Should We Abolish Chapter 11? Evidence from Canada

Posted: 6 Dec 1996


Over the last decade, Chapter 11 has been the brunt of serious criticism. Some American jurists arguing in favor of revising Chapter 11 have raised the possibility that the Canadian reorganization system might be a good alternative to the existing US system. This article argues that there are fruitful lessons to be learned from the Canadian experience with court-supervised reorganization. Canadian evidence shows that acceptance, confirmation, and consummation rates of proposals are very high. Moreover, firms reorganizing in Canada are almost ten times more likely to survive reorganization than their American counterparts. Furthermore, Canadian data yield no support for the claim that problems with bankruptcy law result from an over-abundance of small firms in reorganization. The analysis also shows that the Canadian reorganization procedure offers a very rapid solution to financial distress and that creditors gain in expected value terms.

JEL Classification: G33, K22

Suggested Citation

Fisher, Timothy and Martel, Jocelyn, Should We Abolish Chapter 11? Evidence from Canada. Available at SSRN:

Timothy Fisher

Wilfrid Laurier University ( email )

Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3C5
519-884-0710 (2671) (Phone)
519-888-1015 (Fax)

Jocelyn Martel (Contact Author)

ESSEC Business School ( email )

Avenue Bernard Hirsch B.P. 50105
Cergy-Pontoise, 95021
33 1 34 43 33 21 (Phone)

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