Tom Kessler’s practice focuses on restructuring and other complex civil litigation.

Tom has represented a wide variety of clients, including debtors and creditors in bankruptcy proceedings, and parties in restructuring-related suits, contractual disputes, and securities litigation.

Tom joined the firm in 2013 and became partner in 2023.

Notable Experiences


  • LATAM Airlines Group and its affiliates in Chile, Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, and the United States in the voluntary reorganization and restructuring of their debt under Chapter 11 protection in the United States.

  • Garuda Indonesia in Chapter 15 proceeding to seek recognition of its Indonesian restructuring proceeding and enforcement of its PKPU Plan.

  • Samarco Mineração S.A. in Chapter 15 proceeding to seek recognition of its Brazilian restructuring proceeding.

  • Apollo Management Holdings L.P., on behalf of certain of its affiliates and funds, as debtor-in-possession lenders to Grupo Aeroméxico and its affiliated debtors.

  • BNP Paribas in clawback actions brought by the Madoff bankruptcy trustee and the Liquidators of Madoff “feeder funds” in connection with the Madoff Ponzi scheme.

  • ModSpace, the largest U.S. provider of temporary and modular office space, in the restructuring of nearly $1 billion in secured debt through a pre-packaged Chapter 11 plan.

  • Overseas Shipholding Group, one of the world’s largest oil tanker companies, in its Chapter 11 proceedings and $3 billion cross-border restructuring.

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Civil Litigation

  • Warburg Pincus in connection with securities litigation related to its acquisition of Rural/Metro Corporation.

  • Petrobras in more than two dozen securities fraud suits arising out of the “Operation Car Wash” corruption scandal.

  • Pro Bono plaintiffs in securing a unanimous jury verdict in Ferguson v. JONAH, a first-of-its-kind lawsuit challenging the provision of conversion therapy as a fraudulent and unconscionable business practice.

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Selected Activities

  • Director, The First-Year Moot Court Program, Columbia Law School


Discharge of Mass Tort Liability, Due Process & Illusory Finality in Chapter 11,” (co-authored with Luke Barefoot and Jack Massey) Bloomberg Law, September 7, 2022

Recent Demand for Examiners in Major Chapter 11 Cases Highlights Ambiguity in the Code,” (co-authored with Luke Barefoot and Jack Massey) ABI Journal, March 23, 2022

U.S. Supreme Court Holds ‘Mere Retention’ of Property Does Not Violate Automatic Stay Under Section 362(a)(3),” (co-authored with Lisa M. Schweitzer and Jessica Metzger) The Banking Law Journal, June 2021

Addressing Treatment of Equity Under Foreign Law and the Code,” (co-authored with Richard Cooper and Kyle J. Ortiz) ABI Journal, April 1, 2021

Amending the Lease-Assumption Deadline in the Wake of COVID-19,” (co-authored with Luke Barefoot), ABI Journal, June 1, 2020

Hitting the Brakes: How a Potential PDV Holding Bankruptcy Might Affect Venezuela and PDVSA Creditors,” (co-authored with Richard Cooper and Luke Barefoot), August 18, 2018 

Supreme Court Holds Section 546(e) Safe Harbor Does Not Apply to All Transfers Made Through Financial Institutions,” (co-authored with Seth Grosshandler, Michael H. Krimminger, Lisa M. Schweitzer, Sean A. O’Neal, Luke A. Barefoot, Sandra M. Rocks, Penny Christophorou, Humayun Khalid, Knox McIlwain, and Brandon M. Hammer), Business Law Today, March 2018

The Supreme Court’s Not-So-Final Judgment: Fraudulent Transfer Actions in the Wake of Stern v. Marshall,” (co-authored with Jane VanLare), Pratt’s Journal of Bankruptcy Law, November/December 2017.

“The Supreme Court Relaxes Standard for Enhanced Damages in Patent Infringement Suits,” (co-authored with Lawrence B. Friedman and David H. Herrington), Intellectual Property & Technology Law Journal, September 2016

“The Supreme Court Clarifies Standard for Attorneys’ Fee Awards in Copyright Infringement Case,” (co-authored with Lawrence B. Friedman and David H. Herrington), Intellectual Property & Technology Law Journal, September 2016

“Notable Intellectual Property Cases of 2015 and a Look at 2016,” (co-authored with Lawrence B. Friedman, David H. Herrington and Arminda B. Bepko), Intellectual Property & Technology Law Journal, April 2016