• December 19, 2014

    Judge Won’t Expand $188M Judgment In Wyly Fraud Case

    A New York federal judge on Friday refused the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s attempt to expand an earlier $188 million judgment against Texas tycoon Sam Wyly and the estate of his late brother, Charles Wyly Jr., in an alleged fraud scheme.

  • December 19, 2014

    Caesars Unit Gets Buy-In From Senior Noteholders

    Troubled Caesars Entertainment Operating Co. said Friday that its first-lien noteholders have signed a restructuring support agreement, getting the company closer to kicking off a Chapter 11 reorganization in January.

  • December 19, 2014

    Bankruptcy Attys, Trustees Back Baker Botts' Meta-Fee Bid

    Former bankruptcy judges from Texas and Pennsylvania, a trustee association and others have filed briefs supporting Baker Botts LLP in its Supreme Court case over awards for defending core fees in miner Asarco LLC's bankruptcy, saying the Fifth Circuit's disapproval of those awards creates a “perverse incentive” for spurious fee challenges.

  • December 19, 2014

    Ch. 11 Case For Skin Treatment Co. Thrown Out

    A Delaware bankruptcy judge threw out Derma Pen LLC’s Chapter 11 case Friday, ruling there was no evidence the skin treatment seller was in financial distress when it filed and that its petition was simply a tactic to disrupt a lawsuit over ownership of the trademark for its primary products.

  • December 19, 2014

    Lehman Trustee Seeks To Recover $98M From Wells Fargo

    Lehman Brothers Inc.’s liquidating trustee on Friday filed a $98 million adversary proceeding against Wells Fargo Bank NA in New York bankruptcy court seeking to recover collateral under a swap agreement the bank allegedly ended when Lehman went under.

  • December 19, 2014

    Bankrupt Aereo Gets Green Light To Stage Asset Auction

    A New York bankruptcy judge on Friday refused to halt Aereo Inc.'s plan to auction assets including intellectual property and equipment among as many as 17 potential buyers, some said to be significant competitors of broadcasters who had put on a full-court press to block the bidding.

  • December 19, 2014

    Rothstein Trustee Cleared To Distribute $13M In Claims

    A Florida bankruptcy judge on Friday approved $13 million in claims distributions by the liquidating trustee of convicted Ponzi schemer Scott Rothstein's bankrupt law firm, but said claims held by a group of hedge fund managers would be withheld while the trustee's adversary suit seeking clarification on their claims is pending.

  • December 19, 2014

    9th Circ. To Rehear En Banc Bankruptcy Atty Fee Row

    The Ninth Circuit agreed Friday to grant an en banc review of an appellate panel's holding that a Chapter 13 debtor should be repaid for attorneys' fees incurred while defending a creditor's appeal of a bankruptcy court ruling because the fees resulted from a violation of the automatic stay.

  • December 19, 2014

    US Bank Settles With CFTC In Suit Over Peregrine Debacle

    An Iowa federal judge on Friday agreed to dismiss a suit brought by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission against U.S. Bank NA after the two parties agreed to settle claims that the bank aided bankrupt Peregrine Financial Group Inc.’s former CEO in misappropriating $215 million in customer funds.

  • December 19, 2014

    THQ Estate Launches Avoidance Suits To Claw Back $9M

    The estate for defunct video game developer THQ Inc. launched dozens of so-called avoidance actions in Delaware bankruptcy court, looking to claw back more than $9 million in payments the company made shortly before it filed for Chapter 11 protection.

  • December 18, 2014

    Harbinger Backs LightSquared's New Restructuring Plan

    With the blessing of controlling equity holder Harbinger Capital Partners LLC, LightSquared Inc. filed a new restructuring plan in New York bankruptcy court on Thursday that anticipates $1.25 billion in exit financing for the reorganized company and a big stake for Harbinger.

  • December 18, 2014

    5th Circ. Affirms $2.1M Verdict In Rap Song Rights Fight

    The Fifth Circuit on Thursday rejected a music publisher’s contention that it deserves a new trial or judgment in a long-running $2.1 million post-bankruptcy sale dispute over the rights to the song “Whoomp! (There It Is),” ruling the district court correctly nixed a new argument introduced after the trial.

  • December 18, 2014

    Exide Bondholders Contend Ch. 11 Plan Unfair, Unworkable

    Two senior bondholders of Exide Technologies Inc. took issue with the battery maker's disclosure statement Thursday, saying it supports an unconfirmable Chapter 11 plan that improperly favors certain creditors.

  • December 18, 2014

    Nortel's US Arm Gets Nod For $1B Bondholder Interest Deal

    A Delaware bankruptcy judge on Thursday blessed a settlement between Nortel Networks Corp.'s U.S. arm and crossover bondholders that caps post-petition interest on their notes at $1 billion, rejecting myriad arguments raised by the defunct telecom's Canadian units.

  • December 18, 2014

    Amid Union Fight, Icahn Pledges $20M To Save Taj Mahal

    Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc. senior creditor Carl Icahn said Thursday that he would put in $20 million of additional financing to keep the company’s only remaining casino operating, the same day the union representing Taj Mahal workers claimed he backed out of a more comprehensive deal to save it from closing.

  • December 18, 2014

    Diocese's Paine Hamblen Malpractice Suit Heads To Trial

    Paine Hamblen LLP lost a last ditch effort Wednesday to avoid a looming trial in the Catholic Diocese of Spokane's malpractice lawsuit that accuses the firm of failing to protect the church from future liability after negotiating a $50 million deal to settle civil sexual abuse claims in its bankruptcy.

