Chapter 11 Reorganization

SulmeyerKupetz has for decades represented parties on all sides of business bankruptcies and corporate restructurings. Our attorneys have extensive experience developing, negotiating, and confirming plans of reorganization on behalf of debtors, creditors’ committees, trustees, purchasers, and other plan proponents. Our firm also represents these parties and all major constituencies in financings, sales, avoidance action and claims litigation, and bankruptcy appeals, as well as contract and lease assumption, assignment, and rejection. Our lawyers are experienced in protecting the rights and maximizing the claim value of secured and unsecured creditors in Chapter 11 cases. Chapter 11 offers an opportunity for companies to reset their balance sheets, renegotiate financial obligations, and emerge on a going concern basis. Our lawyers also successfully utilize Chapter 11 to implement sale procedures and consummate sales and acquisitions.

Chapter-11 Reorganization


Our firm maintains a robust practice representing companies in filing for Chapter 11 relief, guiding them through the Chapter 11 process, and negotiating plans of reorganization through the bankruptcy court with all constituencies, including lenders, landlords, and vendors. Our work on behalf of Chapter 11 debtors has included the following representative matters:

  • Negotiated and executed prepetition plan support agreement and accompanying term sheet with secured lenders and equity funders on behalf of virtual reality company, following severe impacts on the business due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Successfully guided client through recovery process that included reopening locations, re-hiring employees, restructuring debt and lease obligations, and confirming plan of reorganization. Since company exited Chapter 11, client has secured substantial additional financing and is operating successfully.
  • Worked with equipment manufacturer to continue operations as a going concern through successful Chapter 11 case. Court approved plan following contested trial, preserving jobs, maximizing the value of the bankruptcy estate, and providing for discounted payoff of unsecured debt.
  • Eliminated millions of dollars in debt for shoe retailer operating 125 stores in 10 states. Secured exit financing, modified dozens of leases, closed unprofitable locations, and confirmed reorganization plan, allowing business to exit Chapter 11 and continue relationships as a going concern with suppliers, landlords, and other trade creditors.
  • Filed single asset bankruptcy case on behalf of client with 30-unit office building on the eve of foreclosure by lender, providing client thirteen additional months to refinance property or obtain sale.
  • In Chapter 11 reorganization matter, renegotiated leases across Southern California for entertainment client that had been forced to shutter business due to the pandemic in 2020, facilitating successful reorganization.
  • Handled Chapter 11 reorganization for church amid dispute over governance, allowing issues to be litigated in state court without the risk that property would be dissipated in the meantime.
  • Successfully contested IRS determination of excise taxes in Chapter 11 case on behalf of distressed manufacturer of truck tanks and storage equipment.
  • Recapitalized approximately $250 million of debt for publicly traded, national chain of over one hundred skilled nursing facilities in successful Chapter 11 reorganization.
  • Assisted retailer in obtaining post-petition financing, as well as in structuring and implementing court-approved expedited sale process that resulted in advantageous, parallel sales of the debtor’s intellectual property and ongoing retail operations. Created liquidating Chapter 11 plan that was confirmed by the court, providing for the allocation and distribution of sales proceeds.
  • Represented apparel company in obtaining court approval for sale of its business and assets, over the objection of several dissident parties, and confirmed a liquidating plan of reorganization.
  • Represented franchisee of approximately one hundred Boston Market restaurants in Chapter 11 case which involved negotiating cash collateral agreements and entering into lease modification and lease termination agreements with various landlords, and confirmation of Chapter 11 plan.
  • Restructured debt for technology company through Chapter 11 plan. Converted entity from publicly held to privately held, assisted in obtaining debtor-in-possession and exit financing, and confirmed plan of reorganization.
  • After construction lender was seized by the federal government and client’s $190-million loan for construction of residential towers was sold as part of lender’s portfolio, represented client in obtaining court authority to fund ongoing construction and confirmed Chapter 11 plan.
  • Defeated motion to dismiss Chapter 11 case and obtained confirmation of contested Chapter 11 plan on behalf of large family-owned plant nursery with multiple locations.
  • Represented television station affiliated with major network in successfully opposing lender’s motion for change of venue and appointment of Chapter 11 trustee. Negotiated and implemented asset purchase agreement allowing for auction which involved active bidding competition among seven media companies and resulted in $70 million sale of assets, a surplus of $40 million over claims in the case.
  • Represented owner of California ski resort in Chapter 11 case involving significant resistance from creditors and former shareholders. Successfully negotiated and confirmed plan of reorganization.
  • Represented one of California’s largest developers of single-family residences after the company’s capital partner entered bankruptcy. Successfully guided client through Chapter 11, since which the company has experienced great success.

