Douglas C. Bernstein
- Licensed Since: 1982
- Joined Firm: 2002
- Partner Since: 2003
Bloomfield Hills, MI 48304
Areas of Practice
Honors & Awards
- Best Lawyers in America® for Bankruptcy, Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law (Copyright 2014 by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, SC), 2014 - 2016
- Award for Excellence - Chambers USA - Banking & Finance: Michigan, 2010
- Leading Lawyer in Banking & Financial Institutions Law / Bankruptcy & Workout Law: Commercial / Creditor's Rights/Commercial Collections Law, Leading Lawyers Magazine Michigan, 2015
- Martindale-Hubbell’s highest rating-AV Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated
- Michigan Super Lawyer in Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights; Michigan Super Lawyers, a Thomson Reuters publication, 2008 - 2015
- Top Lawyer in Banking & Financial Service Law and Bankruptcy / Creditors / Debtors Rights, Dbusiness magazine, 2009, 2012 - 2015
- Top Lawyer in Insolvency and Reorganization Law, Dbusiness magazine, 2015
- American Jurisprudence Award – Labor Law 1, 1980
- Honor Roll – Spring 1979, Fall 1980
- Detroit College of Law, J.D., 1982
- Wayne State University, B.A., 1978
Bar & Court Admissions
- Michigan, 1982
- U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, 1982
- U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan, 2004
- U.S.Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit, 1982
The managing partner of Plunkett Cooney’s Banking, Bankruptcy and Creditors’ Rights Practice Group, Douglas C. Bernstein focuses his practice in the areas of commercial litigation, commercial loan restructuring and documentation, creditors’ rights, commercial and municipal bankruptcy, receiverships and other banking-related litigation and appeals on behalf of national and regional lenders and special servicers.
Prior to joining Plunkett Cooney, Mr. Bernstein was employed by Michigan National Corporation as an attorney for over 20 years. He subsequently joined the Standard Federal Bank Legal Department when the bank merged with Michigan National Corporation in 2001.
Mr. Bernstein, who currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of Plunkett Cooney, Detroit Riverfront Events, Inc. and the H1 Unlimited Hydroplane Racing Series, has a number of published appellate decisions to his credit. He is a member of several professional organizations and presents seminars to clients and industry organizations on commercial loan restructure, bankruptcy and litigation issues, and assisted the state of Michigan in the training of potential emergency managers and emergency financial managers.
Mr. Bernstein regularly appears as a guest on finance and general news radio and television programs to discuss banking law and bankruptcy issues, and he is frequently quoted by media covering the business, banking and financial industries.
Representative Client Work
- Served as counsel to charitable foundations in connection with City of Detroit bankruptcy "Grand Bargain"
- Serves as a resource to local, regional and national media on the City of Detroit's financial emergency status and Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy filing
- Served as counsel to secured lenders in several troubled residential construction and development projects, including obtaining the appointment of a receiver.
- Representation of lenders in bankruptcy proceedings to deny debtors discharge of debts.
- Representation of court appointed receivers.
- Successful restructure on behalf of lender of $28,000,000 loan relationship, resulting in full repayment to client, including reimbursement of all costs and attorneys’ fees.
- Representation of major automotive supplier in defense of $10,000,000 preference and fraudulent conveyance action.
- Served as counsel to lender in numerous matters involving troubled hotels, restaurants, boat manufacturers, automotive suppliers.
- Providing general bankruptcy advice to several automotive suppliers.
- Oakland County Bar Association (In-House Counsel Committee, Past Chair)
- State Bar of Michigan
- Turnaround Management Association
- American Bankruptcy Institute
- Attorney Discipline Board, Hearing panelist
- Detroit Riverfront Events, Inc., Co-Founder, Director (April 2015 - Present)
- H1 Unlimited Hydroplane Racing Series (General Counsel, 2010 - Present; Board Member, 2011 - Present)
- Detroit River Regatta Association, Board Member (2005 - 2015)
- Oakland County district and circuit courts, Case evaluation panelist (1988 - 2014)
- American Power Boat Association, General Counsel (Past)
- Hydro-Prop Unlimited Hydroplane Racing Series (General Counsel, 2002 - 2004)
- Michigan Sports Hall of Fame (Board Member, April 2008 - July 2009)
Representative Publications and Lectures
- "Does the 'Detroit Future City Plan' begin at Chapter 9?," Panelist, Turnaround Management Association Spring Conference, Southfield, Michigan, April 25, 2013
- “To Sell or Not to Sell? That’s the $363 Million (Section 363) Bankruptcy Question,” Presenter, ACG and Turnaround Management Association Detroit Chapter Seminar, Farmington Hills, Michigan, March 12, 2013
- "Between a Rock & a Hard Place - Municipal Entities in Distress" Presenter, The Federal Bar Association, Eastern District of Michigan - Bankruptcy Committee Seminar, Southfield, Michigan, October 10, 2012
- "Best Practices in Local Government Fiscal Management" Panelist, Michigan State University and Turnaround Management Association Michigan Chapter Conference, Bankruptcy - Chapter 9, Lansing, Michigan, April 19, 2011
- “Bank and Special Asset Forum on Distressed Real Estate” Presenter, Information Management Network third annual conference, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, February 17, 2011
- Bankruptcy - Chapter 9, Emergency Financial Manager Training Program, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, February 10, 2011
- Plunkett Cooney attorneys named ‘Leading Lawyers’
- 20 Plunkett Cooney attorneys among DBusiness Top Lawyers
- Plunkett Cooney attorneys among Michigan 'Super Lawyers'
- Plunkett Cooney attorneys among 2015 ‘Best Lawyers in America’
- Plunkett Cooney attorneys among DBusiness Top Lawyers
- Bernstein joins national panel to examine scope of municipal bankruptcy
- Plunkett Cooney attorneys among Michigan ‘Super Lawyers’
- Plunkett Cooney attorneys among ‘Best Lawyers in America’ 2014
- Firm welcomes new members to board of directors
- Bernstein re-elected to Gold Cup race board
- Plunkett Cooney attorneys among Michigan ‘Super Lawyers’ 2011
- Bernstein Appointed to Hydroplane Racing Board
- Plunkett Cooney attorneys among Michigan 'Super Lawyers' 2010
- Plunkett Cooney elects three to firm’s board of directors
- Plunkett Cooney attorneys among Michigan ‘Super Lawyers’ 2009
- 'Quick rinse' bankruptcy for GM: a pipe dream?
- Media update examines auto industry bailout, possible bankruptcy filings
- Bernstein re-elected to Gold Cup race board
- Plunkett Cooney attorneys among Michigan 'Super Lawyers' 2008
- Bernstein elected to Michigan Sports Hall of Fame Board
- Bernstein to present at national bankruptcy conference