Greene investigates why consumer bankruptcy reorganization fails

Under chapter 13 consumer bankruptcy, debtors enter into court-approved plans to repay at least some creditors a portion of the amounts owed over three to five years and homeowners must repay their mortgages in full. But if they fail to meet the requirements of their repayment plans, their remaining debts won’t be forgiven. But as Professor Sara Greene and two co-authors write in “Cracking the Code: An Empirical Analysis of Consumer Bankruptcy Outcomes,” only about one-in-three chapter 13 filers successfully complete their repayment plans. Their goals with their novel study of included illuminating areas of policy and practice that could improve chapter 13 outcomes; addressing systemic access-to-justice issues; and overcoming a pervasive belief that local and regional differences in the way bankruptcy law is applied undercut possibilities for change.

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Prof. Sara Greene

About Sara Greene

Sara Greene is an interdisciplinary scholar whose interests span consumer law, bankruptcy, poverty law, access to justice, tax, and contracts. She has recently focused on the role of the law in perpetuating and exacerbating poverty and inequality.

Meet Sara Greene



Faculty Spotlight

In new book, Siegel and co-author introduce readers to constitutional law, theory, politics

Neil SiegelIn the introduction to their new book, United States Constitutional Law (Foundation Press, 2019), David W. Ichel Professor of Law and Professor of Political Science Neil Siegel and co-author Daniel Farber explore the dynamic “interactive process” between the Supreme Court and a range of actors and institutions who make claims on the Constitution in the sphere of constitutional politics, including social movements, political parties, and governmental institutions.

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Recent Activities

  • Deborah A. DeMott
    Professor DeMott presented a paper, “Fiduciary Duties on the Thresholds of Agency Relationships,” at the workshop on Global Perspectives on Fiduciary Law, the Atara Kaufman Annual Conference on Law and Globalization, Radzyner Law School, IDC Herzliya. The Workshop was the first conference on fiduciary law held in Israel.
    (April 15, 2018)
  • George C. Christie
    Professor Christie was invited to deliver a lecture at the University of Athens Law School. His talk was entitled “Why It Is Impossible as Well to Try to Eliminate the Need for Judges to Exercise Practical Wisdom in Legal Decision Making.”
    (February 06, 2018)
  • Deborah A. DeMott
    On behalf of the Institute for the Fiduciary Standard, Professor DeMott organized a panel discussion and gave a presentation on “Is the SEC’s Proposed Regulation Best Interest a Suitable Best Interest Standard?” at Texas Tech University, Sept. 21, 2018. The event honored Harold Evensky, 2018 recipient of the Institute’s Frankel Fiduciary Prize.    
    (September 21, 2018)

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  • Alaska Law Review

    Alaska Law Review
    The Alaska Law Review — published at Duke Law School under the sponsorship of the Alaska Bar Association since 1984 — examines legal issues affecting the state of Alaska.

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    Duke Environmental Law & Policy Forum
    The Duke Environmental Law & Policy Forum examines environmental issues from legal, scientific, economic, and public policy perspectives.

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    Duke Forum for Law & Social Change
    The Duke Forum for Law & Social Change seeks to provide ongoing discussion of social change and related issues through an annual symposium and publication.

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    Duke Journal of Comparative & International Law
    Published since 1990, the Duke Journal of Comparative & International Law features articles from prominent international scholars and practitioners focusing on issues of comparative and international law.

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    Duke Journal of Constitutional Law & Public Policy
    The Duke Journal of Constitutional Law & Public Policy examines the constitutional issues and policy dimensions of court decisions and legislation as they affect practitioners, judges, and legislators.

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    Duke Journal of Gender Law & Policy
    The Duke Journal of Gender Law & Policy examines gender, sexuality, race, and class issues in the context of law and public policy. Published since 1994, DJGLP aims to foster debate and encourage scholarship outside conventional boundaries.

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    Duke Law & Technology Review
    The Duke Law & Technology Review explores the evolving intersection of law and technology, through both traditional journal articles and short “iBriefs" that provide cutting-edge insight to lawyers and non-legal professionals.

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    Duke Law Journal
    The Duke Law Journal was founded in 1951 as the Duke Bar Journal and publishes eight issues each year, including an annual Administrative Law Symposium issue.

