06 Jun Who Is The U.S. Trustee?
Congress established the Office of the U. S. Trustee as part of the Bankruptcy Reform Act of 1978 to act on behalf of the executive branch and regulate or supervise certain aspects of the bankruptcy process.
According to the official website the US Trustee program consists of the Executive Office for U. S. Trustees (EOUST) located in Washington, DC; the regional offices; and the field offices in each region. Clifford J. White, III is the current U. S. Trustee. There are 21 (originally 18) regions covered by the US Trustee program, including all Federal Judicial Districts except Alabama and North Carolina. Each of the 21 regions has a regional office and one or more field offices. At present, there are 95 field offices of the U. S. Trustee program located throughout the country.
The U. S. Trustee, Assistant U. S. Trustee and their staffs are employees of the Federal Department of Justice. Their positions are funded primarily from fees paid by parties and businesses invoking Federal bankruptcy protection. Their job is to appoint and supervise the trustees managing individual bankruptcy cases.
According to the a U.S. Department of Justice site, other duties of the U.S. Trustee are taking legal action to enforce the provisions of the Bankruptcy Code and to prevent fraud and abuse, referring matters for investigation and criminal prosecution where appropriate, ensuring that estates are administered efficiently and fees are reasonable, appointing and convening creditor’s committees in Chapter 11 reorganization cases, reviewing disclosure statements and applications for the retention of professionals, and advocating matters relating to the Bankruptcy Code and rules of procedure in court.
Examples of U.S. Trustee involvement in consumer cases are refusal to confirm a Chapter 13 plan on grounds of unfair discrimination among creditors and a motion to dismiss a case because of concealment of assets or income. Bankruptcy Law Network member Karen Oaks answers the question “What Does the U. S. Trustee Do?” in an earlier article on this site.
Oregon is in USTP Region 18, which includes Alaska, Idaho, Montana, and Washington. Region 18 has 7 subdistricts. two in Oregon. The Acting US Trustee for Region 18 is Gail Geiger, the Acting Assistant Trustee for the Portland sub-district is M. Vivienne Popperl and the Acting Assistant Trustee for Eugene is Ronald C. Becker.
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