What, Exactly, Is the Trustee’s Percentage Fee

In recent years, a handful of cases have discussed the issue of what happens to the trustee’s percentage fee, collected from debtor plan payments, upon the dismissal or conversion of a case prior to confirmation. This is an emerging area of law, with decisions on both sides.  However, with this new issue, there appears to be at least some confusion about this fee. Specifically, at least some judges seem to equate the trustee percentage fee with the trustee’s personal compensation.So, let’s go back to basics – just what is a trustee percentage fee, how is . . .

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rebeccaherr
Chapter 13 Standing Trustee for the District of Maryland (Annapolis)

Rebecca A. (Becky) Herr was appointed Chapter 13 Standing Trustee for the District of Maryland on October 1, 2019 and maintains her offices in Annapolis.

Ms. Herr’s appointment came on the heels of the retirement of Chapter 13 Standing Trustee Nancy Spencer-Grigsby. But Herr is no stranger to NACTT, The Academy, and the Chapter 13 Trustee community.

So, let’s start at the beginning. She received her undergraduate degree (in Criminology and Criminal Justice because she thought she was going to be a criminal lawyer!) from the University of Maryland.

Before attending law school, she took a few years off from school; lived in Florida and worked at Disney World.

She stumbled into bankruptcy (as many of us did). Her last year in law school she took a bankruptcy class. She expressed an interest in bankruptcy practice to her professor, Mark Neal, who at the time was the AUST for Baltimore. Neal knew that one of the then Chapter 13 Standing Trustees, Gerard Vetter, was looking for someone to work in his office and made the suggestion that she might be a good fit. Vetter hired Herr originally as a part-time law clerk and then she worked as a paralegal.

She received her law degree from the University of Maryland School of Law.

In 2010, Vetter’s office merged with the other Chapter 13 Standing Trustee in the District of Maryland, Nancy Spencer-Grigsby when Vetter took a position as an Assistant United States Trustee. At the time of the merger, Herr became one of three Staff Attorneys to Ms. Spencer-Grigsby as the office was now covering eight judges.

Herr often jokes: “I pushed my way into the office. Pushed my way into any job that came open, and eventually pushed Gerard out the door so I could have a position as an attorney. Looks like my evil plan really worked!”

Her hobbies mainly include running and baking (you need one to cancel out the other, right?). Although she has an adventuresome spirit and could probably be talked into anything if it sounds fun enough!

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