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The Third Circuit Court of Appeals is considering the reappointment of Bankruptcy Judge Mary Walrath for a new 14-year term. Judge Walrath's current term is set to expire on September 8, 2012.
Judge Walrath is currently the bankruptcy judge for the District of Delaware in Wilmington.
Walrath has gained national attention as the judge overseeing the Washington Mutual bankruptcy proceedings. Judge Walrath, who has twice rejected WaMu's reorganization plans, appointed New Jersey bankruptcy judge Raymond Lyons this week to mediate between the company and its creditors, reports The Washington Post.
In February, Judge Walrath found enough evidence of allegations of insider-trading at WaMu to grant permission to investigate the insider-trading claims, according to Thomson Reuters News and Insight.
The Third Circuit Court of Appeals welcomes comments regarding Judge Walrath's appointment. All comments may be emailed to Walrath_Reappointment@ca3.uscourts.gov or mailed to:
Office of the Circuit Executive, Toby D. Slawsky
601 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106-1790
Independent bankruptcy courts are a relatively new invention. In 1997, the National Bankruptcy Review Commission recommended that the bankruptcy courts be established under Article III of the Constitution. The subsequent legislation introduced in Congress, however, did not extend to bankruptcy judges the protections of life tenure and immunity from any reduction in salary.
In bankruptcy cases and proceedings referred by the district court, the U.S. Code and the Federal Judgeship Act state that a bankruptcy judge may hold status conferences, conduct hearings and trials, make final determinations, enter orders and judgments, and submit proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law to the district court.
Comments on Judge Mary Walrath's reappointment must be received no later than 12 p.m. EST on Tuesday, November 15, 2011.