Bankruptcy and Restructuring

Legal Services

Bankruptcy and Restructuring

Kerr Russell has extensive experience in every aspect of the law involving bankruptcy, reorganization, corporate restructurings and out-of-court workouts. Our attorneys have represented corporate debtors, creditors’ committees, trustees, receivers, secured lenders and unsecured creditors in a variety of industries inside and outside of court. We help creditors maximize their recoveries, and businesses experiencing distress navigate challenges and determine a path forward.

Kerr Russell bankruptcy and restructuring attorneys have assisted numerous small to middle-market businesses with the resolution of their insolvency issues. Kerr Russell attorneys are skilled at reaching creative solutions to the legal problems of financially distressed businesses outside of court. Our attorneys have successfully guided numerous businesses through successful out-of-court restructurings that preserve business operations for owners and employees while enhancing value for creditors.

Where necessary, Kerr Russell attorneys have successfully guided numerous businesses through the Chapter 11 process, including automotive, retail, manufacturing, aviation, health care, real estate, construction and entertainment. In light of the challenges facing health care organizations—including physicians groups, hospitals, and health systems—in today’s complex, heavily regulated, and volatile economy, we have gained considerable experience working with clients who are struggling to compete effectively in this environment.

In all restructuring matters, we are able to build consensus among key constituencies, including creditors, lenders, and equity holders, to craft resolutions that get our clients out of court and back to running their businesses. We also provide zealous advocacy to ensure that assets are protected to the greatest extent possible.

We emphasize a team approach in bankruptcy and restructuring matters. Our attorneys work closely with and draw on the talents of firm colleagues in other practice areas including corporate, securities law, employment, real estate, tax and litigation.  We have significant experience in representing both public and private companies in insolvency matters. Our fee structure enables us to handle complex insolvency matters for our clients in a cost-effective manner.

Our services in bankruptcy and restructuring include:

  • Counseling financially troubled companies through out-of-court restructurings in order to avoid bankruptcy and, if necessary, assisting them with bankruptcy filings
  • Representing small to middle-market businesses in all aspects of the Chapter 11 bankruptcy process, including negotiating debtor-in-possession financing agreements, § 363 sales and preparing plans of reorganization
  • Representing creditors’ committees, creditors and trustees in Chapter 11 proceedings
  • Representing clients in bankruptcy litigation, including actions to recover preferential transfers and fraudulent conveyance and claims resolution
  • Representing purchasers and sellers of assets of insolvent companies both in and out of bankruptcy
  • Representing secured and unsecured creditors’ interests both in and out of bankruptcy
  • Assisting clients with out-of-court loan workouts and restructurings, including negotiating and drafting forbearance agreements
  • Representing court-appointed receivers
  • Representing companies and individuals with a resolution of tax debt, both in and out of bankruptcy
  • Representing clients in liquidation and restructuring proceedings including assignments for the benefit of creditors, out-of-court creditor compositions, receiverships and Chapter 7 bankruptcies
  • Representing trustees and corporate restructuring officers in bankruptcy proceedings
  • Advising boards of directors regarding their fiduciary obligations as a result of pending insolvency
  • Protecting rights of creditors by analyzing their secured position and assisting with asset recovery and foreclosure
  • Advising clients in the automotive industry with troubled customers or troubled suppliers to maximize the recovery of claims and ensure continued production
+Practicing Attorneys & Staff

Attorneys

Brandi M. Dobbs

Law Clerk

Jason W. Bank

Member

William C. Blasses

Member

F. Broc Gullett

Associate

+Related Insights

October 14, 2019

Bankruptcy Article by William Blasses in Corp! Magazine

William C. Blasses discusses how to identify, assess, and mitigate the risks of working with a distressed business.

