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ABI NYC Bankruptcy Conference Ethics Panel

Level: Advanced
Runtime: 67 minutes
Recorded Date: May 22, 2019
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  • Introduction - General Applicability
  • Ethical Obligation - Retention of Counsel
  • Conflicts
  • Bankruptcy Code Requirements - 
  • Disinterestedness
  • The Jay Alix Protocol
  • Disclosure of Connections
  • Committee Counsel Issues
  • Committee Counsel Retention Issues
  • Compensation Matters
Runtime: 1 hour and 10 minutes
Recorded: May 22, 2019


Join in this discussion on a plethora of current ethical issues, including when it is necessary to obtain a conflict waiver (current vs. recent vs. former clients); directly adverse vs. positionally adverse; relatedness to a prior matter; use of confidential information; review of disinterestedness standards under BC ? 101(14) and related disclosure requirements; the ABI Report on Standards of Professional Courtesy and Conduct; Caesars litigation over disinterestedness of debtor’s counsel; professionals retentions and disclosure requirements (disclosing conflicts and the Jay Alix/McKinsey litigation); and litigation financing in the liquidating trust context.

This program was recorded as ABI's 2019 New York City Bankruptcy Conference on May 22nd, 2019.

Provided By

American Bankruptcy Institute
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Brian Trust

Mayer Brown LLP

Brian Trust leads Mayer Brown's Global Restructuring, Bankruptcy & Insolvency practice. He focuses on representing large institutional creditors, including agent banks, lending syndicates, insurance companies and other investors.

Brian has extensive experience in complex Chapter 11 reorganizations, out-of-court restructurings and recapitalization, mergers and acquisitions of financially distressed companies, acquisition and divestiture of claims against and equity interests in distressed companies, debtor-in-possession and exit financing, and cross-border insolvencies.

Ranked year after year by Chambers USA and Chambers Global, clients praise Brian for his "wealth of restructuring experience" and "superior ability to thoroughly analyze complex issues from both the legal and the business sides," and applaud him for doing a "fantastic job on complex work." Brian is lauded for his "great reputation in the bankruptcy and restructuring community," described as "very bright, client-oriented, attentive and very practical," and viewed as “very strategic, a great communicator, and talented on a myriad of levels.” The Legal 500 USA highlights Brian for his corporate restructuring work, commending Brian for being "extremely responsive" and "technically very strong," and noting that he "knows the issues important to banks" and has "excellent judgment. "Additionally, Brian is listed in the Best Lawyers in America in Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law, identified as a Notable Practitioner in IFLR1000 and, for over ten years, New York Super Lawyers has recognized Brian as a top lawyer in the area of "Creditor Debtors Rights: Business." Recognized as a thought leader, Brian is a frequent lecturer and author on novel and complex bankruptcy and reorganization issues. The media often interviews Brian for his views on innovative and timely reorganization topics.

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Johnathan L. Flaxer

Golenbock Eiseman Assor Bell & Peskoe LLP

Mr. Flaxer has devoted his career to business bankruptcy practice, successfully representing bondholders, chapter 11 debtors and trustees, creditors’ committees, distressed debt investors, distressed asset acquirers, indenture trustees, and landlords. Mr. Flaxer has also led numerous successful out-of-court workouts. He is active in several professional organizations and writes and lectures on bankruptcy-related topics. He has recently been appointed to serve as chapter 11 trustee in cases involving a residential building and a large construction company. Mr. Flaxer is AV-rated by Martindale-Hubble.

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Mark E. Hirschfield

Royer Cooper Cohen Braunfeld LLC

Marc E. Hirschfield is a partner with Royer Cooper Cohen Braunfeld LLC in New York, where he leads its Business Restructuring & Bankruptcy practice and is a member of the firm’s corporate and litigation departments. He regularly represents debtors, committees, DIP lenders, secured and unsecured creditors and acquirers of assets in both out-of-court workouts and bankruptcy cases.

Mr. Hirschfield has served as an expert witness on bankruptcy matters. He also is an experienced mediator and is on the mediation panels for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York and the District of Delaware. Having served as one of the lead counsel to the trustee in the Madoff liquidation and in other Ponzi scheme cases, he has specialized expertise in financial fraud matters.

Mr. Hirschfield has been included Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business and is a New York Super Lawyer. He received his B.A. with honors and Phi Beta Kappa in 1989 from the State University of New York at Binghamton, and his J.D. magna cum laude in 1992 from the State University of New York at Buffalo School of Law, where he was editor of the Buffalo Law Review and a member of the Moot Court Board.

