Richard G. Hardy

Partner | Chair, Corporate Restructuring & Creditors' Rights | Hiring Partner


Certified as a specialist in business bankruptcy law by the American Board of Certification, Richard has more than 40 years of experience counseling large and middle-market clients in connection with bankruptcies, receiverships, and insolvency litigation throughout the country. Richard chairs the firm’s Corporate Restructuring & Creditors’ Rights Group. His broad experience includes representing debtors, lenders, creditors committees, and purchasers of distressed businesses in bankruptcy and insolvency proceedings nationwide.

Best Lawyers® has twice named Richard the Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law “Lawyer of the Year” in Cleveland. Based on the highest overall peer-feedback for a specific practice area and geographic region, Best Lawyers bestows this designation to only one attorney for each specialty and location. Additionally, Richard has achieved the highest ranking, AV Preeminent®, from Martindale-Hubbell® and has been consistently named to The Best Lawyers in America® and Ohio Super Lawyers lists.

Education & Admissions

Education

  • University of Iowa

    (B.A., 1975)
    Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Fraternity

  • Case Western Reserve University School of Law

    (J.D., 1978)
    Associate Editor, Case Western Reserve Law Review

Admissions

  • State of Ohio
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio

Experience

REPRESENTATIVE EXPERIENCE
Richard has represented the following:
Insolvency Litigation

  • A multinational electronics manufacturer in connection with prosecuting attachment proceedings in California.
  • A Fortune 500 insurance company in a $32 million fraudulent conveyance action in Kansas Bankruptcy Court.
  • Two Fortune 500 companies in defense of two multi-million dollar fraudulent conveyance and preference actions in The Tribune Company bankruptcy case in the Southern District of New York.
  • A national consulting firm which prevailed in objecting to discharge and bad faith litigation in Florida Bankruptcy Court.
  • Shareholder/creditors seeking re-characterization of their claims in West Virginia Bankruptcy Court.
  • A public company which prevailed in the prosecution of fraudulent conveyance and re-characterization claims in American Arbitration Association proceedings in Columbus, Ohio.
  • Both plaintiffs and defendants in numerous fraudulent conveyance and preference cases in multiple jurisdictions.

Bankruptcy Proceedings

  • A multinational public company in connection with its role as the chair of the Official Creditors Committee and the largest creditor in the Delaware bankruptcy case of a customer.
  • The sponsor of a plan of reorganization pursuant to which the client acquired the assets of the manufacturer of a pharmaceutical company.
  • A national credit card processor in connection with negotiating cash collateral arrangements and pursuing collection of its processing fees in bankruptcy proceedings in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Delaware, and other jurisdictions.
  • Creditors’ committees in Chapter 11 proceedings including that of a steel manufacturing business and a chain of discount stores.
  • The purchaser in connection with its acquisition of multiple nursing homes by means of proposing and confirming a plan of reorganization in Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings.
  • Several owners of multi-family apartment complexes in connection with their respective Chapter 11 proceedings.
  • The secured lender in numerous Chapter 11 proceedings including those of the manufacturer and retailer of fine chocolate and confectionary products; the holding company and subsidiaries of a multi-state foundry operation; a large wholesale distributor of household goods; and a fixed-base operator and charter airline.
  • Equipment lessor in connection with Chapter 11 proceedings of forging business.
  • The debtor in connection with Chapter 11 proceedings of a manufacturer of metal halide lighting products, a trucking company, and an oil and gas producer.
  • The trustee in numerous adversary proceedings to avoid fraudulent conveyances and recover assets from several related parties and entities.
  • One of Ohio’s largest municipalities in connection with the Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceeding of thermal energy provider crucial to the citizens of the municipality.

Workouts

  • Several secured lenders in connection with workout of credit facilities for numerous residential real estate developers; a temporary employment agency; an injection molding operation; and numerous other borrowers.
  • The national syndicator/developer of low-income multifamily housing developments in connection with restructuring and workout of certain projects.
  • A precision aviation parts manufacturer in workout of its loan with secured lender and eventual refinancing.
  • The borrower in a workout of loans involving several parcels of real estate involving national lenders.
  • Developers and partners of distressed shopping center projects.
  • Numerous manufacturing companies in connection with restructuring loans with their secured lenders.

Receiverships  

  • The receiver in connection with its operation of certain hotel facilities.
  • The receiver in connection with its operation of manufacturer of certain electrical components.
  • The secured lender in receivership proceeding brought against plastic injection molding manufacturer.
  • The secured lender in receivership proceeding brought against manufacturer of specialized coating machinery.
  • The acquirer of real estate and businesses from receivers.

Distressed M&A

  • Both purchasers and sellers in numerous successful court-approved sales of assets including, among many other businesses: metal manufacturing and processing companies; hotel owners and operators; a manufacturing and welding company; a private country club and golf course; and a company specializing in the production of railroad track and machinery.
  • Sellers and purchasers in successful asset dispositions through the use of Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code, including a window manufacturer; accounts receivable factor and other businesses.

 

Publications & Presentations

Presentations

  • “New Age of Bankruptcy,” 2015 William J. O’Neill Great Lakes Regional Bankruptcy Institute (May 2015)
  • “Distressed Credits,” Chicago Chapter of the Global Association of Risk Professionals at DePaul University Department of Finance (February 2015)
  • “Commercial Breakout: It’s Not All Bricks and Mortar: Special Issues in Construction Bankruptcies,” 2013 William J. O’Neill Regional Bankruptcy Institute (June 2013)
  • “Real Estate Forecast 2009,” NorthStar Title Services (January 2009)
  • Frequent lecturer in bankruptcy at the William J. O’Neill Bankruptcy Institute and other bankruptcy seminars
  • “Your Largest Customer is Failing: Now What?,”  ACCA Seminar (August 2008)

Involvement

PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS

  • 2009 William J. O’Neill Regional Bankruptcy Institute (Chair)
  • American Bar Association (Corporations, Business and Banking Section)
  • Ohio State Bar Association
  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association (Bankruptcy and Commercial Law Section)
  • American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Turnaround Management Association (Former Trustee)
COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT
  • Case Western Reserve University School of Law (Member, Alumni Advisory Board, Center for Business Law & Regulation 2011-present)
FIRM INVOLVEMENT 
  • Corporate Restructuring & Creditors’ Rights, Chair
  • Hiring Partner, Ulmer & Berne
  • Business Law, Chair (Former)
  • General Counsel, Ulmer & Berne (Former)

Honors

HONORS

  • Designated Best Lawyers Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law “Lawyer of the Year” in Cleveland (2015; 2018)
  • Named to The Best Lawyers in America, Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law; Corporate Law; Litigation-Bankruptcy (2007-2019)
  • AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated – Martindale-Hubbell
  • Named to the Ohio Super Lawyers list (2004-2019)
  • Named a “Leading Lawyer” in Northeast Ohio in a survey of lawyers by Inside Business Magazine (2009-2011*) *2011 final year of survey

CERTIFICATIONS

  • Certified as a Specialist in Business Bankruptcy Law by the American Board of Certification (1994-present)