Bankruptcy Appellate Panels
Bankruptcy Appellate Panels (BAPs) are 3-judge panels authorized to hear appeals of bankruptcy court decisions. These panels are a unit of the federal courts of appeals.
BAPs were established under the Bankruptcy Reform Acts of 1978 and 1994. 28 U.S.C. §158 sets forth jurisdiction for appeals of bankruptcy decisions and authorizes the establishment of BAPs upon the order of the circuit judicial councils. BAP judges continue to serve as active bankruptcy judges in addition to their duties on the appellate panel.
Appeals from dispositive orders of bankruptcy judges may be taken to the district court or the BAP (if one has been established and the district has chosen to participate), with further appeal as of right to the court of appeals for the circuit. The BAP will hear an appeal of a bankruptcy court decision, unless one of the parties to the appeal makes a proper and timely election to have the appeal heard by the district court in accordance with requirements of federal statutes and procedural rules.
The following circuits have established BAPs:
1st, 6th, 8th, 9th, and 10th Circuits.