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Full-Text Articles in Law

Crowdsourcing (Bankruptcy) Fee Control, Matthew Bruckner Mar 2015

Crowdsourcing (Bankruptcy) Fee Control, Matthew Bruckner

Matthew Adam Bruckner

In this article, I explore how crowdsourcing can help reduce the cost of professional representation in corporate bankruptcy cases. The cost of professional representation in bankruptcy cases is currently a hot topic, with oral argument haven taken place before the U.S. Supreme Court in Baker Botts L.L.P. v. Asarco, L.L.C. in February 2015, which case addressed various issues raised in my article. In brief, the fees of lawyers, investment bankers, and other bankruptcy professionals has been spiraling out of control because chapter 11’s existing fee control system is broken. That system can neither identify ...


Examining Success, Jonathan C. Lipson Feb 2015

Examining Success, Jonathan C. Lipson

Jonathan C. Lipson

Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code presumes that managers will remain in possession and control of a corporate debtor. This presents an obvious agency problem: these same managers may have gotten the company into trouble in the first place. The Bankruptcy Code thus includes checks and balances in the reorganization process, one of which is supposed to be an “examiner,” a private individual appointed to investigate and report on the debtor’s collapse.

We study their use in practice. Extending prior research, we find that examiners are exceedingly rare, despite the fact that they should be “mandatory” in large cases ...


Flexible Finality In Bankruptcy: The Right To Appeal A Denial Of Plan Confirmation, Joseph L. Nepowada Feb 2015

Flexible Finality In Bankruptcy: The Right To Appeal A Denial Of Plan Confirmation, Joseph L. Nepowada

Joseph L Nepowada

This Article examines the current state of the law interpreting what “finality” means in context of a bankruptcy proceeding and what effect that interpretation has on the appealability of certain orders, such as the denial of plan confirmation under a Chapter 13 bankruptcy proceeding. The article highlights nine courts of appeals and their decisions concerning the appealability of a denial of a plan confirmation and it is apparent that the courts are split with three courts of appeal allowing a debtor to appeal a denial of plan confirmation as a matter of right, while six courts of appeal will deny ...


Chapter 11 Triage: Diagnosing A Debtor's Prospects For Success, Anne Lawton Mar 2012

Chapter 11 Triage: Diagnosing A Debtor's Prospects For Success, Anne Lawton

Anne Lawton

In 2005, Congress enacted a number of provisions aimed at improving success rates for Chapter 11 small business debtors. The available empirical data, albeit limited in scope, showed startlingly low rates of plan confirmation. Conventional wisdom attributed the plan confirmation problem to the high failure rate of the Chapter 11 small business debtor. This Article presents the results of a large empirical study of Chapter 11 cases filed in 2004, the year before the small business amendments. The study examines the following questions. First, are confirmation rates in Chapter 11 low, and how do small debtors fare in terms of ...


Chapter 11 Triage: Diagnosing A Debtor's Prospects For Success, Anne Lawton Mar 2012

Chapter 11 Triage: Diagnosing A Debtor's Prospects For Success, Anne Lawton

Anne Lawton

Chapter 11 Triage: Diagnosing A Debtor's Prospects for Success by Anne Lawton In 2005, Congress enacted a number of provisions aimed at improving success rates for Chapter 11 small business debtors. The available empirical data, albeit limited in scope, showed startlingly low rates of plan confirmation. Conventional wisdom attributed the plan confirmation problem to the high failure rate of the Chapter 11 small business debtor. This Article presents the results of a large empirical study of Chapter 11 cases filed in 2004, the year before the small business amendments. The study examines the following questions. First, are confirmation rates ...


Chapter 11 Triage: Diagnosing A Debtor's Prospects For Success, Anne Lawton Mar 2012

Chapter 11 Triage: Diagnosing A Debtor's Prospects For Success, Anne Lawton

Anne Lawton

In 2005, Congress enacted a number of provisions aimed at improving success rates for Chapter 11 small business debtors. The available empirical data, albeit limited in scope, showed startlingly low rates of plan confirmation. Conventional wisdom attributed the plan confirmation problem to the high failure rate of the Chapter 11 small business debtor. This Article presents the results of a large empirical study of Chapter 11 cases filed in 2004, the year before the small business amendments. The study examines the following questions. First, are confirmation rates in Chapter 11 low, and how do small debtors fare in terms of ...


The Uncertainty Of “True Sale” Analysis In Originator Bankruptcy, Stephen P. Hoffman Jan 2012

The Uncertainty Of “True Sale” Analysis In Originator Bankruptcy, Stephen P. Hoffman

Stephen P. Hoffman

While much of law is complex or unclear, it is unusual for a judge to comment that a legal doctrine is so unsettled that courts “could flip a coin” to decide an issue. Unfortunately for practitioners, determining what constitutes a “true sale” for bankruptcy purposes is such an issue. Add to this the recent novel and innovative processes of structured finance and asset-backed securitization, and you have the stuff of law students’—and corporate counsels’—nightmares. As a result, courts and legislatures need to provide clarity in this area so that originators can safely structure investments and transactions, not only ...


