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William W. Kannel

Member / Chair, Bankruptcy & Restructuring Practice

BKannel@mintz.com

+1.617.348.1665

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Bill is a nationally recognized bankruptcy attorney with extensive experience in corporate and municipal reorganizations and debt restructurings both in and out of court. He represents creditors and debtors across a wide range of industries throughout the country in all phases of distressed debt negotiations, bankruptcy litigation, and distressed asset acquisitions. Bill is also recognized as one of the leading attorneys in the nation for his work representing bond trustees and bondholders in Chapter 9 bankruptcies and other governmental and municipal insolvencies.

Bill is the chair of the firm's Bankruptcy & Restructuring Practice. His practice focuses primarily on commercial law and litigation, workouts, and corporate and municipal restructurings. Bill has represented various institutional lenders, indenture trustees, bondholders, and other creditors, debtors, and trustees in all manner of insolvency proceedings in courts throughout the United States.

His industry experience encompasses municipalities, airlines, hospitals and other health care facilities, retail, telecom, energy and clean tech, waste disposal, military housing, hotels, and educational institutions.

He has substantial experience in all phases of bankruptcy litigation, practice, and case management from both the debtor’s and creditor’s perspective, including relief from stay, adequate protection, valuation, preference, fraudulent transfer, subordination, competing plan, and appellate litigation. One of his specialty areas is in negotiating sales of troubled companies and assets, both in and out of bankruptcy. His practice also includes addressing bankruptcy and documentation issues in securitizations, receivable sales, bond transactions, and structured financings generally.

Bill is active in the American College of Bankruptcy, American Bankruptcy Institute and the Turnaround Management Association and frequently lectures and writes on insolvency issues in front of these groups and numerous other bar, trade, and industry groups, including the National Federation of Municipal Analysts and its constituent societies and the Municipal Bond Buyers Conference. He served as an editor-in-chief of the American Bankruptcy Institute Health Care Insolvency Manual and served as co-chair of the American Bankruptcy Institute’s Health Care Insolvency Section.

Education

  • Boston University School of Law (JD)
  • Wesleyan University (BA)

Experience

  • Representation of ad-hoc sewer and water revenue bondholders in Chapter 9 of Detroit, Michigan proceedings in the United States Bankruptcy Court for Eastern District of Michigan.
  • Representation of ad-hoc group of second lien bondholders in Chapter 11 of Caesars Entertainment Corp. in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Illinois.
  • Representation of indenture trustee for first lien bondholders in Chapter 11 bankruptcy of Molycorp, Inc. et. al. in United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware.
  • Representation of numerous institutional holders of municipal bond debt of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and related entities.
  • Representation of indenture trustees in numerous Chapter 9 hospital district cases including Atoka Medical Center in the United States Bankruptcy Court for Eastern District of Oklahoma, Tulare Medical Center in the United States Bankruptcy Court for Eastern District of California and Palm Drive Health Care District in the United States Bankruptcy Court for Northern District of California.
  • Representation of indenture trustee for lease revenue and special revenue debt in Chapter 9 of Stockton, California in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of California.
  • Representation of indenture trustee in receivership of Scranton Parking Authority in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
  • Representation of indenture trustee in receivership of Central Falls Detention Facility Corporation in Central Falls, Rhode Island.
  • Representation of Synata Bio Inc. in the purchase of assets from Abengoa Bioenergy Biomass of Kansas, LLC pending in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Kansas.
  • Representation of liquidity providers and bondholders in Chapter 9 of Jefferson County, Alabama in the United States Bankruptcy Court for Northern District of Alabama.
  • Representation of indenture trustees and bondholders with respect to facility revenue bonds in the Chapter 11 bankruptcies of United Airlines, Inc., Northwest Airlines and Delta Airlines, Inc.
     

Recognition & Awards

  • Legal 500 Hall of Fame Finance: Municipal Bankruptcy 
  • Recognized as a leading lawyer by The Legal 500 United States for Finance: Municipal Bankruptcy (2013-2020)
  • Best Lawyers in America: Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law, Litigation – Bankruptcy (2006 – 2021)
  • Chambers USA: Massachusetts – Bankruptcy/Restructuring (2005 – 2020)
  • The International Who’s Who of Insolvency & Restructuring Lawyers (2015 – 2020)
  • Included on the Massachusetts Super Lawyers: Bankruptcy: Business list (2005 – 2020)
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent
  • Recognized as Lawdragon 500 Leading U.S. Bankruptcy and Restructuring Lawyers 2020
  • Part of team that worked on a matter that received the 2020 Non-Profit Turnaround of the Year Award by the Turnaround Management Association

Recent Insights

News & Press

Events

Viewpoints

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363 Sales as a Health Care M&A Tool, Part 2 – Pros and Cons for Buyers and Sellers

September 11, 2020 | Blog | By Deborah Daccord, William Kannel, Rachel Irving Pitts, David Chorney, Tim McKeon

Over the summer, we wrote about why health care companies may want to consider buying assets out of bankruptcy, taking advantage of the Bankruptcy Code Section 363 sale process (a "363 Sale”). We are back with our second post, to provide more detail to the process and discuss some pros and cons of 363 Sales.

