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Bankruptcy / Restructuring

Overview

Bankruptcy and restructuring lawyers represent debtors, creditors, equity interest holders, and other entities that may be interested in a business (such as a prospective acquirer) that is confronting financial difficulties. The practice can involve out-of-court negotiations to restructure a company’s financial affairs without the intervention of a court or bankruptcy reorganization litigation; there are practitioners who focus on either one of these aspects and others whose practices encompass both. Likewise, there are firms that specialize in representing creditors, others that focus on the representation of debtors, and broad practices that do both. Lawyers are often drawn to restructuring work to straddle the business and litigation sides. Bankruptcy involves an arcane set of rules that can take a long time to master. There are limited in-house positions for bankruptcy attorneys, so much of the practice is in a law firm setting. The practice is counter-cyclical—bankruptcy lawyers are most in demand in down markets. A clerkship at a federal bankruptcy court can be helpful, especially for those more interested in the litigation side rather than restructuring transactions. Some bankruptcy practitioners also earn an LL.M. in bankruptcy at some point in their careers.

Featured Q&A's
Get an insider's view on working in Bankruptcy / Restructuring from real lawyers in the practice area.
Rachael Ringer, Partner
Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP

Describe your practice area and what it entails.

My practice concentrates on in- and out-of-court restructurings of large corporations. I advise clients on issues relating to bankruptcy planning, investments in distressed companies, and legal issues surrounding operational and financial restructurings. My work includes negotiating bankruptcy documents, such as Chapter 11 plans and disclosure statements as well as restructuring support agreements—if and when consensus is achieved. When consensus is not achieved, my practice also involves litigating bankruptcy issues, often including issues relating to debtor-in-possession financing and/or plan confirmation.

What types of clients do you represent?

My most recent experience includes representing official creditors’ committees and creditors or ad hoc creditor groups in large Chapter 11 cases nationwide. I am currently representing the ad hoc committee of governmental and contingent litigation claimants in the Purdue Pharma Chapter 11 case pending in the Southern District of New York and recently represented the official unsecured creditors’ committees in the Aegerion, Hexion, and Toys “R” Us bankruptcy cases in New York, Delaware, and Virginia, respectively. I also represented Brigade Capital Management as a large secured and unsecured creditor in the Nine West bankruptcy cases, and now I represent Premier Brands Group, the reorganized company of Nine West. In addition to representing clients in active restructurings, I often advise hedge funds and distressed investors with respect to stressed or distressed companies.

What types of cases/deals do you work on?

I primarily work on in-court Chapter 11 cases, which, depending on my particular client in the case, may involve pre-bankruptcy planning or negotiations. Almost all of my cases involve the restructuring of corporations but can differ depending on whether the company is undertaking either financial or operational restructuring. Because the restructuring space is cyclical in nature, my experience spans numerous industries, with recent experience concentrated in the biopharmaceutical industry (including Purdue Pharma and Aegerion Pharmaceuticals) and oil and gas services, as well as substantial involvement in retail cases, such as Toys “R” Us, Nine West, and other out-of-court matters.

How did you choose this practice area?

When I started at Kramer Levin as a summer associate in 2009, I admittedly had very limited interest in a career in restructuring—primarily because in my two years of law school at that point, my exposure to the field was quite limited. Fortunately, the department was quite busy in mid-2009, having just secured official creditors’ committee roles in both the GM and Chrysler cases, as well as representing Bally Total Fitness in its Chapter 11 proceedings. I was immediately attracted to the fast-paced nature of the work, and after spending a significant amount of my summer associate tenure working with the Restructuring department, I found myself planning 3L classes around a future in this practice area. Since returning to the firm as an associate and, now, partner, I have continued to be challenged and fulfilled by all that a career in bankruptcy has to offer.

What is a typical day like and/or what are some common tasks you perform?

It would be difficult to describe a “typical” day in this field because, more often than not, the day shapes itself around time-sensitive issues pertaining to various active matters. That being said, my days are usually filled with client calls, internal and external meetings (including with fellow professionals on a given case, both on the same side and across the aisle), the drafting of pleadings or agreements, negotiations with adversaries, and frequent trips to court for those matters actively in bankruptcy. The culture at Kramer Levin, however, is extremely collegial, and I have close friendships with many of my colleagues. So while days and nights are filled with extensive and substantive work, many days also involve some sort of camaraderie within our department—be it birthdays, other celebrations, or the occasional “pizza Friday.”

What training, classes, experience, or skills development would you recommend to someone who wishes to enter your practice area?

