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Client Matters Left Unfinished at a Firm When It Files for Bankruptcy Are the Property of the Defunct Firm According to Latest ABI Poll

Alexandria, Va.— A narrow majority of respondents (52 percent) in a recent ABI Quick Poll “agreed strongly” or “agreed somewhat” that client matters left unfinished at a firm when it files for bankruptcy are the property of the defunct firm. The question is based on the chapter 11 proceeding of law firm Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP, as ongoing client matters are one of the firm’s primary assets for producing revenue during its bankruptcy case. Dewey listed accounts receivable of about $255 million for its operations at the time of its filing on May 28. Dewey’s bankruptcy advisers have said they plan to pursue nearly $60 million in “unfinished business” claims. The court last month also approved a $70 million “clawback” settlement from ex-partners, but claims on profits from unfinished legal work that former partners took to their new firms remain a point of contention in the case. Conversely, 48 percent of respondents (37 percent “strongly” and 11 percent “somewhat”) believe that client matters left unfinished at a firm when it files for bankruptcy are not the property of the defunct firm. ABI’s Quick Poll is posted on ABI’s home page, ABI members and the public are invited to respond to a question on a timely bankruptcy or insolvency issue. Visit to access the results of previous ABI Quick Polls. ### ABI is the largest multi-disciplinary, nonpartisan organization dedicated to research and education on matters related to insolvency. ABI was founded in 1982 to provide Congress and the public with unbiased analysis of bankruptcy issues. The ABI membership includes over 13,000 attorneys, accountants, bankers, judges, professors, lenders, turnaround specialists and other bankruptcy professionals, providing a forum for the exchange of ideas and information. For additional information on ABI, visit For additional conference information, visit