People

Craig Goldblatt

Partner

Goldblatt, Craig

Craig Goldblatt is an experienced bankruptcy litigator, with a focus on complex bankruptcy disputes and bankruptcy appeals. The core of his practice has been protecting the interests of secured creditors, insurance companies and financial institutions in bankruptcy-related disputes, though he has also represented leading technology, transportation and communications industry clients in bankruptcy matters. Mr. Goldblatt, who joined the firm in 1994, is a member of the firm's Management Committee.

Practice

Mr. Goldblatt represents parties in all stages of bankruptcy proceedings. The core of his practice involves bankruptcy and insolvency related trial-level matters and appeals—particularly the representation of financial institutions and other commercial creditors in bankruptcy litigation. He has argued two bankruptcy cases before the Supreme Court of the United States, and one before the en banc Third Circuit, prevailing in all three. He has also been involved in a range of civil litigation matters outside of bankruptcy, with an emphasis on complex commercial disputes and appellate litigation.

Outside of his bankruptcy practice, Mr. Goldblatt participated in WilmerHale's representation of the University of Michigan, from the district court to the Supreme Court, in Grutter v. Bollinger, 539 US 306 (2003). The Supreme Court's decision in that case held that institutions of higher education may consider race as a factor in admissions decisions. He has also represented an array of pro bono clients in civil rights, criminal and constitutional litigation.

Honors & Awards

  • Recognized as a DC leader in the bankruptcy/restructuring field in the 2005-2014 editions of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, with a source saying that on technical issues Mr. Goldblatt "does a super job of explaining matters." 
  • Selected by his peers for inclusion in the 2010-2014 editions of The Best Lawyers in America in the area of bankruptcy and creditor-debtor rights law
  • U.S. News Media Group and Best Lawyers 2013 states that "Mr. Goldblatt is extremely smart and thoughtful" and "is a first-rate mind, has extensive bankruptcy litigation experience, and excellent ability to relate to clients and their needs"
  • Winner of the Washington Business Journal's 2008 award for the Top Washington Lawyer in the category of bankruptcy
  • Listed as a Top Lawyer in bankruptcy and commercial law in Washington DC by Washingtonian magazine in 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2013
  • Selected by his peers as a leading attorney in Washington DC in the 2012, 2013 and 2014 editions of Super Lawyers
  • Listed as a leading bankruptcy lawyer by The American Lawyer and The Daily Deal
  • Recipient of the 2007 Pro Bono Award from the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys for the firm's amicus brief in Marrama v. Citizens Bank of Massachusetts
  • Fellow in the American College of Bankruptcy

Publications & News

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June 9, 2014

US Supreme Court Resolves Executive Benefits on Narrow Grounds, Leaving Unresolved Many Important Questions About Bankruptcy Court Authority

The US Supreme Court earlier today issued its much anticipated decision in Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkison, No. 12-1200 (June 9, 2014), a follow-on case to the Court's landmark decision in Stern v. Marshall, 131 S. Ct. 2594 (2011), regarding the scope of bankruptcy courts' authority under Article III of the Constitution.

May 23, 2014

Chambers USA Ranks Top WilmerHale Lawyers and Practices in 2014 Edition

We are pleased to announce the names of the individuals and practice areas that are ranked in the 2014 edition of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business.

April 25, 2014

WilmerHale Attorneys Recognized in Annual Washington DC Super Lawyers Listing

The annual edition of the Washington DC Super Lawyers magazine, published by The Washington Post Magazine, released its 2014 listing which includes 37 WilmerHale attorneys.

March 6, 2014

Law v. Siegel: The End of Equitable Disallowance?

Bankruptcy courts have divided over the question of whether a creditor's otherwise valid claim may be "equitably disallowed" on account of the creditor's inequitable conduct. The reasoning of the Supreme Court's decision this week in Law v. Siegel, while arising in the context of an individual debtor's claim of exemption, strongly suggests that no such authority exists.

December 2, 2013

‘Free and Clear’ Has Broad Reach in Bankruptcy Sales

An article by Craig Goldblatt, Andrew Goldman and Nancy Manzer, published in the Corporate Restructuring and Bankruptcy section of the New York Law Journal.

December 2, 2013

Washingtonian Magazine Names 14 WilmerHale Attorneys to "Best Lawyers" List

August 15, 2013

Best Lawyers in America® 2014 Recognizes Nearly 100 WilmerHale Partners, Naming Eight “Lawyer of the Year”

Nearly 100 WilmerHale lawyers have been selected for inclusion in the 20th edition of The Best Lawyers in America®—a respected peer-review publication in the legal industry. The 2014 list also highlights eight WilmerHale partners who have been named "Lawyer of the Year" by Best Lawyers.

