Meet the New Trustee

malerMichael G. Malaier was appointed as a Chapter 13 Standing Trustee for the Western District of Washington effective October 1, 2015. Malaier succeeds David Howe who passed away in April.

Malaier graduated from Santa Clara University in 2000 with a degree in philosophy. He then received a JD from the University of Arizona in 2003. From there he returned ‘home’ to Washington.

After graduating from law school, Malaier worked as a public defender, gaining invaluable trial experience in front of both judge and jury cases. He is passionate about civil rights and criminal justice issues. In the summer of 2009, despite not knowing anything about bankruptcy, Dave Howe convinced Malaier to come work for him as a staff attorney. He learned a great deal from Trustee Howe who was a consummate gentleman, thoughtful guy, and above all else, prided himself in his staff and trusteeship. Malaier notes that Howe was a true friend and mentor and, as we all will, will miss him always.

Malaier was born and raised in the Seattle area and now calls Tacoma home. He married the love of his life, Jessica, in 2014. Together they are raising Jessica’s daughter, Katin, who is 12. Katin, it appears, has also stolen Malaier’s heart as he describes her as compassionate, articulate, and a math whiz, all while having a gentle spirit. Their household is made complete by a 14-year-old German shepherd mix named Bo and his pal, an 18 month old Cavalier, named Buddy.

Malaier is an avid reader (Graham Greene and Junot Diaz being among his favorite authors). He is also a news/politics junkie. He is a lifelong fan of the Mariners and Seahawks; loves to cook with his wife; explore new restaurants; and will eagerly try any new microbrew (fave right now being Green Flash IPA from San Diego). He is an outdoorsman and likes to stay active by playing softball, going to the beach, and generally enjoying the Pacific Northwest.

Interestingly, Malaier has an identical twin brother, Bill, who lives in Seattle, is an attorney, and also practices bankruptcy!

Malaier loves his job, staff, and the feeling of helping people through difficult times. “We do important work and I take much satisfaction in it.”

No Author Biography has been linked to this Article.

Related Articles

May 12, 2019
By Margaret A. Burks, Esq., Chapter 13 Trustee (Cincinnati, OH) I was recently asked to expound on a “Day in the Life of a Chapter 13 Trustee.” Then Regina (Logsdon, Executive Director of asked me to write an article for the Academy. I believe in fate so here goes. Please see ‘Effective Communication Guide.’ It came out about four...
Copy of Hildebrand-2016
October 30, 2022
In order for a debtor to succeed in setting aside a dismissal in a motion filed under Rule 9024, F.R.B.P., the debtor must prove specific grounds as outlined in Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b). (Oxholm) In re Gardner, 2022 WL 654410 (Bankr. E.D. Mich. May 24, 2022) Case Summary Carl and Taisha Gardner filed Chapter 13 in September of...
June 7, 2020
By The Honorable William Houston Brown (Retired) HAVEN Act applied to modification when plan was confirmed prior to Act becoming law. The debtor proposed a plan modification deleting from disposable income $1,789 monthly VA disability benefits. First concluding that the HAVEN Act was applicable law at time of this decision, nothing in the Act, its legislative history or the Official...
Copy of Hildebrand-2016
February 12, 2023
Section 1329(c), as it currently exists, forecloses the ability of Chapter 13 debtor to modify a confirmed plan to alter the plan payment amount while maintaining an extended plan, previously approved under the CARES Act. (Hanan) In re Nelson, 2022 WL 6795096 (Bankr. E.D. Wis. October 11, 2022) Case Summary Immediately after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Congress sought...
August 20, 2023
Wishing our dear friend and colleague, Isabel Balboa, a hearty congratulations on her upcoming retirement. As many of you know, Isabel came to the United States from Cuba at the age of 6 with her mother and sisters.  Upon leaving Cuba, they were forced to leave everything behind for fear that they would be caught and detained.  Her father was...
Copy of Hildebrand-2016
September 24, 2023
In calculating projected disposable income, 13 debtor may deduct entire mortgage payment notwithstanding amount exceeds the housing allowance as established by the IRS Financial Standards Allowance.
January 5, 2020
By David Cox,1 Cox Law Group, PLLC (Lynchburg, VA) Overview Filing considerations. Perfect Storm! Pensions going down. Healthcare costs going up. Home Equity high. Medical debts increasing. Limited income. Common considerations. Embarrassment. Many of the elderly are from a generation which regards bankruptcy as an indication of moral failure and shame. Confidentiality. May not want family members, including a spouse,...
Copy of Hildebrand-2016
July 10, 2022
Failure of Chapter 13 debtors to satisfy post-petition property tax payments to the county, specifically required in the debtors’ Chapter 13 plan, renders the debtors ineligible for a discharge, even where the debtors proposed a loan modification to repay the mortgage creditor which had advanced the post-petition taxes. (Rodriguez) In re Villarreal, 2022 WL 1102223 (Bankr. S.D. Tex. April 12,...
November 3, 2019
By Henry E. Hildebrand, III, Standing Chapter 13 Trustee for the Middle District of TN (Nashville) A creditor may request an extension of time to file a claim under Rule 3002, F.R.B.P. only where the conditions of that rule have been fully satisfied; the filing of a defective list of creditors does not permit an extension of the time for...
August 18, 2019
By Lawrence R. Ahern, III, Brown & Ahern (Nashville, TN) PART I Overview Introduction Four bankruptcy-related bills have been passed by both the House and the Senate this term. The legislation was sent to the President for signature on August 13, 2019.1 The bills were not controversial and had bipartisan support. The legislation affects both business and consumer cases. One...

Looking to Become a Member? offers a forum to advance continuing education of consumer bankruptcy via access to insightful articles, informative webinars, and the latest industry news. Join now to benefit from expert resources and stay informed.


These informative sessions are led by industry experts and cover a range of consumer bankruptcy topics.

Member Articles

Written by industry experts, these articles provide in-depth analysis and practical guidance on consumer bankruptcy topics.

Industry News

The Academy is the go-to source for the latest news and analysis in the Chapter 13 bankruptcy industry.

To get started, please let us know which of these best fits your current position: