Lawyer Image

Lawrence G. McMichael

Member, Senior Leadership Team; Chair of Professional Practice
LinkedInJoin my network on LinkedIn
Primary Office
1500 Market St., Suite 3500E
Philadelphia, PA 19102
Direct(215) 575-7268
Fax(215) 575-7200


Lori Zimmerman
Direct(215) 575-7097

Lawrence G. McMichael is one of the region’s most experienced and successful commercial trial lawyers. He has practiced commercial litigation for more than 42 years. While Mr. McMichael has extensive trial experience in both federal and state courts, he also has a particular specialty in reorganizing companies in Chapter 11.  He has served as lead counsel in many high profile cases and appeals. He has also been engaged to render fiduciary and board advice by many of the city's largest not-for-profit institution's including:

  • Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
  • The Philadelphia Orchestra
  • The Please Touch Museum
  • The Archdiocese of Philadelphia
  • North Philadelphia Health System
  • Carson Valley Children's Aid

Mr. McMichael is one of only a handful of attorneys in the U.S. to be elected as a Fellow of both the American College of Trial Lawyers and the American College of Bankruptcy. 

In addition, Mr. McMichael is a frequent lecturer for the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, the American Bar Association, Business Law Section, and other organizations. He also has authored papers for presentation at Pennsylvania Bar Institute programs and at the American Bankruptcy Institute.

Representative Experience

  • Representation of the Rigas Family as defendants in over 50 securities cases arising from the collapse of Adelphia Communications.
  • Representation of Sanjay Kumar, former Chairman and CEO of Computer Associates in connection with the Computer Associates securities litigation.
  • Representation of the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News as lead Debtors’ counsel in their bankruptcy proceeding.
  • Representation of the Philadelphia Orchestra as lead Debtor’s counsel in its bankruptcy proceeding.
  • Representation of John and Timothy Rigas in the defense of a federal criminal tax case, including a successful en banc argument of double jeopardy defenses in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.
  • Representation of the family of Hassan Nemazee in connection with criminal forfeiture proceedings.
  • Representation of the controlling shareholders of Erie Indemnity Company in policy holder derivative claims.
  • Representation of a senior official of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in connection with a grand jury proceeding and criminal investigation.

Professional & Community Activities

  • Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers
  • Fellow, Member, American College of Bankruptcy 
  • Member, Union League of Philadelphia 
  • Member, Supreme Court Historical Society 
  • Member, Eastern District of Pennsylvania Historical Society 
  • Member, Philadelphia Bar Association 
  • Member, American Bankruptcy Institute 
  • Member, St. Thomas More Society of Philadelphia

Speeches & Presentations

  • Speaker, 20th Annual Bankruptcy Institute, Pennsylvania Bankruptcy Institute, Philadelphia, PA, October 29, 2015.
  • “Top Commercial Cases of the Year,” American Bankruptcy Institute, Philadelphia, PA, October 30, 2014.
  • Non-Profit Insolvency presentation, American College of Trusts and Estates, New Orleans, LA, October 8, 2014.
  • Presented “Bankruptcy Appeals: Credit Bidding Under A Plan: RadLax”, American Bar Association, Business Law Section, Las Vegas, NV, March 2012.
  • Presented “What’s Hot In Complex Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Practice: Credit Bidding And Strategies Post-In Re Philadelphia Newspapers, LLC”, Pennsylvania Bar Institute, Philadelphia, PA, March 2012.
  • Presented “Operating The Entity At The Intersection of Bankruptcy And Forfeiture: “Distribution And Priority In The Bankruptcy And Forfeiture Context: Advanced Topics”, American Bar Association, Business Law Section, San Francisco, CA, November 2011.
  • Presented “Keep It Interesting: Novel Issues Right Here In Philadelphia In The Inquirer Case”, Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Bankruptcy Conference Fall Program, November 9, 2009.

Professional Recognition

  • Named a Lawdragon 500 Leading U.S. Bankruptcy & Restructuring Lawyer, 2020
  • Chambers USA, Lead Attorney in Bankruptcy/Restructuring, “Star Individuals” (2019).
  • Named Philadelphia Best Lawyers "Lawyer of the Year" for Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law (2019).
  • Selected to The Best Lawyers in America® in the area of Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law (2006 – 2020).
  • Pennsylvania Super Lawyer (2004 – 2020).
Search Tips

Our Web site's search function employs a variety of techniques to help you make the most of your queries. In this tips section we use square brackets [ ] to signal queries, so [antitrust and litigation] is one query, while [antitrust] and [litigation] are two.

  • Exact phrases: Eliminate unnecessary search results by surrounding your search phrase with quotation marks. Placing ["project finance"] in quotes will return specific results and discard additional results that simply have the words "project" and "finance" peppered on a page.
  • Wildcard symbol: If you're not exactly sure how a piece of information you want is phrased, use the following symbol (*) as a word root expander. A search for [child*] will find not only "child," but also results with words like "children" and "childhood."

Alternate Biographies





  • J.D., Duke University School of Law, 1978
  • B.A., summa cum laude, Duke University, Phi Beta Kappa, 1975

Bar Admissions

  • Pennsylvania, 1978
  • United States Court of Appeals Third Circuit, 1979
  • United States District Court Eastern District of Pennsylvania, 1980
  • United States Supreme Court, 1985
  • United States Court of Appeals Eleventh Circuit, 1996
  • United States District Court Western District of Pennsylvania, 1997
  • United States Court of Appeals Second Circuit, 2005
  • United States District Court Middle District of Pennsylvania, 2009