October 8, 2019

Jason Bank Article Discusses Workouts and Bankruptcy Proceedings for Business in Michigan Bar Journal

The October 2019 Michigan Bar Journal features an article by Jason W. Bank. In the article, he discusses key aspects of representing financially troubled businesses in loan workouts, restructurings, and Chapter 11 business bankruptcy proceedings. He also discusses the common mistakes business owners make when dealing with a bank or lender.

September 5, 2019

Bankruptcy Alert - New Bankruptcy Laws Aimed to Help Small Businesses, Farmers and Veterans

Jason W. Bank highlights recent changes to the Bankruptcy Code and their impact on small businesses, veterans, and farmers. As of August 23, 2019, several new bankruptcy acts became law: the “Small Business Reorganization Act of 2019” (H.R. 3311), the “HAVEN Act” (H.R. 2938) and “Family Farmer Relief Act of 2019” (H.R. 2336). These acts represent the first substantive changes to the U.S. Bankruptcy Code since 2005.

January 26, 2018

Download Kerr Russell's updated firm brochure and overview of services

Kerr Russell is proud of Detroit. We are proud to have had a seat at the table here since 1874. Our exceptional attorneys understand the unique challenges facing business leaders. Our legal solutions are prompt, accurate, economical, and focused around your needs in every area. We know Michigan business like the back of our hands.

January 15, 2018

Honoring the legacy of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.

On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and every day, we at Kerr Russell honor Reverend King’s leadership and his legacy as well as the critical importance of diversity and opportunity in this great land of ours. Strength comes from difference; a multiplicity of voices brings positive change; understanding and inclusion inspire creativity and innovation.

August 15, 2014

Jason W. Bank authors article "The Detroit Bankruptcy: The Olympics of Restructuring"

Kevyn Orr referred to the herculean task of fixing the City’s financial woes as the “Olympics of Restructuring.” Mr. Orr has officially entered the medal round based upon the recent filing of the City of Detroit’s Plan of Adjustment, which sets forth his proposal for repayment of creditors and his vision for improving services for City residents. Very shortly, Mr. Orr will attempt to earn the gold medal of restructuring by obtaining Bankruptcy Court approval of his plan.

June 11, 2014

Jason W. Bank authors, "Navigating Financial Turbulence; Preserving Air Carrier Certificates in Chapter 11"

The aviation industry has endured a significant amount of financial distress since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. In recent years, regional air carriers, a once-profitable segment of the airline industry, have experienced a bumpy ride due to a decreased demand in military spending, wildly fluctuating fuel costs and an overall weakness in the global economic markets. Several regional airlines have recently filed for bankruptcy to pursue mergers, sales or other restructurings of their operations.

October 12, 2013

Jason W. Bank authors "The Motor City Faces a Rocky Road in Chapter 9 Bankruptcy"

On the day of his appointment as the City of Detroit's emergency financial manager, Kevyn Orr referred to the herculean task of fixing the city's balance sheet as the "Olympics of Restructuring." In order to earn the gold medal, Mr. Orr has filed the largest Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history. This article discusses some of the key aspects of Chapter 9 and explores the significant differences between Chapter 9 and Chapter 11 business reorganizations.

July 11, 2011

Jason Bank authors "Overview of Chapter 9 Bankruptcy"

As cities, townships and municipalities struggle to address the sobering reality of a mountain of debt and decreased revenues, one tool at their disposal is Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy. For many at the state and local level, filing for Chapter 9 bankruptcy is still viewed as the unthinkable, nuclear option. For others, Chapter 9 is viewed as a viable tool to restore financial stability to a community.
+Related News

September 3, 2019

15 Kerr Russell Attorneys Recognized on the 2019 Michigan Super Lawyers List

A total of 15 lawyers from Kerr Russell are named as Thomson Reuters, 2019 Michigan Super Lawyers. The award is given annually to attorneys who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement.

August 15, 2019

15 Lawyers From Kerr Russell Are Recognized In The Best Lawyers In America© 2020

A total of 15 lawyers from Kerr Russell are named to the prestigious 2020 Edition of the Best Lawyers in America©. The award is given annually in recognition of being named as part of the “top legal talent in the U.S.”

