A proceeding in a bankruptcy case created when a party files a motion asking for relief from the bankruptcy court, as compared to an “adversary proceeding” created when a party files a complaint.
Contested matters differ from adversary proceedings primarily in the procedures employed by the court. A contested matter is generally less formal and is heard more quickly than an adversary proceeding. Another difference is that adversary actions sometimes involve jury trial rights while contested matters do not.
Stay relief motions, motions for valuation, and motions to assume or reject unexpired leases or executory contracts, for example, all give rise to contested matters. Preference lawsuits, fraudulent transfer lawsuits, and avoidance actions under Section 544 are examples of adversary actions.
See also Adversary Action.