An Overview of the ABA Business Bankruptcy Committee

A highly respected New York bankruptcy attorney with more than three decades of experience, Norman Kinel serves as a partner at Squire Patton Boggs LLP. In his current duties, he deals extensively with restructuring and insolvency. He also has vast experience in bankruptcy asset sales, cross-border insolvency proceedings, and mergers and acquisitions. Norman Kinel serves on the American Bar Association Business Bankruptcy Committee.

The American Bar Association (ABA) acts as the national representative of the legal profession, promotes the best quality legal education, and enhances professionalism and ethics. The mission of the ABA Business Bankruptcy Committee is to act as the main resource for legal professionals who handle bankruptcy issues. The committee provides quality educational content in multiple formats and is involved in the formulation and review of proposed bankruptcy legislation.

Through the committee, young attorneys get a chance to work with experienced experts in order to build their legal credentials and reputation. The Business Bankruptcy Committee facilitates global connection of over 1,500 legal experts through meetings, discussion groups, and webinars about bankruptcy and insolvency. In addition, legal colleagues can collectively brainstorm to come up with ideas, solve challenges, and seek solutions on various issues affecting bankruptcy law.

What is a Fraudulent Conveyance?

For more than three decades, Norman Kinel has gained valuable skills in the field of bankruptcy, litigating numerous cases on behalf of his clients. In his current duties, he serves as a partner in the New York office of Squire Patton Boggs LLP and also serves as the National Chair of Creditors’ Committee Practice Group. During the course of his career, Norman Kinel has gained extensive experience in various legal areas, including fraudulent conveyances.

A fraudulent conveyance refers to the transfer of property to another individual in order to avoid payment of a debt or potential debt, to ensure the property is out of creditors’ reach, especially during bankruptcy proceedings or when they are just about to begin. Fraudulent conveyance can involve a company or an individual, whereby property is transferred to family, friends, or other third parties.

Under the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act (UFTA), there are various factors that determine if a fraudulent conveyance occurred. This includes whether the transfer was made to an insider such as a family member and whether the debtor retained possession or control of the property after the transfer. Other considerations include if a debtor had been threatened with legal action before the property transfer was made, if the debtor received payment for the transfer of assets, and whether they transferred a substantial portion or all of their assets.

Bankruptcies Set to Increase as Debt Maturities Loom

Serving as a partner at Squire Patton Boggs (US) LLP, Norman Kinel is a New York based partner and member of the firm’s Restructuring & Insolvency Practice Group and heads the Firm’s Creditors’ Committee Practice as national chair. In late 2019, Norman Kinel was a participant in Corporate LiveWire’s Bankruptcy and Restructuring Virtual Roundtable.

The first topic discussed was the bankruptcy and restructuring landscapes presently existing in each panelist’s jurisdiction. As Mr. Kinel described it, there has been a slight increase in business bankruptcy filings, which he felt may presage a wave of filings in sectors that are particularly vulnerable.

In addition, with debt maturities approaching for a diversity of over-leveraged companies, lenders are less likely to extend deadlines when reaching their natural limits. At the same time, political uncertainties abound domestically and worldwide, and a recession is “long overdue” when going by historical standards.

A fellow panelist noted that, with bankruptcy filings having last reached a peak in September of 2010, followed by years of decline, non-business bankruptcies continued to decline, but only marginally. At the same time, the first half of 2019 witnessed a significant increase in business bankruptcies, led by major national retailers.

LBI Media, Inc., Chapter 11 Disclosure Statement Approved

Norman Kinel

Norman Kinel

Norman Kinel is a New York-based attorney at Squire Patton Boggs, LLP, who serves as head of its Creditors’ Committee practice and as partner in the Restructuring & Insolvency Practice Group. As reported by Law360 in January, 2019, Norman Kinel represented the official committee of unsecured creditors in a case in which a Delaware U.S. bankruptcy judge approved a disclosure statement in connection with a proposed plan proposed by Debtor LBI Media, Inc.

The disclosure statement was approved after objections by junior noteholders, who requested that more details be provided before its approval. Their specific concerns centered on undisclosed details regarding LBI’s plans to sell the company, top officer compensation provisions, and inadequate review time. The noteholders alleged that with the additional information it sought the chances of having a “contested hearing on the disclosure statement itself” would be minimized.

Mr. Kinel noted that this did not affect the committee’s ongoing investigation of whether any valid claims against California-based LBI or others existed. The committee he represented had yet to decide on whether it would support the Chapter 11 plan presented by LBI.