Comprised of nationally recognized insolvency lawyers, Schiff Hardin’s Restructuring Group provides outstanding business and legal guidance to all constituencies in complex restructurings, both in and out of court.
We represent a wide range of both national and international clients in corporate restructurings, workouts, and litigation. We are often called upon to assist companies facing financial distress, the creditors of a troubled company, or investors looking for the opportunities to purchase certain assets or a distressed business. Our clients include secured and unsecured creditors, bondholders, investors and interested purchasers, debtors, boards of directors, creditors’ committees and equity holders’ committees.
We regularly assist in restructurings of entities which finance their operations through the issuance of tax-exempt bonds, representing both the entities themselves and the creditors, bond trustees, mutual funds, and other investors who buy and own the bonds. We have significant experience with pre-bankruptcy workouts and forbearances, as well as bankruptcy cases and adversary proceedings.
We often take a team approach to addressing insolvency issues, working with Schiff Hardin lawyers in other practice areas — including finance, securities, corporate, tax, litigation, and energy law — to deliver cutting-edge solutions to clients in distressed situations.
Recognized Leaders in the Field
Lawyers in the Restructuring Group have been recognized as leading bankruptcy and restructuring attorneys by Chambers USA, Law Bulletin’s Illinois Leading Lawyers Network, Super Lawyers, and U.S. News - Best Lawyers.
Schiff Hardin’s Restructuring Group has extensive experience representing clients in a wide range of industries involving unique and complex business and legal issues. We regularly represent clients in various industries, including public finance, energy, food and beverage, healthcare, hospitality, insurance, real estate and construction, retail, and higher education.
Distressed Public Debt and Municipal Insolvency
We provide pragmatic advice and strategic planning for any client involved in a distressed municipal bond transaction, working closely with our Public Finance Group to develop innovative strategies for each municipal transaction. We represent indenture trustees, institutional debt holders, hedge funds and secured lenders in out-of-court workouts and municipal insolvency proceedings. Our clients are in virtually all industry sectors of municipal investment, particularly health care, infrastructure, hotels, manufacturing, education, and housing. We have experience in chapter 9 cases as well as chapter 11 and 7 cases.
Our broad experience and multidisciplinary approach to restructurings in the energy industry has yielded successful results for our clients. Our restructuring lawyers routinely collaborate with Schiff Hardin’s Energy and Public Utilities Practice Group, to provide broad regulatory and industry-focused restructuring and insolvency advice in virtually every energy sector, including oil and gas, ethanol, alternative energy sources, solar, and natural gas. Our clients include domestic and international manufacturers and distributors of energy resources.
Food and Beverage
We have in-depth understanding of the relevant federal and state regulatory laws implicated by restructurings in this industry. This understanding enables us to provide clients in distressed situations with legal and business solutions to complex challenges.
We have served as counsel to several large food and beverage companies in significant bankruptcy proceedings. We understand the unique nature of the products our clients deliver, and the particular rights and regulatory scheme that enables our clients to recover on often perishable commodities delivered to an insolvent or bankrupt customer. We have also represented equipment lenders to franchisees, effectively protecting their interests in a sale, liquidation, or transition to another franchisee. Similarly, our restructuring attorneys have advised restaurants and retail food suppliers, navigating them through the restructuring process.
We have substantial experience representing medical centers, hospitals, CCRCs, nursing homes, and similar facilities, along with lenders providing financing to health care facilities and other interested parties. Through these representations, we have gained a comprehensive knowledge of the intricacies involved in healthcare industry restructurings.
Lenders and borrowers of obligations owed by universities, charter schools, and other higher education facilities have engaged us when confronted with a need to restructure debt, or to negotiate and resolve regulatory issues. Our insolvency lawyers have provided creative solutions to these complex hybrid issues requiring sophisticated workout and regulatory experience.
Our diverse bench of restructuring lawyers assists our hospitality clients with an array of real estate, finance, labor, environmental, and other legal issues. For example, we represented a leading global investment banking firm in an airlines chapter 11 filings relating to hotel accommodation services agreements. We have also represented bondholders and indenture trustee in the restructuring of debt on a hotel. Our restructuring attorneys are also able to call on Schiff Hardin’s practice groups in each of these areas for capable assistance.
We have earned a distinguished national reputation for representing insurers in cases across the country, effectively resolving claims and defending coverage issues asserted by class action plaintiffs, debtors, directors and officers, and other insolvent insureds. We work closely with the firm’s insurance and reinsurance practice on each matter, leveraging their expansive national and international experience representing clients in the UK, the EU, Bermuda, and Japan.
Our restructuring lawyers’ notable representations include the representation of The Catholic Mutual Relief Society of America and The Catholic Relief Insurance Company of America in Diocese chapter 11 filings across the country.
Real Estate and Construction
We frequently represent lenders, landlords, brokers, architects, construction companies, and other creditors in real estate and construction insolvency proceedings. We work closely with our real estate, finance, and construction groups to develop effective and creative strategies to achieve our client’s objectives and maximize recoveries.
While representing landlords and parties to executory contracts with a debtor, we have created new law on the treatment of unexpired leases through bankruptcy, and have forged other novel issues in cases furthering clients’ interests in numerous jurisdictions.
As in all industries, interested parties may have competing interests, requiring a unique perspective. Our extensive work with parties across the real estate industry has given us an appreciation for all such perspectives.
We routinely represent creditor’s committees, landlords, and vendors in many of the largest and most complex retail restructurings. Our lawyers have substantial experience developing strategies to successfully employ the restructuring tools available to each retail client’s needs. As competition from online sales increases, traditional retailers have come under increasing financial pressure. Our restructuring lawyers understand the unique aspects of retail restructuring, including the particular rights available to the sellers of products to an insolvent or bankruptcy customer, and the competing need of the retailer to obtain the products and the necessary funding to continue operating.