A career in the restructuring field requires a significant amount of negotiation, court appearances, and brief-writing, and it is one of the rare practice areas that truly straddles the transactional and litigation fields. Facilitating success on both sides, thus, requires confidence and oral argument skills (moot court or mock trial are good options for law students, and deposition training programs are great for young lawyers), as well as significant attention to detail and an ability to craft clear, concise, and innovative arguments in a persuasive manner. On this latter point, writing workshops are always valuable, as are those programs that emphasize meticulousness, like law review or school journals.

What do you like best about your practice area?

One of the greatest things about restructuring—and, in particular, Kramer Levin’s Restructuring practice—is that you are constantly exposed to new companies and industries, which gives you an opportunity to learn the intricacies of various types of businesses. While you are learning about new industries, you are simultaneously gaining experience on bankruptcy issues that apply across the board. The expedited nature of the practice keeps you “on your toes,” and given my appreciation for puzzles, the constant problem solving required by the practice is a perfect complement.

What is unique about your practice area at your firm?

Our firm is unique for a number of reasons, including, most prominently, the caliber of the attorneys at all levels within our group, as well as the collegial atmosphere on a day-to-day basis within the department. Our group is known both in and outside the firm for the breadth of our experience, but also for the strength of our relationships with our colleagues. I particularly enjoy the fact that our group sits together on one floor of the firm, which lends itself to substantial collaboration among all attorneys and frequent thoughtful, constructive debate of cutting-edge legal issues. Our group also approaches every matter with extreme thoughtfulness and intellectualism, which is why we have a record of being at the forefront of precedent-making decisions in recent years, including those in Puerto Rico, Peabody, TOUSA, Genco Shipping, and Residential Capital.

What kinds of experience can summer associates gain in this practice area at your firm?

Summer associates can gain immense experience in the Bankruptcy group even during the short summer period. When I was a summer associate, I had the privilege of assisting on certain preparations for creditors’ committee pitches, and when the firm was selected as committee counsel, I had the opportunity to sit in on committee calls, attend court hearings (including the GM sale hearing), conduct legal research, and prepare bankruptcy pleadings. Our group regularly invites summer associates to attend client calls, depositions, bankruptcy auctions, court hearings, and multi-week trials—including confirmation trials, where Kramer Levin’s bankruptcy group has an active role either on behalf of the debtor or creditors’ committees or groups. In addition to the many shadowing opportunities our group offers to summer associates, we regularly provide summer associates with substantive legal experience, including researching legal issues that are directly relevant to issues either being negotiated by senior attorneys or argued in court. We make a strong effort to educate our summer associates about the nuts and bolts of bankruptcy issues, preparing them for a future career in this area, if they choose to follow it!

What are some typical career paths for lawyers in this practice area?

The bankruptcy bar is unique in that many of the attorneys who started in the industry as young associates have chosen to remain practicing bankruptcy attorneys long term. As a result, the relationships you develop among your peers outside the firm have lasting impacts, and you are frequently negotiating with or against the same people with whom you’ve worked closely on multiple deals. For those who choose to leave the practice, many still remain in the restructuring field, often taking in-house positions at hedge funds involved in distressed investing or transitioning to roles at financial advisory or investment banking firms—again allowing for the continued development of those relationships either as clients or colleagues within the industry.

Rachael Ringer, Partner — Corporate Restructuring & Bankruptcy

Rachael Ringer is a newly elevated partner in the Corporate Restructuring and Bankruptcy practice in Kramer Levin’s New York office. She has been involved in many of the nation’s recent large and most complex bankruptcies and restructurings in numerous industries, including retail, biopharmaceutical, oil and gas services, shipping, automotive, and health care. Rachael specializes in handling high-stakes and complex bankruptcy matters on behalf of creditors’ committees and creditor groups, bondholders, and companies in connection with in- and out-of-court restructurings and regularly advises hedge funds regarding stressed and distressed investments.

Ms. Ringer was named a New York Super Lawyers Rising Star in bankruptcy from 2017-2019, and she received the M&A Advisor’s Emerging Leaders Award in 2019. She earned her J.D., cum laude, from Hofstra University School of Law in 2010 and her B.A., with high distinction, from the University of Michigan in 2007.

Aparna Yenamandra, Partner • Stephen L. Iacovo, Associate
Kirkland & Ellis LLP

Describe your practice area and what it entails.

