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We have previously discussed default-rate interest and late fees in connection with a secured creditor’s claim.  Can a secured creditor choose to waive one in favor of the other if both are not available?  And when is a secured creditor entitled to default-rate interest in the first place? Recently, in In re Sagamore Partners, the Eleventh Circuit weighed in on these issues.  Background
8 hours 45 min ago
Sandy Chaikin is Co-Founder of Chaikin Analytics, a ground-breaking desktop and mobile stock research and analysis platform. With no prior experience, Sandy started investing in 2012 with Chaikin Analytics and built a portfolio that has consistently outperformed the S&P 500 and most money managers. Read more here.
9 hours 15 min ago
Companies loaded down with cheap debt could be in for a tough time refinancing it in coming years, according to a new report by Moody’s Investors Service.

Read More from: Bankruptcy Beat

11 hours 12 min ago
Changes to charters and bylaws by boards, director and executive compensation, proxy access, director independence and overboarding are the key topics of focus in the ISS survey for the 2016 proxy season. The survey responses from investors, issuers and others help inform ISS policy formulation for the 2016 season, and will have an impact on how the proxy advisory firm makes recommendations, especially on director elections. The survey closes on September 4th at 5:00pm
11 hours 51 min ago
Most Official Bankruptcy Forms are scheduled to be replaced with substantially revised, reformatted and renumbered versions effective December 1, 2015, if approved by the Judicial Conference at its September 2015 meeting.  Some of the modernized forms are already in effect and will simply be renumbered on December 1, 2015. Other forms were published for public comment in August 2013 or 2014 and have been approved by the Advisory Committee on Bankruptcy Rules and the Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure (the Standing Committee). All but six existing official forms are on track to be replaced by modernized versions.  The form number conversion chart issued on July 30, 2015 may be found here. form_number_conversion_chart_2015.
11 hours 59 min ago
As a Walworth County bankruptcy attorney who represents creditors, you can only imagine how many questions I get asked during initial consultations. I am more than happy to answer all of your questions. Creditors in bankruptcy have every right to be concerned about their owed debt. Depending on the type of bankruptcy the debtor has filed, and a few other details, your options as a creditor can vary. Below you will find answers to some of the most commonly asked questions by creditors in a Walworth County bankruptcy. Question 1. I have a judgment against the debtor. The debtor has now filed bankruptcy. Can I still collect on the judgment? Answer: The answer is no. You cannot collect on your judgment any longer now that the debtor has filed bankruptcy. You may have other options to pursue depending on the type of bankruptcy filed by the debtor. Consult your Walworth County creditor bankruptcy attorney for your options and advice. Question 2. I have a lien against the debtor’s property. Will my lien be removed when the debtor files bankruptcy?

Read More from: Wynn at Law, LLC

12 hours 3 min ago
Last week I introduced to Credit Slips readers my draft article on federal court oversight of Detroit's bankruptcy. An easily overlooked element of what I called The Detroit Blueprint is non-random judge selection, required by Congress for municipal bankruptcy cases. Departing from the random assignment norm in the federal judiciary, section 921(b) of the Bankruptcy Code requires the chief judge of the applicable circuit court of appeals to select the judge who will preside over a municipal bankruptcy. In 1997, the National Bankruptcy Review Commission unanimously recommended eliminating section 921(b).  That Commission's Final Report observed that the fear prompting the provision - random draw of a judge unable to handle the case - was no longer salient. Congress did not take up this recommendation. What difference did section 921(b) make in Detroit?

Read More from: Credit Slips

12 hours 14 min ago
This excerpt from the Legal Action television show highlights the fact that there are pre-filing requirements that must be satisfied prior to filing for bankruptcy.   Long gone are the days where a person could simply fill out some papers from an office supply store, head down to the Clerk of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court and+ Read More The post Completing All Of The Pre-Filing Bankruptcy Requirements appeared first on David M. Siegel.
13 hours 20 sec ago
In a case of first impression at the Circuit Level, the Ninth Circuit has held that an insider who waives his right to indemnification from a debtor is not a “creditor” for purposes of preferential transfers under § 547(b)(4). The facts before the court in Alberta Stahl, Chapter 7 Trustee v. Simon (In re Adamson Apparel), 2015 WL 2081575 (9th Cir.

