J. Michael Sutherland
"Corporate reorganizations are marked by significant differences from one case to the next. These differences are often fascinating and keep this practice area stimulating. However, they also mean that cookie cutter solutions from one matter won’t necessarily work next year or even in the next matter. So there is plenty of opportunity for creativity and innovation... The client’s objectives and the politics of a reorganization case are also dynamic from the beginning to the end. Hearing what parties are trying to say and discerning what they can realistically hope to accomplish can be very challenging, but ultimately rewarding."
Mr. Sutherland has practiced law for three decades, focusing primarily on bankruptcy, reorganization, workouts, insolvency cases, and related business litigation.
His practice includes representation in notable cases of debtors, trustees, secured creditors, committees, and plan trusts in chapters 7, 9, and 11. Recent cases have included reorganizations in the healthcare, wireless communications, telecommunications, airline, entertainment, and retail industries. Although most cases have involved for-profit corporations or partnerships, Mr. Sutherland has had significant experience in cases involving non-profit entities, charitable organizations, and municipal entities.
“There’s a right way and sometimes a wrong way to do it. Whenever possible, I prefer to use the combination to open the safe rather than just jumping to the step of blowing it up. But, to do this, you have to listen for the tumblers falling into place. I appreciate the client who knows the difference between the available approaches and doesn’t just automatically opt for burning things down or blowing them up.”
Mr. Sutherland was Chairman of the Bankruptcy Section of the Tarrant County Bar Association in 2001-2002.
Mr. Sutherland was chair of the 24th Annual Bankruptcy Conference of the University of Texas, held in Austin, Texas in November 2005, and was co-chair of the first Consumer Bankruptcy Conference of the University of Texas, held in Galveston, Texas in July 2005.
Mr. Sutherland is a frequent writer for and lecturer at both private and academic-based continuing legal education seminars.
Mr. Sutherland has been listed as a Texas Monthly Super Lawyer each year from 2004 to the present. He has also been listed among Chambers USA's America's Leading Lawyers for Business from 2004 to the present.
“It’s okay to be yourself at Carrington Coleman. The people are fun and creative and vibrant. If you are going to spend the amount of time that’s required in the practice of law, you want to spend it around people you like.”