Jim Wallack is a bankruptcy lawyer who leads the firm’s nationally recognized bankruptcy and restructuring group. Jim has extensive experience in complex Chapter 11 reorganizations, workouts and transactions involving distressed assets. A primary focus of his practice is the representation of private equity firms and their underperforming portfolio companies.
Jim is known nationally for his industry expertise involving the acquisition and disposition of troubled real estate assets and retail and consumer products companies. Recognized by Chambers USA as "brilliant and tenacious" and “one of the best lawyers in the area…A practical lawyer with a great deal of experience and wisdom who is highly respected in Court,” Jim represents borrowers, debtors-in-possession, purchasers, investors, secured lenders, unsecured creditors’ committees, and landlords in bankruptcy proceedings in New England, New York and throughout the U.S.
- Representation of a joint venture seeking to acquire a large portfolio of hotel properties out of a Chapter 11 proceeding.
- Representation of CrossHarbor Capital as first mortgagee and buyer in the Spanish Peaks Holdings II LLC case. Assisted CrossHarbor to acquire the debtor’s real property and to obtain the cash proceeds of the sale pursuant to its first mortgage lien, including resolving disputes with the trustee and a major construction lienholder, and successful litigation with the debtor’s insider concerning leases on the property which CH SP acquired. The lease litigation involved appeals up to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, resulting in a favorable decision for CrossHarbor on an issue of first impression as to when a sale of property can be free and clear of leasehold interests.
- Representation of Gordon Brothers Group in its successful acquisition and disposition of assets from the United States operations of Ben Sherman Group.
- Representation of PLR IP Holdings, LLC (owner of the Polaroid brand) in an acquisition of the interests of the trustee of the Polaroid Corporation in bankruptcy proceedings in Minnesota, and counseling Gordon Brothers Group and Hilco Consumer Brands in connection with a buyout of the other partners in PLR by an affiliate of the Polaroid family.
- Representation of Calypso St. Barth in the restructuring of its retail leases and implementation of a rent deferral program.
- Representation of Nulife Glass in the wind down of its business, including negotiations with creditors, asset dispositions, and the disposal of cathode ray tube materials it had acquired.
- Representation of distressed portfolio companies of a national private equity firm, including the sale of a manufacturing business with international operations, the out-of-court restructuring of a technology company, and the sale of a construction company.
- Lead debtor-in-possession counsel to Betsey Johnson LLC in the sale and disposition of its assets in Chapter 11 proceedings before the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.
- Lead debtor-in-possession counsel for Victor Oolitic Stone Company, the largest limestone quarry in Indiana, in its chapter 11 bankruptcy case in Indianapolis and its successful 363 sale process and the asset acquisition by an affiliate of Resilience Capital Partners.
- Representation of Canadian retailer in connection with its bid to acquire leases from Aeropostale, Inc. in its Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings in the Southern District of New York.
- Representation of six landlords in the Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases of Eastern Outfitters LLC in the Delaware bankruptcy court. Four leases were assumed pursuant to negotiated lease amendments, the other two were rejected.
- Representation of several investors, including Audax Management Company, in connection with the Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities Bankruptcy and SIPA proceedings. Representation includes the defense of avoidance and disgorgement actions and prosecution of claims against the Madoff Victim Relief Fund.
- Representation of Costco in its successful acquisition of real property from Princeton Office Park, L.P. in its Chapter 11 case filed in New Jersey.
- Representation of Edens Limited Partnership (formerly Edens & Avant) in its successful acquisition of a majority interest in the Closter Mall as plan sponsor in the Irani Chapter 11 case in the District of New Jersey.
- Pro bono representation of Codman Square Neighborhood Development Corporation in its successful acquisition and preservation of affordable housing properties in the Uwagboe O. Uru-Lawrence bankruptcy case in the District of Massachusetts.
