Forum Rules (Everyone Must Read!!!) (updated: 04/28/2015)

Welcome to the Bankruptcy Forum. Bankruptcy (BK) Forum is known as and will be referred to as BKF hereinafter. In order to ensure a long term success of our vibrant community, we have established certain rules and guidelines to which everyone must adhere to. Please take your time to carefully read our rules, before you start to participate in the community.

Things you agree to do: (BKF) users agree to use the search function before starting a new thread. This prevents duplicate discussions and allows for better organized topics.

All BKF users agree to read the sticky posts which may be available at the top of a forum page. These Sticky posts often contain valuable information. They may also outline more rules and guidelines specific for that particular forum, stickies are put in place by that forums moderator(s) or admin(s).

Things you agree not to do:

All BKF users agree not to call people names or write a post simply to make a personal attack, or get a negative reaction; this behavior is not allowed on our forum. The use of derogatory language aimed at anyone will be severely dealt with. There is no need to agree with each other, or to even like each other. However, by signing onto you agree to treat each member and guest with the respect they deserve. No threats or personal attacks will be allowed.

All BKF users agree not to discuss, engage, or encourage any behavior or activity which violates the law. Discussion of drugs, violence, murder, theft, vandalism, fraud or any other issue which could be used to help individuals break the law is strictly forbidden.

All BKF users agree not to "bump" old threads, unless there is a specific benefit to the community by doing so. But in most cases, please don't post in very old threads, instead start new threads.

All BKF users agree not to attempt/use another members account. It is against BKF rules to use any account other than your own. Impersonating another member will result in an immediate ban. It is also against the rules to open more than one account in your own name without permission from a moderator or administrator. If you have been banned for any reason, it is against the rules to open another account. If you were banned temporarily and you are caught using another account you will be banned permanently. Choosing a moniker which is similar in either sound or spelling as a moderator or administrator is strictly forbidden.

All BKF users agree not to private message any moderator, admin, or other member with questions related to their personal circumstances (Questions about the forum or issues with the forum are ok). This forum only works when members share their experience and insights with everyone.

Things you agree not to post:
All BKF users agree not to post any derogatory/racist/or sexist remarks. This includes attachments, links and all information contained within posts, signatures, and avatars, failure to comply with this rule will result in a permanent ban.

All BKF users agree not to post any copyrighted or trademarked information without the express written permission of the owner(s) / proper citation of source.

All BKF users agree not to post any real names, addresses, telephone numbers, email addresses, social security numbers, or any other personal details (their own or other people's).

All BKF users agree not to post links, pictures, attachments, videos, or the like of pornographic content, objectionable material or extreme violence, whether cartoon or real.

All BKF users agree not to use BKF for advertising purposes without a written contract between yourself/company/agent and the administration of BKF. Blatant advertising will result in a ban.

All BKF users agree not to spam the forums. Spam includes but is not limited to posting erroneous, non-relevant-useless, off-topic, or meaningless posts. Spam may also include posts which contain no text, or large areas of blank space between lines. Simply posting emoticons without text is considered spam. BKF is the largest bankruptcy message board and all the content is intended to help other users. Please help us improve the quality of our forum by making sure that your posts are well-worded, spell checked, grammatically correct and syntaxed.

Regarding actions of moderators and administrators:

The forum is no place to air out your opinion or be judgmental of our staff and its capabilities.

All BKF users agree not to abuse or mistreat moderators or administrators. It is against BKF rules to post any information regarding bans or any other action taken by a member of the moderating or administrative team. If you wish to discuss bans or warnings please do so via PM. To place a complaint against a moderator, send a PM to a super moderator. All Moderators are equal, any decision made by a moderator must be adhered to. If a moderator tells you something you do not like, do not go to another moderator looking for a different answer. If you are caught doing this you will be banned. The moderators work as a team and respect the decisions made by their peers and will help enforce them unless an administrator tells them differently.
If you have an issue with how the forum is run, then notify one of our administrator and we will look into the situation. We have in the past and still do appreciate any input that you offer this forum. But critical input and/or judgmental postings towards the staff will result in you getting banned.

Should you find a thread offensive or out of line, then notify a Mod in a PM so they can evaluate the situation and do the action deemed necessary.

All moderators do have active "other" lives outside of the forum and help moderate this forum in their spare time throughout the days and weeks.

