On July 31st, James Molleur spoke about consumer finance and personal bankruptcy under Chapters 7 and 13 at the American Bankruptcy Insitute International Law program at the Fletcher School of Diplomacy at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts. The Conference provided a multi-day program for Armenian scholars, judges, and public officials learning about the American economic system and bankruptcy in general.
Jim was joined on the speakers panel by Perer Fessenden, Maine's Chapter 13 trustee, Joseph Braunstein, a Chapter 7 trustee from Massachusetts, and Judge Joan Feeney, a Massachusetts bankruptcy judge. The attendees from Armenia learned about credit card debt (a type of credit not yet prevalent in Armenia) and various types of credit usage in the United States, along with the problems associated with collection activities by creditors, and remedies available to debtors dealing with harassing creditors.
Armenia (a small country formerly part of the Soviet Union, and bordered by Turkey, Azerbijian, and the Republic of Georgia) has recently enacted a bankruptcy statute for individuals, but it is relatively untested to date. The Armenians were provided guidance on the techniques available to debtors and creditors under the current American Bankruptcy Code. As the Armenian economy becomes more market driven, and consumers gain more influence, it is expected consumer bankruptcy will become a necessary part of their economy.