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    Law & Contemporary Problems
    Law and Contemporary Problems is the oldest scholarly publication at Duke Law. Published quarterly in a symposium format, L&CP focuses each issue on a topic of contemporary concern from the perspective of a variety of disciplines.





  • Center for Criminal Justice and Professional Responsibility

    Center for Criminal Justice and Professional Responsibility
    The Duke Center for Criminal Justice and Professional Responsibility promotes justice in criminal cases by identifying, remedying, and preventing the wrongful conviction of innocent people.

  • Center for Innovation Policy

    Center for Innovation Policy
    The Center for Innovation Policy addresses fundamental issues of law and policy affecting innovation. The center brings a scholarly focus to cross-cutting policies relevant to innovation generally and to sector-specific areas such as the life sciences, information and communications technology, and energy-related technology.

  • Center for International & Comparative Law

    Center for Institutional and Organizational Performance
    The Center for Institutional and Organizational Performance (CIOP) advances our understanding of the factors that enhance the performance of institutions and organizations in our society through research and scholarship, special events, teaching, and student development.

  • Center for International & Comparative Law

    Center for International & Comparative Law
    Launched in 2006, Duke Law School’s Center for International and Comparative Law (CICL) coordinates and supports the School’s programs, resources, and events in the areas of international law, comparative law, and U.S. foreign relations law.

  • Center Judicial Studies

    Bolch Judicial Studies
    The Bolch Judicial Institute advances the rule of law through the study of courts, judicial decision-making and legal institutions; judicial education and training; and civic education initiatives.

  • Center for Law, Economics and Public Policy

    Center for Law, Economics and Public Policy
    The Center for Law, Economics, and Public Policy organizes workshops, conferences, and other scholarly activities in the area of law and economics, with a particular focus on the intersection between welfare economics and normative questions regarding legal frameworks, institutions and doctrines.

  • Center for the Study of the Public Domain

    Center for the Study of the Public Domain
    The Center for the Study of the Public Domain advances research and scholarship on the contributions of the public domain to speech, culture, science and innovation. The center promotes debate about the balance needed in our intellectual property system and works to translate academic research into public policy solutions.

  • Center on Law, Ethics and National Security

    Center on Law, Ethics and National Security
    Founded in 1993, the Center on Law, Ethics and National Security is an promotes education and discussion of the complex issues involved in national security, such as the legal and policy implications of the war on terror; U.S. relations with the International Criminal Court; humanitarian interventions; and role of contractors in military operations.

  • Center on Law, Race and Politics

    Center on Law, Race and Politics
    The Duke Center on Law, Race and Politics (CLRP) is a multidisciplinary initiative created to support research, public engagement, teaching, and activities at the intersection of CLRP's core focus.

  • Center on Law & Technology

    Center on Law & Technology
    The Duke Center on Law & Technology prepares students for the growing landscape of technology in the legal profession through collaboration with Duke’s innovative and entrepreneurial initiatives, engagement with local entrepreneurs, and by providing educational opportunities at the intersection of technology and the law.

  •  Global Financial Markets Center

    Global Financial Markets Center
    The Global Financial Markets Center facilitates research, education, and publication that broadens inquiry, dialogue, and debate into the operation of capital and financial markets beyond traditional academic boundaries, bridging the gap between theory and practice.

  • Program in Public Law

    Program in Public Law
    The Program in Public Law promotes a better understanding of our nation’s public institutions, of the Constitutional framework in which they function, and of the principles and laws that apply to the work of public officials through scholarship, workshops, conferences, and curricular programs.

  • Voices of American Law

    Voices of American Law
    Voices of American Law produces high-quality educational materials about the Supreme Court and its role in American society through a video series focusing on the stories of the real people behind the court's opinions.

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    Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions
    The Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions engages with decision makers in government, the private sector, and the nonprofit community to develop innovative and nonpartisan solutions to critical environmental challenges.



Law Blogs

    • Balkinization

      Duke faculty occasionally contribute to this law professor blog

    • Lawfire

      A blog about national security

    • Take Care

      Legal analysis by Profs. Joseph Blocher, Walter Dellinger, and affiliates of the President's adherence to the rule of law

    • The FinReg Blog

      Commentary by faculty and affiliates of the Duke Law Global Financial Markets Center