ABI Blog Exchange

Banks should place a premium on employees who hold themselves to high standards, care about a greater cause and understand their roleÂ's relationship with the broader organization.

Read More from: BankThink

2 hours 45 min ago
Liens can be placed on a debtor’s home in many different ways. Some are by agreements, like mortgages. Others are by operation of the law, like property tax liens on a debtor’s home. And some liens are to enforce judgments that have been entered against the debtor. Certain liens can never be removed in a bankruptcy case except by paying the underlying indebtedness, and others can only be removed if special action is taken in the bankruptcy case. So, if a debtor has any question about liens on their home, these matters should be discussed with an attorney.
3 hours 44 min ago
In the Frederick’s of Hollywood bankruptcy proceeding, a formation meeting has been scheduled for Wednesday, April 28, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. (ET) at the J. Caleb Boggs Federal Building, 844 King St., Room 5209, Wilmington, DE 19801.  Click Here for a copy of the Notice of Formation Meeting for Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors issued by the Office of the United States Trustee.  If you want to be considered for Committee membership, you MUST complete a questionnaire and return it to the U.S. Trustee no later than April 27, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. (ET). In addition, the U.S. Trustee has requested that a Section 341 Meeting of Creditors be scheduled for Thursday, May 27, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. (ET) at the J. Caleb Boggs Federal Court House, 844 N. King Street, 2nd Fl., Room 5209, Wilmington, DE 19801. My colleague, Carl Neff, provided an overview of the Frederick’s of Hollywood bankruptcy here..
4 hours 43 min ago
Rejecting the reasoning of a number of opinions by federal courts, the Minnesota Supreme Court has held that the “Ponzi Scheme Presumption” does not apply to claims brought under the Minnesota Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act (“MUFTA”).  Patrick Finn and Lighthouse Management Group, Inc. v. Alliance Bank et al, 2015 WL 672406 (Minn.

Read More from: Creditors' Rights

4 hours 45 min ago
The CFPB is purging the dark corners of debt collection and buying. It's a revolution that's been a long time coming.

Read More from: BankThink

4 hours 45 min ago
Experienced Social Security disability attorney Jeff Scholnick discusses which medical conditions are listed in the Social Security Administration’s impairment listing manual, also known as “the blue book.” The Social Security Administration (SSA) lists a number of impairments, both physical and mental, in the manual usually called “the blue book.” All impairments listed will automatically qualify an individual for Social Security disability benefits (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), providing the condition meets specified criteria. The listing manual includes the following medical conditions:
  1. Musculoskeletal complications such as back injuries
  2. Cardiovascular conditions such as heart failure or coronary artery disease
  3. Senses and speech issues including hearing and/or vision loss
  4. Respiratory illnesses such as asthma or chronic lung disease
  5. Neurological disorders including multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy
  6. Mental disorders such as depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, autism or retardation
  7. Immune system disorders including HIV/AIDS, lupus and rheumatoid arthritis
  8. Types of syndromes such as Sjogren’s Syndrome and Marfan Syndrome
  9. Skin issues including dermatitis
  10. `Digestive tract problems such as liver disease or Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  11. Kidney disease and genitourinary problems
  12. Cancer

