Michael R. Enright

Partner

  • Overview

    Biography

    Mike Enright co-chairs the firm’s Bankruptcy + Reorganizations Group. He represents debtors, committees, creditors, and other parties in the business bankruptcy and workout process and in bankruptcy litigation. His work also includes preference, fraudulent transfer, and other bankruptcy litigation analysis and defense. He has extensive experience guiding clients through bankruptcy filings, including reorganization and liquidation. Mike also has broad business law experience, and provides general counsel to non-profit organizations and commercial entities regarding all manner of corporate governance and commercial transactions.

    Mike recently represented a global fuel oil supplier in its Chapter 11 case, including negotiation and confirmation of its plans, which provided for a substantial distribution to creditors. He also routinely represents secured creditors, creditors’ committees, and other creditors. He recently assisted a major global corporation in protecting its ongoing interests in high-value contracts following customer Chapter 11 filings in multiple energy generation businesses.

    Mike participates as a member of the American Bar Association's (ABA) Business Bankruptcy Committee, speaking annually on current developments in bankruptcy for the Task Force on Current Developments, of which he is Vice Chair. He writes frequently on bankruptcy related topics, including for practice guides and legal treatises. Mike is a contributing editor to the ABA’s monthly publication, Business Law Today, in the area of bankruptcy law.

    Mike has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America© in the areas of Bankruptcy and Creditor-Debtor Rights Law / Insolvency and Reorganization Law since 2006 and Litigation - Bankruptcy since 2011. He has been selected to the Connecticut Super Lawyers list from 2006 to 2021.

  • Experience
    • Experience

      Experience

      • Represented Fortune 500 company as major investor in and lender to professional sports league. Implemented DIP financing to facilitate orderly liquidation. Negotiated consensual plan that preserved tax benefits for estate and maximized likely return to creditors, dependent upon outcome of antitrust litigation.
      • Represented purchaser of distressed food business in out-of-court asset purchase. Negotiated, structured, and documented combination of debt acquisition and real/personal property foreclosures utilizing Article 9 remedies and deed-in-lieu transaction. Successfully negotiated with creditors regarding successor liability issues.
      • Retained by one of the world's largest manufacturers to represent one of its business units in all bankruptcy and commercial collection litigation matters throughout the U.S., including over 100 bankruptcy cases, some of which are among the largest and most complex cases pending in the country. Provided advice on collateralizing debt obligations and on enforcing alternative creditor remedies, including advice on reclamation and mechanic's liens.
      • Represented Connecticut chapter of national ethnic affinity nonprofit group in workout of its creditor issues and negotiated rescue transaction including infusion of resources by parent organization to stabilize and rehabilitate local chapter.
      • Represented nonprofit hospital consortium in potential acquisition of the assets of another nonprofit hospital out of Chapter 11 proceedings pursuant to Section 363 of the Bankruptcy Code.
      • Represented lenders to various nonprofit healthcare organizations in and out of receivership proceedings and bankruptcy proceedings.
      • Represented landlords of chain of nonprofit nursing homes in receivership proceedings.
      • Counseled tax exempt organizations regarding compliance with various provisions of the Connecticut Nonstock Corporations Act.
      • Advised tax exempt foundation regarding preference and fraudulent transfer claims made against it in connection with bankruptcy proceedings of donors.
      • Represented church in workout negotiations with the holders of notes issued in connection with financing of construction of new church and possible Chapter 11 proceedings.
      • Represented trustee of foundation in connection with potential investment of trust funds into a fund managed by a wholly-owned tax exempt subsidiary of the foundation.
      • General counsel to manufacturing businesses, including advice regarding corporate governance, contracts with vendors and customers, distribution and sales representative agreements, and related matters.
      • Represented secured creditor in Chapter 11 case regarding leveraged buyout (LBO) debt resulting from acquisition of similar mail-order businesses. Engagement included litigation over amount of debt resulting from net worth guaranties issued by operating companies, with the debtors asserting that proper interpretation of the guaranties resulted in debt reducing to zero. Settled litigation and negotiated consensual plan providing for lender to immediately receive all of the value of its collateral.
      • Represented secured creditors in many single-asset real estate cases that involved all types of commercial properties. Initiated and pursued stay relief and confirmation litigation through stay relief and disposition, confirmation hearings on competing plans, negotiated resolution, or sale of debt to third party.
      • Retained by one of the largest U.S. banks as secured creditor in workout, followed by Chapter 11, concerning significant manufacturer. Implemented debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing and negotiated a consensual plan to be implemented by the debtor under certain conditions. When the debtor could not meet those conditions, terminated DIP financing and participated in consensual liquidation by trustee, first of machinery and equipment, then of real estate, with accounts collected by creditor.
      • Representation of the selling majority shareholder in a $20 million fraudulent transfer action brought by a bankruptcy trustee. The challenged transfer arose out of a leveraged buyout of our client's business, which ended up in a Chapter 7 liquidation case within two years after the transaction closed. Representation included extensive deal and valuation analysis, particularly with regard to likely expert testimony on the value of intellectual property and the reasonableness of cash flow projections at the time the transaction closed. One of the key defenses was the "settlement payment doctrine" under Section 546(e) of the bankruptcy code, which is novel and has split the circuits in interpreting its availability. After several years of litigation, Robinson & Cole settled the fraudulent transfer action on favorable terms for the client, relying on the settlement payment doctrine, other defenses, and valuation analyses.
      • Representation of an insurance carrier concerning longshoreman's insurance policy issued to a shipyard in a Chapter 11 proceeding commenced in the District of Connecticut. Following confirmation of debtor's Chapter 11 plan, represented carrier in asserting approximately $1.5 million administrative claim for unpaid and past due premiums. Additionally, undertook review and analysis of claims made under policy for purposes of fixing of carrier's prepetition general unsecured claim. Negotiated the ultimate settlement agreement covering all aspects of obligations owed to carrier, which resulted in substantial payments of all amounts due, as well as an extension of ongoing coverage for limited period postconfirmation.
      • Represented O.W. Bunker, a global supplier of fuel oil to ships in port or at sea, in its Ch. 11 case, including negotiation and confirmation of its Ch. 11 plans, providing for a substantial distribution to its creditors.