August 13, 2013

WilmerHale Again Tops Contributions in Generous Associates Campaign

For the 11th consecutive year, WilmerHale has surpassed the donations of all participating law firms in the Legal Aid Society’s Generous Associates Campaign, a fundraising campaign run by associates at Washington DC law firms.

May 24, 2013

Chambers USA 2013 Final Results Announced

Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business today announced its final rankings for the 2013 edition, in which 93 WilmerHale lawyers and 44 firm practice areas have been recognized as leading in their field.

December 10, 2012

Bankruptcy and Financial Restructuring Group: 2012 Recap

WilmerHale’s Bankruptcy and Financial Restructuring Group is pleased to report another successful year. Led by eight partners out of the firm’s New York, Boston and Washington DC offices, the group presents a unique combination of litigation and transactional practices spanning the bankruptcy and financial restructuring landscape.

Speaking Engagements

  • December 6, 2013 – American College of Bankruptcy Symposium on the Theory and Practice of Chapter 13
  • October 31, 2013 – National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges, Plenary Session panel on Appellate Advoacy in the Post-Stern World
  • October 17, 2013 – Loan Syndications Trading Association 18th Annual Conference, Panel on The Future of Bankruptcy: A Provocative Discussion of What Bankruptcy Reform Means for Secured Lending 
  • January 17, 2013 – ABA Business Law Section, Avoidance Power Subcommittee of the Business Bankruptcy Committee – Webinar on "More Fallout from Stern v. Marshall: Ninth Circuit v. Sixth Circuit—the holding of Bellingham Insurance (9th Cir.) allows waiver of Article III adjudication conflicting with Waldman v. Stone (6th Cir)"
  • October 5, 2012 – ABI Views From The Bench Conference Panel on "Recent Decisions Addressing the Implications of Stern v. Marshall"
  • September 14, 2012 27th Annual Mid-Atlantic Institute on Bankruptcy and Reorganization Practice – "Rules? What Rules? (The Use and Neglect of Bankruptcy Rules in Consumer Cases)"
  • July 12, 2012 US House of Representatives, Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Courts, Commercial and Administrative Law – "Testimony of the Effect of Stern v. Marshall on the Bankruptcy System"
  • April 24, 2012 WilmerHale/Loan Syndications and Trading Association Bankruptcy Express Webinar – Panel on "Commentary on the Supreme Court Argument in the Credit Bidding Cases"
  • March 23, 2012 ABA Business Law Section, Business Bankruptcy Committee, Bankruptcy Appeals subcommittee Panel on "Radlax and the Right to Credit Bid in the Supreme Court"
  • February 3, 2012 American College of Bankruptcy Panel on "The Role of the Government in Bankruptcy Cases"
  • October 4, 2011 Commercial Law League Webinar on "Implications of Stern v. Marshall"
  • September 15, 2011 ABI Views From The Bench Conference Presentation on the "Implications of Stern v. Marshall"
  • April 16, 2011 ABA Business Law Section, Business Bankruptcy Committee, Chapter 11 Subcommittee Panel on "Prepackaged Bankruptcy Developments"
  • April 14, 2011 ABA Business Law Section, Business Bankruptcy Committee Presentation on "Bankruptcy Issues Before the Supreme Court"
  • April 5, 2011 International Swaps and Derivatives Association Symposium Panel on "ISDA Litigation in the OTC Derivatives Market," focused on developments in the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy
  • January 27, 2011 NY State Bar Association, Committee on Derivatives and Structured Products Presentation on "Issues Relating to the Treatment of Derivatives in Bankruptcy"
  • October 21, 2010 International Swasps and Derivatives Association Symposium Panel on "Issues in Derivatives Market," focused on Swedbank v. Lehman  
  • September 16, 2010 International Swaps and Derivatives Association Symposium Presentation on "Effect of Lehman Bankruptcy on Safe Harbors and Derivatives"
  • April 29, 2010 ABA Webinar Teleconference on "Consequences of Supreme Court Decision in Milavetz"
  • April 18, 2010 ABA Business Law Section, Business Bankruptcy Committee, Mass Tort and Environmental Claims Subcommittee Panel presentation on "Effect of Auto Restructurings on Mass Tort Claims"

Recent Highlights

Mr. Goldblatt's recent experience includes:

