Proposal would Limit Bankrupt Company Exec Comp Plans

April 11, 2006 ( - Companies in US Bankruptcy Court reorganization would have to seek court approval of any executive compensation package, such as stock option grants, before implementing them under a new bill introduced in Congress.

US Senator Evan Bayh (D-Indiana) and Congressman John Conyers, Jr. (D-Michigan) introduced The Fairness and Accountability in Reorganizations Act that not only includes the executive compensation limits, but also requires corporations to provide a more accurate picture of their holdings before trying to modify collective bargaining agreements or promised health benefits.

The companion US House and Senate bills would:

  • Require any and all aspects of executive bonus packages, including special benefits such as stock options and car services, to be approved by the bankruptcy court for any corporation undergoing or connected to a bankruptcy reorganization plan.
  • Consider the debtor company’s foreign assets when determining whether or not a company can modify its existing collective bargaining agreement.
  • Require the bankruptcy court to take into account the debtor company’s foreign assets when determining whether or not to modify the company’s retiree health benefits.

“A company’s plan for success should involve all its workers, not just its top executives,” Bayh said in  a Web site statement . “When a company hits hard times, it’s not right for some executives to continue to enrich themselves at the expense of the average worker. I’m proud to offer this legislation today with Congressman Conyers to make sure that workers and retirees receive the fair treatment they have earned when their company is facing bankruptcy.”