Investing In Distressed Italian Companies Under The Reformed Italian Bankruptcy Law - A Comparison With The Us Bankruptcy Code, Pierantonio Musso Nov 2011

Investing In Distressed Italian Companies Under The Reformed Italian Bankruptcy Law - A Comparison With The Us Bankruptcy Code, Pierantonio Musso

Pierantonio Musso

This article presents a scheme to profitably invest in distressed Italian companies by taking advantage of the Italian Bankruptcy Law in comparison with the US Bankruptcy Code. The risks connected to the insolvency proceeding are analyzed under their economic effects and foreseen in their general appearance. Specific remedies to avoid or mitigate the potential risks are provided. Singular advantages, available only in the proposed investment scheme under the Italian Law, are described. As a result the investment produces a less risky and more profitable outcome than an investment in a non-distressed and non-Italian target company.


Delaware’S Relevance In Chapter 22: Who Is “Courting Failure” Now?, Ruth S. Lee Sep 2011

Delaware’S Relevance In Chapter 22: Who Is “Courting Failure” Now?, Ruth S. Lee

Ruth S Lee

This study presents surprising new statistical evidence that contributes to the current “over-heated” academic debate about the Delaware courts’ role in Chapter 11 failure. In 2001, Professor LoPucki published an influential article suggesting that when large corporations file for bankruptcy under Chapter 11, they fail at a dramatically higher rate in Delaware courts than in other jurisdictions. He attributed this to corruption. His article enraged many academics and practitioners, and ignited many articles in the past two decades. This study presents startling evidence that while Chapter 11s filed in Delaware courts did have much higher failure rates from 1991-1996, after ...


Cleaning Up Bankruptcy: Limiting The Dischargeability Of Environmental Cleanup Costs, Sonali P. Chitre Jul 2010

Cleaning Up Bankruptcy: Limiting The Dischargeability Of Environmental Cleanup Costs, Sonali P. Chitre

Sonali P Chitre

This article reconciles the joint aims of environmental and bankruptcy law after Judge Posner’s myopic opinion in the Seventh Circuit’s resolution of U.S. v. Apex Oil. These two areas of law represent alternative means to the same end—the equitable distribution of limited resources—and share equity’s traditional emphasis of function over form. Ignoring these principles, Judge Posner ruled in Apex that a cleanup order constitutes a dischargeable “claim” when styled as a legal judgment but not when styled as an equitable injunction. This despite the fact that in either case the liability amounts to the ...


Interpreting The Supreme Court’S Treatment Of The Chrysler Bankruptcy And Its Impact On Future Business Reorganizations, Fred N. David Jun 2010

Interpreting The Supreme Court’S Treatment Of The Chrysler Bankruptcy And Its Impact On Future Business Reorganizations, Fred N. David

Fred David

On June 9, 2009, the Supreme Court terminated its stay of Chrysler’s sale of substantially all of the company’s assets to a new entity, dubbed “New Chrysler” with the backing of European automaker Fiat. The effect of that ruling was to permit the sale to close the next day and bring to an end a chaotic period that determined Chrysler’s future. However, critics of the sale to Fiat argued that the Supreme Court’s ruling would also have a detrimental effect on secured credit and undermined the creditor protections normally afforded by Chapter 11 going forward.

But ...


Bankruptcy Reorganizations And The Troubling Legacy Of Chrysler And Gm, Ralph E. Brubaker, Charles J. Tabb Feb 2010

Bankruptcy Reorganizations And The Troubling Legacy Of Chrysler And Gm, Ralph E. Brubaker, Charles J. Tabb

Ralph E. Brubaker

BANKRUPTCY REORGANIZATIONS AND THE

TROUBLING LEGACY OF CHRYSLER AND GM

Ralph Brubaker

University of Illinois College of Law

Charles Jordan Tabb

University of Illinois College of Law

Abstract:

The Chrysler and General Motors bankruptcy reorganizations represent the culmination of a sea-change in corporate restructuring practice that has occurred largely over the course of just the past decade. A bankruptcy reorganization has traditionally been effectuated though a chapter 11 plan of reorganization, with elaborate requirements for disclosure, creditor voting, and allocation of stakes in the reorganized debtor entity’s new capital structure among creditors and owners. Such an internal boot-strap reorganization ...


Bankruptcy Reorganizations And The Troubling Legacy Of Chrysler And Gm, Ralph E. Brubaker Feb 2010

Bankruptcy Reorganizations And The Troubling Legacy Of Chrysler And Gm, Ralph E. Brubaker

Ralph E. Brubaker

BANKRUPTCY REORGANIZATIONS AND THE

TROUBLING LEGACY OF CHRYSLER AND GM

Ralph Brubaker

University of Illinois College of Law

Charles Jordan Tabb

University of Illinois College of Law

Abstract:

The Chrysler and General Motors bankruptcy reorganizations represent the culmination of a sea-change in corporate restructuring practice that has occurred largely over the course of just the past decade. A bankruptcy reorganization has traditionally been effectuated though a chapter 11 plan of reorganization, with elaborate requirements for disclosure, creditor voting, and allocation of stakes in the reorganized debtor entity’s new capital structure among creditors and owners. Such an internal boot-strap reorganization ...