  • Representing the petitioning creditors in the involuntary bankruptcy case filed against the Houston Regional Sports Network
  • Representing a leading specialty lines insurer in the bankruptcy of Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway, a bankruptcy case arising out of the July 2013 train derailment in Lac Megantic, Quebec 
  • Representing an array of swap counterparties—from large financial institutions, major hedge funds, Fortune 100 companies and public entities—in the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy and related litigation involving bankruptcy law’s treatment of derivatives, swap agreements and other complex financial products. Mr. Goldblatt has also represented the International Swaps and Derivatives Association as amicus curiae in appeals (in both the Lehman and Enron bankruptcy cases) in disputes related to the treatment of derivative transactions in bankruptcy.
  • Representing a leading financial institution in matters relating to the servicing of mortgage loans for borrowers in bankruptcy.
  • Representing Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. and its subsidiaries in dozens of bankruptcy cases filed by debtors with asbestos and other mass-tort related liabilities, including the Western Asbestos, Combustion Engineering, Federal Mogul, Skinner Engine Company and Global Industrial Technology bankruptcies and related appeals. Mr. Goldblatt prevailed in his argument before the en banc Third Circuit in Global Industrial Technologies, in which the court issued a pathmarking decision on the issue of insurer standing in bankruptcy. In describing the industry-wide significance of the string of precedent-setting cases, Chambers USA pointed out Mr. Goldblatt’s “contribution to changing the mass-tort legal landscape to the advantage of his insurance-industry clients.”
  • Serving as co-counsel to the Marshall estate in Stern v. Marshall, a matter that resulted in a landmark Supreme Court decision on the scope of bankruptcy jurisdiction. Mr. Goldblatt previously represented a group of law professors as amici curiae when the case was pending before the Ninth Circuit. In that appeal, the Ninth Circuit rejected the approaches advocated by the two parties, expressly adopting the approach urged in WilmerHale’s amicus brief, which the court described as “thoughtful.” Following the Supreme Court’s decision to grant certiorari, WilmerHale was retained as co-counsel to Marshall estate. The Supreme Court affirmed the Ninth Circuit’s judgment, in a decision sharply curtailing the authority of bankruptcy courts to resolve non-bankruptcy disputes.
  • Representing the Loan Syndication Trading Association in several complex bankruptcy appeals affecting the treatment of syndicated bank debt, as well as in its successful effort before the Advisory Committee on Bankruptcy Rules seeking to amend Bankruptcy Rule 2019 to prevent disclosure of proprietary information.
  • Representing William Schwab, a chapter 7 trustee, before the Supreme Court in Schwab v. Reilly, No. 08-538 (decided June 17, 2010), a case involving the process by which bankruptcy trustees are required to object to debtors’ claims of exemption. Mr. Schwab retained WilmerHale during the certiorari stage before the Supreme Court, following successive adverse decisions by the bankruptcy court, the district court and the Third Circuit. The Supreme Court granted certiorari and reversed the decisions of the lower courts.
  • Successfully representing Elliott and Carol Archer in the Supreme Court (Archer v. Warner, 538 US 314 (2003)). In addition to his successful arguments in Schwab and Archer, Mr. Goldblatt has also been involved, for a party or an amicus, in most of the Supreme Court's other bankruptcy cases in recent years, including Milavetz, Gallop & Milavetz v. United States, 559 U.S. ___ (2010); Travelers v. Pacific Gas & Elec., 549 U.S. 443 (2007); Marrama v. Citizens Bank of Massachusetts 549 U.S. 365 (2007); Marshall v. Marshall, 547 U.S. 293 (2006); and Rousey v. Jacoway, 544 U.S. 320 (2005).
  • Representing Alcatel-Lucent, on appeal from a judgment in favor of a bankruptcy trustee for more than $335 million, arising out of the Winstar bankruptcy, on theories of preferential transfer, breach of contract and equitable subordination.
  • Involvement in the firm's representation of debtors in complex and high-profile bankruptcy matters, including PSINet, Iridium, US Office Products and Kmart.

Professional Activities

Mr. Goldblatt is the chair of the ABA Business Bankruptcy Committee’s Subcommittee on Bankruptcy Appeals. He previously served as Chair of the Subcommittee on Environmental and Mass Tort Claims. He has taught as an adjunct professor at the Georgetown University Law Center. He is a regular speaker at ABA, ABI and other conferences on bankruptcy matters. Mr. Goldblatt also serves on the Board of Trustees of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.

Practices

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Education

JD, with honors, University of Chicago Law School, 1993, Comment Editor, University of Chicago Law Review

BA, magna cum laude, Georgetown University, 1990

Bar Admissions

District of Columbia

United States Supreme Court

Clerkships

The Hon. David H. Souter, US Supreme Court, 1995 - 1996

The Hon. Richard D. Cudahy, US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, 1993 - 1994