Practice Group Leader: Thomas O'Connor
The lawyers in the Real Estate Finance Practice Group at D&S have extensive experience and experience in representing virtually every type of lender in all facets of real estate finance at all levels of the capital stack. Our experience is international in scope and includes representation of CMBS lenders, mortgage REITs, commercial banks, investment banks, life insurance companies, equity funds and other institutional and opportunistic lenders.
The following distinguishes us from other real estate law finance practice groups:
We protect you and simultaneously your relationship with your borrower: We recognize that the borrower is our client’s client. We also recognize that our first and most important role is to rigorously advocate for our clients’ interests. However, there is a rough and insensitive way to do this, and there is a way to do this that fosters good will and repeat business relationships. We make sure our clients receive the protections they need but at the same time work hard so that the borrowers look forward to dealing with our lender clients (and their lawyers) a second time around – as opposed to dreading it.
We help you grow your business: We believe that one of our key roles – in addition to providing excellent legal representation – is to help our lender clients build their businesses, and in this regard many of our clients want our help in finding borrowers and transactions. This plays to our great strength in being part of such a large real estate practice in which we represent many of the major players in the real estate industry (many of which are borrowers). As a result, we regularly make numerous connections and introductions for our lender clients and our lender clients find this to be quite beneficial.
We provide answers: Another of the great strengths of our finance practice is the advice we provide to our clients when dealing with difficult issues which can derail a transaction. We understand it is not enough to uncover issues, it is our job to proactively solve them by offering real and practical answers. This involves sound and thoughtful judgment in order to provide our clients with the “best answer” in some instances when there is no perfect solution (rather than the “on the one hand…and on the other hand” evasions many lawyers offer until they run out of hands). This is why our clients often turn to us for their more complex transactions.
The Real Estate Finance Practice Group’s expertise includes the following types of lending:
Additionally, we represent lenders in:
- Syndicating and purchasing co-lender and participation interests in both senior and subordinate positions (including the negotiation of co-lender, intercreditor and participation agreements).
- Whole loan and loan portfolio acquisitions and dispositions.
- Creatively structuring preferred equity to conform to the constraints imposed by senior debt holders while at the same time maximizing the preferred equity holder’s rights and remedies.
- Restructurings and workouts (including, as necessary, the enforcement of remedies such as foreclosure).
Representative clients of the Real Estate Finance Practice Group include:
- Acore Capital
- Axonic Capital LLC
- Barclays Bank PLC
- Benefit Street Partners
- C-III Asset Management LLC
- Cantor Commercial Real Estate Lending, L.P.
- Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC
- Deutsche Bank Securities Inc.
- Mizuho Securities USA Inc.
- New York Life Insurance Company
- Nomura Securities International, Inc.
- Northern Trust Company
- NorthStar Realty Finance Corp.
- Oritani Bank
- Safra Bank of New York
- Starwood Property Trust Inc.
- SteepRock Capital
- Realty Finance Trust
- Terra Capital Partners
The biographies for the partners in the Real Estate Finance Group: