Articling student wins top Insolvency Institute writing award

September 29, 2021


Maria Belykh, JD’21 and current articling student at Levitt Sheikh LLP, placed first in this year’s annual Insolvency Institute of Canada’s (IIC) law student writing competition.

Belykh’s paper “CCAA Supplier Protection: A System in Need of Reform,” focused on several key issues with the current regime that, if remedied, would result in a system that incentivizes cooperation between debtors and their suppliers and mitigates against the risk of bankruptcies in the COVID-19 era and beyond. It was nominated by professor Thomas Telfer.

“I am honoured to be the recipient of this award and thank the Insolvency Institute of Canada for this opportunity and recognition,” said Belykh. “I learned a lot about the profound effects that a few words in a piece of legislation could have on financially distressed businesses and on the suppliers that they rely on to stay afloat.”

“I am grateful to Professor Telfer for inspiring me to dig deeper when researching and for guiding me in the right direction on this paper,” she added.

In addition to the first-place prize of $7,500, Belykh’s achievement will be recognized at the IIC’s 2021 annual general meeting, and she will have the opportunity to attend their next conference in Kelowna, B.C. in Sept. 2022.

“I am proud Maria Belykh has won this national award for her insolvency scholarship,” said Dean Erika Chamberlain. “Western Law’s strength in this field, bolstered by research and internship opportunities, gives our students the chance to develop a depth of expertise even before completing their JD.”

The IIC Law Student Writing Awards Program allows students at law schools across the country to research insolvency issues, develop ideas, and bring proposals for reform to the attention of the business and legal community.

Since 2011, Western Law students have dominated the competition, bringing home nine first-place awards, five second-place awards, and three third-place awards.