Read More from: Creditors' Rights

15 hours 25 min ago
Weren’t we all taught as kids to clean up after ourselves? It’s as true and useful in our financial and personal lives as in the playroom.  Especially in divorce. Left-over debts are nothing but trouble. Yet, divorcing couples don’t always mop up the joint debts they held during the marriage, and chaos ensues years later when one ex-spouse hits financial trouble. Joint account remained open after divorce It’s playing out in a bankruptcy case I have now:
  • divorce final for decades.
  • no balance on joint line of credit when the spouses divorced.
  • no one closed the account
When one spouse hit a rough patch, she accessed the left-over line of credit, big time.  But it wasn’t enough to avoid the need for bankruptcy. My client’s financial mess threatens to slop over to the former spouse who remained listed on a dormant line of credit.  Even though the current debt is long after the divorce, the ex spouse remains liable to the lender because his name is on the account. During the marriage, the community would have gotten the benefit of the community property discharge.  Not so after divorce, when there is no community. What is discharged on joint debt
15 hours 39 min ago
Puerto Rico missed most of a $58 million bond payment Monday, marking the first default by the U.S. commonwealth and escalating its attempt to restructure about $72 billion in debt, The Wall Street Journal reported. The payment to bondholders is the first skipped since Gov. Alejandro García Padilla in June said the island’s debts were unsustainable and urged negotiations with creditors, which range from individuals to hedge funds.  (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 our homepage, scroll to the bottom and click “try for free.”) Investors who bet with hope on an oil-and-gas business rebound probably aren’t happy that oil prices have turned downward again, dropping below $46 a barrel in New York to a four-month low. Funds managed by Franklin Resources Inc., Blackstone Group LP and Oaktree Capital Group LLC, among others, are facing paper losses on substantial investments this year in exploration-and-production companies, WSJ reports.

Read More from: Bankruptcy Beat

16 hours 39 min ago
Dan Brenner for The Wall Street Journal
Miners’ debt hole is deepening. Coal producer Alpha Natural Resources Inc.’s chapter 11 bankruptcy filing Monday helped push a measure of financial woe among U.S. miners to its highest level in more than five years. The trailing-year default rate for U.S. metals and mining companies tracked by Fitch Ratings surged to 10% from July’s 7%, for the highest reading since at least the start of 2010, according to the firm. This year had already seen fellow coal companies Walter Energy Inc. and Patriot Coal Corp. file for chapter 11, as well as others like gold mining group Allied Nevada Gold Corp. and iron ore recovery company Magnetation LLC. Much of the pain revolves around slowing economic growth in China and elsewhere around the globe. For years, China’s urbanization had driven a boom in materials used to produce steel, among other commodities. Amid the euphoria, Alpha, Walter and other coal companies loaded themselves with debt to pursue multi-billion-dollar acquisitions.

Read More from: Bankruptcy Beat

16 hours 56 min ago
Authored by Adam B. Brandon of Rogers TowersOn July 24, 2015, a federal court cleared the way for a small Texas bank to challenge the constitutionally of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”).  In State National Bank of Big Spring, et al. v. Lew, et al., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia held that the bank falls under the regulatory authority of the CFPB and may contest regulations issued by the CFPB. Previously, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia had found that the bank lacked standing and dismissed the suit. By reversing this decision, the appellate court ensures that the case will move forward. The bank alleges that the CFPB is an independent agency which must be headed by several members, not an individual director. The bank also suggests that the President’s recess appointment of Richard Cordray, the CFPB’s Director, was illegal and that actions taken by Mr. Cordray before Senate confirmation were unlawful. Congress created the CFPB in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 (“Dodd-Frank Act”) in the wake of the financial crisis. The CFPB’s stated mission is to protect consumers by regulating consumer finance markets.

