Bankruptcy Business Torts Civil Procedure

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Volunteer Directors and Officers Liable to Facility Creditors

The Third Circuit Court of Appeals recently upheld a trial court’s jury verdict finding the individual board members and officers of a non-profit healthcare facility personally liable to the facility’s creditors. The board...more

Directors of Nonprofit Held Financially Liable for Relying on Incompetent Officers and Lack of Oversight

In a striking decision earlier this year, the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a jury’s findings of liability for breach of fiduciary duties and ‘deepening insolvency,’ and the award of $2.25 million in compensatory...more

A novel question of duty – Philip Davison Sebry v Companies House and The Registrar of Companies

The Claimant, Philip Sebry, formerly Managing Director of Taylor & Sons Limited (‘Company’), brought a claim for damages for negligence and breach of statutory duty against Companies House and the Registrar of Companies...more

"Delaware Court of Chancery Decision Clarifies Fiduciary Issues in Insolvent Company Context"

The Court of Chancery of Delaware recently issued a noteworthy decision clarifying fiduciary duties and confirming business judgment rule protection for board-level business strategy decisions by directors of insolvent...more

The Seemingly Interminable Garlock Saga: Where Are We Now?

As reported in our February 2014 edition, the bankruptcy court estimating Garlock Sealing Technologies, LLC’s asbestos liability uncovered significant evidence “that the last 10 years of its participation in the tort system...more

HAMP and Section 75-1.1, Part 2

In yesterday’s post, we discussed when a lender’s failure to comply with guidelines under the federal Home Affordable Mortgage Program (HAMP) might violate N.C. Gen. Stat. § 75-1.1 as well. We analyzed a very recent federal...more

Bankruptcy Bleak House—The Limited Ability of Bankruptcy Courts to Enter Final Judgments

In Stern V. Marshall, ____ U.S ___, 131 S. Ct. 2594 (2011), the Supreme Court held that bankruptcy courts cannot issue final judgments on state law counterclaims even though they are “core proceeding”. Stern V. Marshall is...more

Limits of Expansive Protection of New York’s In Pari Delicto Defense

Whenever a company tumbles into bankruptcy following the discovery of its management’s financial misdeeds, firms that provided the company with accounting, legal, banking and financial advisory services should prepare to...more

Clawback Suit Targets International Investors

In 2008, a few months before the $65 billion Madoff Ponzi scheme fell apart, the $3.65 billion Petters Ponzi scheme made headlines. Tom Petters told investors that they were financing the purchase and sale of consumer...more

The U.S. Supreme Court Clarifies the Procedure for Unconstitutional “Core” Matters Under Stern v. Marshall in Executive Benefits...

In 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Stern v. Marshall, 131 S.Ct. 2594. In Stern, the Court was faced with the question of whether the Bankruptcy Court had statutory and Constitutional authority to decide a counterclaim...more

Ruling Explains and Extends Application of Good Faith Defense to Fraudulent Transfer Actions in SIPA Context

In an April 27, 2014 decision in the Madoff cases, Judge Jed S. Rakoff ruled that the standard of good faith should be considered differently in a Securities Investor Protection Act (SIPA) liquidation. To defeat a good faith...more

U.S. Supreme Court Clarifies Bankruptcy Court Jurisdiction but Leaves Some Questions Unanswered in Executive Benefits Insurance...

The Supreme Court issued its decision in the closely followed case of Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkison, Chapter 7 Trustee of Estate of Bellingham Insurance Agency, Inc., 573 U.S. ___ (2014) (Bellingham) this...more

Garlock Court Grants Access to Sealed Documents Demonstrating a Widespread Pattern of Manipulation of Exposure Evidence

Ford Motor Company recently obtained access to previously sealed testimony and exhibits that formed the basis for a bankruptcy court’s January 10, 2014 Order finding a widespread pattern of demonstrable misrepresentation by...more

Supreme Court Upholds Limited Bankruptcy Court Jurisdiction Over Defendants in Fraudulent Transfer Actions; Leaves an Open Door to...

On June 9, 2014, the Supreme Court issued a decision in Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkison, a case that tested the extent of the jurisdiction of bankruptcy court judges to decide fraudulent transfer and certain...more

Supreme Court Decides Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkison

In Executive Benefits Ins. Agency v. Arkison, No. 12-1200, the Supreme Court ruled that when Article III does not permit a bankruptcy court to enter final judgment on a core bankruptcy claim, the bankruptcy court may issue...more

Delaware Bankruptcy Court Denies Derivative Standing to Creditor Seeking Recharacterization

In that case, Walnut Creek Mining Company (“Walnut Creek”), the debtor Optim Energy’s largest unsecured creditor, sought standing to pursue recharacterization, equitable subordination, and fiduciary duty claims on behalf of...more

Bankruptcy Court Shields Equity Sponsors Serving as Secured Lenders from Individual Creditor Seeking to Litigate Subordination and...

In a recent case — In re Optim Energy, LLC — the Delaware Bankruptcy Court denied an individual creditor’s request to pursue the subordination or recharacterization of the claims of secured lenders who were also the debtors’...more

Connecticut District Court Affirms Ruling that Collateral Estoppel Effect of California Judgments for Fraud Established Them as...

Debts based on fraud are not dischargeable in bankruptcy, but to achieve that result the aggrieved creditor must ordinarily commence a non-dischargeability action and prove the fraud. However, when an action for fraud is...more

California Court: Commercial Crime Policy Rescinded Due To Insured’s Material Misrepresentation Concerning Handling of Funds

Kurtz v. Liberty Mutual Insurance Co., et al., Case No. 2:11-cv-7010 (C.D.Cal. April 14, 2014), was an insurance coverage dispute arising out of the downfall of Los Angeles businessman Ezri Namvar who has also been referred...more

Can a Receiver Be Liable for Acts or Omissions that Occurred in a Case After Discharge?

The court has approved my final account and report, discharged me as receiver and exonerated my bond in a difficult, litigious case I am glad to have over. An elder receiver I know told me I could still be liable for acts or...more

Court Rules Houston Astros Cannot Strike Out Fiduciary Duties in Bankruptcy

Introduction - One of the incentives that Delaware law offers founders of business entities is the ability to tinker with the fiduciary duties that the managers of the business owe. While the duties owed by corporate...more

First Circuit Finds that a Private Equity Fund Can Be Liable for the Pension Obligations of its Portfolio Company

In Sun Capital Partners III, L.P. et al. v. New England Teamsters & Trucking Industry Pension Fund, No. 12-2312, 2013 WL 3814985 (1st Cir. July 24, 2013), the First Circuit held that a private equity fund could be liable for...more

Fifth Circuit Applies Moench Presumption of Prudence at Motion to Dismiss Stage

The Fifth Circuit recently joined four other circuits (the Second, Third, Seventh and Eleventh Circuits) in holding that the presumption of prudence applicable in employer stock fund cases is appropriately applied at the...more

Securities Class Representative Cannot Object to Bankruptcy Release on Behalf of Class

The US District Court for the Southern District of New York affirmed an order rejecting an objection to the confirmation of a Chapter 11 Plan of Reorganization for Dynegy, Inc. and Dynegy Holdings, LLC (together, Dynegy) for...more

Ninth Circuit Rejects Class Action Settlement Providing Conditional Incentive Awards

Earlier this week, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed approval of a $45 million class action settlement that had been reached with three credit reporting agencies in Radcliffe v. Experian...more

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