A New Approach to Valuing Secured Claims in Bankruptcy

59 Pages Posted: 5 May 2001 Last revised: 22 Oct 2010

See all articles by Lucian A. Bebchuk

Lucian A. Bebchuk

Harvard Law School; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Jesse M. Fried

Harvard Law School; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: May 2001

Abstract

In many business bankruptcies in which the firm is to be preserved as a going concern, one of the most difficult and important problems is that of valuing the assets that serve as collateral for secured creditors. Valuing a secured creditor's collateral is needed to determine the amount of the creditor's secured claim, which in turn affects the payout that must be made to the creditor. Such valuation has generally been believed to require either litigation or bargaining among the parties, which in turn give rise to uncertainty, delay, and deviations from parties' entitlements. This paper puts forward a new approach to valuing collateral that involves neither bargaining nor litigation. Under this approach, a market-based mechanism would determine the value of collateral in such a way that no participant in the bankruptcy would have a basis for complaining that secured creditors are either over- or under-compensated. Our approach would considerably improve the performance of business bankruptcy and could constitute an important element of any proposal for bankruptcy reform.

Suggested Citation

Bebchuk, Lucian A. and Fried, Jesse M., A New Approach to Valuing Secured Claims in Bankruptcy (May 2001). NBER Working Paper No. w8276, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=268885

Lucian A. Bebchuk (Contact Author)

Harvard Law School ( email )

Cambridge, MA 02138
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617-495-3138 (Phone)
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HOME PAGE: http://www.law.harvard.edu/faculty/bebchuk/

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

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Jesse M. Fried

Harvard Law School ( email )

1575 Massachusetts
Griswold Hall 506
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-384-8158 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.harvard.edu/faculty/directory/10289/Fried

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

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