Guidelines

Style Sheet and Editorial Guidelines

ABI reserves the right to edit all papers for content and style. The three winning papers may be edited before publication in an ABI Journal or Committee Newsletter.

Citations

All citations must be placed in footnotes. Any article with citations located within the body of the article will be returned to the author for proper citation placement.

Cases

Always italicize case names and cite according to West Bankruptcy Reporter using B.R.; otherwise, use Blue Book Form.

All articles MUST contain:

  1. Title (no caps)
  2. Byline(s) containing name, firm name, city/state, and e-mail address
  3. 1-line professional bio for the About the Author box (please do not put this information in a footnote; the online submission form provides space for this information)

Suggested Article Length

2,000-2,500 words (around 6 columns). Word count includes footnotes. ABI reserves the right to edit articles due to space constraints when necessary.

Format

Headlines: at top of page, bold. NO all-caps or small caps. Always include a headline.

Subheads: bold subheads, upper/lower case.

Bylines: center and italicize the following beneath the title if you are on the Journal Editorial Board. Always include a byline.

Contributing Editor:
John Doe
Firm or Company; City, State
e-mail address

or the following if you are not on the Editorial Board:
Written by:
John Doe
Firm or Company; City, State
e-mail address

Graphics

Charts and graphs may be placed within your document as you want them to appear, but always include the original images in a separate file(s) (e.g., Excel-generated charts used should be sent in their original Excel files or as PDFs). The online submission form enables you to upload images along with your article.

Quotes

Indicate quotes with quotation marks, or indent the block of text on both sides. If you are omitting the beginning, end or any part of a text block, use the ellipsis (...).

Pull-out Quotes

As space allows, pull-out quotes will be used to emphasize important points. You may indicate potential pull-out quotes at the end of the article. Final determination will be made by the Editor-in-Chief.

Emphasis

Use italics for emphasis (do not use underlines or bolds).

Acronyms

When utilizing an acronym, refer to the item, bill or organization initially by its full title and the acronym in parentheses (do not use quotes). On subsequent references, the acronym stands alone (e.g., The American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI) is headquartered in Alexandria. ABI holds many conferences throughout the year).

ABI Members

If you mention a current ABI member within the article, bold the full name. You can confirm member status by checking the online directory at ABI World (http://www.abiworld.org).

Capitalization

Lowercase "state" in all references, as well as professional titles (unless they precede the person's name) Avoid capitalization except for proper nouns or quoted text. Lowercase references to the chapters of the Bankruptcy Code.

Commas

  • In a simple series, omit the comma before the conjunction (e.g., The flag is red, white and blue).
  • Use the serial comma if an integral element of the series requires a conjunction (e.g., I had orange juice, toast, and ham and eggs for breakfast).
  • Omit comma before Inc., Corp., Co., Ltd., L.P., P.C., etc. (e.g., Smith & Smith Inc.).
  • Omit comma after name and before suffix (e.g., John A. Doe Jr.; John A. Doe Sr.; John A. Doe III).
  • Omit comma following a month and preceding a year (e.g., February 1994 (not February, 1994)).
  • Include commas when listing a full date (e.g., On Feb. 18, 2007, ABI announced its meeting).

Terminology

BAPCPA (the bankruptcy law enacted Oct. 17, 2005)
the Bankruptcy Code
the Code
the Bankruptcy Act (prior to 1978)
chapter 7, chapter 11, etc. (NOT capitalized)
Title 11
U.S. Trustee
panel trustee
bankruptcy judge
bankruptcy court
district court
Section 1031 (at the beginning of a sentence)
ยง 1031 (within a sentence)
out-of-court
parties in interest
Supreme Court
pre-petition
post-petition
debtor in possession (use DIP on second reference)
court (uppercase only when naming a specific court and in all references to the U.S. Supreme Court)

Cities and States

When referring to a city, list the city and state unless the city is one of the following, in which the city stands alone:

ATLANTA
BALTIMORE
BOSTON
CHICAGO
CINCINNATI
CLEVELAND
DALLAS
DENVER
DETROIT
HONOLULU
HOUSTON
INDIANAPOLIS
LAS VEGAS
LOS ANGELES
MIAMI
MILWAUKEE
MINNEAPOLIS
NEW ORLEANS
NEW YORK
OKLAHOMA CITY
PHILADELPHIA
PHOENIX
PITTSBURGH
ST. LOUIS
SALT LAKE CITY
SAN ANTONIO
SAN DIEGO
SAN FRANCISCO
SEATTLE

In listings of cities and states, all states should be abbreviated except Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Ohio, Texas and Utah. List the District of Columbia as Washington, D.C.

State Abbreviations:

Ala.
Ariz.
Ark.
Calif.
Colo.
Conn.
Del.
Fla.
Ga.
Ill.
Ind.
Kan.
Ky.
La.
Md.
Mass.
Mich.
Minn.
Miss.
Mo.
Mont.
Neb.
Nev.
N.H.
N.J.
N.M.
N.Y.
N.C.
N.D.
Okla.
Ore.
Pa.
R.I.
S.C.
S.D.
Tenn.
Vt.
Va.
Wash.
W.Va.
Wis.
Wyo.

Spell out the names of the states when they stand alone in textual material (e.g., The floods in Missouri were devastating).