Judy A. O'Neill is an adjunct professor at the Law School, where she teaches a Chapter 11 bankruptcy practicum. Previously, she was an adjunct professor at the University of Toledo Law School, where she taught business reorganization in bankruptcy.
Prof. O'Neill is a partner with Foley & Lardner LLP and is the firm's national automotive crisis insolvency chair. She practices in bankruptcy, insolvency, reorganization, commercial transactions, and corporate law and business transactions, concentrating on issues arising under the Bankruptcy Code. Her experience has spanned a variety of industries, including the real estate, automotive, retail, and health care industries. She has represented clients in all aspects of debt restructurings, counseling companies on strategies to prevent court proceedings and representing troubled public and private companies in bankruptcy and in out-of-court proceedings. Her cases include the representation of purchasers and sellers in acquisitions arising from receiverships and bankruptcy proceedings, unsecured creditors committees, and secured lenders in bankruptcy and out-of-court restructurings. Her representations of troubled companies has included Blue Water Automotive Systems, Inc. and its affiliates, Intermet Corporation and its subsidiaries, Venture Holdings, LLC and its subsidiaries, The 1/2 Off Card Shop, Steinbach Stores, Inc., Pilot Industries and their subsidiaries, Metaldyne Corporation and its affiliates, and special counsel to Oxford Automotive, Inc. and its subsidiaries. Her representation of unsecured creditors has included The Unsecured Creditors Committee of J.L. French, The Unsecured Creditors Committee in Folands, Inc., The Unofficial Committee in Fort Wayne Foundry Inc., and The Official Unsecured Creditors Committee of River City Plastics.
Prof. O'Neill is a facilitator for the Eastern District of Michigan Bankruptcy Court. In addition, the chief judge of the Eastern District of the Michigan Bankruptcy Court appointed her as an examiner on various issues surrounding fees and the decline of the business in the Chapter 11 bankruptcy case for Collins & Aikman, a multi-billion dollar automotive supplier. In that role, she examined the causes and timing of the issues thwarting the reorganization of the multi-billion dollar revenue auto supplier, and the impact of those issues on the fees incurred by professionals. She also represented a significant creditor in the Alleghany Health and Education Foundation, Mariner Healthcare, and Sun Healthcare bankruptcy proceedings. She represented several purchasers in the Michigan Healthcare Corporation bankruptcy.
Prof. O'Neill is also a member of Foley's Sub-prime Task Force for the Distressed Real Estate Initiative, whereby she counsels companies and lenders in connection with perceived threats to their business, and offers them viable options for dealing with and planning for such threats.
At her former firm, Dykema, she managed the business department which housed the real estate, bankruptcy, tax, employee benefits and corporate practice groups. Prior to that, she assisted in the leadership of the Bankruptcy and Creditor's Rights/Reorganization Practice group.
Prof. O'Neill received her law degree, with high honors, from University of Michigan Law School in 1980, and her undergraduate degree, magna cum laude, from Michigan State University in 1976.
Prof. O'Neill is a member of the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association, the Michigan Bar Association, and the American Bar Association. She is a past regional membership director of the American Bankruptcy Institute and its Unsecured Trade Creditors Committee, a past advisory board member of the American Bankruptcy Institute Central States Conference, a past advisory committee member of the Eastern District of Michigan Bankruptcy Court, and a past Debtor/Creditor Committee chairperson of the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association. In addition, the American Board of Certification has certified her as a Bankruptcy and Creditor's Rights Attorney.
In 2002, upon the invitation of the American College of Bankruptcy Fellows, she became a fellow in the College and within the same year, the National Registry of Who's Who made her a lifetime member. She has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America® for more than the past decade, and was selected for inclusion in the 25th Anniversary Edition of Best Lawyers in 2008. She is also listed in Who's Who Legal USA: Insolvency & Restructuring 2006, and Who's Who in American Law, 2000 edition, and has also been selected for inclusion in the Guide to the World's Insolvency and Restructuring Lawyers, 2003 and 2006. She was selected by Crain's Detroit Business as one of the "100 Most Influential Women in Michigan," March 2002. Prof. O'Neill has been recognized, since inception, in the lists of Michigan Super Lawyers® for her work in bankruptcy, creditor, and debtor rights. In addition, she has been named one of the Top 100 Super Lawyers and Top 50 Women Super Lawyers in Michigan for receipt of the highest point totals in the 2007, 2008, and 2009 Michigan Super Lawyers® nomination, research and blue ribbon review process. She has also been recognized by Corporate Counsel as one of the Top Lawyers.
Legal 500, "The Client's Guide to the Legal Profession," identified Foley & Lardner and Prof. O'Neill as an excellent choice in the bankruptcy and restructuring arena. They noted, based upon the combined opinions of many corporate counsel and law firm clients, that she is "bright, hard-working, creative, and attentive to the client."