Creditors appoint counsel at Dewey & LeBoeuf

TWO CREDITOR groups of collapsed law firm Dewey & LeBoeuf’s estate have selected Brown Rudnick and Kasowitz Benson Torres & Friedman to advise them, writes the Am Law Daily.

Edward Weisfelner, chairman of Brown Rudnick’s bankruptcy and finance department, confirmed his firm has been selected to represent Dewey’s unsecured creditors’ committee and that Kasowitz will represent a committee of former Dewey partners. Kasowitz’s David Friedman is taking the lead on that assignment, Accountancy Age’s sister publication Legal Week reports.

The creditors’ committee includes staffing agency HireCounsel, car service Inta Boro Acres and equipment lessor Winthrop Capital. Representing former Dewey partners are David Bicks, Cameron MacRae, John Kinzey and John Campo, all of whose ties to the firm go back to predecessor firm LeBoeuf Lamb Greene & MacRae.

Dewey – the 28th highest grossing law firm in the US last year – ended weeks of speculation about how its rapid collapse would officially play out by filing for Chapter 11 protection on 28 May. That was the same day the US giant’s London and Paris offices, which operated as a UK limited liability partnership, filed for administration. BDO administrators have been appointed to both London and Paris operations.

The firm has acknowledged outstanding debts totalling at least $325m (£208m), including approximately $225m owed to a syndicate of secured creditors. JPMorgan Chase is acting as collateral agent to that group, which is mostly made up of hedge funds.

In landing their respective assignments, Brown Rudnick and Kasowitz join several other firms that have already taken roles in the Dewey collapse. Albert Togut of insolvency boutique Togut Segal & Segal is representing the firm’s estate, while Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel partner Kenneth Eckstein is working for JPMorgan.

Mark Zauderer, partner at New York’s Flemming Zulack Williamson Zauderer; Tracy Klestadt, partner at New York boutique Klestadt & Winters; and Dorsey & Whitney are lining up to represent groups of former partners and retirees. Kathryn Coleman, partner at Hughes Hubbard & Reed, submitted papers on Friday (1 June) to court, highlighting that she will represent Dewey’s former executive director Stephen DiCarmine in connection with the administration.

The Am Law Daily is a US affiliate title of Legal Week.

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