August 9, 2019

Kerr Russell Attorneys Prevail in Case Before the Michigan Court of Appeals

William C. Blasses and Daniel G. Beyer recently obtained a favorable opinion from the Michigan Court of Appeals, affirming and upholding a Macomb County Circuit Court judge’s decision. 

June 11, 2019

Attorney James E. DeLine to Speak at the Central States Bankruptcy Workshop

The American Bankruptcy Institute's (ABI) Central States Bankruptcy Workshop is June 13-15, 2019.  Kerr Russell attorney, James E. DeLine will be speaking on effective client interviews, deposition strategies, techniques and more.

January 11, 2019

William C. Blasses Elevated to Member of Kerr Russell

Kerr Russell is pleased to announce that William C. Blasses has been selected to become a Member of the firm effective January 1, 2019.

October 29, 2018

Attorneys William Blasses and James DeLine Prevail at Trial on a Claim of Non-dischargeability on Behalf of a Creditor

Kerr Russell attorneys William Blasses and James DeLine prevailed at trial on a claim of non-dischargeability on behalf of a creditor who was owed over $370,000.

September 20, 2018

Kerr Russell recognizes our 2018 dbusiness Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit honorees

Kerr Russell recognizes this year’s dbusiness Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit honorees - 21 attorneys, many for multiple practice areas.

September 7, 2018

15 Kerr Russell attorneys recognized as 2018 Super Lawyers

Congratulations to the following attorneys who have been designated "Super Lawyers" by Thomson Reuters:

September 4, 2018

Jason Bank publishes "Nuts and Bolts of Evaluating Third-Party Releases in Chapter 11 Plans" in the American Bankruptcy Institute Journal

Kerr Russell member Jason Bank (bankruptcy/turnaround) has been published in the September issue of The American Bankruptcy Institute Journal.

May 15, 2018

Kerr Russell supports, attends Matrix Human Services Mission Fundraising Breakfast

Kerr Russell was pleased to support Matrix Human Services today at the Matrix Mission Fundraising Breakfast at the Detroit Athletic Club. A magnificent nonprofit doing incredible work in our community. Thank you, Matrix. #MatrixMission. Attending on behalf of Kerr Russell were Jason Bank, Brandy Mathie, and Roy Sexton.

May 13, 2018

2018 Detroit Heart Walk a great (if rainy) success - Kerr Russell colleagues contribute over $6,000

Kerr Russell's participation in the 25th anniversary Detroit Heart Walk, benefiting the Southeast Michigan American Heart Association, was a great success, with Kerr Russell colleagues raising $6,230 to contribute to the cause. This was in addition to the firm's overall sponsorship and to member Jason Bank's leadership on the Heart Walk's executive cabinet.

April 26, 2018

Kerr Russell, Jason Bank support Southeast Michigan American Heart Association Heart Walk ... seventh inning stretch!

We are in the seventh inning stretch, folks. The Southeast Michigan American Heart Association​ Heart Walk is just over two weeks away. Kerr Russell has been so pleased to support this effort to increase heart health awareness in our community. Diet and exercise and regular screenings are the key to a happy and healthy heart. Our firm is represented by Jason Bank​, member - bankruptcy/turnaround, on the Heart Walk executive cabinet. Henry Ford Health System​'s Wright Lassiter, III and Wayne State University​'s M. Roy Wilson chair the committee.

April 4, 2018

Jason Bank appointed to Chapter Health Working Group by TMA Global

Kerr Russell member Jason Bank (turnaround, bankruptcy) has been appointed to the Chapter Health Working Group of the Turnaround Management Association (TMA) Global.

March 29, 2018

Detroit Public Television's PBSNewsHour and Nightly Business Report to be sponsored by Kerr Russell

Kerr Russell is pleased to support Detroit Public Television, and, beginning April 2, the following spot will air during PBS NewsHour (weekdays, 6-7 pm) and the Nightly Business Report (weekdays, 7-7:30 pm). View the spot here.