Stephen: Restructuring lawyers advise companies, private equity sponsors, distressed debt funds, ad hoc committees, and other investors with respect to public, private, and portfolio companies in financial distress, including out-of-court exchanges and restructurings, amend and extend transactions, refinancings, liability management transactions, and bankruptcy and insolvency proceedings.

What types of clients do you represent?

Aparna: In the U.S., our practice is approximately 75-80 percent company side and 20-25 percent creditor/investor side. In London, Munich, and Hong Kong, it is the reverse, although our offices in the U.S. and internationally are fully integrated. We represent the largest and most complex clients and are industry agnostic. For example, in recent years, oil and gas has been the focus of the restructuring community, then retail, and now telecom and health care. Among other large clients, we have represented Caesars, Energy Future Holdings, iHeart, and Toys ‘R Us. Our representations of Sea-drill and Noble, in particular, reflected the cross-integration of our domestic and international offices.

Stephen: Kirkland advises companies, private equity sponsors, distressed debt funds, ad hoc committees, and other investors in all aspects of corporate restructuring, bankruptcy, and insolvency proceedings. Some of my notable clients have included iHeartMedia, Inc. in its currently pending Chapter 11 cases and Avaya Inc. in its 2017 Chapter 11 cases. I also represented an international maritime logistics services company in an out-of-court restructuring, and I’m currently representing an operating company interested in potentially purchasing assets of an insolvent Fortune 500 company.

What types of cases/deals do you work on?

Aparna: As a group, we largely prepare companies for an expeditious stay in Chapter 11. We work hard to negotiate consensus with as many creditor constituencies as possible, but we are prepared to litigate where necessary. In addition, we advise companies on out-of-court deleveraging transactions (e.g., a debt-for-equity swap, an amendment and extension of debt facilities, and/or sale transactions). I have spent the vast majority of my time at Kirkland on Energy Future Holdings, the third-largest operational filing in history. I have also had an opportunity to work on smaller cases in the software and retail space.

Stephen: The majority of my deals involve representing debtors in complex Chapter 11 proceedings. For example, in connection with iHeartMedia, Inc.’s Chapter 11 restructuring, the company reached an agreement with holders of more than $11 billion of its debt and its financial sponsors regarding a comprehensive balance sheet restructuring that will reduce iHeart’s debt by more than $10 billion, provide iHeart’s existing senior creditors with over 90 percent of the reorganized company’s stock, and separate iHeart from its majority-owned subsidiary, Clear Channel Outdoor Holdings, Inc.

How did you choose this practice area?

Aparna: I liked (and still like!) that restructuring has a mix of litigation elements and corporate elements and that we are in a position to help companies during what is typically a high-stress time for them. Helping to reorganize a company, stabilize its operations, save jobs, and “keep the lights on” is hugely satisfying. I also like that the practice affords an opportunity to both sit at the negotiating table and also present arguments in court, providing a very comprehensive experience to any young lawyer.

Stephen: I chose restructuring because I was looking for a dynamic practice that also required a level of business skills and sophistication above and beyond that of traditional corporate lawyers. In particular, representing debtors requires lawyers to negotiate and broker extremely complex deals with large numbers of key stakeholders, which can involve the use or threat of litigation when needed. I particularly enjoy that every single day and every single case presents new challenges and the ability to use both transactional and litigation skills. In addition, bankruptcy lawyers get to appear in court frequently, even at junior levels of responsibility. And on top of the legal work, I spend considerable time working with restructuring advisers and investment bankers to assist and advise clients on strategic and operational business issues. In my experience, no other practice uses such a broad range of skills.

What is a typical day like and/or what are some common tasks you perform?

Aparna: A typical day changes dramatically the longer you are here. I have been at Kirkland in the restructuring group for six-and-a-half years. A typical day for me at this stage is a mix of fielding inbound questions from senior members of the management team and board members as to either issues that have arisen or broader restructuring strategy questions; working with younger associates to develop pleadings, deal documents, and various client presentations; and coordinating with my senior partners to make sure the communication lines are constantly open and that we are working together as cohesively as possible.

Stephen: The best part about being a restructuring lawyer is that there is no typical day. Some days, I’ll be at a client’s offices, working with the client and its other advisers to formulate a restructuring strategy and prepare the company for a Chapter 11 filing. The next week, I might be in court seeking confirmation of a Chapter 11 plan. The days in between are spent on conference calls and in meetings trying to broker agreements to piece together a global deal and drafting various court-related documents, such as first day motions, plans of reorganization, claim objections, sale motions, and orders. I’ve even drafted bankruptcy appellate briefs. On any given week, I can find myself at a client’s headquarters anywhere in the world, at a meeting with key lender groups in New York, or in court anywhere in the U.S.