Read More from: Florida Banking Law Blog

17 hours 19 min ago
A recent survey by the Brunswick Group counters beliefs that retail investors are always “pro-management” in any voting contest.  The survey examined the views of 801 US-based individuals who play an active role in their personal investment decisions.
17 hours 25 min ago
Rapper 50 Cent (R), whose real name is Curtis James Jackson III, exited a New York couurthouse last month after testifying in a sex tape lawsuit. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
Brendan McDermid/Reuters
Fresh court documents just put a spotlight on bankrupt rapper 50 Cent’s personal finances, including details about his income, his business investments and his spending habits. On Monday, his lawyers filed 56 pages of financial information that’s required as part of the process to getting a fresh start through bankruptcy. Find out whether the 40-year-old entertainer, whose real name is Curtis James Jackson III, is really as rich as he claims to be. HIS ASSETS $24,823,899.18

Read More from: Bankruptcy Beat

17 hours 34 min ago
In 2010, the United States Supreme Court expanded the concept of “corporate personhood” when it held in Citizens United v. FEC, 558 U.S. 310, 130 S. Ct. 876, 175 L. Ed. 2d 753 (2010), that corporations can engage in political speech protected by the First Amendment. The same rationale carried over to the religious context in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., 134 S. Ct. 2751, 189 L. Ed. 2d 675 (2014), when the Court decided closely-held corporations have religious liberties under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. Now it appears legal entities might be entitled to protection under a federal consumer protection statute too, at least in the Sixth Circuit.

Read More from: Creditors' Sidebar

1 day 8 hours ago
Just weeks after Discover was ordered by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to pay $18.5 million for illegal student loan servicing practices, Citibank is facing a probe into its own practices. In a filing dated August 3, 2015 with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the banking giant indicated that federal regulators have opened a probe into its student loan servicing practices. Though Citi didn’t indicate which federal agency is conducting the investigation or which student loan practices are the subject of concern, a source tells Bloomberg that that it is part of a crackdown by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The investigation comes nearly five years after the company sold nearly $28 billion in securitized federal loans to Sallie Mae, and nearly $4.2 billion of private loans and $3.4 billion of securitized loans to Discover Bank. Since that time, Citi has largely remained out of the student loan business. The Citi student loans, by the way, were the same ones that landed Discover in hot water with the CFPB in July 2015.
1 day 8 hours ago
If you’re still beating yourself up over your financial woes and thinking that bankruptcy is only reserved for the poor and financially irresponsible, consider the fact that a top executive in state government who was charged with managing the state’s finances is now, himself, filing for personal bankruptcy. Former Arkansas Lieutenant Governor Mark Darr, along with his wife Kimberly, recently filed for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy protection, according to court documents. Though Darr resigned from office amid rampant financial scandal, including allegations of misappropriation of state funds, his situation proves that no matter how “successful” you seem to be, you’re still vulnerable to financial hardship and subsequent bankruptcy. You’re Not Alone: New Jersey Bankruptcy by the Numbers According to the New Jersey Bankruptcy Court, 26,956 Garden State residents have already filed for some form of bankruptcy protection so far this year. This is actually a slight uptick from the 29,286 residents who had filed at the same point last year, proving that financial struggle is a pervasive issue for both businesses and residents alike in New Jersey. Additionally, consumer bankruptcy filings continue to vastly outnumber those of businesses, many of which close down before ever getting to the point of filing for bankruptcy. Chapter 7 continues to be the most common form of bankruptcy, accounting for 19,028 cases this year.
1 day 12 hours ago
 “It’s not that I’m afraid to die, I just don’t want to be there when it happens.”  — Woody Allen It has not been a good run for proponents of equitable mootness in the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.  The doctrine, designed to prevent a court “from unscrambling complex bankruptcy reorganizations when the appealing party should have acted before the plan became extremely difficult to retract,” has been under significant fire from a growing number of the sitting Third Circuit panels in recent years who have posited it has been applied too offensively for too long.  The Third Circuit’s latest decision on the subject, In re One2One Communications, may well represent the death knell for the doctrine in the Circuit. 
1 day 13 hours ago
If you’re in debt up to your eyeballs, you look to the bankruptcy laws to help you dig out of the hole and start over. That, after all, is what the law’s designed to do – give you another opportunity to put yourself in a better financial position. But if your debts include student loans, you quickly find out that the bankruptcy laws won’t help unless you jump through another set of hoops and prove that your existing financial situation is not only bad, but also long lasting. That’s why so many people with student loan problems don’t consider bankruptcy as a tool to help them get ahead. As an article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette shows, bankruptcy is proving to be an option for some people who are struggling with their private student loan debts. The article centers around David King and Julie West, two Pittsburgh area people with private student loans and using bankruptcy as a way to keep them under control.
1 day 13 hours ago