Skip to main content

The Globe and Mail

Quebec seeks role in U.S. bankruptcy proceedings for MM&A railway

The beginning of the Maine, Montreal & Atlantic Railway (MMA) in St. Jean, PQ on July 16, 2013.

Peter Power/The Globe and Mail

Quebec is seeking a role in the U.S. bankruptcy court system following the deadly derailment of a train owned by Montreal Maine & Atlantic Railway.

Quebec justice minister Bertrand St-Arnaud says the provincial government is seeking to ensure there's compensation for those affected by the MM&A train derailment in Lac-Mégantic.

He says the government also wants to ensure that Quebec taxpayers don't bear the costs of decontamination and rebuilding.

Story continues below advertisement

The government has appointed a Quebec bankruptcy specialist with standing in New York State to make representations on behalf of an informal creditors' committee.

The committee represents the province, the municipality and members of a class-action lawsuit.

Luc Despins of the firm Paul Hastings will ask the court and the U.S. Trustee Office to officially recognize the creditors' committee.

The province has also issued a legal demand to MM&A, Canadian Pacific Railway and several other companies it says are responsible for picking up the tab for mopping up from the July 6 train derailment, which killed 47 people, devastated the town core and dumped millions of litres of crude oil into the environment.

Calgary-based Canadian Pacific Railway has said it holds no financial responsibility for the rail disaster.

Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway has been granted Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the U.S. while its Canadian subsidiary has creditor protection.

According to court documents, MM&A owes about $48-million to 128 unsecured creditors, including $43.4-million to its parent company and $2.35-million to the operator of the NB Southern Railway.

Story continues below advertisement

Report an error
As of December 20, 2017, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this resolved by the end of January 2018. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.