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Response or Comment

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Since Sturgis v. Crowninshield, 4 Wheat. 122, it has been clear that State Insolvency Laws were valid (within certain well-defined limits) during the non-existence of a Federal Bankruptcy Act, and that upon the enactment of a Federal Bankruptcy Act the State laws were superseded and suspended so far as they were in conflict with the Federal legislation. The difficulty has been in determining when there was such conflict, and it has arisen in various ways. For instance, the Federal Bankruptcy Act permits any natural person to become a voluntary bankrupt, but provides that no involuntary proceedings shall be taken against a farmer or a wage earner, or a person owing less than $1000. The question has frequently been raised whether State Insolvency Laws are still effective in the cases of persons thus exempted by the Federal Act, and has been variously decided. See Littlefield v. Gay, 96 Me. 422; Lace v. Smith, 34 R. I. 3 (commented on in 11 MICH. L. REV. 60); Rockville Bank v. Latham, 88 Conn. 70; and Pitcher v. Standish, 90 Conn. 601,(commented on in 15 Micn. L. Rzv. 68). The Supreme Court of the United States, in the recent case of Stellwagen v. Clum, 38 Sup. Ct. 215, has now passed on another phase of the same question.