March 21, 2018

Toys R Us Bankruptcy and Ongoing Retail Distress

Toys R Us has filed documents in U.S. Bankruptcy Court detailing plans to close all of its stores and liquidate its remaining inventory. This process will result in the closure of 735 stores and eliminate 33,000 jobs. Toys R Us earned fifteen percent of all toy-related revenue in the U.S., but could not sustain a viable, competitive business while saddled with a whopping $5 billion of debt.

March 19, 2018

Kerr Russell kicks off American Heart Association Heart Walk involvement

We had a full house today for Kerr Russell's Southeast Michigan American Heart Association | American Stroke Association #HeartWalk firm-wide kick-off! Thanks to Jason Bank, Member and Kerr Russell's representative on the 25th Anniversary Heart Walk Executive Cabinet, as well as Annie Hill, AHA Development Director, for their remarks. Kerr Russell's team page: http://lnkd.in/dxjus74

March 7, 2018

ACG/TMA co-host “Women In Leadership,” a panel of leading Detroit-based female executives discussing opportunities and challenges for women; Kerr Russell a silver sponsor

On March 7 at The Townsend Hotel, the Association for Corporate Growth Detroit Women's Forum & Turnaround Management Association Detroit Network of Women hosted “Women In Leadership,” a panel of leading Detroit-based female executives discussing opportunities and challenges for women in this C-level role. Kerr Russell is a silver-level sponsor of TMA.

February 26, 2018

Kerr Russell's latest ad "Driven By Results" debuts in Crain's M&A, Biggest Deals issue this week

Kerr Russell's latest ad "Driven By Results" debuts in Crain's M&A, Biggest Deals issue this week. The ad emphasizes the firm's 143-year presence in Detroit as part of the larger business and legal community. "We understand the region. We know what moves Michigan. We are committed to the community."

February 20, 2018

Second session of 2018 Detroit Bar Association "Inn of Court" series is a capacity affair

Standing room only for the February 20th Detroit Bar Association “Inn of Court” session as Team 1 made its presentation. Kerr Russell is pleased to host the series which runs monthly through May. Associates Katherine Cser and William Blasses are participants in the program.

February 16, 2018

Dan Beyer, William Blasses obtain favorable judgment (deed in lieu of foreclosure)

Daniel Beyer and William Blasses successfully obtained judgment in favor of one of the Kerr Russell’s clients in the Macomb County Circuit Court. The plaintiff, a defaulting borrower, sought to overturn a deed in lieu of foreclosure in an effort to unwind a transaction and try to recover property it had previously transferred to the lender.

February 15, 2018

Jason Bank, new member of Detroit Athletic Club

Congratulations to Kerr Russell member Jason Bank (bankruptcy, restructuring) on becoming a member of the Detroit Athletic Club. Other Kerr Russell partners who belong to the DAC include Mark Cunningham, Dan Schulte, and Kurt Vilders. Associate Stephen Reaume is also a member.

January 18, 2018

Detroit Lawyer Magazine, February 2018, features William Blasses

Kerr Russell's William Blasses, associate, is named as one of Michigan Lawyers Weekly's "Up & Coming Lawyers, Class of 2017." You can read the full magazine here. Kerr Russell was the focus of Detroit Lawyer's December 2016-January 2017 issue, which you can view here.

January 16, 2018

ACG/TMA co-host, Kerr Russell sponsors "Automotive Landscape: An Inside Look at a Driver of the Global Economy"

The Association for Corporate Growth Detroit​/Turnaround Management Association​ Detroit joint breakfast “The Automotive Landscape: An Inside Look at a Driver of the Global Economy” was held on January 16 at the Detroit Athletic Club. Kerr Russell is a silver sponsor of TMA. Presenters included Michael Robinet, Managing Director, IHS Markit​’s Automotive Global Advisory, and Peter Nagle, IHS Markit​’s Automotive Senior Automotive Economist, North American Industry Analysis.

