All posts in Books & Articles

Prof. Chemerinsky Explains Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. v. Haeger

The 9th Circuit was reversed by the Supreme Court on Tuesday in Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. v. Haeger, — S. Ct. —, 2017 WL 1377379 (2017).  The case deals with a court’s inherent powers to sanction parties and attorneys.   The rule is pretty clear that a court may sanction a party using its inherent power if the party’s conduct was “bad faith, wanton, vexatious, or oppressive,” i.e., more than reckless or even frivolous.  But how much?  The unanimous Supreme Court said the sanctions “must be compensatory rather than punitive in nature.”  It said that the “fee award may go no further than to redress the wronged party ‘for losses sustained’; it may not impose an additional amount as punishment for the sanctioned party’s misbehavior.”  Thus, “a court’s shifting of fees is limited to reimbursing the victim.”  That is not to say that the sanctions cannot be punitive but if they are, that is essentially a criminal proceeding and the sanctionee has the same rights as other criminal defendants.

In Goodyear, certain reports favorable to the Plaintiff were not turned over to the Plaintiff.  The Plaintiff, not knowing that the reports existed, ultimately settled with Goodyear.  A year later, the reports were discovered.  How is the district court going to figure out “the losses sustained” because of the failure to turnover the reports? Read more…

A Summary of Bankruptcy Law Third Edition

I have finally finished my Summary of Bankruptcy Law Third Edition.  You can get it on Amazon by clicking here.    The 400+ footnotes focus almost entirely on the 9th Circuit and California law.  Let me know what you think.

Financial Report of the United States Government 2015

Just ran across this 274 page report.  ”Mind blown,” as Kramer liked to say.  Statistics and financial info until you can’t stand it no more.

The financial fact that jumped out at me is that the US Government owns $3.2 trillion in TOTAL assets (page 60).  Of that, $1.2 trillion, or more than a third of the total, is “Loans Receivable.”  Of that, $977 billion is student loans!  So 31% of the value of the assets this country owns is receivable from students and former students.   I wonder how they valued the assets? Read more…

Nice Post by Cathy Moran on Hamp

Last Call For Loan Modifications Under HAMP


By Cathy Moran, Certified Consumer Bankruptcy Specialist, Mountain View, CA

HAMP, the government program incentivizing home loan modifications, ends in 2016. Read more…

A Great Lesson From Prof. Stephen Bainbridge on Law School Exams

Law school exams, the bane of my existence.  This is such a good lesson from the blog UCLA Law Prof. Stephen Bainbridge.  Reprinted verbatim.

Exam drafting tips for a new law teacher

A former student who is now teaching securities regulation for the first time asked for some exam writing tips. FWIW, here’s what I came up with:

  • Don’t make it too complicated. You’ll get garbage back.
    • You could put students in a room with a window, ask them to describe the weather, and get a bell curve. So don’t make it too complicated.
  • Try to be fair. If you use three essays (typical) make sure they focus on three areas that ate up a lot of class time. Read more…

Great Article on Bankruptcy 101 by Retired Judge Lisa Hill Fenning

This article, written for the Association of Corporate Counsel, is directed at “investors.”  You can access it here.

Debt Collection Tricks Exposed By the Courts

Nice post by Christine Wilton on a new case slapping around debt collectors for trying to collect “time barred” debts.  The post is here.  

2013 Consumer Action Handbook

Hi everyone,

Each year, the U.S. General Services Administration’s (GSA) Office of Citizen Services and Innovative Technologies updates the Consumer Action Handbook, a resource with consumer tips to help consumers in their daily life. This annual handbook provides consumers with information essential to making financial decisions on everything from purchasing a home and paying for college to securing health care and protecting one’s privacy when shopping online.

The handbook is accessible at the link below:

Please feel free to forward to any individual, organization or agency.


Magdalena Reyes Bordeaux
Supervising Attorney
Public Counsel
Consumer Law Project &
Debtor Assistance Project

2013 Bankruptcy Reference Book

The 2013 Bankruptcy Reference Book is available on Amazon.  It contains, in a single volume, the bankruptcy code, the FRCP, the Federal Bankruptcy Rules, the Central District local rules, the California exemptions, and the addresses of phone numbers of the Central District judges.

2013 Bankruptcy Cover


You can access the Amazon page here.

Six Golden Bankruptcy Rules

I updated this article to include the 2005 Amendments.  6 Golden Rules