Read More from: Scholnick Law

4 hours 56 min ago
Lawyers become lawyers, in large part, because they can’t, or don’t want to, do math. Judges are lawyers who got promoted. And therein is the root of the problem with “no look” attorneys fee for consumer bankruptcy cases. Judges don’t understand mathematics.  They expect the “law” of averages to result in fair compensation for debtor’s lawyers, relieving judges of having to consider and approve an appropriate fee case by case. Only the law of averages doesn’t work on small numbers:  small numbers like the number of cases a consumer lawyer handles in a year. The problem The Bankruptcy Code empowers judges to review the debtor’s financial transactions with his attorney.  Chapter 13 enables individuals to reorganize their financial affairs over a three to five year period.  The help of a lawyer is virtually required to make that happen. Ask any judge and, almost invariably, their least favorite judicial task is considering fee applications.  Because the job is tedious, the total dollars relatively small next to the Chapter 11 fees that most judges earned before they took the bench, the bench has looked for streamlined ways to compensate consumer lawyers.
5 hours 4 min ago
How would you like to be paid only for work which, in hindsight, unquestionably resulted in a material benefit to your employer? That unsuccessful sales call? Freebie. That account you spent hours trying to collect, but ultimately had to write off? That’s on your time. Thanks. Well, bankruptcy lawyers wouldn’t like that compensation arrangement any more than you. And on April 9, 2015, the Fifth Circuit issued an important opinion in Woerner v. Barron & Newburger, P.C. (“Woerner”) that overruled the Court’s prior decision in Pro-Snax Distributors, Inc. that had adopted a “hindsight” approach to awarding compensation to estate attorneys. In Woerner, the Fifth Circuit returned to a “prospective” approach stating: “We now recognize that the retrospective, ‘material benefit’ standard enunciated in Pro-Snax conflicts with the language and legislative history of [11 U.S.C. § 330], diverges from the decisions of other circuits, and has sown confusion in our circuit.” Accordingly, the Court overturned Pro-Snax and adopted the prospective, “reasonably likely to benefit the estate” standard endorsed by other circuits.

Read More from: Insolvency Insights

5 hours 21 min ago
Oil and gas developer Endeavour International Corp. is attempting to swat away accusations from unsecured creditors seeking to sue over allegedly improper prebankruptcy financial maneuvers. Read the Daily Bankruptcy Review article here. (Daily Bankruptcy Review is a daily newsletter with comprehensive coverage and analysis of emerging and in-progress insolvencies and turnarounds. For a two-week trial, visit http://on.wsj.com/DJBankruptcyNews, scroll to the bottom and click “try for free.”) The Wall Street Journal reports on the death of bankruptcy trailblazer Harvey Miller, who handled huge bankruptcy cases including Lehman Brothers and General Motors . Kevyn Orr, who was the city of Detroit’s emergency manager during its bankruptcy, is now leaving Atlantic City, N.J.’s emergency management team, Reuters reports.

Read More from: WSJ.com: Bankruptcy Beat

5 hours 29 min ago
Receiving Wide Coverage ... Riots in Baltimore: Most media outlets have coverage of the rioting in Baltimore, with at least 15 police officers injured and numerous businesses destroyed or looted, including a branch of Ace Cash Express, following Monday's funeral of Freddie Gray. Officials declared a state of emergency. Protesting the police force's alleged excessive force against the city's minority community, rioters burned and looted a CVS pharmacy and other buildings in the Mondawmin neighborhood. Additionally,...

Read More from: BankThink

5 hours 37 min ago
Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) has sent a letter to SEC Chair White to express her concerns about the increase in stock buybacks and asks for information on Rule 10b-18, including analytic work done by the SEC on the long-term economic impact of the rule, an accounting of investigations by the SEC into possible violations of the rule and an assessment of whether the rule is adequate to foster capital formation and prevent fraud. Rule 10b-18 provides a company with a safe harbor when repurchasing its own stock, so long as it meets the rule’s manner, timing, price and volume conditions. 
5 hours 45 min ago
Authored by Scott J. Kennelly and Janet C. Owensand Scott J. Kennelly and Janet C. Owens of Rogers TowersSection 90.616, Florida Statutes, sets forth the procedure for excluding certain witnesses from a proceeding, referred to as “invoking the rule,” so that one witness does not potentially color the testimony of other witnesses.  Although witness sequestration during trial is routine, Florida law is less clear on whether attorneys can utilize this procedure during a deposition.  Currently, there is a circuit split on this issue and thus, for the moment, the procedure may depend on where the lawsuit is filed.

