Practice/Industry Group Overview
Mintz Levin’s nationally recognized bankruptcy practice is supported by a full service firm of approximately 500 attorneys including specialists in virtually all areas of law. Unlike many bankruptcy practices, Mintz Levin has represented all parties and interests involved in the debtor/creditor relationship including debtors, secured and unsecured creditors, investors and equity holders, acquirers of assets and companies, committees, examiners, trustees, receivers, landlords, equipment lessors, executives and directors, and others. We also maintain one of the foremost national bankruptcy practices representing tax-exempt municipal bondholders and their indenture trustees.
One of our strongest assets is our ability to draw upon the wide variety of excellent legal resources available within the firm. This is of particular value in bankruptcy cases. Non-bankruptcy issues can often become the focus of significant disputes of crucial importance to a Chapter 11 proceeding. We frequently address the interplay of bankruptcy law and lender liability law, labor law, pension law, landlord-tenant law, tax law, public and private bond finance, health care law, and environmental law. Working in an integrated fashion with all areas of the firm's practice, our attorneys are particularly qualified to provide comprehensive, creative, and cost-effective representation in the most complex insolvency and reorganization proceedings. Overlapping expertise in litigation and transactional matters allows Mintz Levin to provide added value to our clients. They appreciate dealing with counsel who know the nuts and bolts of deal documents as well as how to attack or defend them. Throughout this process, we are always cognizant of the cost that must be shouldered by the client and the fact that, in the end, the client's needs and desires are paramount.
While Mintz Levin represents a broad range of parties in insolvency proceedings, we are well known for our representation of debtors in Chapter 11 cases and out-of-court restructurings. Our practice has extended to cases and transactions involving virtually all industries, including large retail companies, entities holding large commercial real estate portfolios, high-technology and biotechnology companies, electronic component manufacturers and consumer electronics chains, chains of convenience stores, communications companies, textile manufacturers, food service companies, other financial services companies, hospitals, nursing homes, and hotels. We emphasize helping Debtors find creative and cost-efficient solutions to their problems. This often includes out-of-court restructuring of debt and the avoidance of the need for Chapter 11 proceedings. However, we are equally experienced at pursuing an aggressive legal approach in Chapter 11 proceedings or litigation involving our experienced commercial litigators.
Our experience is not limited solely to the bankruptcy court arena. We are known for implementing and concluding State and Federal Court insolvency proceedings, such as receiverships, as well as assignments for the benefit of creditors. In fact, our deep knowledge and understanding of creditors' remedies significantly increase our ability to represent our debtor clients more effectively and efficiently.
Representative Chapter 11 proceedings:
- Alpha Omega Jewelers
- Joan Fabrics Corporation
- Malden Mills Industries, Inc.
- Filene’s Basement, Inc.
- ACT Manufacturing, Inc.
- Great Northern paper, Inc.
- Divine, Inc.
- Caribbean Petroleum Corporation
- Contemporary Industries Corporation
Representative out-of-court restructurings:
- Adventis Corporation
- Tri Foods, Inc.
- New England Aquarium
Additionally, workouts have been arranged for pharmaceutical companies, airplane manufacturers, retail companies, real estate entities, biotechnology companies, telecommunication companies and printing companies, among many others.
Distressed Debt and Claims Trading
Mintz Levin’s Distressed Debt and Claims Trading practice helps clients take advantage of the opportunities in the distressed debt market. Our team, comprised of bankruptcy and litigation attorneys, has assisted numerous clients with all aspects of the acquisition and sale of distressed investments, including bank loans and trade claims.
Publicly Traded Debt Market Recovery
Over the last 20 years, Mintz Levin has developed one of the country’s most prominent and successful workout and insolvency practices representing holders of publicly traded debt securities. Working as an integrated team with members of our Public Finance Practice, Tax Section, and other practice groups, we have represented bondholders, indenture trustees, bond insurers, and borrowers in financial restructuring and bankruptcy matters.
In particular, we are regarded as one of the most experienced firms in the nation in connection with the representation of holders of tax-exempt bonds and debt securities. Our clients include most of the large institutional holders of bond debt in the U.S. and their indenture trustees—including mutual funds as well as private holders—and their individual claims have ranged up to hundreds of millions of dollars.