Simultaneous Distress Of Residential Developers And Their Secured Lenders: An Analysis Of Bankruptcy & Bank Regulation, Sarah P. Woo Aug 2009

Simultaneous Distress Of Residential Developers And Their Secured Lenders: An Analysis Of Bankruptcy & Bank Regulation, Sarah P. Woo

Sarah P Woo

With falling home prices and home foreclosures currently acknowledged as a severe problem in the U.S., more attention needs to be paid to the contributing phenomenon of residential developers undergoing liquidation, which has left behind a trail of partially-completed or abandoned properties. In order to understand this phenomenon, we analyzed 222 residential developers that filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy petitions between November 2007 and December 2008. We find that only a very small proportion of these developers, as compared to previous similar large studies, confirmed a reorganization plan. Most cases ended in liquidations. In the sample, 72.5% of the ...


The Shadow Bankruptcy System, Jonathan C. Lipson Jan 2009

The Shadow Bankruptcy System, Jonathan C. Lipson

Jonathan C. Lipson

This article exposes and explores a puzzle at the heart of the current economic crisis: The surprising under-use, and increasing misuse, of Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code, the principal legal system for salvaging troubled businesses.

The answer offered here: The rise of the shadow bankruptcy system. “Shadow bankruptcy” describes the severely under-regulated non-bank financial institutions (e.g., hedge funds, private equity funds and investment banks) that increasingly dominate and manipulate Chapter 11 reorganizations.

Like the “shadow banking” system for which it is named, shadow bankruptcy thrives on and promotes opacity and undisclosed, possibly perverse, incentives. Shadow bankruptcy ...


Failure's Futures: Controlling The Market For Information In Corporate Reorganization, Jonathan C. Lipson Aug 2008

Failure's Futures: Controlling The Market For Information In Corporate Reorganization, Jonathan C. Lipson

Jonathan C. Lipson

This Article identifies and explores an important gap in bankruptcy theory and policy, with significant implications for the coming wave of major business failures: How to manage information about financially distressed businesses?

The paper makes three claims. First, Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code plays a unique informational role, as it creates mechanisms to explain a debtor’s failure and to promote reinvestment. Second, the information functions performed by this system face internal and external threats. Internally, bankruptcy reorganization increasingly resembles an unregulated securities market, dominated by sophisticated, wealthy investors whose motives and strategies are often highly opaque ...


The Doctrine Of Necessity In Bankruptcy Reorganizations, Rahul K. Sharma Apr 2008

The Doctrine Of Necessity In Bankruptcy Reorganizations, Rahul K. Sharma

Rahul K. Sharma

Necessity is an old concept used in many fields of law. In criminal law and torts, it is a defense. In property law, its reasoning is used to support eminent domain. This paper will analyze the use of the doctrine of necessity in bankruptcy reorganizations. In bankruptcy, necessity has also been used as a justification for paying certain creditors earlier than they would have otherwise been paid. This has become controversial as such payments became routine. A decision by the Seventh Circuit in the 2004 Kmart case strongly criticized such payments and criticized reliance upon the doctrine of necessity. This ...


Collective Bargaining Agreements And Chapter 9 Bankruptcy, Ryan Preston Dahl May 2007

Collective Bargaining Agreements And Chapter 9 Bankruptcy, Ryan Preston Dahl

Ryan P Dahl

The recent cycle of automotive and aviation bankruptcies is ending. The next major restructuring cycle may come from a very different quarter. Municipalities throughout the United States will face the very real prospect of insolvency. The treatment of collective bargaining agreements will play a significant role in this process. Unaffordable collective bargaining obligations may be the efficient cause of such filings. Alternatively, rejecting such agreements may be the most effective means of restoring a municipal debtor’s financial health.

Statutory gaps, the absence of significant caselaw, and limited scholarly commentary raise serious questions as to how courts should treat collective ...


Rio Grande Designs: Texans’ Nafta Water Claim Against Mexico, Paul Stanton Kibel, Jonathan R. Schutz Mar 2007

Rio Grande Designs: Texans’ Nafta Water Claim Against Mexico, Paul Stanton Kibel, Jonathan R. Schutz

Paul Stanton Kibel

No abstract provided.


Grasp On Water: A Natural Resource That Eludes Nafta's Notion Of Investment, Paul Stanton Kibel Jan 2007

Grasp On Water: A Natural Resource That Eludes Nafta's Notion Of Investment, Paul Stanton Kibel

Paul Stanton Kibel

No abstract provided.