What training, classes, experience, or skills development would you recommend to someone who wishes to enter your practice area?

Aparna: I would recommend taking a broad base of classes, including those touching on business organizations, evidence, federal tax, accounting, trial advocacy, and legal writing. A secured transactions class may also be helpful to understand bankruptcy basics. Much of what we do involves working with investment bankers, so any business-related classes would be helpful. In addition, if there is an opportunity to clerk with a bankruptcy judge, that could be helpful to understanding restructuring from the bench’s perspective. All that being said, Kirkland offers a wealth of training sessions on key topics, and nothing beats on-the-job training.

What is the most challenging aspect of practicing in this area?

Aparna: One challenging aspect of the practice as debtors’ counsel, in particular, is that we are the consensus-makers among a number of parties with investments at stake. Debtors owe a fiduciary duty to maximize value for all of their stakeholders, and debtors’ counsel often has the task of trying to negotiate a global compromise across a number of disparate creditor constituencies who often have extremely different goals. Bringing those parties together can sometimes be a challenge but when done successfully, can also be very rewarding. Another challenge is the unpredictability of the practice—some days are simply triage for unexpected yet significant issues.

What do you like best about your practice area?

Aparna: There are a number of things I particularly like about my practice area. First, we work with virtually every practice group in the firm (tax, litigation, debt finance, capital markets, M&A, etc.), which allows me to develop relationships and get a snapshot of the work that others do. Second, every day is completely unpredictable and different from the previous day, which keeps things dynamic and interesting. Third, as distressed industries change (e.g., the shift in focus from oil and gas to retail to health care and telecom), we get to become subject-matter experts in various industries. That means we are always learning about new industries and new companies (often high-profile ones), which I really enjoy.

Stephen: The thing I like most about my practice area is the people. The restructuring industry is a very small community, and you consistently work with (or against) the same people over and over and are consistently in front of the same judges. Because of that dynamic, relationships and credibility are so important, and that builds a real camaraderie across the industry that you can’t find anywhere else.

What is unique about this practice area at your firm?

Aparna: Kirkland’s restructuring practice is unique. It is a young, highly energized group that is growing quickly but retains a small-group feel. The group leaders are laser focused on ensuring that young lawyers have opportunities as early as possible, maximizing the group’s diversity and encouraging a healthy work/life balance. Our cases are generally staffed fairly leanly, which means that there are not a number of layers between the senior partners and junior associates. This not only gives junior associates opportunities to take on more substantive work, but it also helps bridge relationships among the deal teams. We are also office agnostic—all of our cases are cross staffed between our primary New York and Chicago teams, which gives every team a chance to get to work with as broad a group as possible.

Stephen: Kirkland encourages junior associates, particularly in the restructuring group, to take on a lot of responsibility early. That includes getting up and arguing in court within your first couple of years of practice. Additionally, the Kirkland Institute of Restructuring Training is a one-of-a-kind training opportunity where associates get paired with teams of junior investment bankers from the top restructuring advisory banks in the world to compete in a mock restructuring scenario. The training allows attorneys to present a mock board scenario, with real directors and other senior restructuring professionals serving as the board of a distressed company, and provides tremendous networking opportunities with other restructuring professionals.

What are some typical career paths for lawyers in this practice area?

Stephen: Restructuring attorneys typically find themselves pursuing any of the following career paths, in no particular order: staying in private practice law; leaving the practice of law for a position as a non-legal adviser in either an investment bank’s restructuring group or at a restructuring advisory firm, with maybe an eventual career at a distressed hedge fund; or pursuing in-house opportunities. Restructuring lawyers actually make great “generalists” because we deal with so many business law issues in our day-to-day practice, including real estate, employment and labor, vendor contracts, corporate and securities law, litigation, etc.

Aparna Yenamandra, Partner, and Stephen L. Iacovo, Associate—Restructuring

Aparna Yenamandra is a restructuring partner in the New York office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP (after having been a summer associate and associate at Kirkland). She advises companies and creditors with investments in distressed companies across a host of industries, including oil and gas, retail, and software. From a company perspective, she advises companies in connection with Chapter 11 filings and out-of-court deleveraging solutions. She also advises creditors in connection with distressed investments and sale transactions. Aparna received her B.A. in Economics and Political Science from New York University and her J.D. from Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law.

