Bulls, Bears, and Pigs: Revisiting the Legal Minefield of Virginia Fraudulent Transfer Law

Isaac A. McBeth *

Landon C. Davis III **

With the state of the Virginia economy as it is, the law surrounding fraudulent transfers has never been more relevant to members of the Virginia Bar than at the present. There is an old investment truism which states, “Bulls make money, bears make money, pigs get slaughtered.” Admittedly, this quip is more applicable to a financial maverick on Wall Street than it is to a Virginia general practitioner. Nonetheless, it hints at the very real truth that those who are reckless with their property run the risk of losing it. Much in the same way, an attorney who recklessly structures a transfer of a client’s property without giving due regard to risks imposed by fraudulent transfer law could wreak disastrous consequences on the client and find herself in an ethical dilemma. Unfortunately, Virginia’s body of fraudulent transfer law is less than well-defined and acts as a legal minefield—out of sight and capable of harming the unwary who traverse it.

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*   Associate, Hirschler Fleischer, P.C., Richmond, Virginia; J.D., 2011, University of Richmond School of Law; B.A., 2008, American Military University. The author specifically thanks Professor David Epstein for his invaluable guidance in forming this article and the members of the University of Richmond Law Review for their hard work in bringing it to fruition.

** Associate, Parrish, Houck & Snead, PLC, Fredericksburg, Virginia; J.D., 2011, University of Richmond School of Law; B.S., 2008, University of Mary Washington.