Who Says Bankruptcy Judges Don’t Have Article III Independence?!

By: Donald L Swanson Actually, the U.S. Supreme Court does . . . but they’re wrong. Here’s why. Some History Back in early 1980s, when the Bankruptcy Code was but a few years old, the U.S. Supreme Court struggled with bankruptcy court jurisdiction. --Northern Pipeline That struggle resulted in the Supreme Court's 1982 Northern Pipeline v.... Continue Reading →

Business Owners Shifting Risks of Failure to Trade Creditors: Solutions are Needed

By Donald L. Swanson “Lending to the most highly indebted companies in the U.S. and Europe is surging.”— Wall Street Journal [Fn. 1] When a large business files for bankruptcy, there is one group that almost always suffers. It is a group with little-to-no power. It is the unsecured trade creditors. It is those that supply... Continue Reading →

Entrepreneurs in Bankruptcy Deserve Respectful Treatment, Not Punishment (In re Romero)

By: Donald L Swanson Many people live the American Dream. They’ve started a business and are succeeding. They’re what makes the U.S. economy work. But bad things can—and do—happen to them: things like product obsolescence, economic downturn, health problems, a costly mistake, bad luck. Such things can destroy their Dream and can destroy the entrepreneurs themselves.... Continue Reading →

Inequality at U.S. Supreme Court: Administrative Agencies v. Bankruptcy Courts (Lucia v. SEC)

By: Donald L. Swanson “Mom always liked you best.” --Smothers Brothers. I finished reading the U.S. Supreme Court’s Lucia v. SEC opinion (decided June 21, 2018). And I’m irritated: the entire situation is just-not-fair to bankruptcy courts and judges. --It’s obvious that the U.S. Supreme Court always liked judicial authority of administrative agencies, like the Securities... Continue Reading →

Fraudulent Transfers: U.S. Supreme Court Lets an Injustice Stand (Henry v. Weiss)

By: Donald L. Swanson The case is Henry & Buresh v. Weiss (Supreme Court Case No. 17-1210). The U.S. Supreme Court denied certiorari on May 29, 2018. This denial allows an injustice to stand, which is a travesty. I’ll try to explain. Facts Michael Bello was sole shareholder, director, and president of Walldesign, Inc. Over a... Continue Reading →

Crime & Punishment & Bankruptcy at U.S. Supreme Court (Lagos v. United States)

By: Donald L. Swanson It’s not every day that the U.S. Supreme Court makes a pronouncement on criminal law in the context of a bankruptcy case. But that’s what happened on Tuesday (May 29, 2018) in the Supreme Court’s Lagos v. United States opinion (Case No. 16-1519). Bankruptcy Facts On February 2, 2010, a trucking enterprise, USA... Continue Reading →

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Arbitration–Again! What’s the Effect on Bankruptcy? (Epic Systems v. Lewis)

By: Donald L. Swanson Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court made its latest pronouncement upholding arbitration: Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, U.S. Supreme Court Case No. 16-285 (issued May 21, 2018). The pronouncement follows a long line of precedents upholding and enforcing arbitration agreements, founded on the Federal Arbitration Act. This article explores the Epic Systems v. Lewis decision... Continue Reading →

Resolving One “Actual Fraud” Nondischargeability Problem But Creating Another: U.S. Supreme Court in Husky International v. Ritz

By Donald L. Swanson Have you ever solved one problem but created another in the process?  That's, of course, not very helpful. But that’s exactly what the U.S. Supreme Court did a couple years ago in Husky International Electronics, Inc. v. Ritz, 136 S.Ct. 1581 (2016).  And ramifications continue, to this day, in a three-way split... Continue Reading →

Sports Gambling and U.S. Constitution: The Ball is Back in Congress’s Court (Murphy v. NCAA)

By: Donald L. Swanson Football fan: “You just cost me $1,000.” Coach Tom Osborne: “I didn’t make the bet.” Steven M. Sipple, Lincoln Journal Star, May 15, 2018. Question: Can Congress command a state’s lawmakers to outlaw sports gambling? Answer: The U.S. Supreme Court says: "No," Congress has no such authority under the U.S. Constitution; but Congress... Continue Reading →

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