Southwestern Law School Los Angeles, CA

News Release

Law Review Symposium Discusses Reshaping and Rebuilding the American Economy January 15, 2010
Law Review Symposium Discusses Reshaping and Rebuilding the American Economy

No longer viewed as a refuge of last resort, bankruptcy is now seen as a process that may be useful in resolving a number of problems that businesses and individuals encounter. Hence, attorneys, lenders, consumers, policy-makers, accountants, and others will benefit from a greater awareness and understanding of this far-reaching law. In view of the continuing extraordinary financial turmoil and record number of bankruptcy filings, Southwestern will host a symposium on Bankruptcy in the New Millennium to explore the important role that bankruptcy plays in reshaping the American economy.

Presented by the Southwestern Law Review on Friday, February 12, this one-day symposium brings together judges, practitioners and scholars at the forefront of bankruptcy law who will explore four areas of change and importance. They include:

  • International bankruptcies following Bankruptcy Code Chapter 15, which was intended to expedite administration of foreign-owned assets in the United States
  • Debtor-in-possession financing in "mega-cases," including concerns of bonded indebtedness, executive compensation, negotiations with secured creditors and creditors' committees, and congressional intervention in the reorganization process
  • Intellectual property issues in entertainment-industry bankruptcies and attendant constitutional questions
  • The U.S. Supreme Court's grant of certiorari in four cases that raise consumer bankruptcy issues - United States Aid Funds, Inc. v. Espinosa, United States v. Milavetz, Schwab v. Reilly, and Hamilton v. Lanning.

This symposium is particularly timely: The ten largest bankruptcies in history have been filed since 2001, and six of those ten - with assets totaling in excess of $1 trillion - have been filed in the last two years. Fueled by the recent financial crisis, immense increases in bankruptcy filings have renewed focus on bankruptcy in general and its role in society.

"This is the moment in history when bankruptcy is in everybody's minds," said Professor Judy Sloan, co-organizer of the symposium. "Both mega-companies and individuals have sought the protection of bankruptcy. Biblical in origin, it has once again become the unique legal tool to reshape our society."

Lisa Hill Fenning, Esq., a Partner at Arnold & Porter LLP, will present the keynote speech, "Flexibility Versus Predictability: The Bankruptcy Policy Wars Continue." Esteemed judges from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Central District of California, who are slated to speak include: Hon. Theodor C. Albert, Hon. Samuel L. Bufford, Hon. Ernest M. Robles and Hon. Barry Russell. Prominent attorneys and academics serving as panelists include: Peter Anderson, United States Trustee, Central District of California, Region 16; Lorin Brennan, Esq., Legal Consultant, Independent Film & Television Alliance; Todd Frealy, Esq., Partner, Levene, Neale, Bender Rankin & Brill LLP; Scott Gautier, Esq., Partner, Peitzman, Weg & Kempinsky LLP; Professor Natalie Martin, University of New Mexico School of Law; Josefina Fernandez McEvoy, Esq., Partner, Fox Rothschild; David L. Neale, Esq., Managing Partner, Levene, Neale, Bender Rankin & Brill LLP; Jonathan Rosenthal '80, Esq., Partner, Saybrook Capital; Professor Judy Sloan, Southwestern Law School; and Richard L. Wynne, Esq., Partner, Jones Day. Southwestern faculty serving as moderators include: Professors Michael Epstein, Christopher Cameron and Michael Scott, and Adjunct Professor Edward Wolkowitz, Partner with Levene, Neale, Bender Rankin & Brill LLP.

Articles written in coordination with the Bankruptcy in the New Millennium symposium will be published in the Southwestern Law Review. Copies of the issues will be sent to participants and will also be available for purchase from the Law Review Office. For further information, contact Southwestern's Student Affairs Office.

The symposium, offering 7.5 hours CLE credit, will take place from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Southwestern's campus. The cost, including lunch, is $75 for non-Southwestern alumni seeking CLE credit; $50 for Southwestern alumni seeking CLE credit; and $40 for those not seeking CLE credit (lunch included). The symposium is co-sponsored by Epiq Systems, Inc. Campus parking is available for $6. Additional information and event registration can be found online. Click here for a map and directions.