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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

  • Recognized as a leading lawyer by The Legal 500 United States for Finance: Municipal Bankruptcy (2013-2019)
  • Best Lawyers in America: Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law, Litigation – Bankruptcy (2006 – 2020)
  • Chambers USA: Massachusetts – Bankruptcy/Restructuring (2005 – 2019)
  • The International Who’s Who of Insolvency & Restructuring Lawyers (2015 – 2020)
  • Included on the Massachusetts Super Lawyers: Bankruptcy: Business list (2005 – 2019)
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent

Recent Insights

Events

Viewpoints

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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.
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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.
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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.
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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. 
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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.
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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.
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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. 
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A few thoughts on Tuesday’s oral arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court in the litigation over whether Puerto Rico’s Public Corporations Debt Enforcement and Recovery Act, an insolvency statute for certain of its government instrumentalities, is void, as the lower federal courts held, under Section 903 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code:
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A few thoughts on Tuesday’s oral arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court in the litigation over whether Puerto Rico’s Public Corporations Debt Enforcement and Recovery Act, an insolvency statute for certain of its government instrumentalities, is void, as the lower federal courts held, under Section 903 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.
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A draft of the U.S. Treasury's proposed debt restructuring legislation began circulating earlier today.  The draft legislation would give Puerto Rico, as well as other U.S. territories, and their municipalities access to U.S. bankruptcy court under a new chapter of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code (so-called "Super Chapter 9").
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News & Press

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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

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