6. What is the authority of the bankruptcy court?
The bankruptcy court has authority to hear any case arising under the bankruptcy system. Generally, the role of the court is simply to approve a plan of liquidation or reorganization. The court’s role expands when there is some level of dispute between debtor and creditor. In a dispute, the bankruptcy court does not allow for a jury trial. A bankruptcy judge, appointed pursuant to Article I of the US Constitution, is charged with hearing the case. Matters arising under the bankruptcy system commonly include administration of the bankruptcy estate, allowance of claims against the estate, counterclaims by the estate against claimants, exemptions of estate property, and matters relating to confirmation of a plan of reorganization. The court may also enter appropriate orders and judgments as provided for under the bankruptcy code.
• Discussion: Why do you think the jurisdiction of the bankruptcy court is limited? Hint: Think about the constitutional authority of the bankruptcy court.