SGL Carbon Corp., the U.S. subsidiary of a German company, does not face bankruptcy-causing mass tort claims as Johns-Manville or Owens-Corning did. But the maker of graphite electrodes still hopes to use the Bankruptcy Code the way those companies did to shield it from financially debilitating litigation-in this case, to cope with an antitrust lawsuit.

SGL got support for its strategy on April 23, when the chief judge of the U.S. district court in Delaware agreed that the company could file for Chapter 11 even though SGL was otherwise solvent and even though no judgment has been entered in the price-fixing litigation, which is pending in federal court in Philadelphia.