Who Needs Bankruptcy Reform?
When Eric Nguyen, a 3L at Harvard Law School, conducted his research on the disproportionate efforts of families with children to save their homes through bankruptcy, he seemed to be embarking early on a promising scholarly career. But events have made his research intensely relevant to national debates. In an op-ed in today's New York Times he reprises his central findings. Eric endorses an amendment to the bankruptcy laws that would permit a bankruptcy judge to restructure home mortgages.
Senator Dodd and Congressman Miller advanced this proposal early last spring, but the lobbyists from the American Mortgage Association fought them off. Even as the bailout took shape, the banking lobbyists were still calling the shots to block bankruptcy amendments. Not surprisingly, mortgage holders prefer a government bailout over taking the write downs on their bad mortgages. The McCain proposal offers just that: a payoff on bad mortgages at their full face value. The taxpayers--rather than the investors--would take all the losses.
Eric's op-ed is timely--but time is running out.