Aiding and abetting fraudulent transfers. Can a Trustee maintain an action against parties who were directly involved in the implementation of a fraudulent transfer, but were not the recipient of any of the fraudulently transferred property? Would it matter if the involved party were an attorney? It depends on where you are.
Two bankruptcy courts have addressed this issue and made contrary holdings, based on differing state law. In the case of In re Parker, 2009 WL205011 (Bkrtcy. E.D. N.Y.), Judge Eisenberg held that applicable New York law “does not recognize a cause of action against parties for aiding and abetting a fraudulent conveyance because …the parties were neither transferees of the assets nor beneficiaries of the conveyance.” Further, the status of one party as an attorney did not change this finding. The Trustee’s only remedy was avoidance of the transfer and recovery of the transferred property for the bankruptcy estate.
In the case of In re Restaurant Development Group, Inc. 397 B.R. 891 (Bkrtcy.N.D. Ill. 2008), Judge Schmitterer noted that Illinois courts recognize claims for conspiracy against attorneys where there is evidence of participation in a plan with their clients to commit fraud. Though acknowledging that other states, under their version of the Uniform Fraudulent Transfers Act, have not found and do not recognize aiding and abetting claims against non-recipients of fraudulent transfers: The Court found such liability under Illinois law. If you have a question about the liability of aiding and abetting fraudulent transfers you should seek the advice of an experience bankruptcy attorney.
For more information about Bankruptcy and aiding and abetting a fraudulent transfers – contact Cynthia Remboldt, at the Remboldt Law Firm at 404-348-4081. FREE consultations can be scheduled by calling 404-348-4081. Evening and Weekend hours are available to meet with an attorney. If bankruptcy turns out to be the best way to move forward considering your alternatives, goals and financial challenges, payment plans are available if you need them.