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Records of bankrupt business not public

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  1. Freedom of Information

    NMU         OKLAHOMA         Freedom of Information         Jul 20, 2000    

Records of bankrupt business not public

  • The fact that the state insurance commissioner is acting as receiver during bankruptcy proceedings is insufficient to make the bankrupt business’ records public.

A company’s business records do not become public under the open records law when the state insurance commissioner is appointed receiver during bankruptcy proceedings, the state Supreme Court ruled in late June.

Only those records that are generated or kept by a public official as part of his or her official duties are to be made public under the open records law, the court said. Taking possession of a company’s business records as a receiver in bankruptcy court is not an official government function of the insurance commissioner, so such records are not subject to the open records law, the court ruled.

Michael Farrimond had filed suit in district court in Oklahoma City in July 1999 against Fisher, who had been appointed receiver of Mid-Continent Life Insurance Company by the bankruptcy court two years earlier. Farrimond had argued that the company’s business records became public when the state’s insurance commissioner was appointed receiver.

(Farrimond v. Oklahoma) BB


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