Bankruptcy lawyers who are living at work while working from home will likely remain swamped for the foreseeable future, according to data released this week.
The legal services firm Epiq reported on Monday that in September 2020, new commercial Chapter 11 filings increased 78% versus September 2019, and that the first nine months of 2020 had one-third more filings than there were in the same period of the prior year.
Epiq’s managing director of corporate restructuring, Deirdre O’Connor, adds some context in a statement:
“After a slower August, we see an increase in Chapter 11 filings in September both month over month and year over year. These commercial filings are primarily small businesses that do not have access to capital or stimulus. Unfortunately, those bankruptcies will continue to rise in the current economic environment. For the largest companies, opportunistic investors are providing much needed capital to supplement the lending capabilities of more constrained traditional banks. However, the most over-leveraged distressed companies could succumb to a formal restructuring due to lack of credit support and overall sector decline.”
Monday also saw the launch of the Leopard Law Firm Index, a law firm rating tool that provides some insight into lateral hiring and other trends in practice areas including bankruptcy.
As law firms compete for this prized talent pool, the Leopard Index reveals that Cozen O’Connor is leading the Am Law 200 in one key metric, bringing on eight bankruptcy lateral partners in the past 12 months.
It’s probably safe to say the new additions have hit the ground running.
Chapter 11 U.S. Commercial Bankruptcy Filings up 78% in September [Epiq]
The Leopard Law Firm Index [Leopard Data Solutions]
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