Creditors' Rights & Bankruptcy

Conrad & Scherer’s creditors’ rights and bankruptcy attorneys handle major collection and bankruptcy matters for a variety of creditors, ranging from financial institutions and governmental agencies to commercial property owners, small business owners and private individuals. We are highly experienced in Chapter 11 bankruptcies, workouts, financial restructurings, compositions and extensions. In addition, our team of seasoned litigators offers substantial trial experience in a wide variety of creditors’ rights and collections actions, including seizures of collateral, attachments, injunctions, mechanic’s liens, garnishments, levies and landlord tenant matters.

  • JESSICA L. KOPAS
    AREAS OF PRACTICE
    BIO
    JESSICA L. KOPAS
    Senior Partner
    JESSICA L. KOPAS
    EDUCATION
    • Nova Southeastern University, Shepard Broad Law Center, Juris Doctor, 2002
    • State University of New York College at Geneseo, Bachelor of Science, 1999
    BAR ADMISSIONS
    • Florida Bar, 2003
    • United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, 2004
    • United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida, 2004
    • United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida, 2004
    BIOGRAPHY:
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    Jessica Kopas is a senior partner in the firm’s Fort Lauderdale office. Ms. Kopas focuses her practice on commercial litigation, bankruptcy and creditors’ rights.

    Over the course of her practice, Ms. Kopas has advocated the interests of her clients – including Fortune 500 companies – in a wide variety of disputes in and out of court. She has appeared before state, federal district and federal bankruptcy courts in Florida. She also has participated in mediations and other forms of alternative dispute resolution, including accomplishing complex settlement agreements as alternatives to trial.

    Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Kopas worked for several commercial litigation firms in South Florida, where she litigated large, complex commercial cases as well as adversarial bankruptcy proceedings.

    Community Involvement/Affiliations
    • Bankruptcy Bar Association for the Southern District of Florida, Member, 2004 to present
    • Broward County Bar Association, Member, 2003 to present
    • Defense Research Institute (DRI), Member commercial litigation committee and women in the law committee, 2014-present
    Significant Matters/Cases
    • Assisted in the representation of a diverse group of plaintiffs seeking recovery of over $225 million in investor losses resulting from a billion-dollar structured settlement Ponzi scheme. This nationally publicized case focused on Toronto Dominion Bank’s (TD Bank) role in facilitating this criminal enterprise asserting novel claims that the Bank willfully aided and abetted the Ponzi fraud. After months of litigation, the matter was resolved through settlement resulting in our clients receiving the highest percentage recovery for victims entangled in a Ponzi scheme.
    • Assisted with the representation of the wife and children of a well-known missing entrepreneur and philanthropist in a dispute with other family members. This Broward County Probate Court case involved legal issues of the highest complexity involving the absentee’s estate, including property rights related to the absentee’s extensive personal property and real estate holdings across the globe.
    Awards/Recognitions
    • Listed as one of the “FACES of Fort Lauderdale” in Complex Commercial Litigation by Fort Lauderdale Illustrated Magazine, 2020
    • Nova Southeastern University Shepard Broad Law Center, Moot Court Honor Society,2000 to 2001
  • RUSSELL R. O’BRIEN
    AREAS OF PRACTICE
    BIO
    RUSSELL R. O’BRIEN
    Partner
    RUSSELL R. O’BRIEN
    EDUCATION
    • University of Miami School of Law, Juris Doctor, magna cum laude, 2010
    • University of California at Berkeley, Bachelor of Arts, 2003
    BAR ADMISSIONS
    • Florida Bar, 2010
    • United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida
    • United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida
    • United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida

     

    BIOGRAPHY:
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    Russell O’Brien is a Partner in the Firm’s Fort Lauderdale office and concentrates his practice on contract disputes, securities litigation, fraud (misrepresentation, inducement, transfers, aiding and abetting and conspiracy), fiduciary relationships and business torts, shareholder disputes (direct and derivative), and class action defense. He also has experience in admiralty law, including vessel acquisitions and sales, vessel refurbishment and repair, vessel charter, and foreclosing and defending against necessaries liens and first preferred ship mortgages.

    Russell is the Firm’s Administrative Partner and manages the Firm’s eDiscovery department. He regularly advises corporate clients regarding eDiscovery planning and protocols, e-Retention, and litigation concerning eDiscovery disputes.

    Russell has represented Fortune 500 companies, small businesses and individuals in both jury and bench trials, and has wide-ranging courtroom experience in both state and federal court. Prior to joining Conrad & Scherer, Mr. O’Brien practiced at an AM 100 law firm, primarily representing financial institutions in class action litigation.

    Community Involvement/Affiliations
    • Broward County Bar Association
    • 17th Judicial Circuit Grievance Committee Member, since 2018
    Awards/Recognitions
    • Recognized as a Best Lawyer: Ones To Watch in Commercial Litigation for The Best Lawyers in America©, 2021
    • Listed in South Florida Legal Guide, “Top Lawyer”, 2021
    • Selected as Florida Super Lawyers®, “Rising Star”, 2020
    • Listed in Fort Lauderdale Illustrated Magazine, “Top Lawyer”, 2020
    • Listed as one of the “FACES of Fort Lauderdale” in Complex Commercial Litigation by Fort Lauderdale Illustrated Magazine, 2020
    • Listed in Attorney At Law Magazine, “Rising Star”, 2018
    Notable Experience
    • Represented fortune 500 insurance company against Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. for aiding and abetting fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud in connection with multi-million dollar insurance fraud scheme.
    • Represented jet engine manufacturer in breach of lease claim and obtained prejudgment writ of attachment on commercial aircraft
    • Appeared before SEC for extensive attorney proffers and client interview in connection with violations of Rule 10b of the Exchange Act
    • Represented company in jury trial for breach of yacht charter management agreement and fines incurred while yacht was in French waters
    • Represented South American business and individuals in cross-border dispute, including challenges to personal jurisdiction and service of process issues under Peruvian law
    • Defended multiple insurance companies in class actions in connection with Florida’s No-Fault insurance statute, including negotiating settlement, final fairness hearings, and issues regarding notice to class members
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