January 15, 2018

Influencing the Legal Landscape - new Kerr Russell ad to appear in dbusiness

Kerr Russell introduces the third ad in the new "Est. in Detroit 1874" series: "Influencing the legal landscape." The piece emphasizes the firm's 143-year presence in Detroit as part of the larger business and legal community. "We don't sit on the sidelines. We are active in industry groups and we're driving legislative change. We are leaders in the law."

January 3, 2018

Kerr Russell highlighted in Best Lawyers - Business, Winter 2017 issue

Look for Kerr Russell attorneys and advertising (pages 92-95) in the Best Lawyers - Business, Winter 2017 issue. Earlier in 2017, a number of Kerr Russell's attorneys and practice areas were honored with U.S. News and World Report Best Lawyers recognition.

December 18, 2017

Kerr Russell team makes holiday donations to Capuchin Soup Kitchen, Wigs 4 Kids, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Ann Arbor, and Children's Hospital of Michigan

One of our traditions here at Kerr Russell is to hold a holiday raffle to benefit three local charities as well as to conduct a toy drive for local children. This year's raffle (many of the beautiful and festive prizes picture here) raised a record total of $3,450 which will be divided equally among three organizations: Capuchin Soup Kitchen, Wigs 4 Kids of Michigan, Inc., and Ronald McDonald House Charities of Ann Arbor.

December 7, 2017

William Blasses honored as Up & Coming Lawyer at Michigan Lawyers Weekly 2017 luncheon

William Blasses was recognized as one of Michigan Lawyers Weekly's "Up & Coming Lawyers" at their 2017 luncheon on December 7 at the Detroit Marriott in Troy.

December 5, 2017

Kerr Russell attorneys attend dbusiness Breakfast Series, featuring David Littmann

Kerr Russell sponsored the December 5 DBusiness Magazine Breakfast Series at the Gem/Century Theatres, which featured an economic forecast from Comerica Bank's David Littmann.

November 30, 2017

Merry and bright ... Kerr Russell welcomes the holiday season

It's a time to celebrate, reflect and remember. However you mark the holidays, we hope your days are filled with warmth and thankfulness, good times, and endless cheer. As another year draws to a close, we at Kerr Russell are grateful to you. You give purpose to our work and add meaning to our relationships. Your trust is a cherished gift. Enjoy these images as we get our offices ready to celebrate the holiday season. Design by Mandy Lark of Lark Interior Design.

November 16, 2017

Culture of Connection - new Kerr Russell ad to appear in Michigan Lawyers Weekly and dbusiness

Kerr Russell introduces the second ad in the new "Est. in Detroit 1874" series: "A culture of connection." The piece emphasizes the firm's 143-year presence in Detroit as part of the larger business and legal community. "We are relationship focused. We know our people and our clients are the lifeblood of our firm."

November 3, 2017

Kerr Russell launches new advertising in upcoming issues of dbusiness and Crain's Detroit

With this month's issue of dbusiness, focused on Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit, Kerr Russell launches its new brand advertising with "A Track Record of Results." Working with Identity Public Relations and Marketing, Kerr Russell's marketing team developed the creative to emphasize the firm's longstanding place in Detroit's legal and business history.

November 3, 2017

Kerr Russell recognizes this year’s dbusiness Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit honorees

Kerr Russell recognizes this year’s dbusiness Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit honorees:

November 1, 2017

Kerr Russell ranked in the 2018 U.S. News - Best Lawyers® "Best Law Firms" list nationally in 1 practice area and regionally in 17 practice areas

U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers, for the eighth consecutive year, announce the "Best Law Firms" rankings.

October 18, 2017

Kerr Russell's Bill Blasses named "Up & Coming Lawyer" by Michigan Lawyers Weekly

Kudos to William Blasses who was just named to Michigan Lawyers Weekly's "Up & Coming Lawyers."