Read More from: Florida Banking Law Blog

6 hours 47 min ago
Unexpected things happen in bankruptcy.   Some debts can be restructured, some debts can be reduced and some debts the debtor is just stuck with.  In contrast, outside of the bankruptcy ecosystem, economic interests are treated normally.  Because of the difference, a creditor’s activities for recovery in bankruptcy will, at times, seem at odds with their economic interests if viewed through the lens of a normal collection matter. Credit:Paramount Pictures A currently pending adversary proceeding in the Energy Futures bankruptcy case is a good example of a creditor taking a somewhat counter-intuitive path to seek recovery. As you may know, the bankruptcy case of Energy Future Holdings Corp. (“EFH”) is currently pending in Delaware.  As the name implies, EFH is an energy company.  The adversary I cite revolves around an affiliate of EFH who issued about $2 billion in notes under an indenture which contained a “make whole” provision. As you may know, a “make whole” provision in a loan agreement basically provides that a borrower will need to pay some or all of the anticipated interest recovery to the creditor if the borrower pays the debt early. In this case, the “make whole” provision was part of a large indenture issued by an affiliate of EFT on 2.18 billion in notes. For the purposes of the current litigation, a few of the provision are relevant:

Read More from: Tough Times for Lenders

14 hours 33 min ago
For all their talk, banks are still sorely lacking when it comes to creating a great user experience in their digital channels, as this unhappy customer can attest.

Read More from: BankThink

16 hours 45 min ago
Here's an early obit.  It's hard for me to imagine a chapter 11 world without Harvey Miller.  Although the adjective is over-used, I think it would be difficult to argue the man was not transformative to bankruptcy law.  He was an incredible mentor, and I am honored to have considered him a friend.  I can't count  how many younger lawyers in the field he encouraged and taught, in so many ways.  It's just hard to imagine a world without his seemingly indefatigable spirit.  Harvey makes -- made, I'm still adjusting to the past tense -- you feel both energized and exhausted at the same time after an engagement.  It's a sad day, but happy too, I suppose, knowing what a great run he had.  Trite, I apologize, but he was a rare breed, indeed.

Read More from: Credit Slips

23 hours 13 min ago
By Robert S. Bernstein, Esq., Co-Managing Partner It’s a small […] The post An 8-Year Battle Comes to an End, Creditors Awarded Millions appeared first on Bernstein-Burkley, P.C..

Read More from: Bernstein-Burkley, P.C.

1 day 25 min ago
At ten companies where shareholders have cast votes on proxy access shareholder proposals this season, four companies received more votes in favor of the proposal than against it, while a majority of shareholders did not support the proposal at six companies.
1 day 1 hour ago
Speculation has swirled in the legal community in recent weeks about who’s likely to appear to testify in the criminal trial stemming from the collapse of Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP. As jury selection begins Monday in the case, some answers are beginning to emerge. An extensive list of 226 people connected to Dewey is included in forms given to potential jurors, listing everyone from Dewey’s top former partners to journalists who covered the now-defunct law firm. Not everyone on the list, however, is a potential witness. Some are “names that may be mentioned,” according to the document, and are being used during jury selection to help ensure no one picked as a juror has a connection to the case. The trial pits the Manhattan district attorney’s office against three former Dewey leaders– chairman Steven Davis, executive director Stephen DiCarmine, and chief financial officer Joel Sanders—who are accused of using fraudulent accounting techniques to make the firm look like it was doing better than it was. The three have denied wrongdoing.

Read More from: WSJ.com: Bankruptcy Beat

1 day 2 hours ago
Breaking up the biggest banks could wind up increasing the chances of a taxpayer bailout, while reinstating Glass-Steagall would only serve to make banks less stable.

Read More from: BankThink

1 day 2 hours ago
Bankruptcy law pioneer Harvey R. Miller has died at 82 after a battle with ALS. Mr. Miller, a partner at the New York law firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges, LLP, was a trailblazer in elevating the field of bankruptcy law from a dusty corner of the legal world to its key place today in most major law firms. Mr. Miller, who created Weil’s bankruptcy practice, played a major role in almost all of the landmark Chapter 11 case—among them Lehman Brothers, General Motors, Worldcom and Enron—of recent years. He was also a valued contributor to Bankruptcy Beat, where his honest opinions and prodigious legal knowledge were equally admired. As a tribute to Mr. Miller, here is an excerpt from his last column for us, from December. The Examiners: Boost Bankruptcy Judges’ Powers If you could make one change to the bankruptcy code, what would it be?

Read More from: WSJ.com: Bankruptcy Beat

1 day 2 hours ago