Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkinson (In re Bellingham Insurance Agency, Inc.), 702 F.3d 553 (9th Cir. December, 2012)

By M. Jonathan Hayes

Issue: "This quotidian bankruptcy case presents a novel question: can a non-Article III bankruptcy judge enter a final judgment in a fraudulent conveyance action against a nonclaimant to the bankruptcy estate?"

Holding: No. "Federal law empowers bankruptcy judges to do so, but we hold that the Constitution forbids it." "But our decision today is no reprieve, because we also hold that the company consented to the adjudication of the fraudulent conveyance claim by a bankruptcy judge by failing to object until the case reached this court."

Appeal from District Court expected to be . . .

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