Due to the wide variety of industries where publicly traded debt can be found—especially tax-exempt debt—our team of lawyers has also amassed a breadth of experience in insolvency matters that is seldom found in other firms, including cases in the following spaces: healthcare (including hospitals, nursing homes, and retirement communities), aviation and airlines, utilities, waste-water treatment facilities, schools and educational institutions, hotels, convention centers, charitable organizations, marine cargo facilities, mining operations, trucking and transportation companies, steel manufacturing, automobile manufacturing and supply, paper manufacturing, petroleum refining, and various public and quasi-public authorities.
Representing Creditors and Other Parties in Interest in Insolvency Proceedings
We bring the full range of Mintz Levin’s services to our representation of all parties in insolvency proceedings. We have a particular expertise in representing parties providing debtor in possession financing to bankrupt companies. We regularly represent other parties in involved in insolvency proceedings, for example, secured and unsecured creditors, supplies, landlords, executives and boards of directors.
Our attorneys are also experts in the Uniform Commercial Code, including issues concerning liens, security interests, letters of credit, notes and bank checks. They assisted in the drafting and enactment of Revised Article 9 of the UCC in Massachusetts, and frequently give lectures and publish articles relating to the UCC.
Distressed Asset Acquisitions
Our Bankruptcy, Restructuring and Commercial Law attorneys have extensive experience representing buyers and sellers in acquisitions involving insolvent and bankrupt entities. We assist clients in purchasing entire businesses, or select assets from distressed businesses, both in and out of bankruptcy court proceedings. Our expertise includes negotiating break up fees and overbid protection for stalking horse bidders. Our clients have included buyers and sellers of intellectual property, equipment and machinery, real estate, contract rights, receivables and other intangible assets, as well as inventory and works-in-progress.
Mintz Levin brings a multidisciplinary approach to these transactions which can involve complex corporate, intellectual property, health care, real estate, environmental, commercial, tax, regulatory issues, depending on the industry and parties involved. In conjunction with our Business and Finance Section, our attorneys have represented a wide variety of clients in many different jurisdictions throughout the United States and internationally, including venture capitalists and debtors-in-possession, in all phases of such transactions from financing and establishing an acquiring entity, through due diligence, document negotiation, court proceedings, and closings.
Our experience includes domestic, international, and cross-border insolvency and bankruptcy acquisitions. We have extensive experience in dealing with issues that frequently arise in bankruptcy sales, including bidding strategy, structuring the bankruptcy auction, access to employees both before and after the sale and techniques for minimizing successor liability risk.
Insurance Bankruptcy Group
Our bankruptcy and insurance practice attorneys work hand-in-hand to resolve the complex issues that can arise for insurers and reinsurers whose insureds are involved in bankruptcy cases. We have successfully litigated coverage disputes. We also have substantial expertise handling multi-party and multi-site coverage litigation at both the trial and appellate levels, as well as commercial coverage cases involving claims under errors and omissions, directors and officers, workers compensation, employers liability, and professional liability policies. We have particular experience in resolving coverage issues in mass tort bankruptcy cases, including lead and asbestos claims, as well as the successful defense of directors’ and officers’ claims, construction defect claims and other issues.
- Twenty-eight Mintz Levin attorneys were named Leaders in their Fields for 2010 by Chambers USA Leading Lawyer for Business, including five of the firm’s Bankruptcy attorneys, one of whom—Richard E. Mikels, practice group leader—was given a “Star” ranking, indicating someone who has received an exceptional number of recommendations in his field.
- Thirty-nine Mintz Levin attorneys were named in The Best Lawyers in America, 2010 Edition, including six from the firm’s Bankruptcy practice in Boston, New York, and San Diego.
- Massachusetts Super Lawyers includes more attorneys from Mintz Levin’s Bankruptcy, Restructuring, and Commercial Law Practice than any other firm in New England. Mintz Levin is also the only practice in the state to have two members listed in the top 100 lawyers in any field: Richard E. Mikels, listed as one of the top 10 lawyers in the state in any practice area, and William Kannel.
- A member in our San Diego office, Jeffry A. Davis, has consistently been selected as a San Diego Super Lawyer in San Diego Magazine.
- A member in our New York office, Stuart Hirshfield, was selected as a New York Super Lawyer for 2008, 2009, and 2010, as published in the New York Times Magazine.