October 12, 2017

dBusiness' coverage of "30 in Their Thirties" - Kerr Russell attorneys featured in photo gallery

From dBusiness: "On Oct. 10, dBusiness magazine hosted a breakfast to honor the 2017 Class of 30 in Their Thirties at the Gem Theatre in downtown Detroit. The keynote speaker was Tony Michaels, president and CEO of The Parade Co. in Detroit, who addressed the business side of planning and operating America’s Thanksgiving Parade Presented by Art Van as well as the Ford Fireworks and other family-orientated events."

October 11, 2017

Jason Bank featured in Turnaround Management Association Detroit, Fall '17 Newsletter

Jason Bank, member, is featured in the Turnaround Management Association Detroit Fall 2017 Newsletter. You can read the original newsletter here. The full text of the piece by Allison Bach follows.

September 18, 2017

Kerr Russell welcomes parents and students to Matrix Human Services Headstart Plymouth Center

What a great way to start the week! Partners Fred Herrmann and Jason Bank along with Director of Marketing Roy Sexton joined President and CEO of Matrix Human ServicesBrad Coulter and Assistant Director Nolana Nobles Bandy PhD to greet parents and children arriving at Matrix's Headstart Plymouth Center in Detroit this morning as well as to provide a continental breakfast for the parents.

September 12, 2017

16 Kerr Russell attorneys recognized as 2017 Super Lawyers

Congratulations to the following attorneys who have been designated "Super Lawyers" by Thomson Reuters.

September 8, 2017

Broc Gullett participates on Michigan Association of Bar Executives "Bar Association Boot Camp" panel

On September 8, the Michigan Association of Bar Executives held its "Bar Association Boot Camp" in East Lansing. The organization described the event as "training and discussion for bar association presidents, executive directors, board members, staff, and young lawyers who project as future leaders.

August 1, 2017

From Crain's Detroit: Partners acquire Linear AMS back from Moog (Kerr Russell mentioned)

From Crain's Detroit: East Aurora, N.Y.-based Moog Inc. has sold Livonia-based Linear AMS Inc. back to the subsidiary's founder and a partner after owning the additive manufacturing company for less than two years.

January 15, 2017

Kerr Russell receives consecutive awards from The M&A Advisor: John Gatti and Mike Gibson receive 2016 “Materials Deal of the Year” Award

Kerr Russell is pleased to have been recognized again by the M&A Advisor who today announced that Kerr Russell was among the winners of the 11th Annual Turnaround Awards.

November 7, 2016

Kerr Russell attorneys named 2017 Top Lawyers by dBusiness Magazine

Kerr Russell counts 11 attorneys among this year’s Top Lawyers as recognized by dBusiness magazine. The 2017 Top Lawyers were selected based on a peer review survey of 19,000 attorneys in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Washtenaw, and Livingston counties. Attorneys are asked to nominate lawyers among 48 legal specialties.

November 1, 2016

Kerr Russell Attorneys Named 2016 Super Lawyers

Kerr Russell attorneys have been named SuperLawyers for 2016, two have been named to the Michigan Top 100 and four have been named as Rising Stars.

August 10, 2016

Kerr Russell, John D. Gatti and Michael D. Gibson named finalists by M&A Advisor for Restructuring Deal of the year Award.

Kerr, Russell, John D. Gatti and Michael D. Gibson have been named finalists for M&A Advisor's Restructuring Deal of the Year (Under $100MM) Award for their work in the 363 Sale of Quantum Technologies.

January 1, 2016

Jason W. Bank leads Treetops Resort through a successful Chapter 11 Reorganization.

A popular Gaylord-area resort whose big-name owners include former Chrysler Corp. CEO Robert Eaton may be ready to seek new financing for improvements and growth after improving its balance sheet and unloading nearly $35 million in debt.