Northeast Consumer Forum

Thursday, July 11

9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

ABC Exams

2:00 p.m.

ABI Registration Desk and Exhibit Hall Open

6:00-8:00 p.m.

Opening Reception

Co-sponsored by AlixPartners LLP, Duane Morris LLP, and Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Friday, July 12

7:30-8:30 a.m.

Registration and Continental Breakfast

Co-sponsored by Gavin/Solmonese and Pepper Hamilton LLP

8:30-10:00 a.m.

Consumer Session

Home Sweet… uh oh: Owners, Obligors, Options and Obstacles

Homeowners and their creditors continue to face variety of emerging challenges in bankruptcy cases. What rights do lien holders have when only one of the obligors files bankruptcy? What potential issues await all owners after only one receives a discharge? Can a debtor modify a mortgage loan without reaffirming the debt, and if not, what are the considerations for all parties? This panel of experienced debtor and creditor attorneys will explore the many obstacles that complicate the goal of preserving a debtor’s interest in real estate and maximizing the return for secured creditors, as well as potential options and considerations for those seeking the relief they need.


William J. McLeod, Moderator

U.S. Bankruptcy Court (D. Mass.); Boston, Springfield and Worcester

Eleanor Wm. Dahar

Dahar Law Firm, Manchester, NH

Hon. Diane Finkle

U.S. Bankruptcy Court (D. R.I.); Providence

Deirdre Keady

Harmon Law Offices, Newton, MA

Christopher Somma

Goodwin Procter, Boston

Steven Weiss

Shatz, Schwartz, and Fentin, P.C., Springfield, MA

10:00-10:30 a.m.

Coffee Break

Sponsored by Candlewood Partners, LLC

10:30 a.m.-12:00 noon

Consumer Session

The Storm II: Remain Calm and Carry On

Even before the first discussion in Newport at the 2011 ABI Consumer Forum, practitioners have experienced the difficulties inherent with managing a client with a mental illness or impairment. There can be even more challenges to managing any client matter when an opposing party suffers from a mental illness, especially when that party is self-represented. This panel of experienced practitioners and mental health professionals will discuss the evolving legal and practical issues surrounding mental illness and its impact on the bankruptcy system, as well as discuss methods of remaining calm in what can be an unpredictable and increasingly unavoidable storm.


Joseph G. Butler, Moderator

The Law Office of Joseph G. Butler, Westwood, Ma.

Hon. Mildred Caban

U.S. Bankruptcy Court (D. P.R.); San Juan

David R. Chenelle

Perkins & Anctil, P.C.; Westford, Ma.

Jared D. Correia

Law Office Management Assistance Program (LOMAP); Boston

Aria Eee

Maine Board of Overseers of the Bar; Augusta, Me.

Hon. Louis H. Kornreich

U.S. Bankruptcy Court (D. Maine); Bangor

Jacob Simon

Liss Law, LLC; Brookline, Ma.


Optional Events

9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Second Beach Shuttle Service

Sponsored by Edwards Wildman Palmer LLP

1:00 p.m.

Golf Tournament at Newport National Country Club

Sponsored by BlumShapiro, Finn Dixon & Herling LLP, Neubert, Pepe & Monteith, PC, PullmanComley, Reid and Riege, PC, Updike, Kelly & Spellacy, PC and Zeisler & Zeisler, PC

Tennis Tournament

Sponsored by Mesirow Financial Consulting, LLC, Parker & Associates and Raftery Law Offices

Tour de ABI

Sponsored by Sheehan, Phinney, Bass + Green

Sport Fishing

Sponsored by Murphy & King, PC and Seyfarth Shaw

Sailing Regatta

Sponsored by Argus Management Company, Gordon Brothers Group LLC and Verdolino & Lowey, PC

6:00-7:30 p.m.

Friday Cocktail Reception

Sponsored by Duane Morris LLP and Salus Capital Partners

Friday Cocktail Reception Entertainment

Kids Entertainment

Sponsored by Sullivan & Worcester LLP

Saturday, July 13

7:00-7:30 a.m.

Registration and Continental Breakfast

Sponsored by Choate, Hall & Stewart LLP

7:30-9:00 a.m.

