Bankruptcy & Insolvency

Led by partner Jamie Dreher, Downey Brand’s Bankruptcy and Insolvency Group is a multi-disciplinary practice that includes a team of attorneys equally adept at both litigating matters through trial as well as strategic advisory and transactional services. The practice is led in Sacramento but serves clients in cases and matters in bankruptcy courts nationally.

Based in Sacramento, our bankruptcy attorneys generate success for a wide range of stakeholders in insolvency-related matters, including debtors in complex chapter 11 cases, committees, secured and unsecured creditors, receivers and other court-appointed fiduciaries, asset purchasers, trustees, hedge funds, equity security holders, and special servicers in many diverse industries such as real estate (office, retail, multi-family, land), food and agriculture, retail, banking and financial institutions, asset-based lending, environmental, construction, energy, manufacturing, engineering, mining, and oil and gas.

For troubled or challenged companies or high net-worth individuals, our interdisciplinary team includes banking attorneys as well as corporate restructuring and tax professionals, allowing a team approach that brings with it the specialized and focused expertise which is available at Downey Brand.

In addition to select debtor representation, our bankruptcy attorneys represent financial institutions and special servicers from credit inception through enforcement and trial, including loan documentation, navigating default and foreclosure of real and personal property for secured creditors, exercising prejudgment remedies including receiverships, and representation in bankruptcy court on behalf of such clients as Textron Financial, Farm Credit West, Farmers & Merchants Bank, Silverpoint Capital, California Bank & Trust, Met Life, Credit Suisse, Golden 1 Credit Union, and various special servicers and leading financial institutions in their capacity as trustee/servicer.

When an out-of-court solution is not practicable, our team is proud of its achievements and results, including litigation and confirmation of plans of reorganization on behalf of industry-leading companies and obtaining unanticipated distributions out of chapter 11 cases on behalf of creditors’ committees or other creditor constituencies. The favorable results obtained by our Sacramento-based bankruptcy attorneys for clients have made our Bankruptcy & Insolvency Group an industry leader.


Selected Experience

  • In a recent dairy chapter 11 the firm helped Farm Credit West obtain full payment of over $30 million, including default interest, prepayment premiums, attorney’s fees and costs.
  • In the Pacific Gas and Electric Company case the firm represented Merced Irrigation District in helping to defeat PG&E’s first proposed chapter 11 plan which provided for the breakup of PG&E.
  • In the IRM case which involved over 50 properties, 100 partnerships and 2000 investors the firm restructured all of these into a single, public limited liability company which ultimately resulted in investor recoveries
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Creditor Representations

  • In a recent dairy chapter 11 the firm’s bankruptcy attorneys helped Farm Credit West obtain full payment of over $30 million, including default interest, prepayment premiums, attorney’s fees and costs.
  • In the Pacific Gas and Electric Company case the firm represented Merced Irrigation District in helping to defeat PG&E’s first proposed chapter 11 plan which provided for the breakup of PG&E.
  • In the IRM case which involved over 50 properties, 100 partnerships and 2000 investors the firm’s bankruptcy attorneys restructured all of these into a single, public limited liability company which ultimately resulted in investor recoveries

Debtor Representations

  • Confirmed chapter 11 plan of reorganization for luxury houseboat rental and sales operator, including payment in full to unsecured creditors and restructure of matured secured debt at favorable terms.
  • Represented a Lake Tahoe timeshare developer in Chapter 11 including related shareholder litigation, leading to confirmation of liquidating plan.
  • Confirmed Chapter 11 Plan of Reorganization for organic foods retailer leading to successful post-confirmation sale of business.
  • Co-counsel for the Debtors in the jointly administered cases of Circus and Eldorado Joint Venture, dba Silver Legacy Resort Casino, and Silver Legacy Capital Corp.

Committee Representations

  • Represents the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors in the SK Foods, L.P. chapter 11, one of the largest chapter 11’s filed in the Eastern District of California.
  • Represented the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors in the Matterhorn, Inc. case, a large-scale manufacturer of ice cream and novelty confections.
  • Represented the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors in Chapter 11 case involving a U.S subsidiary of an international medical device manufacturer, resulting in substantial distribution to unsecured creditors.
  • Counsel to the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors in the case of singer and entertainer Wayne Newton.

Additional representative casework includes substantive roles in connection with the following cases: Enron, Montgomery Ward, K-Mart, Linens N Things; United Air Lines, Delta Air Lines, 360 Global Wines, City of Vallejo Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy, Shasta Lake Resorts, Commonwealth Equity Trust, Desert Power, Circuit City, Dunmore Homes, Hometown Buffet, Mervyn’s, Quebecor, Mariner Post- Acute Network, Inc., Tower Records, Zacky Farms, Aquarius Pools, Flying J, Inc., Reynen & Bardis, Sagewood Manor Associates Ltd., Tropicana Entertainment, LLC, Specialty Trust, Inc., and others.

5 Attorneys

Brian C. Aton

Associate

Sacramento 916.520.5432

Jamie P. Dreher

Partner

Sacramento 916.520.5478

Michael J. Laino

Associate

Sacramento 916.520.5360

Kelly L. Pope

Partner

Sacramento 916.520.5362

Danielle Stephens

Danielle R. Stephens

Partner

Sacramento 916.520.5475

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