Stephen L. Iacovo is an associate in the restructuring group at Kirkland & Ellis in Chicago. Since joining Kirkland in 2016, Stephen has been involved in some of the largest and most complex corporate restructurings of the past few years, including representing iHeartMedia, Inc. and Avaya Inc. in their Chapter 11 cases. Stephen also maintains an active pro bono practice serving military veterans. Stephen graduated with a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and an M.B.A. from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 2016. Prior to law and business school, Stephen served as a Commissioned Officer in the U.S. Army for four years. Stephen earned his Commission through Army ROTC at the University of Notre Dame, where he graduated with a B.B.A. in Finance and a supplemental major in History in 2009.

Ronit J. Berkovich, Partner
Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP


Describe your practice area and what it entails.

My practice focuses on restructuring, which is a broad prac-
tice that involves anything relating to a company in financial distress. When representing the company itself, the goal is usually to help the company out of its difficult situation, whether through negotiations with creditors and shareholders, other methods of increasing liquidity (such as selling assets), or a formal bankruptcy process. A successful restructuring usually benefits many parties—not only do we keep the company afloat and save jobs, but also, by maximizing value, we provide the greatest recovery to creditors throughout the capital structure (from banks to bondholders to trade creditors to litigation claimants).

What types of clients do you represent?

The bread and butter of my practice is to represent companies in financial distress (called “the debtor”). I have represented very prominent companies, like General Motors, Lehman Brothers, and WorldCom, as well as companies that are not household names, but are nonetheless important in their industries.

I sometimes represent creditors. Examples include financial institutions like Brookfield, (the largest creditor in the multibillion-dollar bankruptcy of Texas utility company Energy Future Holdings [TXU]) and Johnson & Johnson (a creditor in the bankruptcy of its talc supplier).

I have also represented purchasers of assets of distressed companies, such as Valeant purchasing the assets of Dendreon (a pharmaceutical company focused on immunotherapy treatments for cancer) and a Chinese company purchasing the assets of an airline parts manufacturer.

What types of cases/deals do you work on?

Financial distress can be caused by many different factors, which makes every situation different. Many cases are simply examples of companies having too much debt and needing a classic balance sheet restructuring (for example a debt-for-equity swap, which can be accomplished out of court or through a bankruptcy, depending on the facts). Other times, fraud is involved (such as in my WorldCom and Parmalat cases), while in other cases, a wave of mass tort and other litigation liabilities cause the company to spiral into distress (such as Takata and Insys, the latter being the first opioid manufacturer to file for bankruptcy due to the litigation over opioid liabilities).

Each case is different, depending on the facts and the parties involved. Some are out-of-court workouts, others are prepackaged bankruptcy filings, and others are more contentious traditional bankruptcy cases. Some involve asset sales, and an increasing number of cases have involved international or cross-border work.

How did you choose this practice area?

I always thought I would be a corporate lawyer and accepted a job in the corporate department of a large Boston-based law firm after my 2L summer. My second day of work at the firm was 9/11. The economy entered into a recession, and corporate work was very slow. I was extremely bored and dissatisfied. Thankfully, in my 3L year, I took a bankruptcy class that I greatly enjoyed and did well in with the famed Professor Elizabeth Warren, so with Professor Warren’s encouragement (and assistance), I decided to try bankruptcy/restructuring work because it was a busy practice during that time. I joined Weil’s restructuring group in June of 2002, and I have been a restructuring lawyer ever since. I love this practice, especially at Weil, and I cannot imagine that I would have loved corporate law or another firm as much.

What is a typical day like and/or what are some common tasks you perform?

There is no typical day. Because restructuring is such a hybrid practice, I could do any or all of the following on a single day:

  • Negotiating a debtor-in-possession loan or a restructuring support agreement.
  • Arguing in court.
  • Advising a board of directors.
  • Participating in team meetings where we discuss creative strategies for solving our client’s problems.
  • Reviewing a memorandum by an associate analyzing a particular legal issue and discussing the issue with the associate.
  • Analyzing loan documents or indentures.
  • Meeting with the company, its financial advisors, and its investment bankers to discuss strategy and options.
  • Editing a motion or brief.
  • Reading pleadings that have been filed by other parties in my cases.
  • Negotiating and marking up an asset purchase agreement.
  • Analyzing a proposed restructuring plan.
  • Sometimes I wake up knowing exactly what my day will entail, and other times, I show up and have to do some quick calendar-shifting to accommodate this fast-paced practice.

What training, classes, experience, or skills development would you recommend to someone who wishes to enter your practice area?

