brad_Terry@azb.uscourts.gov

Cindy Turnbull, Courtroom Deputy
520-202-7988
Cindy_Turnbull@azb.uscourts.gov

For status on orders, contact:  Lupe Martinez at 520-202-7562, Lupe_Martinez@azb.uscourts.gov

 

PHOENIX (Courtroom #301, 3rd Floor)

Judge Whinery presides over Phoenix cases on a regular basis. Approximately 8% of her caseload involves Phoenix cases. Please contact her Courtroom Deputy, Cindy Turnbull, by e-mail at Cindy_Turnbull@azb.uscourts.gov  or by telephone at 520-202-7988 for questions about Judge Whinery's Phoenix schedule.

Setting a Matter for Hearing on the Court’s Calendar

The moving party should request a hearing date and time by contacting Cindy Turnbull by e-mail or by telephone.

Preliminary Hearings

Once a response has been filed, the moving party is responsible for scheduling a preliminary hearing on the lift stay motion (See Order re: Procedures in Stay Relief Matters) from the dates listed below, provided seven (7) days' notice of such hearing can be given to the debtor, debtor's counsel, and any other respondents and their counsel. The movant is responsible for noticing and sending the Courtroom Deputy a copy of the notice and ECF receipt for calendaring. The Phoenix dates are as follows:

Telephonic and Video Appearance

Telephonic and video appearances may be arranged two business days in advance by contacting Cindy Turnbull at 520-202-7988 or by e-mail at Cindy_Turnbull@azb.uscourts.gov

Obtaining Transcripts

In order to obtain a transcript from a Phoenix hearing, contact the Court’s ECR Operators by phone at 602-682-4200.

CONTACT INFORMATION

Chambers Staff for Phoenix:
Cindy Turnbull, Courtroom Deputy
38 S. Scott Ave., Suite 100                                 
Tucson, AZ  85713
520-202-7988                                                          
Fax: 520-202-7989
email: Cindy_Turnbull@azb.uscourts.gov 

For status on orders, contact:  Lupe Martinez at 520-202-7562, Lupe_Martinez@azb.uscourts.gov

 

YUMA        

Effective January 1, 2014 each Judge will hear their own assigned cases. At this time court will continue to be held twice a month, but is subject to change at any time. The Court dates can be obtained below

Setting a Matter for Hearing on the Court’s Calendar

To set a matter for hearing, the moving party should access the dates available below.  Please select a hearing date that allows for proper notice under the Bankruptcy Rules. If there is insufficient time to notice for the next hearing, the matter is set for the following month or, if the matter is a routine one, on the video conference calendar dates. Once a hearing date is selected by the moving party, the moving party MUST give notice to all interested parties and file a certificate of service.

For obtaining dates for Motions to Dismiss or Preliminary Hearings on Motions to Lift Stay please access the CHS Link Below

 

For all other matters, please use this list:

October 16. 2014 @ 1:30 PM

November 20, 2014 @ 2:00 PM

December 4, 2014 @ 1:30 PM

January 23, 2015 @ ???

 

Preliminary Hearings

Once a response has been filed, the moving party is responsible for scheduling a preliminary hearing on the lift stay motion (See Order re: Procedures in Stay Relief Matters) from the dates listed below, provided seven (7) days' notice of such hearing can be given to the debtor, debtor's counsel, and any other respondents and their counsel. The movant is responsible for noticing and sending the Courtroom Deputy a copy of the notice and ECF receipt for calendaring.

Telephonic and Video Appearance

Video appearances for Yuma cases may be arranged up to two business days in advance by email at mailto mailto:yumahearing@azb.uscourts.gov

 Matters heard by video conference include: preliminary and routine final lift stay hearings, emergencies, and expedited matters and any other matter that needs to be dealt with between the monthly Yuma hearing dates.

Telephonic appearances for Yuma will only be granted if you are outside of the Phoenix, Tucson, or Yuma area. Arrangements may be made by emailing yumahearing@azb.uscourts.gov Or in extenuating circumstances with Chambers approval.

Setting Matter for Hearing on Court's Calendar

Submit electronic filing receipt for Notice of Hearing to mailto:yumahearing@azb.uscourts.gov

Obtaining Transcripts

In order to obtain a transcript, contact Aida Urbalejo, ECR Operator, 602-682-4954 or e-mail at mailto:Aida_Urbalejo@azb.uscourts.gov

CONTACT INFORMATION

Chambers Staff for Yuma
Robert M. Townsend 602-682-4952

and

Maria Godwin 602-682-4956

Yuma Courtroom Staff                            
email:  yumahearing@azb.uscourts.gov

Aida Urbalejo, ECR Operator
602-682-4954

For status on orders, contact:  Lupe Martinez at 520-202-7562, Lupe_Martinez@azb.uscourts.gov

Mailing / Delivery Address 
John M. Roll United States Courthouse 
Bankruptcy Court
98 W. 1st Street, Suite 270
Yuma, AZ 85364

Files for download: