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Michael Lichtenstein is a seasoned litigator who is recognized for his excellence in Best Lawyers in America, Best Lawyers in Washington, DC, Maryland and DC Super Lawyers, the Washingtonian, Smart CEO and in Chambers and Partners, which notes his “quality” as both a lawyer and mediator. Michael has delivered successful outcomes for financial institutions, creditors’ committees, creditors, property owners, debtors and equity holder clients in Chapter 11 proceedings in a dozen states, including Maryland, DC, Virginia, West Virginia, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Tennessee, California and New York. He has helped clients in a wide range of industries, including telecommunications, defense, real estate, technology and retail chains, in matters ranging from $25 to $400 million.   

Debtor and creditor clients in or facing Chapter 11 proceedings have found Michael’s background as a corporate board member and his business focus a tremendous asset in successfully navigating the process. Michael represents clients from a variety of industries in the purchase or sale of assets in bankruptcy proceedings. He also provides expert witness and mediator services in Chapter 11 matters.

In addition to representing companies in bankruptcy and restructuring, Michael delivers successful outcomes in commercial litigation matters involving contracts, securities, telecommunications, construction, commercial real estate and intellectual property matters. He litigates in state and federal courts across the country and has argued several times before the United States Courts of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and Third Circuit.

Michael is a shareholder in the Litigation and Business and Financial Services Departments and chair of the Bankruptcy, Restructuring and Creditors’ Rights Group. Prior to joining Shulman Rogers, he was a litigation and bankruptcy partner at Swidler Berlin, L.P. in Washington, DC. He has earned an AV Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell, a recognition of excellence from both his fellow attorneys and the judiciary.

Professional & Community Affiliations

  • American Bankruptcy Institute, Member
  • Walter Chandler Inns of Court, Master
  • American Bar Association, Member
  • Maryland Bankruptcy Bar Association, Member
  • Maryland Bar Association, Member
  • Resolution Advocate for the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Maryland
  • Appointed as Mediator in Chapter 11 Proceedings by the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Maryland
  • Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless, Board of Directors, 2013 – present
  • Kids in Need Distributors, Volunteer
  • Settled state court breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty limited liability litigation that resulted in multi-million dollar payment to clients.
  • Obtained order converting Chapter 11 to Chapter 7 proceeding in case involving solar energy and cryptocurrency.
  • Won an appeal in the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit affirming the lower court’s decision that lending institution client had a first lien priority on the borrower’s assets on account of a $3.2 million loan and allowing the bank to collect $1.2 million being held in the court registry.
  • Successfully settled a $6 million suit filed for plaintiff in Montgomery County Circuit Court in Maryland through the use of mediation that resulted in monthly payments to client.
  • Appointed by a Maryland Bankruptcy judge as a mediator in a large Chapter 11 proceeding with a trustee who sued several defendants over significant multi-million dollar disputes about lien priorities and entitlement to sales proceeds.
  • Successfully defeated motion to dismiss lawsuit in federal court in Greenbelt, Maryland in suit against insurance company for coverage related to fraudulently issued $1 million letter of credit.
  • Won Board of Immigration Appeals’ affirmance of immigration judge’s grant of asylum for pro bono client from Guinea who fled the country because of religious persecution. The BIA affirmed the immigration judge and then denied DHS’ subsequent motion for reconsideration.
  • Successful representation of pro bono client from Burundi seeking asylum before the Board of Immigration Appeals.
  • Chambers and Partners, 2018, Bankruptcy/Restructuring – Maryland
  • The Best Lawyers in America, 2014-2019, Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law 
  • Maryland Super Lawyers, Business Litigation 2015 – 2018
  • District of Columbia Super Lawyers, Business Litigation, 2014 – 2018
  • Maryland Super Lawyers, Bankruptcy, 2010 – 2014
  • District of Columbia Super Lawyers, Bankruptcy, 2011 – 2013
  • Washingtonian Magazine, Top Bankruptcy Lawyers, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017
  • Best Lawyers in Washington, DC, Washington Post, 2014
  • SmartCEO Legal Elite, 2013
  • Washington DC Top Rated Lawyers, 2012
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Rating
  • Governor’s Volunteer Service Certificate, 2014
  • Commercial Bankruptcy Presentation, Law School for the Public – Montgomery Community Media TV, January 13, 2016
  • “Chapter 11 Structured Dismissals – Viable Exit Strategy or Impermissable”, October 28, 2014
  • “Commercial Lease Damages in Bankruptcy Proceedings”, Maryland Bankruptcy Bar Association, February 26, 2014
  • “Exit Strategies in Chapter 11: Asset Sales and Structured Dismissals,” The Twelfth Annual Spring Break Weekend, Maryland Bankruptcy Bar Association May, 2012
  • MICPEL, Advanced Real Property Institute, October 7, 2009 “Bankruptcy Brush Up:  What to do when a landlord files?”
  • Recent Case Developments in Consumer and Business Bankruptcy Cases, The Tenth Annual Spring Break Weekend, Maryland Bankruptcy Bar Association
  • Chair, Loan Workout, Bankruptcy and Collateral Liquidation in the District of Columbia, Lorman Education Services

Publications

Banking

Landlord-Tenant Bankruptcy

  • A Commercial Landlord’s Damage Remedies in a Tenant’s Bankruptcy Proceedings– Real Estate Finance Journal, Winter 2013/2014
  • What Are A Tenant’s Rights When A Landlord Files For Bankruptcy? Real Estate Law Journal Summer, 2012 with Richard Goldberg
  • The Payment of “Stub Rent” Under the Bankruptcy Code, Real Estate Law Journal, Fall, 2007
  • How New Bankruptcy Code Changes Affect Tenants, Commercial Tenant Lease Insider, August 2005
  • How New Bankruptcy Code Changes Will Affect You, Commercial Lease Law Insider, July 2005
  • Calculating a Landlord’s Claim in Bankruptcy, Real Estate Law Journal, Fall, Volume 32, Number 2, 2003

Chapter 11 Issues

  • The Enforcement of Arbitration Agreements in Bankruptcy Proceedings– Pratt’s Journal of Bankruptcy Law, June 2017
  • Lifestyles of the Rich and Not So Famous in Bankruptcy Proceedings– Pratt’s Journal of Bankruptcy Law, April/May 2016
  • Can Consent Be Implied In A Sale Of Property Free And Clear Of Liens Under Section 363(F) Of The Bankruptcy Code?– Pratt’s Journal of Bankruptcy Law, January 2015
  • Asset Sales and Structured Dismissals in Chapter 11– Pratt’s Journal of Bankruptcy Law, January 2014
  • Insolvency – Chapter 11 Reorganization or Liquidation for Businesses in the United States Lawrope International, March 2012
  • Disappointed Bidders Don’t Have Standing to Appeal an Order Approving a Sale of Assets XXXI ABI Journal 2, March 2012
  • The Treatment of IRUs in Bankruptcy Proceedings, In the Matter of Rural Health Care Support Mechanism WC Docket No. 02-60, July 15, 2010
  • The Imposition of Constructive Trusts in Bankruptcy Proceedings (with Stephen A. Metz), ABI Business Reorganization Committee Newsletter, Volume 7, Number 2, 2008
  • Bankruptcy Courts’ Treatment of Severance Agreements Providing for Continued Payments to Former Employees, Business Law Brief, Fall 2006
  • Supreme Court Ducks Sovereign Immunity Question: A Recap of Circuit Conflicts, American Bankruptcy Institute Journal, July/August 2004
  • Violations of the Automatic Stay: Void or Voidable, American Bankruptcy Institute Journal, May 2004
  • The Treatment of IRUs in Bankruptcy Proceedings, Journal of Bankruptcy Law and Practice, November/December, Volume 11, Number 1, 2001
  • Who Is An Insider For Voting Purposes in a Single Asset Chapter 11?, Bankruptcy Law and Practice, March/April, Volume 10, Number 3, 2001

Litigation

Seminars & Speaking Engagements

  • Commercial Bankruptcy Presentation, Law School for the Public – Montgomery Community Media TV, January 13, 2016
  • “Chapter 11 Structured Dismissals – Viable Exit Strategy or Impermissable”, October 28, 2014
  • “Commercial Lease Damages in Bankruptcy Proceedings”, Maryland Bankruptcy Bar Association, February 26, 2014
  • “Exit Strategies in Chapter 11: Asset Sales and Structured Dismissals,” The Twelfth Annual Spring Break Weekend, Maryland Bankruptcy Bar Association May, 2012
  • MICPEL, Advanced Real Property Institute, October 7, 2009 “Bankruptcy Brush Up:  What to do when a landlord files?”
  • Recent Case Developments in Consumer and Business Bankruptcy Cases, The Tenth Annual Spring Break Weekend, Maryland Bankruptcy Bar Association
  • Chair, Loan Workout, Bankruptcy and Collateral Liquidation in the District of Columbia, Lorman Education Services

News & Events