There is no class that is an absolute prerequisite for bankruptcy—not even a bankruptcy class. You will learn what you need to know on the job. Nevertheless, I think the following are the most helpful classes: bankruptcy/reorganization, secured transactions, corporate finance, and any class that teaches you to analyze/negotiate contracts.

What is the most challenging aspect of practicing in this area?

What is most challenging about restructuring is also one of the things that makes it so exciting—almost everything is urgent and important. The former head of Weil’s Restructuring group (the late Harvey Miller, who is also viewed by many as the founder of modern bankruptcy law) used to analogize a company in financial distress to a patient on the operating table, and we are the surgeons who must act quickly and with great skill to save the patient. The restructuring is often literally the most important event the company has ever gone through—and its very future is on the line. So much is urgent because delay could cause massive losses. Therefore, we work on a lot of tight deadlines. However, like many type-A personalities, I do my best work and enjoy it the most when the stakes are high and the pressure is on. These circumstances lead to amazing teamwork and camaraderie, and we can look back at what we have done with a real sense of accomplishment.

What do you like best about your practice area?

What I like best about this practice is that not a day goes by that I don’t learn something new. The law in bankruptcy is always changing (each day approximately 3 to 10 new opinions are issued by bankruptcy courts and higher courts throughout the country), and there are so many different issues that can come up in any one case. No one has seen it all, and there are times when the first-year associate knows more about a particular legal issue than the partner who has been practicing for 40-plus years. It is also extremely creative—there is no one-size-fits-all solution, and creative ways of using the law or making arguments can be game changers. There is even the opportunity to change the practice by trying out something new and watching it become a mainstream tool.

What is unique about your practice area at your firm?

Restructuring is the rare practice in a large law firm that is truly a hybrid between corporate and litigation. We are analyzing complex capital structures and negotiating all types of corporate agreements (asset purchase agreements, loan agreements, etc.) with our corporate colleagues, but we are also drafting briefs and appearing in court to make arguments. That variety makes the practice so interesting.

It also has me working closely with attorneys throughout the firm—spanning our litigation, M&A, banking, capital markets, and tax practices, to name a few, and wide-ranging specialty areas, including environmental, real estate, and securities, among others. We have to sit together, roll up our sleeves, and come up with a comprehensive solution to our client’s problems, and one that the creditors and/or the court will buy into.

What are some typical tasks that a junior lawyer would perform in this practice area?

Junior associates get a variety of work—including drafting motions (which involves close contact with the company and its financial advisors to gather information); analyzing and summarizing pleadings; preparing board presentations; keeping track of all the tasks that need to get done; researching and writing memos; drafting hearing scripts; appearing in court (usually on smaller or uncontested matters); and participating in negotiation sessions with creditors, litigants, and asset purchasers.

Because restructuring (unlike litigation or corporate deals) is something most clients have never been through before, junior associates get more of an opportunity to provide advice to clients, explaining bankruptcy law or process.

The learning curve is steep, and most junior associates don’t even realize how much they know until the summer associates show up, and the juniors get to teach the summers about our practice or supervise them on an assignment.

Ronit J. Berkovich, Partner—Business Finance & Restructuring

Ronit J. Berkovich is a partner in Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP’s Business Finance & Restructuring department and is based in New York. Ms. Berkovich represents debtors, creditors, lenders, investors, and acquirers of assets in all aspects of distressed situations. She has served as debtors’ counsel in several of the largest and most significant Chapter 11 cases in history, including General Motors, Lehman Brothers, WorldCom/MCI, and Takata. Ms. Berkovich actively lectures on various topics relating to restructuring. She is the co-editor of the Weil Bankruptcy Blog and has written extensively, including articles published in The Banking Law Journal, The American University Law Review, Real Estate Finance, and the Harvard Law School Bankruptcy Roundtable. In 2019, Ms. Berkovich was awarded “Dealmaker of the Year” by The American Lawyer and named “Outstanding Restructuring Lawyer” by Turnarounds & Workouts. In 2018, she was named an “MVP for Bankruptcy” by Law360. Most recently, she has become a member of the National Bankruptcy Conference, an organization of prominent academics and practitioners that provides input to Congress on bankruptcy-related topics, and joined Bloomberg Law’s Bankruptcy Innovation Board. Ms. Berkovich is also a member of the Lawyers Executive Committee and Bankruptcy and Reorgan-ization Group of the UJA Federation of New York and co-chaired its Next Generation Bankruptcy and Reorganization Group for several years.

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