PJ practices in the business and securities litigation department where he advises financial institutions on a wide variety of matters. PJ vigorously defends financial institutions in mortgage-related disputes, including claims brought under federal and state consumer protection statutes.
PJ has also represented financial institutions in loan workouts, foreclosures, HOA liens, sales of collateral, confessed judgments, receiverships, debt actions, replevin actions as well as levies and garnishments.
In addition to commercial litigation, PJ has significant bankruptcy and creditors’ rights experience. He has represented secured lenders and equipment financers, landlords, vendors and other unsecured creditors, chapter 11 debtors, and trustees in numerous bankruptcy cases in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware and the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Maryland.
As a practical lawyer, PJ seeks to provide cost-effective solutions to a client’s issue.
- Negotiated settlement on the eve of trial requiring return of millions of dollars worth of inventory and dismissal of plaintiff’s case.
- Defended financial institutions against claims of alleged violations of Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA)
- Orchestrated settlement between parties just four months after taking over lender liability case that had been pending for over 10 years.
- Obtained multimillion-dollar confessed judgment for lender; thoroughly researched and briefed issues relating to meritorious defenses; judgment affirmed on appeal.
- Advised lenders and services on the regulatory requirements regarding foreclosures of real property under deeds of trust and mortgages as well as sales of personal property under the UCC.
- Prevented sale on an emergency basis of client’s collateral by identifying seller’s noncompliance with statute; negotiated settlement that preserved client’s property interest.
- Obtained relief from stay for national bank after trial, thereby allowing it to secure and liquidate its collateral; as first chair, secured dismissals of defendant’s appeals in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.
- Counsel to court-appointed fiscal agent and Chapter 11 trustee for companies allegedly engaged in the sale of unregistered securities by unregistered agents; conducted monthly omnibus hearings, argued numerous motions including obtaining approval of procedures for the sale of estate assets; prosecuted fraudulent conveyance actions; secured court approval of settlements that yielded millions of dollars for the debtors’ estates; confirmed plan of liquidation that provided meaningful recovery for victims of a Ponzi scheme who would have otherwise received no distribution on their allowed claims.
- Protected financer’s interests in sixty million dollars worth of equipment by promptly obtaining court authorization thereby giving financer full access to borrower’s site to inspect and secure collateral.
- Analyzed vendor contracts and advised client of its rights and obligations; persuaded counterparty to prepay invoices and increase its cure payment.
- Handled various bankruptcy matters, including: first-day motions, disclosure statements and plans, DIP financing, cash collateral, 363 sales, contract assumption and rejection, relief from stay, settlements, objections to claims, preferences, fraudulent transfers and fee applications.
Intellectual Property Litigation
- Defended companies as local counsel in intellectual property cases; assisted team in dismissal of patent infringement complaint after Markman hearing resulting in minimal amount of liability for client.
- Successfully appealed lower court’s judgment for violations of Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA), where lower court erred in its conclusion that client had acted in bad faith.
- Handled all aspects of commercial real estate sales as substitute trustee: review title and lien searches; advertised sales and answered bidder inquiries; drafted orders, affidavits, notices and deeds, prepared accounting, and obtained court ratification of sales and audits; recorded deeds.
- Reviewed and revised loan agreements, deeds, and mortgages to comply with state law.
The Catholic University of America, Columbus School of LawJD
magna cum laude, Associate Editor, Catholic University Law Review2000
The University of GeorgiaBA
American Bankruptcy Institute
Maryland State Bar Association
Delaware State Bar Association
- Author, "Claim, Asset or Both?", American Bankruptcy Institute Real Estate Newsletter, 2016
- Contributing author, Maryland, Chapter 54, Strategic Alternatives For and Against Distressed Businesses, Thompson West, 2016
- District of Columbia
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware
- U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
- Speaker, "The Details of Retail: Can You Reorganize Middle-Market Retailers", 12th Annual Mid-Atlantic Bankruptcy Workshop, August 2016