The Maxwell Case

18 Pages Posted: 19 Jul 2007


International bankruptcy scholars well know the Maxwell case as probably the most important litigation precedent in this fledgling jurisprudential field. What they tend to know less about is the "back story" of the redoubtable Robert Maxwell (born Jan Ludwick Hock). A towering, inspiring, and larger than life figure, Maxwell built an international publishing empire that spanned the globe before it came crashing down in scandal after his mysterious death. This book chapter (in a book devoted to the back stories of famous bankruptcy cases) explores Maxwell's life, business, fall from grace and, of course, posthumous bankruptcy. In so doing, it analyzes both the legal issues involved in the regulation of cross-border financial distress as well as certain eternal truths about the human condition (and, indeed, the corporate form).

Keywords: posthumous bankruptcy

JEL Classification: G33

Suggested Citation

Pottow, John A. E., The Maxwell Case. BANKRUPTCY LAW STORIES, R. Rasmusen, ed., pp. 222-237, 2007, U of Michigan Law & Economics, Olin Working Paper No. 07-012, U of Michigan Public Law Working Paper No. 89, Available at SSRN:

John A. E. Pottow (Contact Author)

University of Michigan Law School ( email )

625 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States
734-647-3736 (Phone)

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