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A license agreement “deemed rejected by operation of law” could not be acquired under a court-approved asset purchase agreement, held the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit on Oct. 29, 2018. In re Provider Meds, LLC, 2018 WL 5317445, 2 (5th Cir. Oct. 29, 2018). Although the acquirer claimed “that it purchased a patent license from [the] debtors in bankruptcy sales of their estates,” the court explained that “a rejected executory contract … could not have been transferred by the bankruptcy sales in question ….” Id., at 1. The court also declined to “approve of the use of a” bankruptcy court sale order “to avoid the requirement that an executory contract be assumed and assigned under” Bankruptcy Code (Code) §365. Id., at 9.
By Timothy W. Hoffmann and Mark G. Douglas
In Nuverra Environmental Solutions,, the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware affirmed a bankruptcy court order confirming a non-consensual Chapter 11 plan that included “gifted” consideration from a senior secured creditor to fund unequal distributions to two separate classes of unsecured creditors.
By Michael L. Cook
The Eighth Circuit affirmed the lower courts’ dismissal of a bankruptcy trustee’s $250 million fraudulent transfer suit against two banks (the Banks), rejecting the so called “Ponzi scheme presumption” that “allows a creditor to by-pass the proof requirements of a fraudulent-transfer claim by showing that the debtor operated a Ponzi scheme and transferred assets ‘in furtherance of the scheme.’”
By Deirdre M. Richards and Howard C. Rubin
Secured creditors can learn a great deal from a few recent bankruptcy cases involving the Uniform Commercial Code that remind us that the “devil is in the details.” These cases show that it is unrealistic to expect forgiveness by a court after a misstep involving Article 9 of the UCC.
By Barry A. Chatz and Kevin H. Morse
On Oct. 3, 2018, the Chapter 11 Liquidating Plan of Eclipse Berry Farms, LLC was confirmed, concluding a two-year journey from one of the largest strawberry growers in the country to the cessation of operations and eventual liquidation.