Jeremy Retherford, partner in the firm’s Birmingham office and co-chair of the Financial Services Practice, and Walt Jones, partner in the firm’s Atlanta office and member of the Financial Services Practice, discussed how 2022 bankruptcy filings may be affected by the rise in COVID-19 cases seen at the beginning of this year in the March issue of the ABI Journal.
The article highlights the reasons why bankruptcy filings were lower than expected in 2021 and provides a forecast of what to expect in 2022. With the economy thriving off consumer spending as shutdown restrictions were slowly lifted throughout 2021, filings were being made well under the projected rate.
For 2022, inflation is expected to remain steady, or possibly increase, in the year’s first two quarters. To combat the increase in inflation, interest rates are also expected to rise. Jeremy and Walt shared that while the future cannot be predicted, conditions strongly suggest that the market will return to “normal” filing rates towards the end of 2022.
As co-chair of Balch’s Financial Services Practice, Jeremy represents financial institutions, utilities, and other creditors faced with troubled credit. He has more than 15 years of experience working with clients at all stages of bankruptcy. A significant portion of Jeremy’s practice is focused on enforcing his clients’ rights and remedies after default. However, he also counsels clients on the structure of transactions to account for the risk of default and bankruptcy.
Walt counsels a wide variety of clients, ranging from community and regional banks, indenture trustees, non-traditional lenders, and debt holders, to private business enterprises, on a broad spectrum of matters involving complex financial and real estate components and transactions. Walt frequently represents his clients in negotiations with borrowers, other business enterprises, and state agencies. He also regularly appears on behalf of his clients in federal district and bankruptcy courts and in all state courts.