William J. Barrett

William J. Barrett

Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg LLP

Recognized since 2015

Chicago, Illinois

Practice Areas

Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law

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Bill is the senior member of the Firm's Bankruptcy & Creditor Rights Group. In recent years Bill has focused his practice on representing secured creditors, landlords, franchisors, suppliers, avoidance action defendants, and asset purchasers in Chapter 11 cases and other insolvency proceedings. Bill has litigated a broad variety of cases in the bankruptcy courts, including stay relief, adequate protection, cash collateral and DIP financing motions brought by or involving secured creditors, and confirmation issues raised by secured and unsecured creditors. In recent years, Bill’s secured creditor practice has included a number of cases involving real estate properties such as multi-family housing, shopping centers, leased industrial facilities, and farmland. He also consults with borrowers and creditors in strategies for resolving debtor/creditor problems.

Bill also has extensive experience in insolvency situations resolved under state law, including Article 9 sales, receiverships, and assignments for the benefit of creditors. These state-law procedures can often provide a secured creditor, particularly one whose collateral is concentrated in a single state, with a speedier and less expensive path to realizing on its collateral compared to a bankruptcy proceeding. Bill is one of very few lawyers who has developed a subspecialty in involuntary bankruptcy cases, typically on behalf of trade creditors. These cases involve not just the successful prosecution of the involuntary petition, but thereafter (often by being appointed as litigation counsel by a trustee) using the powers of the Bankruptcy Code to recover assets fraudulently transferred by the debtor and then selling those assets under Section 363 of the Bankruptcy Code.

Contact & Links


  • 200 West Madison Street, Suite 3900
    Chicago, IL 60606


  • University of Southern California , J.D., graduated 1985
  • Michigan State University, BA, graduated 1980

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois, State of Illinois
  • Michigan, State of Michigan

Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America® 2023 for work in:

  • Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law

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