If you have a problem with a member or Mod follow the proper channels of reporting it.

BKF reserves the right to delete any posts which contain anti-BKF comments or discussion. Any bashing of moderators or administrators, or any of their discussion or actions will also be deleted, and the responsible posting party(s) will be banned. Any public anti-BKF advertising, communication, or posts on another forum will result in permanent bans as well.

All warnings and bans are decided by individual moderators and administrators. Warnings are preferable to bans however, for serious offenses and repeat abusers bans will go into effect. The length of the bans can vary from several hours to permanent.

All messages posted or sent including through PM are the property of

All BKF users agree not to advertiser on the forum (Niether by posting, private messaging or using your signature). If you are a company/attorney/legal adviser wishing to advertise on the site or sell a product, you must contact the head administrator and inquire about our advertising packages.

All bankruptcy related opinions expressed on are those of their authors and not necessarily of BKF, its staff or representatives.

You agree not to copy any material/post/content from BKF without written permission from our head administrator .

By posting on this forum you agree to these terms and conditions, including any punishment deemed appropriate by moderators or administrators in the event of an offense.

Administrators/Moderators can change these rules at any time without prior notice.
See more
See less

Will they sell my husbands plant patent?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Will they sell my husbands plant patent?

    My husband's filed chapter 7. The trustee said he was very interested in the patent because he had never dealt with anything like it before. My husband makes about $2000 yearly from royalties on the patent. Will they force the sale of it and if so, how will the value of the patent be determined?
    My husband is really worried since this is about 10% of his yearly income.
    Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Before you confer with any bankruptcy attorneys, you probably better consult a copyright and patent attorney. What type of plant is it?

    Also it will help to know what state you are in and if any state or Federal exemptions will apply.

    Welcome to the Forum, by the way. Please excuse my lapse in manners.
    "To go bravely forward is to invite a miracle."

    "Worry is the darkroom where negatives are formed."


    • #3
      Does he consider it part of his retirement funds? If he is retired he might just throw that stone in. Ask your lawyer. After all 1/10th forever is a huge price to lose. 'Hub
      If I knew it all, would I be here?? Hang in there = Retained attorney 8-06, Filed 12-28-07, Discharge 8-13-08, Finally CLOSED 11-3-09, 3-31-10 AP Dismissed, Informed by incompetent lawyer of CLOSED status, October 14, 2010.


      • #4
        Will they sell my husbands plant patent?

        Thanks for the welcome.We're in Michigan and have already filed chapter 7 and had the 341 hearing.The patent is in my husbands name and he is not retired.He's really concerned because the trustee seemed so interested in the patent...also he received a Notice of Possible Dividend to Creditors yesterday but nothing is listed as to what "monies" would be used as dividends.He has a mortgage on our home and a car loan, both of which have no equity and he has stated his intent to reaffirm both loans.He doesn't own anything else except a lawn mower and a business he runs from home.Can the trustee take any money from his business account?Should he pay himself (wages) what's in that account?


        • #5
          An asset is an asset. Your attorney should have taken this into account, but if all he receives is 2000/yr there may not be much liquidation value there. It should get appraised to see what the present value is. If the present value is substantial the trustee may try to sell it, if not then he will abandon it.
          7-2-2009 Filed
          8-28-09 341 Concluded, no assets
          10-28-09 DISCHARGED/CLOSED!!!!


          • #6
            I agree with Whisper, an asset is an asset.

            There is NO way this BK should have been filed without at least doing some background on the issue. The basic questions you ask when you have an asset.
            1. How much is the asset worth.
            2. Are there any loans against the asset.
            3. Is the asset (or equity in such asset) exempt or non-exempt.

            If the asset is non-exempt, has more than a 0 equity value, and you file BK, it is at risk to seized by the BK trustee.

            This patent is probably toast, the real question, as already pointed out, does it have any actual liquidation value. The trustee cannot take the asset to get at its income stream, he needs to liquidate it to pay creditors.


            • #7
              Somewhat related...

              I have a provisional patent filed, which merely holds the invention date of an idea I had. A utility patent (which definitely is property) has not been filed, issued, or published. I can't afford to file for a patent since I am indigent, but once I clear my debts and accumulate a bit of money, I may try to. It's really a down payment on assuming even more debt to attain speculative valuation. Lawyer fees are typically $10,000 to $20,000 for the filing process with no guarantee it will issue.

