John J. Rapisardi, Chair of the Firm’s Global Restructuring Practice, has 40 years of domestic and international debtor and creditor restructuring experience across a variety of industries, including automotive, chemical, environmental, health care, energy, gaming, public infrastructure projects and investments, retail, real estate, municipal, satellite, sports franchises, textile and telecommunications.
Over the last five years, John has led O’Melveny’s ongoing representation of the Government of Puerto Rico with respect to all aspects of the financial restructuring of Puerto Rico’s debt obligations—marking the largest municipal restructuring in recent history. At the height of the 2008 Economic Crisis, John served as lead outside counsel to President Obama’s Auto Task Force in the restructuring of General Motors and Chrysler, and the automotive supplier Delphi. During that period of time, he also served as lead debtor counsel for LyondellBasell, one of the world’s largest petro chemical producers with subsidiaries across the world, which emerged from chapter 11 within 15 months. He advised in every aspect of its bankruptcy restructuring of more than US$25 billion in debt. John also served as co-lead counsel in representing the Governor of California in the PG&E chapter 11 case.
Consistently recognized as one of the leading restructuring lawyers in the US, Chambers USA has recently described John as a “tremendous lawyer” and “bankruptcy scholar” who is “well regarded in the industry” and praises his approach to both company and creditor-side transactions as “very measured, smart, diligent, thoughtful.” For his representation of the US Treasury Department in the Chrysler, General Motors and Delphi restructuring, Chambers USA described John as a “go-to attorney on behalf of the US Treasury.”
In 2022, John was recognized by the American Lawyer as a “Dealmaker of the Year” for his work in Puerto Rico. For a second time, John was ranked to Law360’s annual list of MVPs (2022). In 2015 and 2017, he received the “Distinguished Leader” award from New York Law Journal. In 2022, US Legal 500 recognized John in its “Hall of Fame,” which highlights lawyers who are “at the pinnacle of the profession” and who have “received constant praise from their clients for continued excellence.” He was recently named in Who’s Who Legal: Thought Leaders - Restructuring & Insolvency 2018, noting “he is reputed as one of the best in the business.” The Best Lawyers in America also has continually selected John as a leading lawyer in Bankruptcy and Creditor-Debtor Rights, Insolvency and Reorganization, Bankruptcy Litigation. John is a fellow of the American College of Bankruptcy (ACB), an honorary professional and educational association of tenured and highly regarded bankruptcy and insolvency professionals.
John represented the People’s Republic of China in the drafting of its new bankruptcy laws, and has written extensively on the subject of lender rights and remedies under the new Chinese Bankruptcy Code. John is co-author of The PRC Enterprise Bankruptcy Law: The People’s Work in Progress (Beard Group, Inc., 2008) and for the past twenty five years, has been the regular bankruptcy columnist for the New York Law Journal. John has also written and lectured extensively on the key aspects of the Brazilian bankruptcy code and its impact on US investors.