As a refresher, a 363 Sale couples a flexible and fast process with ample liability protection for willing buyers. The primary benefit of a 363 Sale is that a buyer can acquire the debtor’s assets free and clear of virtually all liens, claims, and interests burdening the assets and the debtor. And when Section 363 is coupled with the “assumption and assignment” provisions of Section 365 of the Bankruptcy Code, a debtor is able to assign most contracts or leases that a buyer may wish to purchase, including contracts with ironclad anti-assignment language, provided that certain conditions are satisfied. When a target is experiencing severe financial distress, the benefit of acquiring assets “free and clear” is extraordinarily valuable.
Read more
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363 Sales as a Health Care M&A Tool, Part 1 – Overview

July 28, 2020 | Blog | By Deborah Daccord, William Kannel, Rachel Irving Pitts, Tim McKeon, David Chorney

Although health care may be well positioned to weather an economic downturn as an industry, certain sectors, including ambulatory surgery, vision, dermatology, dental, and other physician practices will bear the brunt of COVID-19 stay-at-home orders and patients delaying non-emergency care. While the onset of COVID-19 has delayed or derailed many transactions, strategic buyers should consider all of the different transaction tools available them to help maximize value and successfully get to closing. For knowledgeable investors and strategic buyers, now is the time to position yourself to acquire valuable health care assets at steep discounts.

For those unfamiliar with 363 Sales, a 363 Sale couples a flexible and fast process with ample liability protection for willing buyers. The primary benefit to a 363 Sale is that a buyer can acquire the debtor’s assets free and clear of virtually all liens, claims and encumbrances burdening the assets and the debtor. When a target is experiencing severe financial distress, the benefit of acquiring assets “free and clear of all liens” is extraordinarily valuable.
Read more
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Top 10 Questions Human Resources May Have When Their Company is Filing for Chapter 11 Protection

June 2, 2020 | Blog | By Andrew Matzkin, Kaitlin R. Walsh, William Kannel

Businesses in a wide range of industries may now be forced to consider bankruptcy given the unprecedented economic challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This advisory is designed to provide a high-level view of issues to be considered by human resources when considering filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
Read more
Bankruptcy & Restructuring Viewpoints Thumbnail
Read about the pros and cons for private company buyers seeking to purchase distressed targets through a formal bankruptcy process in the post–COVID-19 era plus strategies for success.
Read more
Bankruptcy & Restructuring Viewpoints Thumbnail
On March 27, 2020, President Trump signed into law the “Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act” (the “CARES Act”), a $2+ trillion stimulus package intended to ease the economic and social disruptions facing the country in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Read more
Bankruptcy & Restructuring Viewpoints Thumbnail

Congress Acts to Mitigate COVID-19 Impact

March 18, 2020 | Blog | By Anthony DeMaio, William Kannel, Leonard Weiser-Varon

Below is an update on legislative efforts by Congress and the White House to address the coronavirus pandemic, prepared by our D.C. colleagues at ML Strategies, who are closely following these fluid and fast-moving developments. Efforts to provide a supply of low cost working capital to the many businesses and entities experiencing operational and/or cash flow disruption may be of particular interest to our bondholder clients.
Read more
Public Finance Viewpoints Thumbnail
Tolstoy warned that “if you look for perfection, you’ll never be content”; but Tolstoy wasn’t a bankruptcy lawyer.  In the world of secured lending, perfection is paramount. A secured lender that has not properly perfected its lien can lose its collateral and end up with unsecured status if its borrower files bankruptcy. 
Read more
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Insolvent “On Behalf Of” Municipal Bond Issuers: Chapter 9, Chapter 11, or Ineligible?

February 26, 2018 | Blog | By William Kannel, Charles W. Azano

Last week, President Trump unveiled his proposal to fix our nation’s aging infrastructure. While the proposal lauded $1.5 trillion in new spending, it only included $200 billion in federal funding.
Read more

Checking-In: Chapter 9, Chapter 11 or Ineligible?

