Formalizing chapter 9’s experts

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    1 Scopus citations


    Chapter 9 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code has many shortcomings. One of the most persistent, yet understudied, problems judges face in chapter 9 is also a problem that exists in other areas of bankruptcy law: the sheer difficulty of applying generalized plan confirmation standards to wildly different, highly specialized entities. In practice, judges have turned to experts—individuals well versed in municipal finance, mediation, and the particular debtor community— to help overcome this problem in chapter 9. These experts often perform critical roles in a municipal bankruptcy case, including conducting mediations, investigating the municipality’s finances, and even helping to craft the municipality’s plan of debt adjustment. Despite the important roles experts play in bankruptcy, their appointment and selection process receives little attention, and the scope of their role is often ill defined. This Article highlights the concerns that arise due to the lack of procedures surrounding experts in municipal bankruptcy. After exploring the benefits and pitfalls associated with using experts in chapter 9 and elsewhere, this Article provides detailed guidance for designing formal procedures for selecting, appointing, and using experts in chapter 9.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)1249-1295
    Number of pages47
    JournalMichigan Law Review
    Issue number7
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2018


    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Law

    Cite this