Effective July 14, 2020, Judge Gregg has implemented the following temporary procedures, which shall remain in effect until further notice sent via CM/ECF:
1. Remote Participation. Unless otherwise stated on the docket in a particular case or adversary proceeding, Judge Gregg shall hold all non-evidentiary hearings, status conferences, and pretrial conferences (collectively, "Hearings") telephonically and/or by video. Parties may arrange to participate and/or observe any Hearing without charge pursuant to the procedures set forth in detail HERE. The public is also invited to observe all Hearings pursuant to the same procedures. The court shall separately establish procedures for use in evidentiary hearings and trials by entering a scheduling order or pretrial order on the docket in a particular case or adversary proceeding. Any person who encounters difficulty registering to participate in a Hearing should contact Ms. Valerie Wyn, the Courtroom Deputy, at (616) 456-2906.
2. Notice and Opportunity. Notwithstanding LBR 9013(c)(4) – (5), other than plan confirmation hearings, parties are required to use the notice and opportunity procedures set forth in LBR 9013(c); provided, however, that the court will schedule a telephonic hearing upon the filing of a separate docket entry entitled “Request for Hearing.”
3. Motion Day Calendar. One business day prior to any chapter 13 motion day, the court shall post an updated calendar on its website stating which matters are being adjourned and whether the trustee is recommending confirmation. In lieu of calling all matters on the court’s calendar, the court shall call only those matters that have not been designated in advance as adjourned or withdrawn. In the event that the chapter 13 trustee is recommending confirmation of a plan and no objections have been timely filed, the court will either confirm the plan or notify the parties of a separate date and time to address any concerns that the court may have.
4. Chapter 13 Plan Modification. A chapter 13 debtor who is experiencing an interruption in income due to COVID-19 may seek to amend the plan to impose a moratorium on plan payments and suspend any payroll order. Generally, a debtor should request such relief by filing a stipulation with the chapter 13 trustee. A form proposed order approving a stipulation is available here. In the event that it is impracticable to seek the consent of the trustee or the trustee does not consent to the relief requested, the debtor may file an ex parte motion setting forth the reasons why it was impractical to seek the consent of the trustee prior to filing the motion or that consent of the trustee was sought but not obtained. A form proposed order approving a motion is available here. Any stipulation or motion must expressly represent that the relief is needed because of a material financial hardship caused by COVID-19. The court will either enter an interim order providing parties in interest with an opportunity to object to the relief or schedule the request for an expedited, if not emergency, hearing.
5. Comments. Judge Gregg welcomes suggestions or comments with respect to these procedures in order to ensure that they meet the ongoing needs of the public and the bar in an efficient and cost-effective manner. Parties should contact Ms. Valerie Wyn, the Courtroom Deputy, at (616) 456-2906 with any suggestions or comments.