Although 2016 has lacked the massive, transnational bankruptcies that the Great Recession gave us, it has provided its own poignant reminders of how interconnected countries and economies can be. The outcome of the Brexit vote caused waves as companies tried to figure out how, or if, they could invest in the EU and the U.K. in the future. The outcome of the U.S. presidential election similarly shook companies as they tried to figure out what would become of existing and pending trade deals, and whether walls are going up (literally or metaphorically). Finally, the carnage in the U.S. energy market continued as global supply and demand collided with local resources and production.
For companies that do business across national borders, the shifts — whether actual or potential — in economic and political connections present challenges. The International Committee brings a cross-border perspective to bankruptcy and restructuring issues. Its panels and articles approach the issues from a variety of perspectives, including comparative law discussions and practical “how to” presentations.
At the Annual Spring Meeting, we partnered with the Commercial Fraud Committee and presented a discussion entitled “People and Assets on the Move Overseas: What You Need to Know to Hold Everything Still and Seize the Assets,” featuring Michael S. Kim (Kobre & Kim LLP; New York); Kathy Bazoian Phelps (Diamond McCarthy LLP; Los Angeles); Eric S. Rein (Horwood Marcus & Berk Chtd.; Chicago); and Gonzalo S. Zeballos (BakerHostetler; New York).
On November 14, we hosted the 2016 Cross-Border Insolvency Program at the Davis Polk conference center in New York City. This program was a great success, with 85 attendees from eight countries for a day-long program featuring the following panels:
- Canada/U.S.: Montréal, Maine & Atlantic Railway. Moderated by Aubrey E. Kauffman (Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP; Toronto) with panelists Andrew H. Adessky (Richter; Montréal), Debra A. Dandeneau (Baker & McKenzie LLP; New York) and Robert J. Keach (Bernstein Shur; Portland, Maine).
- Caribbean: Resort Insolvencies. Moderated by Rafael X. Zahralddin-Aravena (Elliott Greenleaf; Wilmington, Del.) with panelists Sam Billard (Aird & Berlis LLP; Toronto), Hon. Robert D. Drain (U.S. Bankruptcy Court (S.D.N.Y.); White Plains), Michael Schulz (KRyS Global; Hamilton, Bermuda) and Sophia Rolle-Kapousouzoglou (LennoxPaton; Nassau, Bahamas).
- Latin and South America: Energy and Resources. Moderated by Christopher P. Greco (Kirkland & Ellis LLP; New York) with panelists Samuel Aguirre (FTI Consulting, Inc.; Toronto), Gilberto Deon Correa Jr. (Souto, Correa, Cesa, Lummertz & Amaral Advogados; Porto Alegre, Brazil), Floris B. Iking (Alvarez & Marsal Mexico; Mexico City) and Chérie Schaible (Ankura Consulting Group; New York).
- Jurisdictional Issues in Cross-Border Fraud. Moderated by Ronald J. Silverman (Hogan Lovells US LLP; New York) with panelists Gerry Apostolatos (Langlois Lawyers, LLP; Montréal), Rebecca Hume (Kobre & Kim LLP; Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands) and Laura Davis Jones (Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP; Wilmington, Del.).
- Jamaica: Restructuring a Nation. A discussion with Former Senator and Minister of Justice Hon. Mark Golding (Ministry of Justice; Kingston, Jamaica), moderated by William A. Brandt, Jr. (Development Specialists, Inc.; New York).
At the Winter Leadership Conference, we partnered with the Technology & Intellectual Property Committee to present a “Cross-Border Tech Talk” session focusing on how technology has been used in various cross-border insolvency cases (such as, for example, coordinating simultaneous hearings in different countries). The panel for this discussion was Hon. Robert D. Drain (U.S. Bankruptcy Court (S.D.N.Y.); White Plains), Kenneth Kraft (Dentons Canada LLP; Toronto) and Justice Frank J.C. Newbould (Ontario Superior Court of Justice; Toronto).
Our committee newsletter featured articles on a variety of cross-border topics, including:
- “Abengoa Sets the Stage for Future Disputes Concerning Recognition of Pre-Insolvency Proceedings Under Chapter 15” by Robert Miller (Manier & Herod, P.C.; Nashville, Tenn.)
- “Recognition Denied: COMI Manipulation in Chapter 15” by Charlie Liu (U.S. Bankruptcy Court (E.D.N.Y.); Central Islip)
- “Liquidation Proceedings in Canada” by Michael J. Hanlon (McMillan LLP; Montreal)
- “Foreign Claimants? No Problem. All You Need Is a Postage Stamp to Satisfy Claims-Objection Service and Declarations from the Debtor to Assert § 502(d) Disallowance” by Salene Mazur Kraemer, MBA, CTA (MazurKraemer Business Law Group; Pittsburgh)
Have an interest in speaking about international issues? Got a brief that really nailed an issue and you want to share your writing? Need fame and fortune on the big stage? Well, we can’t promise to help with the last one, but on the first two points we can deliver. Contact any of the committee’s leadership and get involved!