On November 10, 2020, Temple Law Professor and 10-Q Faculty Editor Jonathan Lipson delivered the 2020 Friel-Scanlan lecture titled “Sex, Drugs, and Bankruptcy: Due Process and Social Debt.” The lecture was delivered against the backdrop of the American opioid crisis and recent events surrounding the well-publicized bankruptcies of Purdue Pharma, Boy Scouts of America, and other debtors with liability for egregious misconduct. Professor Lipson argued that a bankruptcy system which offers sweeping releases from civil and criminal liability for those involved in this wrongdoing upsets the basic tenets of Due Process.
Recently, I (along with colleagues at other law schools) asked that an “examiner” be appointed in the Purdue Pharma chapter 11 bankruptcy case, pending in the Southern District of New York. Although the Bankruptcy Court has not yet acted on that request (technically, it was in the form of a letter to the United States
In a unanimous decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled recently in Taggart v. Lorenzen that a creditor in a bankruptcy case may be held in civil contempt, and subject to sanction, where there is “no fair ground of doubt” about whether the discharge order barred the creditor’s conduct. Creditors engaging with consumers post-discharge often face litigation for