Press Releases


Bernstein named American College of Bankruptcy Fellow


Douglas C. Bernstein, a partner at Plunkett Cooney,one of the Midwest’s oldest and largest law firms, Doug Bernstein Plunkett Cooney Banking Attorneywas recently selected as a Fellow of the American College of Bankruptcy.

Fellows are selected on an invitation-only basis. Recommended by the Circuit Admissions Council in each federal judicial circuit, nominees for fellowship are extended a request to join based on a record of achievement in the insolvency process by professionals who have distinguished themselves in their practice and in their contribution to the insolvency field.

“Doug is highly respected by his clients and colleagues because of his expertise, character and integrity,” said Thomas P. Vincent, Plunkett Cooney’s President & CEO. “He represents the highest standard of professionalism in the law, and his selection to the American College of Bankruptcy is well deserved.”

The college board approved Bernstein’s nomination to become a fellow during its October meeting in Las Vegas. He is the only Michigan attorney, as well as the only attorney from the federal Sixth Circuit, nominated for the 2018 class. He will join 21 other attorneys from Michigan who are also fellows in the college.

A member of the firm’s Bloomfield Hills office and the firm’s Banking, Bankruptcy & Creditors’ Rights Practice Group Leader, Bernstein concentrates his practice in the areas of commercial litigation, loan restructuring, commercial loan documentation, bankruptcy, banking-related litigation and appeals.

Prior to joining Plunkett Cooney, Bernstein worked as an in-house attorney at Michigan National Corporation for over 20 years. He subsequently joined the Standard Federal Bank Legal Department when the bank merged with Michigan National Corporation in 2001.

Bernstein earned his undergraduate degree in 1978 from Wayne State University and his law degree in 1982 from the Detroit College of Law. He has received several honors for his legal work, including an AV rating by Martindale-Hubbell, a leading peer-to-peer professional ratings service, and selection as a Michigan Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers magazine from 2008 to 2017 and a Best Lawyers in America® from 2014 to 2018.

Criteria for selection in the college includes the highest standard of professionalism, ethics, character, integrity, professional expertise and leadership in contributing to the enhancement of bankruptcy and insolvency processes; sustained evidence of scholarship, teaching, lecturing or writing on bankruptcy or insolvency; and commitment to elevate knowledge and understanding of the profession and public respect for the practice.

In order to be selected for fellowship, judges, lawyers, international fellows, and accountants must be licensed to practice for at least 15 years, work primarily in the bankruptcy and insolvency areas for at least 10 years, and in the case of judges, serve on the bench for five years. The college’s board of regents is responsible for the nomination and selection of qualified candidates to fellowship.

Organized in 1989, the college has over 800 fellows, and it is the largest financial supporter of bankruptcy and insolvency-related pro bono legal service programs in the United States. The college plays an important role in sustaining professional excellence and supports educational and pro bono efforts in local communities around the country.

Established in 1913, Plunkett Cooney employs approximately 300 employees, including 150 attorneys in eight Michigan cities, as well as in Chicago, Illinois, Columbus, Ohio and Indianapolis, Indiana. The firm, which provides a range of transactional and litigation services, has achieved the highest rating (AV) awarded by Martindale-Hubbell. Fortune magazine has also named Plunkett Cooney among the top commercial firms in the United States.

For more information about Douglas Bernstein’s selection as a fellow of the American College of Bankruptcy, contact the firm’s Director of Marketing & Business Development John Cornwell at (248) 901-4008 or

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