      • Represented international corporation in connection with its long term maintenance contracts with power generation facilities in Ch. 11, including requesting prompt assumption or rejection of such contracts and addressing substantial issues of post-petition payment and enforcement of contract terms, providing for the ultimate renegotiation and/or assumption of such contracts in the debtors’ Ch. 11 plans.

      • Represented former founding shareholders of bankrupt sports/entertainment business in defense of fraudulent transfer claw back litigation instituted by Ch. 7 trustee and settled on favorable terms, obtaining full releases in exchange for nominal payment.

      • Represented lenders to medical supply company in Ch. 11 case, culminating in negotiated exit strategy which evolved from a stalking horse sale process and involved a sale of the lenders’ secured debt to be used as a credit bid by the buyer, with full releases for the banks. 

      • Represented largest creditor of a bankrupt rap mogul in his Ch. 11 case, coordinating with two other large creditors as an informal committee and proposing a creditor plan, which ultimately led to a timely exit by the debtor, confirming a consensual plan that paid creditors approximately 80% of their debt within one year.

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    • Professional Associations

      Professional Associations

      American Bar Association
      Business Law Section, Business Bankruptcy Committee, Task Force on Current Developments (1992 - present); Vice Chair (2014 - present)
      Section of Taxation, Exempt Organizations Committee

      Connecticut Bar Association
      Commercial Law and Bankruptcy Section, Executive Committee (1992 - present)

      American Bankruptcy Institute (1995 - present)

      New York State Bar Association (2004 - present)

      Chicago Bar Association (2007 - present)
    • Honors + Awards

      Honors + Awards

      Selected to the Connecticut Super Lawyers list from 2006 to 2021 and 2023.

      Selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© in the area(s) of Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights law / Insolvency and Reorganization Law since 2006 and Litigation-Bankruptcy since 2011.

      Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© as Hartford Lawyer of the Year in the area of Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law for 2024 and 2020 and in the area of Litigation - Bankruptcy for 2021 and 2013.

      Winning Deal Team for Chapter 11 O.W. Bunker Debtors, “Restructuring Deal of the Year (Over $100MM)”, 15th Annual M&A Advisor Awards, 2016

      Winning Deal Team for Chapter 11 O.W. Bunker Debtors, “Energy Deal of the Year (Over $500MM to $1B)”, 11th Annual M&A Advisor Turnaround Awards, 2017

      Winning Deal Team for Chapter 11 O.W. Bunker Debtors, “Restructuring Deal of the Year”, 9th Annual M&A Advisor International Awards, 2017

      Presented with the Food & Beverage Restructuring Deal of the Year honor as part of the Global M&A Network’s 14th Annual Turnaround Atlas Awards in recognition of serving as counsel to Tribe 9, LLC in the Carla’s Pasta, LLC Chapter 11 bankruptcy case.

