Sean A. O
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Sean A. O'Keefe

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2014
Phone: 949-334-4135

Mr. O’Keefe has over twenty years of practice experience in the areas of bankruptcy, insolvency and commercial law.  His experience includes representing debtors and creditors in work-outs, bankruptcy proceedings and in related litigation matters. His experience includes, but is not limited to the following:

Debtor Practice.  Mr. O’Keefe has represented real estate developers, builders and investment entities that own large commercial, retail and multifamily real estate portfolios (REITs, limited partnerships, limited liability companies) in Chapter 11 cases. These cases have encompassed substantially every real estate asset category, including raw land, entitled but unimproved land, master planned residential developments, commercial and retail centers, and multi-family projects. He has also represented manufacturing businesses, retail and service businesses, health-care centric businesses, and financial service businesses.

Creditor Practice. Mr. O’Keefe has represented bondholders, banks, mutual funds, secured creditors, landlords and unsecured creditors in workouts, Chapter 11 cases and in related insolvency litigation matters.

Litigation. Mr. O’Keefe has defended and prosecuted a diverse range of legal matters including dischargeability cases, preference and fraudulent transfer cases, securities fraud cases, trademark cases, contract cases, and the range of disputes arising under the Uniform Commercial Code. Mr. O’Keefe also has substantial experience in valuation trials, having tried cases involving substantially every major real estate asset.

Recent Reported Cases

  • U.S. Philips Corporation v. KBC Bank, N.V., 2012 WL 112264 (9th Cir. 2012);
  • In re Hatem Yehia Youssef, 2011 WL 3298903 (9th Cir. BAP 2011);
  • U.S. Philips Corp. v. KBC Bank, N.V., 590 F.3d 1091 (9th Cir. 2010);
  • In the Matter of Checkmate Staffing, Inc., 359 Fed.Appx. 736 (9th Cir. 2009);
  • In re The Legacy Estate Group, Slip Copy, 2007 WL 3261854 (Bankr. N.D.Cal. 2007);
  • In re California Litfunding, a Nevada Corp., 360 B.R. 310 (Bankr. C.D.Cal. 2007).

Mr. O’Keefe is member of the California (1986) and New York (1983) Bar Associations. He has been accorded the highest peer review rating by Martindale Hubbell (AV).

Mr. O’Keefe was selected for inclusion in the 20th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America, in the practice area of Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law.

Mr. O’Keefe graduated from Dartmouth College (BA 1980) and obtained his law degree from Fordham University School of Law (1983).

He is a past Chairman of the Commercial Law and Bankruptcy Section of the Orange County Bar Association and has written and spoken on bankruptcy and insolvency matters for over twenty years. His professional writing and speaking engagements include, but are not limited to

  • "Adequate Protection After United Savings v. Timbers of Inwood Forest," 16 Cal. Bankr. J. 8 (1988);
  • "Post-Petition Perfection of Assignment of Rent Clauses Under 11 U.S.C. §546(b): A Creative Illusion," 17 Cal. Bankr. J. 123 (1989);
  • Panelist: 1990 Annual Conference of the California Bankruptcy Forum, "Converting Rents, Rates and Revenues Into Cash Collateral: New Challenges to an Old Alchemy";
  • Orange County Bankruptcy Forum, "What Price Justice: Is There an Exception to The Absolute Priority Rule?" February, 1993;
  • National Business Institute Seminar, "How to Protect Secured Interests in Bankruptcy in California," August, 1993;
  • Orange County Bar Association, "Bankruptcy Issues Arising From Securitized Loans," February 2002;
  • Orange County Bar Association, "Nondischargeability Litigation: Selected Issues," May 2002; and
  • Panelist, Orange County Bankruptcy Forum Program: "Recovering the Loot: "Pursuing and Defending Fraud and Other Claims Against Insiders, Investors, and Aiders & Abettors In Bankruptcy Cases," April 2009.
  • Panelist, American Bankruptcy Institute, “Failing Lenders: Dueling Bankruptcy Cases”, March 2012.
  • Panelist, Orange County Bankruptcy Forum and Chapman University School of Law, “Bankruptcy Code Section 523: A Comprehensive Seminar on All Aspects of Nondischargeability and Nondischargeability Litigation Under 11 U.S.C. Section 523”, April 2012”

Dartmouth CollegeBA 1980Fordham UniversityJ.D. 1983

Office Location

575 Anton Boulevard, Suite 1050
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
United States

Lawyer of the Year Awards

2016 Lawyer of the Year in Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law of the Orange County Metro Area
Sean A. O'Keefe has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2016!

Practice Areas

Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law