Stuart A. Laven, Jr.


Stuart Laven is Counsel in Ulmer’s Banking & Commercial Finance Practice Group, where he focuses on commercial finance and financial restructuring matters. He represents lenders, borrowers, and equity sponsors in all modes of commercial financings, including asset-based and cash flow revolving loan facilities, health care and long-term care financings, commercial real estate financings, and subordinated/mezzanine loans. His healthcare finance experience includes representation of skilled nursing, behavioral health, and inpatient rehabilitation borrowers in acquisition financings and refinancings, including bridge-to-HUD and revolving credit facilities.

Stuart’s commercial finance practice complements his financial restructuring and bankruptcy practice, which includes more than two decades of experience representing debtors, senior lenders, acquirers, landlords, and other significant stakeholders in all phases of the Chapter 11 process, as well as in non-bankruptcy restructurings, including receiverships, forbearance agreements, and Article 9 collateral dispositions. Stuart’s restructuring engagements span a broad spectrum of industries, including automotive (Tier 1 and Tier 2 suppliers), trucking and logistics, agribusiness, retail, and health care. His insolvency litigation experience includes defense of fraudulent transfer, preference, and successor liability actions in multiple jurisdictions. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Stuart led successful out-of-court restructurings of middle market businesses in a variety of heavily impacted industries, including live events, aerospace, and automotive.

In his free time, Stuart volunteers as an instructor with the Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center, an adaptive skiing program in Breckenridge, Colorado for adults, children, and veterans with disabilities and special needs.

Education & Admissions


  • The George Washington University

    (B.B.A., 1995)

  • The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law

    (J.D., 1999)


  • State of Ohio
  • State of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Wisconsin



  • Representation of long-term care borrowers in originations and refinancings of bridge-to-HUD and revolving credit facilities between $25 and $300 million.
  • Representation of a national bank as a multi-tranche bondholder in the comprehensive restructuring of an Indiana community hospital’s $25 million tax-exempt bonds.
  • Representation of retail landlords in Chapter 11 and 7 bankruptcies of In re Party City Corp., In re Cineworld Cinemas Limited (Regal Cinemas, Inc.), In re Christmas Tree Shops, LLC, and In re JC USA, Inc. (Jenny Craig).
  • Representation of a pandemic-impacted aircraft/aerospace component borrower in a workout and refinancing of $30 million term and revolving loan facilities.
  • Representation of a pandemic-impacted live events borrower in an $11 million senior loan workout, sale-leaseback, and refinancing with rescue capital from a national restaurant group.
  • Represented a multifamily borrower in a $30 million Freddie Mac K-Deal acquisition financing, including issuance of a non-consolidation opinion.
  • Serves as outside general counsel to a Tier 1 automotive supplier in several diverse matters, including the restructuring and modification of a $40 million term and $23 million revolving credit facilities, sale-leaseback of multiple industrial facilities, and long-term OEM supplier contract negotiations.
  • Represented a private equity-sponsored specialty plastics borrower in various substantive modifications to a $16 million split collateral term/ABL facility.
  • Represented a middle market lumber/construction materials borrower in the distress refinancing of a $7 million asset-based revolving credit facility.
  • Served as lead outside counsel to the trade credit group of a large public company in customer Chapter 11 bankruptcies.
  • Defended a private equity-sponsored heavy electrical equipment manufacturer in a series of post-acquisition successor liability and fraudulent transfer actions in New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas.
  • Represented a first-lien agricultural lender in a Chapter 12 bankruptcy of a large Western New York dairy farm.
  • Represented a distressed regional ambulance business in an out-of-court forbearance with an SBIC lender and an ultimate Article 9 asset sale to a strategic acquirer.
  • Represented a distressed private equity sponsor in restructuring and the ultimate $5 million sale of a portfolio recycling business.
  • Represented a process automation hardware manufacturer and mobile app developer in various outbound licensing and SAAS agreements.

Publications & Presentations

Client Alerts


  • “J.C. Penney’s Big Rent Abatement Push: Will Landlords Bear the Brunt of COVID-19’s Impact on Retail?” Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Journal (September 2020)
  • “2019 Farm Bankruptcies: A 20% Increase Compounded by Record High Debt and Record Low Income,” The Farm Bankruptcy Blog (February 2020)
  • “The Pea Protein Market Shift: Why Producer Bankruptcies May Play a Bigger Role,” The Farm Bankruptcy Blog (January 2020)
  • “Chapter 12’s New $10 Million Debt Limit: Will Farm Bankruptcy Filings Spike,” The Farm Bankruptcy Blog (December 2019)
  • “Official Creditors’ Committees in U.S. Chapter 11 Cases: What Foreign Creditors Should Expect,” Geneva Group International Debt Collection, Restructuring and Insolvency Newsletter (Winter 2017)
  • “U.S. Oil and Gas Insolvencies: The Tip of the Iceberg,” Geneva Group International Debt Collection, Restructuring and Insolvency Newsletter (Spring 2016)
  • “Midstream Agreements: The Door is Open for 365 Rejection,” American Board of Certification Bankruptcy Blog (April 2016)
  • “Post-Bankruptcy Interest on Oversecured Debt: How Much Can You Get,” CRE Finance World (Winter 2013)
  • “The Absolute Truth,” Default Servicer News Magazine (March 2013)


  • “Bankruptcy Issues in Commercial Real Estate Leasing,” Sterling Education Services (2014)
  • “Funding a Chapter 11 Case: Show Me the Money,” Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association (2012)
  • “Maximizing Value in Distressed CRE Assets Through Receivers,” CRE Finance Council Distressed Debt Summit, New York City (2012)
  • “Bankruptcy Alternatives: General Overview and Strategic Considerations,” Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association / Turnaround Management Association (2011)
  • “Financial Advisor Due Diligence,” ABI MidAtlantic Bankruptcy Workshop (2011)



  • American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association


  • Named to The Best Lawyers in America, Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law (2024)