Secured Creditors

Our lawyers also work on behalf of secured creditors to protect and enforce their rights and maximize recovery in Chapter 11 cases. Examples of the firm’s work in this area include:

  • Represented lenders as secured creditors in Chapter 11 proceedings, in relation to loans against commercial real estate valued at $1-10 million. Handled cash collateral issues, disclosure statements, plans, relief-from-stay matters, and forbearance agreements.
  • Represented secured lenders in real estate bankruptcies throughout the country involving hotel properties and residential developments.
  • Represented Silverstone Ranch Community Association in Chapter 11 case filed by Stoneridge Parkway, a 272-acre planned community in Las Vegas, Nevada that included approximately 1,520 homes built around a 27-hole championship golf course.
  • Obtained right to foreclose on behalf of lender in San Diego Chapter 11 matter which was converted to a Chapter 7. Handled agreement with Chapter 7 trustee to locate potential buyers for 18-hole golf course owned by Premier Golf Properties, ultimately leading to the lender’s right to foreclosure in the absence of an acceptable bid.
  • Representing lender in two Chapter 11 cases involving entities controlled by well-known real estate developer Mohamed Hadid. Helped to bring transparency to Hadid’s efforts to sell 67 acres of prized open space in Franklin Canyon owned by the entities, on behalf of client who acquired the distressed debt prior to the reorganization petitions.
  • Represented secured lenders in numerous Chapter 11 cases involving cash collateral, financing, plan, and bankruptcy litigation issues.

Creditors’ Committees

We represent unsecured creditors’ committees in all aspects of Chapter 11 cases, including negotiating, propounding, and opposing plans of reorganization, as well as advising and representing committees to maximize creditor recovery, pursuing avoidance actions and other litigation, and otherwise proactively protecting the rights of unsecured creditors. Our firm’s representation of committees has included:

  • Represented creditors’ committee in Delaware bankruptcy matter related to California-based provider of stage lighting and digital video equipment, involving nearly $1 billion in debt. Opposed pre-negotiated deal that would have paid unsecured creditors nothing, ultimately securing material payments under the Chapter 11 plan.
  • On behalf of automotive repair kit manufacturer as creditor, successfully opposed debtor’s initial plan which would not pay creditors’ claims in full, ultimately obtaining full payment of unsecured claims including payment of post-petition interest.
  • Following the company’s multi-million-dollar loss in an antitrust suit, proposed plan of reorganization for leading consumer telescope manufacturer on behalf of unsecured creditors’ committee, which was confirmed by the bankruptcy court.
  • Obtained multi-million-dollar recovery for creditors’ committee following class action lawsuit against seller of athletic bracelets. Pursued claims against principals, directors, and officers after sale of company.
  • Represented unsecured creditors’ committee in Chapter 11 case of chain of skilled nursing facilities.
  • Worked on behalf of creditors’ committee in Chapter 11 bankruptcy of largest private landowner in Downtown Los Angeles, Meruelo Maddox Properties.


Chapter 11 is frequently used to facilitate sales of distressed businesses and assets. Generally, sales procedures are negotiated and approved by the bankruptcy court. Our firm represents “stalking horse” buyers and other purchasers in such sales. Representative matters include:

  • Represented client in acquisition of retail chain with annual revenues in excess of $200 million, through Section 363 sale in Delaware Chapter 11 case.
  • Represented European buyer in acquisition of food processing and pasteurization business in Chapter 11 case, which included high-pressure pasteurization facilities, along with custom food and beverage product brand.
  • Representing “stalking horse” buyer in Chapter 11 acquisition of aviation business valued in excess of $400 million.
  • Represented buyers in numerous acquisitions of businesses and assets from debtors in possession and Chapter 11 trustees.

Our firm also includes and regularly represents Chapter 11 trustees. For more on our trustee work, please visit the Bankruptcy Trustees & Receivers page here.

Lawyers to Contact:

To find out how we can help your business to navigate the Chapter 11 process, please contact our firm by calling the office at 213.626.2311 or by emailing the attorneys below.