Christopher Soper
Clinical Professor of Law
Director of Legal Writing

Prof. Soper Discusses Archdiocese Bankruptcy on MPR

Professor Christopher Soper spoke to MPR News about the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis bankruptcy proceeding, which is currently pending in Minnesota federal bankrutpcy court. The Archdiocese will likely file a plan of reorganization in the next few weeks, and Soper discussed the role the Archdiocese's insurance policies might play in crafting a bankruptcy plan of reorganization. Insurance policies are the likely source of the most substantial funding available to pay the Archdiocese's largest creditor constituency--sexual abuse claimants. But the underlying liability on those policies is not yet resolved. Soper said: "The insurers might have a very valid defense to the Archdiocese claims on the policies," and he discussed how the bankruptcy process might include a settlement between the Archdiocese and the insurers. Such a settlement would provide funding to pay abuse claimants and resolve future liability insurers might face on the policies. 

Soper's recent Collier Monograph, Insurance Issues in Bankruptcy, addresses similar issues that have arisen in prior church bankruptcies.