              Since I'm merely putting a date on hold so far and have not filed for a patent, do I need to list the provisional as an intangible asset in a Ch 7 filing? I would think not, since there is no value (filing fee is <$200) and it's a down payment on a money pit with indeterminable valuation, if it even issues (there's a big hurdle at the patent office just to issue the patent).

              I've looked high and low, checked the couch cushions, looked under the carpets and there's nothing I could find, about whether provisional patents, which commemorate the original date of the idea and have no claims, are required to be listed as intangible assets, on the Internet.

              Thanks in advance


              • #8
                I have a provisional patent filed. . . Since I'm merely putting a date on hold so far and have not filed for a patent, do I need to list the provisional as an intangible asset in a Ch 7 filing? I would think not, since there is no value. . .
                You list it as an intangible with a proper description and an "unknown" value. What has no value in your mind may be worth millions to a Trustee and it is not up to you to determine what is or is not "valuable". It is an asset (potential property right) therefore it is listed.

                What you do not want is finding out down the road that this asset does have significant value and, due to your failure to disclose it, you do not own it.



                • #9
                  Thanks for the prompt reply, Des.

                  So, I do what you say, let's say I list the provisional and file on Monday for BK as a hypothetical. Provisional patent (it's holding the date, not the invention) expires end of that week.

                  On Thursday (remember, this is hypothetical, my understanding is that even the following day I am clean of debt and can try to rebuild my life and gain a source of income if the BK gets approved) I file an actual patent for the invention because I'm allowed(the trustee does actually, but the patent office will still allow me to file in my own name even though the trustee is sitting on the estate's right to file) to file on or before Friday. There I incur a further debt of $20,000 in lawyer fees. That is paid by an arm's length investor I have available to me. The provisional is worthless because it was not liquidated before it expired, which technically reverts it back to me, also worthless because it is an expired right.

                  The assignment of the patent right, a new thing of value and that the investor gains a property right to after the BK filing is when I file the patent, not the provisional. The provisional is worthless. Had I had a year, let's say, worth of runway on the provisional, it may be possible it could be sold by the trustee, but there's nothing that compels me to spend the money to file or sign the filing of a patent to turn it into a property right (it isn't one until I file the patent) and the buyer of the provisional has to file a patent, and I have to assign it to them, in order to create a value.

                  So the trustee is sitting on a right that expired by the time s/he gets to liquidating it, and the patent property right is something that didn't exist at the time of filing, but did due to my own acts and the investor's to create a property right after the BK filing date. The provisional is not a property right, it simply holds a date, a right for a buyer to file a patent - which they can't because the provisional has expired. It may have been worth millions, but because it expired it became worthless in the trustee's hands.

                  This is not weasel stuff - no investor in their right mind would put money into something they could not gain equity to and first liquidation rights. I think you can see how twisted this one is vs merely listing something, which I agree with you should be. It's what happens after the filing of the BK is what has me scratching my head. If I do nothing after the BK filing date, there is still nothing in hand for the trustee to liquidate. And while the trustee might hold the right to the provisional, in the eyes of the patent office, I can still file, which is what allows me to file and the trustee sits on an expired right that's worthless because they did not act to preserve the value of what was listed in the BK. Being a worthless right (it cannot be sold since it merely commemorates a date, nothing more), it has to revert back to me.

                  I appreciate your and anyone else's input here, since I cannot afford an attorney, I'm going to need to file pro se.
                  Last edited by fortunateson; 08-14-2015, 08:05 PM.


                  • #10
                    Unfortunately your hypothetical is too convoluted for a proper analysis in this type of a forum. Yes, this sounds like a cop-out, but patent law and what is or is not an intangible "asset" can be very complicated. Is an idea in your head an asset? Don't know. I suspect it depends upon how far along in the process you are. If you have an investor lined up and all that needs to be done is to put the plan in your head onto paper then, maybe that is an asset. What worries me is that you state (in the hypothetical) that 3 days after filing bk you might decide to "file an actual patent for the invention". Why isn't the "invention" a pre petition asset?

                    You really need to sit down with an attny (both a bk and a patent attny) to determine what is or is not an asset regardless of what value "you" think there may be. You just do not want to screw with this, especially if you think you can make a living off of this down the road.



                    Unconfigured Ad Widget