      Presented with the Chapter 11 Restructuring of the Year in the “mega” category (value: above $5 billion) as part of the Global M&A Network’s 15th Annual Turnaround Atlas Awards in recognition of serving as co-counsel to the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors (UCC) in the Mallinckrodt plc, et al. chapter 11 cases.

  • NEWS + PRESS
    • Publications

      Publications

      "Solving for Solvency: Problematic Make-Whole Provisions Defy Uniform Approach," published in the American Bar Association Business Law Section's Business Law Today "Month-In-Brief: Bankruptcy & Finance" (October 2022)

      "Post-Confirmation Jurisdiction Is Narrow, But Not That Narrow," published in the American Bar Association Business Law Section's Business Law Today "Month-In-Brief: Bankruptcy & Finance" (August 2022)

      "Post-Petition Payment For 20-Day Goods Does Not Reduce New Value Defense," published in the American Bar Association Business Law Section's Business Law Today "Month-In-Brief: Bankruptcy & Finance" (July 2022)

      "County’s Tax Lien Foreclosure Avoidable as a Fraudulent Transfer," published in the American Bar Association Business Law Section's "Month-In-Brief: Bankruptcy & Finance" (June 2022)

      "Subpoenaed Third Party Can Recover Cost of Its Attorneys’ Review," published in the American Bar Association Business Law Section's Business Law Today "Month-In-Brief: Bankruptcy & Finance" (May 2022)

      "Goods, Services and Bankruptcy Code Section 503(b)(9)," published in the American Bar Association Business Law Section's Business Law Today "Month-In-Brief: Bankruptcy & Finance" (March 2022)

      "Withdrawal Liability Under ERISA as a Successor," published in the American Bar Association Business Law Section's Business Law Today "Month-In-Brief: Bankruptcy & Finance" (January 2022)

      "Sometimes It May Be Better to Just Walk Away," published in the American Bar Association Business Law Section's Business Law Today "Month-In-Brief: Bankruptcy & Finance" (October 2021)

      "When Did Business Cease for Purposes of Employees’ Priority Claims?" published in the American Bar Association Business Law Section's Business Law Today "Month-In-Brief: Bankruptcy & Finance" (September 2021)

      "Administrative Claims That First Arise After Entry of the Confirmation Order Still Need to Comply with the Bar Date," published in the American Bar Association Business Law Section's Business Law Today "Month-In-Brief: Bankruptcy & Finance" (August 2021)

      Connecticut Exemptions, published in Bankruptcy Exemption Manual
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      Overview of the Bankruptcy Code and Claims Trading, published in Business Workouts Manual
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      Post-Closing Matters, published in Collier Practice Guide
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      Bankruptcy and Reorganization, published in Controller's Business Adviser
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      "Q&A with Robinson & Cole's Michael Enright," published in Law360 (4/26/2013)

      "May a Bankruptcy Court Exercise Supplemental Jurisdiction Predicated on Its Referred 'Related To' Jurisdiction?" published in Norton Journal of Bankruptcy Law and Practice, co-authored with Patrick M. Birney (January 2010)

    • Presentations

      Presentations

      "Current Developments in Bankruptcy," as part of the American Bar Association’s Business Bankruptcy Committee CLE sessions, a a follow-up to the ABA’s programs at the National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges in October. (11/5/2021)
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      "Imerys Talc America Inc. Bankruptcy," co-presented with Natalie D. Ramsey and Mark A. Fink, presented at the HarrisMartin Talcum Powder Litigation Conference (1/9/20)
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      "Current Developments in Bankruptcy," served as a panelist at the American Bar Association's 2014 Spring Meeting of the Business Law Section in Los Angeles (4/11/2014)

      "Recent Developments Regarding Priorities in Bankruptcy," at Task Force on Current Developments, Business Bankruptcy Committee of the ABA Section of Business Law (annually)
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      "The Tipping Point: Shifts in Negotiating Leverage Created by the Bankruptcy Reform Act," at Commercial Finance Association Annual Meeting, San Diego, California, co-presented with Stuart Ames, Patricia Redmond, and Robert Zadek (11/10/2005)
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      "Minimizing Client Risk: Avoiding the Pitfalls of Multi-Borrower Loan Arrangements," at ABA Business Law Today Teleseminar, co-presented with Stuart Ames and Michael Maglio (2/9/2005)
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      "Six Sexy Bankruptcy Issues (Another Dose of The Bankruptcy Relief Package for Corporate Generalists)," at Westchester/Southern Connecticut Chapter of The American Corporate Counsel Association seminar, co-presented with Stephen Gross (3/19/2002)

