Course Information

Registration Information

Meeting Times

Day Time Location
MON, TUE, WED 10:30 - 11:37 am JON 5.206/207

Evaluation Method

Type Date Time Location
Final December 13, 2019 1:30 pm 2.138


This course is for students who want to practice bankruptcy - and for those who simply want a fun, challenging course that covers a key legal system underlying the U.S. and global economies. It covers Title 11 of the U.S. Code, the Bankruptcy Code. The course includes both consumer and business bankruptcy and a modest introduction to state law collection issues. Students learn the basic concepts of "straight" bankruptcy liquidation (Chapter 7), in which a trustee is appointed to sell the debtor's assets and pay the proceeds to the creditors. For consumers, that topic includes the fresh start--the discharge of all pre-existing debt--and the identification of exempt assets. Students also study the rehabilitation provisions, under which the debtor attempts to pay all or some part of the pre- bankruptcy debt: Chapter 13 payout plans for consumers and Chapter 11 reorganization proceedings for businesses. Principal attention is given to the substance of the bankruptcy laws, including the "avoiding powers" (for example, preferences and fraudulent conveyances), treatment of secured creditors (including the automatic stay against repossession or foreclosure), and priorities in asset distribution. More than half of the course is devoted to business reorganizations in Chapter 11, including the legal requirements for confirmation of a plan of reorganization and "cramdown" of recalcitrant creditors. Questions of jurisdiction and procedure are introduced, but are not the major focus of the course. The course attempts to give balanced attention to the practice realities of negotiation and leverage within a complex of doctrinal rules and to the social and economic consequences of the bankruptcy system in both its consumer and commercial manifestations. Grading will be primarily based on the exam but there is a class-participation component. Prerequisite: none.

Textbooks ( * denotes required )

The Law of Debtors and Creditors *
Elizabeth Warren, Jay Westbrook, Katherine Porter, John Pottow
Aspen / Wolters Kluwer , edition: 7th
ISBN: 9781454822387
2019 Bankruptcy and Article 9 Statutory Supplement *
Elizabeth Warren
Wolters Kluwer , edition: 2019


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