Plenary Session

The Cause and Effect of Municipal Insolvency and the Limits of Chapter 9

This single plenary session will feature a policy-oriented panel discussing the reasons for municipal insolvency nationally, with a particular focus on the New England Region. The panel of highly-experienced government officials, municipal receivers and thought leaders will review and debate the challenges faced by state and local leaders in their efforts to address the financial stress facing many of our cities and towns. Among the issues to be addressed are: the pressures of labor contracts, legacy benefits, and pension and retirement plans on municipal budgets; creditor and bondholder relations; sections of the code that impact these issues; and trends arising from the most recent cases. The panel may also touch on needed Chapter 9 reform. Lawyers, lenders, insolvency specialists, as well as those interested in the future of our cities and towns, will be interested in this program.


Jim Stergios, Moderator

Pioneer Institute; Boston

Hon. Frank J. Bailey

U.S. Bankruptcy Court (D. Mass.); Boston

William A. Brandt, Jr.

Development Specialists, Inc.; New York

Marilyn Shannon McConaghy

Rhode Island Department of Revenue; Providence, R.I.

Phil Puccia

Infrastructure Capital LLC; Boston

Theodore Orson

Orson and Brusini, Ltd.; Providence

9:00-9:30 a.m.

Coffee Break

Sponsored by Summit Investment Management LLC

9:30-10:45 a.m.

Consumer Session

Pomp and Circumstances, Part I: Education Loans

Debtors frequently emerge from bankruptcy still burdened by a burgeoning student loan debt. A private “loan for an educational benefit” can limit the fresh start many debtors need is increasingly being used to test the nondischargeability of might have once been general unsecured claims. This panel will discuss the emerging issues and case law surrounding nondischargeability, as well as strategies for maximizing the benefits of the bankruptcy system for struggling debtors.


James F. Molleur, Moderator

Molleur Law Office; Portland, Me.

Prof. Daniel A. Austin

Northeastern University School of Law, Boston

Hon. Mildred Caban

U.S. Bankruptcy Court (D. P.R.); San Juan

John Rao

National Consumer Law Center, Boston

Anne J. White

Demeo, LLP, Boston

10:45-11:15 a.m.

Coffee Break

Sponsored by Murtha Cullina LLP

11:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Consumer Session

Pomp and Circumstances, Part II: Evidence in Student Loan Dischargeability Claims

The information you glean from Part I needs to be viewed with the practical approach found in Part II. If you are challenging dischargeability, how do you prove it? All debtors are in a hardship, but what is an undue hardship, and again, what evidence should you have at the ready to prove the debtor’s case. Using a short vignette, this panel will address the evidentiary and practical quandaries that must be overcome in order to plead and prove a case for dischargeability of loans under Section 523(a)(8).


Stacie D. McHale, Moderator

U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Boston

Joyce Leary Clark

Scarborough Legal Center, Scarborough, Maine

Hon. Diane Finkle

U.S. Bankruptcy Court (D.R.I.); Providence

David B. Madoff

Madoff & Khoury, LLP, Foxborough, Ma.

Walter Oney

Oney Law Office, Fitchburg, Ma.

Optional Events

9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p. m.

Second Beach Shuttle Service

Sponsored by Development Specialists, Inc.

1:00 p.m.

Kayaking on the Narrow River

Sponsored by Goodwin Procter LLP

2:00 p.m.

Sailing Aboard the Schooner Aurora

Sponsored by Day Pitney

4:00-5:15 p.m.

Bayside Chat

Hon. Joan N. Feeney

U.S. Bankruptcy Court (D. Mass.); Boston

Prof. Michelle Morgan Harner

University of Maryland School of Law

Robert J. Keach

Bernstein Shur; Portland

6:00-7:00 p.m.

Sponsor Reception (by invite only)

Sponsored by Foley Hoag LLP and Spinglass Management Group LLC

7:00-10:00 p.m.

Saturday Clam Bake

Sponsored by Deloitte CRG

Saturday Entertainment

Sponsored by Nixon Peabody LLP and WilmerHale

Kids’ Buffet

Sponsored by Bingham McCutchen LLP

Kids’ Entertainment

Sponsored by Goulston & Storrs, PC


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