New Commission to Explore Overhauling Chapter 11 Detailed in ABI Journal Article

New Commission to Explore Overhauling Chapter 11 Detailed in ABI Journal Article

Contact: John Hartgen
             [email protected]


May 31, 2011, Alexandria, Va. —A new American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI) commission will explore overhauling chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code, according to a column featured in the June edition of the ABI Journal. In “Commission to Explore Overhauling Chapter 11,” authors ABI Chairman Robert J. Keach of Bernstein Shur (Portland, Maine) and Albert Togut of Togut, Segal & Segal LLP (New York) provide an overview of ABI President Geoff Berman’s initiative to study and recommend changes to chapter 11.
“It has been more than 30 years since the enactment of the Bankruptcy Code, and there is a growing view that the current law needs an overhaul,” the authors wrote. Keach and Togut pointed to feedback stemming from ABI’s “Chapter 11 at the Crossroads: Does Reorganization need Reform?” that took place in 2009.  “While the Bankruptcy Code was developed in an era when the biggest employers were manufacturers, the biggest employers today are service companies such as retailers and technology-driven enterprises,” according to the authors. “Since the Code’s enactment, there has been an explosion in the use of secured credit, placing secured debt at all levels of the capital structure and trumping any long-term reorganization for the benefit of existing shareholders.”
Berman has tasked Keach and Togut to help assemble a roster of chapter 11 practitioners, academics and bankers to study possible business bankruptcy law reforms. The commission will hold hearings nationwide to hear and collect data and opinions on various issues related to chapter 11. “The final result will be a comprehensive report,” Keach and Togut wrote, “part blueprint for reform and part catalog of open issues and current options, to be considered in updating the bankruptcy laws.” While the work of the commission will likely be a multi-year effort, the authors said that the commission’s aim is to “do the work that Congress will require to change the law.”
To obtain a copy of “Commission to Explore Overhauling Chapter 11,” published in the June edition of the ABI Journal, please contact John Hartgen at 703-894-5935 or via email at [email protected]


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 nearly 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