      "Bankruptcy Relief Package for Corporate Generalists," at Westchester/Southern Connecticut Chapter of The American Corporate Counsel Association seminar, co-presented with Stephen Gross (1/17/2002)

      "Who Wants to Avoid a Million-Dollar Mess?" at interactive sessions with various clients, tailored to their needs
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    • News

      R+C in the News

      • July 20, 2023

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized During Global M&A Network's 2023 Turnaround Atlas Awards

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      • November 8, 2022

        Mike Enright Authors ABA Business Law Today Item About Claims Based on Make-Whole Provisions in Chapter 11 Cases

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      • July 25, 2022

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized During Global M&A Network's 2022 Turnaround Atlas Awards

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      • October 18, 2018

        51 Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized by Super Lawyers®

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      • August 20, 2018

        52 Robinson+Cole Lawyers Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© 2019

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      • June 6, 2016

        Robinson+Cole Sponsors George W. Crawford Black Bar Association's 2016 Annual Dinner

      • June 29, 2015

        Robinson+Cole Hosts Young Lenders Happy Hour

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      • May 7, 2014

        Mike Enright Presents at Annual Meeting of ABA's Business Law Section

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      • May 11, 2010

        Robinson & Cole Attorney Speaks on Bankruptcy Panel During Business Law Program

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      R+C News Releases

      • October 26, 2023

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized in 2023 Super Lawyers®

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      • August 17, 2023

        78 Robinson+Cole Lawyers Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© 2024

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      • August 18, 2022

        74 Robinson+Cole Lawyers Listed in The Best Lawyers in America 2023

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      • March 3, 2022

        Robinson+Cole Advises Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors in Chapter 11 Mallinckrodt plc Case

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      • October 14, 2021

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized by Super Lawyers®

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      • August 19, 2021

        65 Robinson+Cole Lawyers Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© 2022

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      • October 15, 2020

        47 Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized in Super Lawyers®

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      • August 20, 2020

        61 Robinson+Cole Lawyers Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© 2021

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      • October 19, 2019

        52 Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized by Super Lawyers®

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      • August 15, 2019

        57 Robinson+Cole Lawyers Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© 2020

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      • October 17, 2017

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized by Super Lawyers®

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      • August 15, 2017

        Fifty-Nine Robinson+Cole Lawyers Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© 2018

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      • July 25, 2017

        Robinson+Cole Involved in Award Winning International M&A Deal

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      • June 5, 2017

        Robinson+Cole Participates in Junior Achievement Career Walk

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      • November 29, 2016

        Robinson+Cole Recognized for Work on “Deals of the Year”

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      • October 18, 2016

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized by Super Lawyers®

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      • August 15, 2016

        Robinson+Cole Receives Top Listing in Connecticut Lawyer Count in The Best Lawyers in America® 2017

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      • October 19, 2015

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized by Super Lawyers®

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      • August 18, 2015

        Robinson+Cole Receives Top Listing in Connecticut Lawyer Count in The Best Lawyers in America® 2016

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      • October 17, 2014

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized by Super Lawyers

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      • August 19, 2014

        Robinson+Cole Receives Top Listing in Connecticut Lawyer Count in Best Lawyers National Peer Review Survey

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      • August 16, 2013

        Robinson & Cole Receives Top Listing in Connecticut Attorney Count in Best Lawyers National Peer Review Survey

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      • October 22, 2012

        Super Lawyers® Names 49 Robinson & Cole Attorneys to 2012 List and Recognizes 26 as Rising Stars

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      • September 14, 2012

        Ten Robinson & Cole Attorneys Selected as “Lawyers of the Year”

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      • August 28, 2012

        Robinson & Cole Receives Top Listing in Connecticut Attorney Count in Best Lawyers National Peer Review Survey

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      • September 12, 2011

        Robinson & Cole Receives Top Listing in Connecticut Attorney Count in Best Lawyers National Peer Review Survey

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    • Legal Updates/Newsletters

      Legal Updates/Newsletters

      "Bankruptcy Sale Order Won't Protect New GM from Ignition Switch Claims Due to Deficient Notice" co-authored with Patrick M. Birney and Steven J. Boyajian