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In The News

William J. Brown Comments on Bankruptcy Trends  More

William J. Brown Selected Local Counsel for Coyne International Enterprises Bankruptcy Matters  More

William J. Brown Appointed Receiver for Premier Debt Acquisitions and Related Entities  More

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Press Releases

Phillips Lytle LLP Listed Among 2018 U.S. News – Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms”  More

Phillips Lytle LLP Adds Attorney Catherine N. Eisenhut   More

Phillips Lytle Among Highest Ranked Law Firms in Buffalo with Seven Top Listed Practice Areas in The Best Lawyers In America© 2018  More

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Speaking Engagements

14th Annual Western New York Bankruptcy Conference, Monroe County Bar Center for Education and Erie Institute of Law, June 2017  More

13th Annual Western New York Bankruptcy Conference, Monroe County Bar Center for Education and Erie Institute of Law, June 2016  More

Western New York Bankruptcy Conference, Monroe County Bar Center for Education and Erie Institute of Law, May 2015  More

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“A Note On Mortgage Assignments In New York,” Law 360, January 2017  More

“Two recent decisions change bankruptcy landscape,” Rochester Business Journal, July 2016  More

“Court decisions impact core bankruptcy law principles,” Rochester Business Journal, July 2015  More

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Bankruptcy & Creditors’ Rights

The successful representation of creditors and financially-troubled businesses requires an experienced understanding of complex laws and creative financial arrangements. An attorney’s ability to artfully blend legal and financial acumen to maximize the value of the distressed organization typically benefits both creditors and debtors alike.

Our attorneys have broad experience in the areas of:       

  • Creditors’ rights
  • Corporate reorganizations
  • Bankruptcy
  • Acquisitions and dispositions of troubled companies
  • Workouts
  • Lender liability
  • Restructurings
  • Avoidance actions

Phillips Lytle stresses an interdisciplinary approach, utilizing lawyers from our Banking & Financial Services, Real Estate, Bankruptcy & Creditors’ Rights, Corporate, Environment & Energy and Litigation Practice Areas to form effective teams that meet the special needs of each matter.

The practice encompasses all aspects of federal bankruptcy law as well as state and international laws governing secured transactions, creditors’ rights, fraudulent and other avoidable conveyances, cross-border refinancings and restructurings, corporate reorganizations and real estate. While the historical foundation of the practice is the firm’s representation of financial institutions, our attorneys also represent all types of secured and unsecured creditors as well as Chapter 7, Chapter 11 and indenture trustees, debtors, landlords, lessees, acquirers, vendors and suppliers, and official creditor and equity committees.

Our attorneys have extensive Chapter 11 reorganization and Chapter 7 bankruptcy experience, and regularly deal with a full range of business and litigation issues, including pre- and post-petition financing, cash collateral orders, automatic stay litigation, contested plan confirmations, sales of claims, asset sales, plan mergers and preference and fraudulent conveyance litigation. We represent lenders, real estate and equipment lessors and lessees, utilities and other special classes of creditors in bankruptcy cases.

For decades, Phillips Lytle has represented creditors and troubled companies in out-of-court restructurings.

Partners in this practice area have significant experience in complex commercial real estate financing transactions, conventional and asset-based commercial loans, industrial revenue bond financing, leasing transactions of all types, leveraged buy-out lending, syndicated and participation credits, letters of credit, floor plan financing and timeshare financing. Among the lender and indenture trustee clients the firm has represented publicly are JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Royal Bank of Canada, National Australia Bank, Generale Bank, CIT, General Motors, General Motors Acceptance Corp., Ford Motor Credit Company, ING Capital Markets and PNC Bank and its affiliates.

Lawyers in the practice area have been significantly involved in bankruptcy cases of national and international significance, including, among others:

  • Delphi Corporation
  • Dana Corporation
  • St. Vincent Catholic Medical Centers
  • Placid Oil Company
  • Hunt Brothers
  • Columbia Gas
  • O’Brien Environmental Energy
  • Drexel Burnham Lambert
  • Integrated Resources
  • Bennett Funding Group
  • R. H. Macy & Co.
  • Jamesway
  • Leslie Fay
  • Standard Brands Paint
  • L. J. Hooker
  • Enron Corporation and its affiliates
  • WorldCom
  • Buffalo Sabres
  • Kaufman Footwear Corporation
  • Wire Rope Corporation of America
  • Rocor International
  • El Paso Electric
  • Wheeling Pittsburgh Steel
  • Phoenix Steel
  • White Motor
  • Sharon Steel
  • Continental Airlines
  • Eastern Airlines
  • Frontier Airlines
  • Maruko
  • D. F. Antonelli
  • Peter J. Schmitt
  • Myerson & Kuhn
  • Laventhal & Horwath 

Banking/Lender Liability Litigation

Our firm is staffed with experienced Partners, Associates and Paralegals who regularly engage in bank-related litigation matters. The depth of our experience and talent enables us to provide skilled practitioners that understand the financial services industry, so that our clients can get the representation they need and the efficiency and responsiveness they expect and deserve.

Our financial institution Litigation attorneys achieve successful outcomes in state and federal courts and arbitrations in a number of areas:

  • Collections of commercial loans
  • Enforcement of security interests and seizure of collateral
  • Commercial reasonableness of sales of collateral under Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC)
  • Judgment enforcement proceedings (including fraudulent conveyance, contempt and installment payment order proceedings)
  • Commercial paper and electronic payment transactions
  • Perfection and priority of security interests
  • Lead bank and participant bank controversies
  • Regulatory compliance
  • Lender liability
  • Complex commercial foreclosures
  • Letter of credit disputes
  • Money laundering
  • RICO
  • Premises liability claims, including claims alleging inadequate security at ATM facilities
  • Disclosure and description of terms in credit card agreements

Our Litigators also counsel our financial institution clients about dispute avoidance, and help them develop business strategies that avoid unnecessary exposure to claims.

Extensive litigation experience in complex bankruptcy, workout and financial restructuring matters is brought to bear for the benefit of our clients in negotiations and litigated matters. We use an interdisciplinary approach to matters in these areas by utilizing lawyers from our Banking, Real Estate, Bankruptcy, Corporate and Litigation Practices in legal teams for the special needs of each matter.

William J. Brown

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