Reprinted from June 1998 ABI Journal
Web posted and Copyright © June 1, 1998, American Bankruptcy Institute.
¶H.R. 3150 was approved 18-10 by the House Judiciary Committee on June 14, after the Committee considered dozens of amendments and agreed to a number of changes. Debtors earning an amount equal to or above the national median income and able to pay 20 percent of unsecured debts over five years, could be shifted to chapter 13 under the bill. The Committee Report was filed on June 18 (Rpt. 105-540). After clearance from the Rules Committee on the scope of further amendments, the bill will be ready for full House action. The bill should come up for a vote in the House by the Independence Day recess, starting on June 26.
¶S. 1301, the Senate counterpart bankruptcy reform bill, was approved 15-2 on June 21. The bill also includes authorization for all of the requested bankruptcy judgeships.
¶The Justice Department has written letters with its views of the pending bills. The Administration prefers the §707(b) approach of S. 1301 to the administrative needs-based formula in H.R. 3150. See http://www.abiworld.org.
¶Legislation permitting donations to charities and tithes to churches in both chapter 7 and 13 cases passed the Senate 100-0 (S. 1244) and the House Judiciary Committee (H.R. 2604) in June.
¶The House Judiciary Sub-committee on Commercial Law approved legislation to provide a right of judicial review in the bankruptcy court when panel trustees are removed from case rotation by the U.S. Trustee (H.R. 2592).
¶ The Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on the business bankruptcy reform bill (S. 1914) on June 19. The bills special rules on small business cases are also found in H.R. 3150. ABI will testify on the bills health care provisions on June 1.