  • December 18, 2014

    Ex-Exec Of Bankrupt Fuel Shipper Arrested In Denmark

    Denmark's economic prosecutor arrested a former executive of bankrupt fuel shipper OW Bunker A/S on Thursday on suspicion of fraud in Italy, on the heels of the company's descent into bankruptcy after it found fraud in its Singapore operations.

  • December 18, 2014

    Old GM Creditor Trust Says Defect Liability Lies With New GM

    The trust representing creditors of General Motors Co.’s bankruptcy estate says that the car company is unfairly trying to skirt lawsuits over drops in vehicle value stemming from flaws, including the deadly ignition switch defect, and that the plaintiffs have correctly directed their claims at New GM.

  • December 18, 2014

    Former Saab Owner Spyker Declared Bankrupt

    A Dutch district court declared automaker Spyker SV bankrupt on Thursday, following the failure of the onetime owner of Saab Automobile AB’s attempt to reorganize after filing for the equivalent of Chapter 11 in early December.

  • December 18, 2014

    Steptoe Hit With $129M Calif. Legal Malpractice Suit

    Steptoe & Johnson LLP and a onetime partner of the firm were hit with a $129 million legal malpractice suit Tuesday in California court, in which they are accused of failing to properly advocate for developers in a fight to secure big claims against a bankrupt mutual fund executive.

Expert Analysis

  • Proposals To Reform Ch. 11 Target Secured Creditors

    David M. Hillman

    On Dec. 8, the American Bankruptcy Institute Commission to Study the Reform of Chapter 11 issued a 400-page report recommending wide-ranging changes to Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code. If enacted, the proposals would significantly impair the rights of secured creditors and materially increase the leverage of debtors and out-of-the-money stakeholders, say David Hillman and Adam Harris of Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP.

  • What Happens When Legal Aid Cuts Stimulate Pro Bono?

    Kevin J. Curnin

    The bad news coming out of the European Pro Bono Summit in November was the rising toll of heavy cuts to public legal aid in England. From this crossroad, there is a lot to be learned about the relationship between public and private assistance, the direction of legal help for the poor in the EU, and whether the American legal aid/pro bono experience offers a road map for what’s next in Europe, says Kevin Curnin of the Association ... (continued)

  • Annual Bankruptcy And Restructuring Roundup

    David N. Griffiths

    Despite the relative paucity of mega cases, 2014 was not a year to forget. With every passing month, new and interesting special situations arose. In case you missed them, here’s a look back at the bankruptcy and restructuring highlights of the year, as well as a look ahead to 2015, say David Griffiths and Doron Kenter of Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP.

  • 9 Lessons For Creditors From Detroit's Bankruptcy

    Lawrence A. Larose

    A great deal of ink has already been spilled on what Detroit's bankruptcy case means, particularly from the viewpoint of the municipality and its citizens. As counsel for one of the largest creditors in the city’s Chapter 9 case, we offer the following nine lessons for creditors and other stakeholders of distressed municipalities, say Lawrence Larose and Samuel Kohn of Chadbourne & Parke LLP.

  • 3 Questions To Ask Yourself Before Hiring Appellate Counsel

    David Axelrad

    In the classic case, a client and his attorney seek appellate counsel after the trial court proceedings are concluded. But these days, “classic cases” are few and far between — more and more, appellate lawyers assist in the trial court with preservation of the appellate record and compliance with the many technical rules of appellate procedure, says David Axelrad of Horvitz & Levy LLP.

  • You Don’t Get 3 Strikes When Filing A Complaint

    L. John Bird

    A Delaware bankruptcy court judge's recent ruling in the Tropicana Entertainment bankruptcy illustrates the importance of providing all the necessary details and required allegations in a complaint, particularly if the court has already provided you with one "do-over," says John Bird of Fox Rothschild LLP.

  • What Lawyer-Novelists Learned From Being Lawyers

    Michael H. Rubin

    The consensus that emerged from my discussions with several lawyers who have become best-selling novelists is that the traits it takes to be a great lawyer are invaluable in crafting first-rate mysteries and thrillers. Both thriller authors and lawyers possess a concentrated attention to detail that allows them to create a logical framework for their story, brief or courtroom presentation, says Michael Rubin of McGlinchey Stafford PLLC.

  • How Borrower Got 'Free House' In NJ Bankruptcy Case

    Donna Bates

    A New Jersey bankruptcy court recently held that a mortgagee and mortgage servicer were time-barred under New Jersey state law from enforcing either the note or the accelerated mortgage against the debtor. This decision is particularly relevant considering that New Jersey’s foreclosure practice has undergone recent developments that have contributed to significant delays in foreclosure filings, say Daniel Cozzi and Donna Bates of Blank Rome LLP.

  • Unique Dynamics Of LIHTC Workouts: 3 Thoughts For Lenders

    Mark V. Bossi

    In the still-developing area of low-income housing tax credit workouts and bankruptcies, secured lenders may feel relatively powerless. But armed with knowledge concerning several key leverage points, a lender can better protect its interests and negotiate an advantageous outcome of a troubled loan, says Mark Bossi of Thompson Coburn LLP.

  • Risks And Opportunities Amid Falling Oil Prices

    Thomas Howley

    Oil producers and oilfield services companies will be most directly affected by the current slump in oil prices — as the viability of new drilling programs decreases and oil producers are forced to trim capital expenditure budgets, both oil producers and oilfield service providers will become ripe targets for consolidation, say attorneys at Jones Day.