Lien Stripping & Service On The Bank

By the end of the afternoon, the judge was pretty tired of turning down lien strip motions for the same old, and avoidable, reason:   lawyers hadn’t served the bank involved properly.

There’s a rule for this:  FRBP 7004(h) says a federally insured depository institution (read:  bank) is served by certified mail addressed to an officer of the institution. That’s not hard, especially when the rules tell you how.

Cases are split on whether it’s sufficient to address it to President, Huge Bank NA, or whether you need to address it to Snidely Whiplash, President, Huge Bank.  In the era of Google, and the relative ease of finding the president’s name, I usually elect to go with the full name of the individual.  You could also, for the price of postage, serve both the name you think is the current president, and the CEO just by title.

In my practice, I also serve anyone who signed a proof of claim on behalf of the lender/servicer/holder and any law firm involved in a motion for relief from stay.

So, spare your judges from having to say to you what my judge kept repeating yesterday:  FRBP 7004!


  1. This is the kind of post I find especially helpful.

    Being a noob, I am often concerned with the substantive aspects, the meat and potatoes, of bankruptcy. Learning which wine pairs best with that meat, or whether salad forks go on the left or right, that all seems pedantic. Procedural matters are not the kind of things that a noob can intuit, can think of the rationale for, or can easily remember from reading, as the reading lacks the true context of a real world situation.

    Thanks for linking the substance with the procedure in clear and memorable way. No mystery. No guesses. Just an answer. Thanks.