Duquesne Law Review


In 1984 the United States Supreme Court, in Brotherhood of Teamsters v. Bildisco & Bildisco, held that a debtor in possession in a Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceeding could unilaterally reject existing collective-bargaining agreements. Under pressure from labor interests, Congress acted quickly and enacted amendments to the Bankruptcy Act, whereby executory collective bargaining agreements were removed from the operation of the rejection provisions found in section 365 of the Code. After summarily examining bankruptcy law and the Bildisco case, the authors thoroughly discuss new section 1113 of the Bankruptcy Code, which deals with the treatment of collective-bargaining agreements in the course of bankruptcy proceedings. Anticipating construction of the section's provisions-based on both the legislative background of the amendments, and on general principles of bankruptcy and labor law-the authors conclude that Congress has successfully enacted law which will work to prevent the derogation of labor's collective-bargaining rights as threatened in Bildisco.

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