- Counsel to Gordon Brothers Group and DJM Asset Management in the following distressed asset transactions: (i) the liquidation of assets and inventory of Joyce Leslie, a regional retail chain of women’s clothing in the tri-state area (New York, New Jersey and Connecticut); (ii) the disposition of all the inventory owned by Delia*s, Inc. in a joint venture with Hilco Merchant Resources (New York); (iii) the disposition of all inventory and real estate in the Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market, Inc. case (Delaware); (iv) the bid to purchase inventory liquidation rights and real estate in the Loehmann’s Holdings, Inc. case in a joint venture with Hilco Merchant Resources (New York); (v) the liquidation of all inventory owned by Filene’s Basement, LLC and Syms Corp. (Delaware, in a joint venture with Hilco Merchant Resources, LLC); (vi) the successful acquisition and wind down of CompUSA, Inc.; (vii) the liquidation of underperforming assets in the Sportsman’s Warehouse chapter 11 case (Delaware); and (viii) the acquisition of the right to liquidate inventory of Finlay Fine Jewelry Corporation and subsidiaries (New York).
- Counsel to Twitchell Corporation in the sale of substantially all of its assets to Twitchell Technical Products, LLC.
- General counsel to CRG Partners in connection with their retentions in numerous turnaround matters around the country, in pursuing a fee enhancement on account of CRG’s extraordinary performance in the Pilgrim’s Pride chapter 11 reorganization in the Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas, and as a defendant in actions brought by the Antioch Company Litigation Trust in the Southern District of Ohio and by the Trustee for Solar Cosmetics, Inc. in the Southern District of Florida.
- Counsel for Michael Macateer, in his capacity as court-appointed Irish liquidator and foreign representative of Bedminister International Limited, in Chapter 15 bankruptcy proceedings pending in the District of Massachusetts.
- Special debtor-in-possession counsel for Tweeter Home Entertainment Group, Inc.
- Counsel to GMAC as a creditor in The Education Resources Institute case in the District of Massachusetts.
- Lead bankruptcy counsel for Omni Facility Services, Inc. and thirteen affiliated debtors in the successful disposition of their businesses.
- Representation of the Official Committees of Unsecured Creditors in the Chapter 11 reorganizations of Organogenesis Inc., Thinking Machines Corporation and Martha’s Vineyard Hospital, Inc.
- Representation of W/S Discount Acquisition LLC in successful disposition of all of Caldor Corporation’s leases and owned real estate.
- Representation of the Richard A. Smith family as the largest shareholder in, and purchaser of an investment portfolio from, the operator of General Cinemas Theatres.
Professional and Community Involvement
- Fellow, American College of Bankruptcy
- American College of Bankruptcy, Member Education Committee for the First Circuit
- Turnaround Management Association of the Northeast, Past President
- American Bankruptcy Institute
Awards and Recognition
- Martindale Hubbell Peer Review Rated AV Preeminent TM
- Best Lawyers in America, Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law, 2006-2017
- Massachusetts Super Lawyers, 2004 - 2016
- "America's Leading Business Lawyers," Chambers USA 2004-2016
- Speaker, "Executive Benefits (Supreme Court Argument)," Circuit Meeting of the American College of Bankruptcy, March 2014
- Panelist, “Views From The Bench,” NYIC/TMA Mohegan Sun Conference, May 2012
- Moderator, Municipal Insolvencies: "Is This The Next Wave?," TMA Northeast Presentation, November 2011
- Instructor, American College of Bankruptcy seminar, “Anatomy of a Distressed Business,” October 2010, April 2008, and April 2007
- Moderator, "Getting the Deal Done in Bankruptcy," TMA Northeast Presentation, November 2009
- Moderator and panelist, “Patent and Patent Applications: Unlocking their Value for the Bankruptcy Estate,” ABI Spring Meeting, April 2008
- Moderator and panelist, “Investment Strategies of the New Lenders: What the Next Round of Cases Will Look Like,” ABI Northeast Bankruptcy Conference, July 2007