Kathy Speaker Kathy Bazoian Phelps
   Bazoian Author
   Phelps Lawyer
Specializing in Unwinding Ponzi Schemes    
Video Demos        Keynotes        Testimonials kphelps@kathybphelps.com
  Video Demos  


Partner, Raines Feldman LLP

Senior Counsel, Diamond McCarthy LLP, 2013 – 2021

Partner, Danning, Gill, Diamond & Kollitz LLP, 1991 – 2013

Juris Doctor, University of California
at Los Angeles, 1991

Bachelor of Arts, Pomona College, 1988

Bar Admissions

State Bar California, 1991

United States District Court, Central District of California, 1991

United States District Court, Southern District of California, 2011

United States District Court, Eastern District of California, 2011

United States District Court, Western District of Michigan, 2010

Professional Concentration

Kathy represents trustees and receivers, debtors, and secured and unsecured creditors in bankruptcy cases.

She also has extensive litigation experience representing both plaintiffs and defendants in a wide variety of bankruptcy litigation matters

She frequently represents operating and liquidating trustees in cases pending in the United States Bankruptcy Court as well as receivers in the United States District Court and the Superior Court of the State of California.

She is recognized by peers for her ability to trace and recover assets in large-scale complex cases and for her familiarity with all issues arising in Ponzi cases.

She has developed a specialty in representing bankruptcy trustees and receivers in litigation involving fraudulent activities and has been lead counsel in large-scale litigation involving recovery of assets in Ponzi scheme cases.

Media Quotations

New York Times, on February 5, 2021, in an article entitled, A Bigger Risk Than GameStop? Beware the Ponzi Scheme Next Door, by Paul Sullivan.

RIAIntel, April 7, 2020, in an article entitled, Madoff Is Behind Bars. But With Markets Infected by Covid-19, More Ponzi Schemes May Be Unmasked, by Greg Bartalos.

Fox News on March 7, 2020, in an article entitled, Bernie Madoff billion-dollar ponzi scheme and what he wants now: Everything you should know, by Barnini Chakraborty.

Business Insider on March 13, 2019, in an article entitled, The world's first embezzlement insurance looks to protect rich investors from Ponzi schemes like Madoff, by Meghan Morris.

Orlando Sentinel on February 5, 2019, in an article entitled, Villages resident tied to massive Ponzi scheme agrees to repay $1M made from fraudulent securities, by Martin E. Comas.

Bloomberg on December 8, 2018, in an article entitled, Madoff's Victims Are Close to Getting Their $19 Billion Back, by Erik Larson and Christopher Cannon. To see the article, click here.

Voice of America Fraud Talk on August 25, 2014, interviewed by Chris Marquet.

The Wall Street Journal on May 13, 2014, in an article entitled, Madoff Fraud Claims Swell, by Dan Strumpf.

The New York Times, July 18, 2013, in an article entitled, Bank in Madoff Case Settles With Some Plaintiffs and Gets Favorable Jury Ruling, by Susan Antilla.

The Deseret News, June 14, 2013, in an article entitled, In Faith Communities, Fraudsters Prey on Trust, by Devon Merling.

The Ponzi Blog was cited in the Concord Monitor on March 21, 2013, in an editorial entitled, Lawmakers Should Reject Fund for FRM Victims.

The Art Newspaper, February 27, 2013, in an article entitled, Gauguin in Alleged Fraud by Former NFL Star, by Riah Pryor.

The Wall Street Journal, March 19, 2012, in an article entitled, Attorney Who Wrote the Book on Ponzi Schemes Discusses Mets Deal, by Jacqueline Palank.

The Wall Street Journal, January 5, 2012, in an article entitled, The Madoff Liquidation, Three Years Later, by Jacqueline Palank.

The Memphis Commercial Appeal, February 17, 2011, in an article entitled, Legal Opinions Favor Stanford Investors, Not Charities, by Toby Sells.