February 23, 2018 | Blog | By William Kannel, Charles W. Azano

Last week, President Trump unveiled his proposal to fix our nation’s aging infrastructure. While the proposal lauded $1.5 trillion in new spending, it only included $200 billion in federal funding. To bridge this sizable gap, the plan largely relies on public private partnerships (often referred to as P3s) that can use tax-exempt bond financing.
Read more

Three Strikes and Recovery Act is Out

June 13, 2016 | Blog | By Leonard Weiser-Varon, William Kannel

Today's U.S. Supreme Court decision in Commonwealth of Puerto Rico v. Franklin California Tax-Free Trust puts an end to one of Puerto Rico's multi-pronged efforts to deleverage itself. 
Read more

News & Press

News Thumbnail
In an article published by Barron’s, Mintz Member and Chair of the firm’s Bankruptcy & Restructuring Practice William Kannel was quoted on an increase in distress in senior living, student housing, hospitality and hotels, and project finance, among other areas, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to strain municipal finance.
News Thumbnail
Mintz Member and Chair of the firm’s Bankruptcy & Restructuring Practice William Kannel, Member Andrew Matzkin, and Special Counsel Kaitlin Walsh co-authored an article published by Pratt’s Journal of Bankruptcy Law that provided a high-level view of issues to be considered by human resources when considering filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
Press Release Thumbnail
In the latest guide, Mintz garnered rankings as a top national firm in eight practice areas, and 32 firm attorneys were individually recognized.
Press Release Thumbnail
Mintz partner and Massachusetts lawyer Julie Korostoff is one of 49 attorneys recognized as “Leaders in Their Fields” by the 2018 Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business guide. Chambers named Korostoff a “Recognized Practitioner” in Technology.
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Best Lawyers named 85 Mintz attorneys to its 2018 list of The Best Lawyers in America. In addition, Mintz attorneys Matthew J. Gardella and Samuel M. Tony Starr were named “Lawyer of the Year” in their respective practice areas.
Fifty-three Mintz attorneys have been named Massachusetts Super Lawyers for 2016 and thirty-one have been named Massachusetts Rising Stars. The findings will be published in the November 2016 issue of Boston Magazine and in a stand-alone magazine, New England Super Lawyers. 
William W. Kannel, Section Head of the Bankruptcy and Restructuring Practice, and Daniel S. Bleck, Member of the Bankruptcy and Restructuring Practice at Mintz, will speak at the High Yield Municipal Bond Conference presented by SMITH’s Research and Gradings.
Best Lawyers named 73 Mintz attorneys to its 2017 list of The Best Lawyers in America. Mintz attorneys selected for inclusion in this year’s list span 44 practice areas. 
The Legal 500 United States has recognized Mintz as a leading municipal bankruptcy firm in the 2016 edition. For the fourth consecutive year, William W. Kannel, Section Head of the Bankruptcy & Restructuring Section, has been named to The Legal 500 United States’  “Leading Lawyers” list.
Firm’s National Healthcare Practice, NY Corporate/M&A and Litigation: General Commercial Among Newest Rankings
The 2015 Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business guide names 52 Mintz, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C.  attorneys as “Leaders in Their Fields.”

Events

Panelist
Nov
18
2020

Chapter 9 and Municipal Securitizations

Smith's Research & Gradings

Online

Webinar Reference Image
Moderator
Oct
3
2019

Smith's High Yield Municipal Bond Conference

Puerto Rico Panel: When Politics Fail

Greenwich, CT

Moderator
Oct
26
2017

Tools for Evaluating State Pension Risk

The Education Committee of the National Federation of Municipal Analysts

Grand Hyatt Denver, CO

Moderator
Sep
15
2017

The Puerto Rico Panel

Smith's Research & Gradings

Hyatt Regency, Greenwich, CT

Panelist
Sep
8
2017

MAGNY Luncheon & Discussion

Yale Club 50 Vanderbilt Avenue New York, NY

Moderator
Jul
21
2017

24th Annual Northeast Conference - Puerto Rico: The View From The Inside

American Bankruptcy Institute

Newport Marriott, Newport, Rhode Island

Panelist
Sep
30
2016

SMITH's High Yield Municipal Bond Conference

SMITH’s Research and Gradings

Greenwich, CT

Speaker
Jul
6
2016

PROMESA Webinar

Height Securities and Municipal Market Advisors

Boston, MA

Panelist
May
4
2016
Panelist
Apr
7
2016

ACIC 2016 Spring Investment Forum

American College of Investment Counsel

The Four Seasons Hotel Chicago, IL

Panelist
Feb
23
2016

2016 Municipal Bond Buyers Conference

Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa Bonita Springs, FL

Panelist
Oct
1
2015

SMITH’s High Yield Municipal Bond Conference

SMITH’s Research & Gradings

Hyatt Regency Greenwich, CT

Speaker
Jun
18
2015

Detroit and Puerto Rico

Minnesota Society of Municipal Analysts

Minneapolis, MN

Speaker
Apr
18
2015

33rd Annual Spring Meeting

The American Bankruptcy Institute

Renaissance, Washington, DC