RESTRUCTURING AND BANKRUPTCY
Time and Money. A business – even a good business – can run short of them. In an age of economic squeeze, getting a bank or other creditor to see that it is in their own best interest to work with your business to get them paid may be impossible, if your only leverage is common sense. The law provides a comprehensive framework to give your business a breathing space, to compel your creditors to take “a dose of reality”, to bring everyone to one big table and try to work it out.
That framework is the Chapter 11 reorganization, a set of federal laws and procedures applied by specialized courts, with its own bar of attorneys who primarily focus on attaining consensual resolutions among companies and their creditors embodied in plans of reorganization. “Graduates” of Chapter 11 reorganizations include United Airlines, Texaco, General Motors, Kodak, Eddie Bauer, Macy’s, Dow Corning, Friendly’s, and many other businesses, who when facing a financial disaster, availed themselves of these powerful tools of federal law, changed their financial landscape, and resumed life as solvent businesses.
Chapter 11 reorganization is not limited to giant corporations. Its tools may be applied by any business that needs to continue its operations through a rough patch, to escape the wasting litigation efforts of creditors to collect debt, or the oppressive terms of particular financing agreements, leases or other contracts. In short, Chapter 11 is the means to educate creditors about your business and the forum best-suited to bring about a consensual, court-mandated “fresh start” for your company.
If you have researched Chapter 11, you may have been encouraged by its possibilities, but discouraged by the costs. Often companies that could benefit most from a Chapter 11 filing are in no position to pay the expensive retainers requested by law firms who focus their practice on this area of law. Even more troubling is the inability of these firms to give a reliable estimate of those costs once the Chapter 11 proceeding is commenced. While the benefits to your company of a Chapter 11 filing might be clear as day, the inability of the legal experts to give you a reliable estimate of costs means you can never devise a reliable cost-benefit analysis.
The attorneys of DuffyAmedeo focus on Chapter 11 representation and know the field, having spent twenty years on average in Chapter 11 practice. Because we keep our overhead costs low, we consistently undercut the amount of upfront retainers requested by other firms of comparable experience. More importantly, wherever possible (and it’s possible in most cases), rather than give you an “estimate” of all your projected costs, we make a commitment to you in writing to deliver our legal services to your company at that cost and not a penny more. We founded our law firm on this difference and believe we are unique. We invite you to speak to us, or to our competitors, about how a Chapter 11 filing might benefit your company. And after speaking with our competitors about costs, if you find them, despite their claims of experience, reluctant to commit to a fixed cost structure, then talk to us, and get one major uncertainty resolved, in writing, at the outset.