FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
ROBERT D. TAYLOR, No. 1-87-01044
ORDER DENYING WAIVER OF DISCHARGE
The debtor filed a voluntary Chapter 7 petition on June 16, 1987. On October 9, 1987, the debtor
filed a motion to dismiss the case, setting a hearing date of November 20, 1987. No request was made
to delay entry of the discharge. On October 20, 1987, in the ordinary course of the proceedings, the
debtor's discharge was entered. The debtor now seeks to "waive" the discharge.
Discharge matters are governed by section 727 of the Bankruptcy Code. Subsection 727(a)(10)
provides that the court shall grant a discharge unless the court approves a written waiver; it does not
address revocation after it has been granted. Subsection 727(e) states grounds for revocation of the
discharge, but does not give the right to seek it to the debtor. Bankruptcy Rule 4004(c) allows a debtor
to seek deferral of the entry of the discharge if he is not sure if he wants it or not. The reasonable
inference to be drawn from these statutes is that the debtor has no right to revocation of his discharge
once it has been entered.
The case law on the issue supports this court's analysis. In Matter of Calabrett
(Bkrtcy.D.Conn.1987) 68 B.R. 861, 863, the court held that the debtor had neither an equitable nor
astatutoryright to have her discharge revoked. The court relied on several bankruptcy court cases and
on the decision of the Seventh Circuit in Matter of Morgan
(7th Cir.1981) 668 F.2d 261, the leading case
in the area. The court in Morgan
adopted the district court's reasoning that the seriousness of a
bankruptcy filing would be undermined if a debtor could undo it at will, and held that bankruptcy courts
do not have authority to revoke discharges at the request of the debtor. 668 F.2d at 264.
In In re Fischer
(Bkrtcy.D.Minn.1987) 72 B.R. 111, 114, the debtor sought dismissal of his Chapter
7 after discharge was granted. The court found that there could be no dismissal after discharge and then,
anticipating the argument of the debtor, found that the debtor could not seek revocation of the discharge.
The court explained:
The grant of discharge in bankruptcy affects multiple
parties, indelibly altering legal rights and duties
previously running between the debtor and his cre-
ditors. By strictly limiting the substantive grounds
for revocation of discharge and the class of parties
who are entitled to petition for it, Congress plainly
intended to protect the remedy of discharge. The
corollary is that Congress did not intend to allow a
debtor to willy-nilly petition for bankruptcy relief,
and then cancel it.
For the above reasons, it is hereby ordered that the debtor's application for an order allowing him to
waive the discharge which has already been entered is denied.
Dated: November 20, 1987 ________________________