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Oscar N. Pinkas


Oscar is a Global Leader in Dentons’ Restructuring, Insolvency & Bankruptcy practice. He represents clients in and out of court in underperforming, distressed, workout, receivership, insolvency and bankruptcy situations involving strategic, operational, or financial issues, with an emphasis on M&A, equity or debt financing transactions.

Clients include investors, purchasers, lenders/agents, indenture trustees, estate fiduciaries, committees and debtors. As a result of his multi-faceted practice, Oscar is able to anticipate and navigate the interests of competing constituencies for the benefit of clients. Known for his creativity, ability to execute and practicality, Oscar is frequently called upon by clients in situations that are unique, sensitive or complex. Clients describe him as an “out of the box thinker” and a “pleasure to work with,” guarding their interests at every turn.

Oscar has received several accolades, including being named a 40 Under 40 Leader in Insolvency by the American Bankruptcy Institute, an Emerging Leader in M&A, Financing and Turnaround by The M&A Advisor, a Top 50 Rising Star Dealmaker in the Americas by Global M&A Network, a Top Rated Bankruptcy Attorney by Super Lawyers, and a Top Attorney Under 40 by Bankruptcy Law360. Restructurings or transactions he has been at the center of have received equal praise as Out of Court Restructuring of the Year or Cross-Border Turnaround of the Year by Global M&A Network’s Turnaround Atlas Award, and M&A Deal of the Year, Restructuring Deal of the Year or Industry Deal of the Year by The M&A Advisor.

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Hon. Elizabeth S. Stong

U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Eastern District of New York

Judge Elizabeth S. Stong has served as U.S. Bankruptcy Judge for the Eastern District of New York since 2003. Before entering on duty, she was a litigation partner and associate at Willkie Farr & Gallagher in New York, an associate at Cravath, Swaine & Moore, and law clerk to Hon. A. David Mazzone, U.S. District Judge in the District of Massachusetts.

Judge Stong is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Council and Membership Committee of the American Law Institute. She is also a Trustee and member of the Executive Committee of the Practising Law Institute, a member of the board of P.R.I.M.E. Finance, an international dispute resolution organization that promotes judicial education in complex financial disputes, and a member of the Board of Directors of the Harvard Law School Association of New York City. She is co-chair of the New York Fellows of the American Bar Foundation, serves on the ABA Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service, represents the ABA’s National Conference of Federal Trial Judges in the ABA House of Delegates, and is a member of the Council of the ABA Business Law Section. She serves as co-chair of the New York City Bar Council on the Profession, a member of the New York County Lawyers Association Justice Center Advisory Board, and a board member of the New York Law Institute. She is an adjunct professor at Brooklyn Law School and St. John’s University School of Law.

Judge Stong is active in international judicial capacity building and has trained judges on five continents, including in Central Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, and the Arabian Peninsula, as an expert with the World Bank, the International Finance Corporation, and U.S. Department of Commerce Commercial Law Development Program. She has also consulted with the Supreme Court of China and People’s High Courts in Beijing and Guangzhou, and has participated in judicial workshops in Cambodia, Brazil, Argentina and Chile. She is an elected member of the European Law Institute and an Adviser to the ELI-UNIDROIT Principles of Transnational Civil Procedure project.

Judge Stong previously served as President of the Harvard Law School Association, chair of the International Judicial Relations Committee of the National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges, Vice President of the Federal Bar Council, Vice President of the Board of Directors of New York City Bar Fund Inc. and the City Bar Justice Center, Chair of the New York City Bar’s Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee and Vice Chair of its Judiciary Committee, the Board of Directors of the International Insolvency Institute, and an officer of the ABA Business Law Section. She was also a member of the board of MFY Legal Services, Inc., one of the largest providers of free civil legal services to low-income residents of New York City, and served on the ABA’s Standing Committee on the American Judicial System, Standing Committee on Continuing Legal Education, Commission on Women in the Profession, and Commission on Homelessness and Poverty.

Judge Stong received the Brooklyn Bar Association’s Freda Nisnewitz Award for Pro Bono Service, the New York Institute of Credit’s Hon. Cecelia H. Goetz Award, the ABA Business Law Section’s Glass Cutter Award, and the MFY Legal Services Scales of Justice Award, among other recognitions.

Judge Stong received her A.B. magna cum laude and her J.D. from Harvard University.

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