Rule 5011. Withdrawal and Abstention from Hearing a Proceeding

(a) Withdrawal. A motion for withdrawal of a case or proceeding shall be heard by a district judge.

(b) Abstention From Hearing a Proceeding. A motion for abstention pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §1334(c) shall be governed by Rule 9014 and shall be served on the parties to the proceeding.

(c) Effect of Filing of Motion for Withdrawal or Abstention. The filing of a motion for withdrawal of a case or proceeding or for abstention pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §1334(c) shall not stay the administration of the case or any proceeding therein before the bankruptcy judge except that the bankruptcy judge may stay, on such terms and conditions as are proper, proceedings pending disposition of the motion. A motion for a stay ordinarily shall be presented first to the bankruptcy judge. A motion for a stay or relief from a stay filed in the district court shall state why it has not been presented to or obtained from the bankruptcy judge. Relief granted by the district judge shall be on such terms and conditions as the judge deems proper.

Notes

(Added Mar. 30, 1987, eff. Aug. 1, 1987; amended Apr. 30, 1991, eff. Aug. 1, 1991.)

Notes of Advisory Committee on Rules—1987

Motions for withdrawal pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §157(d) or abstention pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §1334(c), like all other motions, are to be filed with the clerk as required by Rule 5005(a). If a bankruptcy clerk has been appointed for the district, all motions are filed with the bankruptcy clerk. The method for forwarding withdrawal motions to the district court will be established by administrative procedures.

Subdivision (a). Section 157(d) permits the district court to order withdrawal on its own motion or the motion of a party. Subdivision (a) of this rule makes it clear that the bankruptcy judge will not conduct hearings on a withdrawal motion. The withdrawal decision is committed exclusively to the district court.

Subdivision (b). A decision to abstain under 28 U.S.C. §1334(c) is not appealable. The district court is vested originally with jurisdiction and the decision to relinquish that jurisdiction must ultimately be a matter for the district court. The bankruptcy judge ordinarily will be in the best position to evaluate the grounds asserted for abstention. This subdivision (b) provides that the initial hearing on the motion is before the bankruptcy judge. The procedure for review of the report and recommendation are governed by Rule 9033.

This rule does not apply to motions under §305 of the Code for abstention from hearing a case. Judicial decisions will determine the scope of the bankruptcy judge's authority under §305.

Subdivision (c). Unless the court so orders, proceedings are not stayed when motions are filed for withdrawal or for abstention from hearing a proceeding. Because of the district court's authority over cases and proceedings, the subdivision authorizes the district court to order a stay or modify a stay ordered by the bankruptcy judge.

Notes of Advisory Committee on Rules—1991 Amendment

Subdivision (b) is amended to delete the restriction that limits the role of the bankruptcy court to the filing of a report and recommendation for disposition of a motion for abstention under 28 U.S.C. §1334(c)(2). This amendment is consistent with §309(b) of the Judicial Improvements Act of 1990 which amended §1334(c)(2) so that it allows an appeal to the district court of a bankruptcy court's order determining an abstention motion. This subdivision is also amended to clarify that the motion is a contested matter governed by Rule 9014 and that it must be served on all parties to the proceeding which is the subject of the motion.

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