Saint Louis University School of Law,
Washington University in St. Louis,
Pi Sigma Alpha
National Political Science Honor Society
Illinois USDC, Northern District
US Ct Appeals, 7th Circuit (Covers IL, IN, WI)
US Supreme Ct
Chicago Bar Association, Bankruptcies and Reorganization Committee
The American Bankruptcy Institute
The Turnaround Management Association
Lawdragon 500 Lawyer
Leading U.S. Bankruptcy and Restructuring, 2020
Thompson Coburn LLP
Walinski & Trunkett, PC
Robins, Kaplan, Miller and Ciresi
Lauren is a strategic, proactive bankruptcy attorney and litigator who fights for lenders and creditors of all kinds. She has achieved successful outcomes for clients in bankruptcies, creditor's rights litigation, foreclosures, and out-of-court loan workouts.
Drawing on her 30 years of experience representing lenders facing all types of bankruptcy and business insolvency problems, Lauren works collaboratively with workout officers to develop creative solutions that achieve the best possible recovery of a troubled loan. Her practical, problem-solving approach has frequently resulted in the complete recovery of loans — and the payment by the borrower of all attorneys' fees.
Lauren also serves as a strategic partner and counselor to trade creditors, lessors, private equity firms and other entities affected by the bankruptcy of customers, tenants or borrowers. She advocates for creditors in bankruptcies of all types and sizes, including in claim disputes, contested confirmation hearings, automatic stay litigation and the defense of preference actions, and negotiates the use of cash collateral.
By focusing on how to achieve the best possible recovery in a thoughtful, practical and efficient manner, Lauren helps all types of lenders and creditors pursue creditors' rights alternatives involving distressed businesses. She leads out-of-court workouts, negotiates and structures forbearance agreements, and guides clients through all aspects of collateral disposition and public and private sales of assets on behalf of lenders. But, unlike many bankruptcy attorneys, Lauren has significant in-court experience, including mortgage foreclosures and loan enforcement actions. Because she can seamlessly represent clients in any litigation needed to contest or enforce a claim, she negotiates from a position of strength. If litigation is necessary, Lauren looks for the strategy that achieves the client's end goal in the most expedient and cost-effective way possible.
Won an appeal to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, affirming a win from the bankruptcy court. Lauren represented a secured lender which is a subsidiary of a large, publically traded REIT. A borrower defaulted on a loan for an office building which ended up in Chapter 11. Lauren successfully defeated three plans of reorganization proposed by the debtor. Debtor attempted to avoid mortgage lien by claiming a prior release of mortgage, which was re-recorded before the bankruptcy was filed, remained released and unperfected since debtor did not consent to re-mortgaging the property. Lauren won on summary judgment in the bankruptcy court, and defended creditor's mortgage lien up the 7th Circuit, which resulted in affirming the lower courts and upheld the lender's lien rights.
Secured the payment in full of a $7 million defaulted loan for a major national bank. Forebearance agreements included obtaining additional collateral to secure the loan. As the borrower cycled through multiple attorneys, Lauren worked together with the bank's special assets loan officer to achieve a resolution that forced the borrower to sell certain assets that resulted in the paydown of the large outstanding loan (2015).
Represented a bank in a workout involving a $16.6 million dollar secured debt on an insolvent shipping company, which resulted in the successful sale of the bank's debt.
In litigating a bank client's objection to a tool-and-die cast company's proposed Plan of Reorganization, Lauren obtained payment in full for the bank through the sale of the debtor's assets.
Counsel to one of the country's largest restaurant supply companies, offering advice on multiple restaurant bankruptcies, including some national chains, and pursuing claims as a trade creditor, including obtaining "critical vendor" status and defending preference actions.
Defended numerous preference actions on behalf of creditors of all types, frequently obtaining low-dollar settlements.
Experience in automatic stay litigation, and objections to claims and confirmation litigation on behalf of lenders, equipment lessors, trade creditors and mortgage lenders.
Numerous secured lender representations throughout the Chapter 11 process, including cash collateral and plan negotiations.
Successfully defended an objection to a claim based on a $1 million mechanic's lien. On appeal, a district court agreed that federal law did not preempt state law lien rights on federal construction projects.
Representation of lenders in resolving numerous distressed real estate loans, including mortgage foreclosure actions and real estate loan workouts. Extensive experience with forbearance agreements and structured settlements, including receiver sales.
"Federal Appellate Court Affirms Secured Creditor’s Retention Of a Mortgage Lien Where Mistaken Release Was Cancelled Prior to Bankruptcy,"
ABA Section of Real Property, June 2019
"How the World Has Changed: Troubled Mortgage Loans Prior to Acceleration,"
Practicing Law Institute, Commercial Real Estate Financing 2009, March 2009
"Troubled Loans, Workouts, and Enforcement Strategies,"
Practicing Law Institute, Commercial Real Estate Financing 2008, March 2008
"Before You Pull the Trigger: Strategies for Loan Workouts,"
Practicing Law Institute, Ninth Annual Commercial Real Estate Institute, March 2007
"Insider and Affiliate Guarantees Under Preference and Fraudulent Transfer Laws,"
Minnesota Institute of Legal Education: Financial Institutions Law,
"Practical Solutions to Defaults: A Basic Guide to Workouts, Remedies and Enforcement";
Equipment Leasing Financing Association Legal Forum, May 2008
"Litigation Skills-Consumer: Valuation, Evidence, Burden of Proof";
American Bankruptcy Institute, 14th Annual Central States Bankruptcy Workshop, June 2007
"Bankruptcy: A Comprehensive Updated Study of Bankruptcy Materials and Legal Information";
National Association of Credit Managers - Midwest, Three-Part Seminar, March & April 2007
"Dealing with Distressed Companies";
Institute of Management Education, Audio Conference, May 2006
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