Michael, a member of the firm’s Litigation & Dispute Resolution and Corporate & Business Transactions practice groups, focuses on bankruptcy and restructuring. He has more than 25 years of experience representing clients in bankruptcy cases, insolvency and default situations, and commercial litigation.

Michael has significant experience representing distressed companies and secured and unsecured lenders in out-of-court workouts, bankruptcy cases, and state and federal court litigation. Michael also has extensive experience in the sale and purchase of businesses and/or assets in bankruptcy and pursuant to Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code.

Michael also represents debtors, lenders and creditors’ committees in complex Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases involving sophisticated issues such as contested plan confirmation hearings, debtor in possession financing, contested asset purchase/sale litigation, lien validity and priority litigation, jurisdictional and venue disputes, complex avoidance action litigation, and litigation concerning fiduciary duties. He has been involved in bankruptcy cases involving manufacturing, energy, health care, financial services, technology and distribution and logistics companies. These cases were primarily in Virginia, New York and Delaware, however, he has represented clients in bankruptcy cases nationwide.


  • AV Peer Review Rated: Martindale-Hubbell
  • Recognized in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, Bankruptcy/Restructuring, Band 1, published by Chambers and Partners, 2015 – present
  • Recognized by IFLR1000 United States as highly regarded in Restructuring and Insolvency, 2019, 2022 – 2023
  • Named among “Top 50 Richmond Lawyers,” 2019
  • Listed in Virginia Super Lawyers, Bankruptcy and Creditor/Debtor Rights, 2007 – present
  • Named among “Top 50 Virginia Lawyers,” 2010 & 2011
  • Named among “Top 100 Virginia Lawyers,” 2012, 2014 – present
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America, 2010 – present
  • Named Best Lawyers’ 2019 and 2024 Roanoke “Lawyer of the Year,” Litigation – Bankruptcy
  • Named Best Lawyers’ 2010 and 2014 Roanoke “Lawyer of the Year,” Bankruptcy and Creditor/Debtor Rights
  • Listed in Virginia Business’ “Legal Elite – Virginia’s Best Lawyers,” 2007 – present

Representative Matters

Chapter 11 Reorganizations and Liquidations

  • Lead debtor’s counsel in Chapter 11 reorganizations, including the successful reorganization of The Glebe, Inc., a continuing care retirement community in Virginia and Yates’ Mobile Home Sales, a manufactured home distributor in Virginia.
  • Lead debtor’s counsel in Chapter 11 liquidations, including companies in the following industries: manufacturing (apparel and furniture), high technology (telecommunications), service (plumbing, food), medical (hospital), financial (hedge fund), real estate development, and charitable organizations. Represented the debtor in several Chapter 11 cases in the Eastern District of Virginia including Heilig-Meyers and Cardinal Homes, Inc.
  • Represented secured and unsecured creditors in many Chapter 11 cases, including some of the largest cases filed in the United States: Fortune 500 companies in the General Motors (Southern District of New York), Hawker-Beechcraft (Southern District of New York), Kodak (Southern District of New York), RG Steel (District of Delaware), and Lyondell Chemical (Southern District of New York) bankruptcy cases.
  • Represented the petitioning creditors in state court receiverships throughout Virginia.
  • Represented a major joint venture partner to the debtor in a Western District of Virginia Chapter 11 case.
  • Represented a national commercial bank for many years in loan workouts and bankruptcy cases throughout Virginia.
  • Represented private equity investors in the Velocity Capital case pending in the District of Delaware.
  • Represented lessors in the Circuit City (Eastern District of Virginia), Ennstone (Eastern District of Virginia) and Movie Gallery (Eastern District of Virginia) cases.
  • Represented a significant supplier in the Cadence Innovation Chapter 11 pending in the District of Delaware.
  • Represented a variety of trade creditors in the Chapter 11 cases of Alpha Natural Resources, Inc. and Patriot Coal, both pending in the Eastern District of Virginia.
  • Represented the founder and former CEO of Health Diagnostics Laboratories, Inc., pending in the Eastern District of Virginia.

Loan Workouts and Financial Restructuring

  • Represented borrowers (ranging from small, family companies to large businesses) and lenders (ranging from community banks to national banks and private investment companies and hedge funds) in countless out-of-court loan workouts and financial restructuring transactions.

Creditors’ Committee Representation

  • Represented Official Committees of Unsecured Creditors in cases in Virginia and Delaware, including the Champion Homes, International Garden Products, and Samuels Jewelers bankruptcy cases pending in the District of Delaware and numerous Chapter 11 cases in Virginia bankruptcy courts.
  • Represented the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors in the Xinergy Ltd. case in the Western District of Virginia.

Purchasers of Assets and Businesses in Bankruptcy

  • Represented purchasers of assets in Chapter 11 in the following industries: oil and gas, manufacturing (apparel and furniture), telecommunications, health care, railroad, resorts, and food service.

Representation of Trustees and Receivers

  • Appointed as receiver of a large construction company by a state court in Virginia, and he represented the receiver in multiple receiverships prosecuted by the Commodities and Futures Trading Commission and the Securities and Exchange Commission.
  • Represented Chapter 7 trustees in litigation of estate claims, including avoidance actions, directors’ and officers’ liability claims and professional malpractice claims.
  • Represented the Liquidating Trustee in the LandAmerica Chapter 11 (Eastern District of Virginia), and the Liquidating Trustee in the Champion Homes case (District of Delaware).
  • Represented state court receivers, including the Receiver of Capitol Components & Millwork in the Loudon County Circuit Court.
  • Represented the petitioning creditor in several state court receiverships, including the receiverships of BRVA Properties in the Circuit Court of the City of Martinsville, Virginia and of Widget Home, LLC in the Circuit Court for Campbell County, Virginia.

Continuing Care Retirement Communities, Long Term Care and Assisted Care Facilities

  • Served as lead counsel for the debtor in the Chapter 11 reorganization of a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC), one of the few in the U.S. to successfully reorganize and emerge from Chapter 11. Michael’s work involved restructuring secured municipal bonds and negotiating with and obtaining a release from a moratorium on the collection of entrance fees imposed by the Virginia State Corporation Commission and the Virginia Department of Insurance.

Attorney Perspectives