The Wall Street Journal, January 3, 2011, in an article entitled, Prosecutors, Trustees Fight For Dominance In Ponzi Bankruptcies, by Jacqueline Palank.

The Pasadena Weekly, March 20, 2008, in an article entitled, Smoke Screen, by Chip Jacobs.


Kathy's interests and accomplishments include extensive travel and the study of the Chinese language.


Ponzi-Proof Your Investments: An Investor’s Guide to Avoiding Ponzi Schemes and Other Fraudulent Scams (IRR Publishing 2013)

The Ponzi Book: A Legal Resource for Unraveling Ponzi Schemes (LexisNexis® 2012), co-authored with Hon. Steven Rhodes, United States Bankruptcy Judge for the Eastern District of Michigan

The Depths Of Deepening Insolvency: Damage Exposure For Officers, Directors and Others (American Bankruptcy Institute 2013), co-authored with Prof. Jack F. Williams

FraudNet Compendium, contributing author of chapter on Ponzi Schemes (to be published in 2013)

Author of The Ponzi Scheme Blog at www.theponzischemeblog.com

Handling Claims in Ponzi Scheme Bankruptcy and Receivership Cases, 42 Golden Gate U. L. Rev. 567 (2012)

What Do You Do When the Feds Come For Your Assets? Third-Party Claims in Forfeiture Proceedings, American Bar Association Business Law Section's Online Resource, Business Law Today (June 21, 2012)

Supplementing the Tools in the Trustee's Toolbox, NABTalk, The Journal of the National Conference of Bankruptcy Trustees (Spring 2012)

Liability of Professionals and Insiders in Ponzi Schemes, 27 CEB Cal. Bus. L. Prac. 22 (Winter 2012)

Emergence of Mareva by Letter: Banks' Liability to Non-Customer Victims of Fraud, Business Law International, Vol. 12 No. 2 (May 2011)

In Pari Delicto and The Blame Game: Should Receivers Get Caught in the Fray?, Receivership News (January 2011)

Opportunities for Trustees in Ponzi Scheme Cases, NABTalk, The Journal of the National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees (Summer 2010)

Membership and Positions

National Association of Federal Equity Receivers

  • Board of Directors, 2012 – 2014, October 2016 to present
  • Secretary, 2019 to present
  • Co-Chair, Conference Committee, 2012 to 2020, presently a member
  • Chair, Judicial Outreach Committee, 2016 to 2019, presently a member
  • Member, Nominating Committee, 2016 to 2019
  • Member, Regional Dinner Committee, 2017 to present

California Receivers Forum, Los Angeles/Orange County Chapter

  • Editor in Chief of Receivership News, 2012 to present
  • Secretary, 2010 - 2012
  • Board of Directors, 2010 to present

American Bankruptcy Institute

  • Board of Directors, 2017 to 2020
  • Member, Publications Committee, 2017 - 2019
  • Co-Chair of Commercial Fraud Committee, April 2015 to 2017
  • Special Task Director of Commercial Fraud Committee, 2013-2015

American College of Bankruptcy

  • Fellow, Class of 2016
  • Co-chair of Ninth Circuit Distinguished Law Student Award Committee, 2017 to present
  • Member, Finance Committee, 2018 to present

Member, International Chamber of Commerce FraudNet global network, 2012-2015, www.icc-fraudnet.org

American Bar Association, White Collar Crime, Asset Forfeiture and Business Bankruptcy Subcommittee focused on parallel insolvency and criminal proceedings, 2012 to 2018

National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees, Member

Armenian Bar Association, Member

Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum, Member


Raines Feldman LLP
Los Angeles, California
Ponzi Proof Your Investments:
An Investor’s Guide to
Avoiding Ponzi Schemes
The Ponzi Book:
A Legal Resource for
Unraveling Ponzi Schemes

To reserve your date for any of Kathy’s programs, call Kathy Phelps 310.488.4883 or email her at kphelps@kathybphelps.com

  Copyright © Kathy Bazoian Phelps.  All rights reserved.