Kelsi Corkran

Partner

Washington, D.C.


Read full biography at www.orrick.com
A former law clerk to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge David Tatel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, Kelsi Corkran has served as lead counsel in dozens of federal and state court appeals. Kelsi has presented argument before the U.S. Supreme Court and 11 of the 13 U.S. Courts of Appeals, including the en banc Ninth Circuit. She also frequently strategizes with trial teams on significant legal questions that arise during earlier stages of litigation.

Kelsi maintains a generalist practice mirroring the wide range of subject matters that appellate judges confront on their dockets. Her constitutional and administrative law experience includes litigating challenges involving the First, Fifth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments; the Appointments Clause; the Bill of Attainder Clause; separation of powers; statutory interpretation; and regulatory overreach. She has also handled appeals involving copyright, class action certification, civil fraud, breach of contract, financial services, bankruptcy, and employment discrimination, to name a few. Rather than structuring her practice around narrow subject areas, Kelsi’s passion is translating complex disputes into compelling stories that persuade the court to rule in her client’s favor.

Prior to joining Orrick, Kelsi was with the Civil Appellate Staff at the U.S. Department of Justice, where she served as lead counsel for the federal government in more than 30 appeals representing a wide array of federal agencies, including the Copyright Royalty Board; the Federal Communications Commission; the Department of Transportation; the Department of Agriculture; the Social Security Administration; the Department of Housing and Urban Development; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms; the Department of Health and Human Services; and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Kelsi previously worked in the Communications Office of the White House’s Executive Office of the President, where she assisted with judicial nominations, including the confirmation hearings of Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Before law school, she was a social worker in Philadelphia’s foster care system.

Kelsi serves on the Board of Trustees for the Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia and as Program Co-Chair for the Edward Coke Appellate Inn of Court.

Posts by: Kelsi Corkran

Not So Fast – Supreme Court Holds Prepetition Fraudulent Transfer Precludes Post-Petition Discharge in Husky International

One of the goals of the Bankruptcy Code is to provide a debtor with a fresh start. The discharge of prepetition debts at the conclusion of a bankruptcy case is one of the most important ways to attain this fresh start.  On May 16, 2016, the Supreme Court made it harder for debtors to obtain a fresh start by broadening an exception to discharge.

Section 523(a)(2)(A) of the Bankruptcy Code provides that an individual debtor is not discharged from any debt “for money, property [or] services … to the extent obtained by false pretenses, a false representation, or actual fraud[.]” Circuits split as to whether actual fraud under Section 523(a)(2)(A) requires an affirmative misrepresentation; the Fifth Circuit had held that this was a necessary element to prevent discharge, but the Seventh Circuit had held that “actual fraud” encompassed a broader range of behaviors.

The Supreme Court resolved this split, rejecting the Fifth Circuit’s narrow interpretation and finding that the term “actual fraud” does not need to include an affirmative misrepresentation by the debtor. With this broader reading, debtors will be unable to discharge prepetition debts where there is evidence that they inappropriately siphoned of their assets prior to filing for bankruptcy. Husky Int’l Elecs., Inc. v. Ritz, No. 15-145, 2016 WL 2842452 (U.S. May 16, 2016). READ MORE