Wednesday, 26 September 2018, New York, USA

E-mail Tel: +44 203 780 4160


Donald Bernstein

Davis Polk & Wardwell

Mr. Bernstein, chairman of Davis Polk’s Insolvency and Restructuring Group, is globally recognized as among the small group of leading insolvency lawyers in the world. He has received numerous honors, including being elected by his peers as the Chair of the National Bankruptcy Conference, the most prestigious professional organization in the field. Mr. Bernstein’s practice includes representing debtors, creditors, liquidators, receivers and acquirers in major corporate restructurings and insolvency proceedings, as well as advising financial institutions and other clients regarding credit risks involved in derivatives, securities transactions, and other domestic and international financial transactions.

Lisa Schweitzer

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton

Lisa M. Schweitzer’s practice focuses on financial restructuring, bankruptcy, insolvency and commercial litigation. She has advised clients in some of the most high-profile bankruptcy matters in North America, and her work repeatedly has been recognized by the business and legal press, including The American Lawyer, which previously named her a “Dealmaker of the Year.” Among her many highlights, Lisa is lead U.S. restructuring counsel to Nortel Networks Inc. and affiliates in their U.S. Chapter 11 proceedings.

2017 Programme

13.30: Welcome coffee and registration

14.00: Chairs' opening remarks

Donald Bernstein, Davis Polk & Wardwell
Lisa Schweitzer, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton

14.05: Keynote address

Hon. Judge Cecelia Morris, US Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York

14.35: Session one: "Home court advantage": Is jurisdictional competition for control of global insolvency proceedings a positive development?

More and more jurisdictions want to be recognized as the "home" court for global insolvency proceedings, even where a connection is tenuous. This has led to COMI shopping, causing some jurisdictions to promote themselves as a preferred "home court". A recent example is Singapore's promotion of itself as a regional insolvency hub. At the same time, more cases are coming along with no overriding connection to anywhere - they have touch points all over the planet - and where it would be in everyone's best interests to achieve an efficient, predictable and cost effective outcome. 

In the trademark GRR Live conversational style, our panel will discuss the ins and outs of competition among jurisdictions for cases. Is the rise of the insolvency hub a good, bad, or neutral development? How can clients and professionals take best advantage of the possibilities on offer, and not fall foul of any limitations?

Questions the panel are expected to discuss include:

  • What are the pros and cons of COMI shopping?
  • What is the likely impact of Brexit on England's position as a preferred insolvency jurisdiction? 
  • If there is no clear "home" jurisdiction for a debtor company, or the COMI jurisdiction has an unreliable insolvency system, is it appropriate to commence main proceedings in a jurisdiction portraying itself as an insolvency "hub" even if connections there are thin?  
  • Are aspiring "hub" jurisdictions constrained by the limits to recognition of their insolvency judgements? 
  • What is the impact of the Model Law on cross-border insolvency and court to court communications protocols, for example, the JIN Guidelines?
  • Will the use of pre-insolvency procedures have an effect on jurisdictional competition for insolvency cases?

Donald Bernstein, Davis Polk & Wardwell

Corinne Ball, Jones Day
Hon. Judge Allan Gropper (Ret.), former US Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York
Mark Lawford, Weil, Gotshal & Manges
Robert van Galen, NautaDutilh

15.45: Coffee break

16.15: Session two: The GRR Live Question Time and Hot Topics debate 

A unique session of free-flowing discussion, in the style of Question Time. Audience members will submit questions in advance, which will be discussed by a leading panel, and the audience alike. The session therefore offers an excellent opportunity to obtain opinions on a question that's been vexing you, or to benchmark your own approach to a particularly thorny problem against that of others. Questions will be distributed to the audience in advance.

Hot Topic 1: Nortel.

The complex multi-jurisdictional Nortel cases were unique in that main creditor protection proceedings were started simultaneously in the US, Canada and the UK for dozens of worldwide affiliates. Thus, even without the ground-breaking cross-border allocation litigation, the Nortel cases offer a valuable example of coordination techniques that can be used at the outset of a multi-national group insolvency to preserve and maximize value for all.  In particular, the cross-border protocols that were adopted - governing the administration of the cases and the resolution of claims, and how vendors and customers should interact - set the Nortel cases apart from nearly all other multi-national insolvencies. 

This panel will address, from the viewpoint of both company and creditor advisors, the strategies employed and how they furthered Nortel's ability to stabilize its business and preserve value ahead of the divestiture of its various business lines. 

Further Hot Topics to be submitted by the audience

Lisa Schweitzer, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton

Andrew Dietderich, Sullivan & Cromwell
Hon. Judge Martin Glenn, US Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York
Steven Reisman, Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle
Jennifer Stam, Goldman, Sloan, Nash and Haber

17.45: Chairs' closing remarks 

Donald Bernstein, Davis Polk & Wardwell
Lisa Schweitzer, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton

17.50 onwards: All delegates are invited to a drinks reception kindly hosted by Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton

New York, USA


Private Practitioner
Type Price Until
Standard $250 26 Sept 2018

Complimentary In-house/governmental registration available