March 09, 2005

Riviera Update: With S256, the "Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005", aka the "Loan Sharking Bill of Rights", aka the "Full-Employment Act for Bankruptcy Counsel", hours from passage by Congress, I would be remiss if I didn't point out my favorite plum in the entire law. Section 1501(a) suspends the effective date of the law for 180 days from the date of passage. Ostensibly to give the courts sufficient time to formulate new procedures and forms for the new law, this elegant little valentine will enable, shall we say, the more dedicated consumer advocates within the bankruptcy bar to advertise from now until September about the importance of filing before the new law goes into effect. Sssssssweeeeeet...just what the doctor ordered for the economy !!

This is another example of the Law of Unintended Consequences at work. Just as the movement to thwart tort actions against Big Business has led instead to the filing of more frivolous lawsuits, and our efforts to fight terrorism have led to more terrorists, so too will this grand attempt to make it harder to file bankruptcy lead instead to more bankruptcy filings. Whatever you might say about Her, God does have a wicked sense of humor.

UPDATE: Oops, my bad--according to CNN, the House isn't set to take up the Senate bill until next month. Expect to see those "Last Chance to File" ads running through the end of October.

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