Ralph E. McDowell assists clients primarily in the areas of commercial bankruptcy, debtors’ and creditors’ rights, and workouts. He has represented the interests of banks and other financial institutions in pre-bankruptcy workout situations, commercial bankruptcy cases, and troubled credit situations.
His work with banks and financial institutions includes representation in court proceedings, sale of debt transactions, foreclosures, liquidation of assets, and forbearance arrangements. He also represents numerous clients in the automotive and manufacturing industries in bankruptcy and troubled supplier situations.
Mr. McDowell has represented trustees, creditors’ committees, non-bank creditors and various debtors in all aspects of bankruptcy cases and debtor-creditor disputes. Because of experience and skill, he is able to assist the firm’s loan origination lawyers in structuring and documenting complex and highly-sophisticated loan transactions. In addition, Mr. McDowell represents the interests of parties in the purchase of assets from trustees, receivers, debtors in possession, and from troubled companies.
Mr. McDowell is chairman of Bodman's Executive Committee, which guides firm operations and business strategy.
Mr. McDowell is listed as 2017 Detroit "Lawyer of the Year" for Bankruptcy and Creditor-Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law by The Best Lawyers in America. In 2015, he was listed as Detroit “Lawyer of the Year” for Litigation-Bankruptcy.
He is listed in The Best Lawyers in America 2019 (for over 15 years) under Bankruptcy and Debtor Creditor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law, Litigation-Bankruptcy, and Bet-the-Company Litigation. He is listed in Chambers USA 2018 under Banking & Finance: Bankruptcy. He is also listed in Michigan Super Lawyers 2007-2017 under Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights and as one of the 100 most highly-rated attorneys in Michigan, and as a 2018 "Top Lawyer" by DBusiness magazine. Mr. McDowell is AV® Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell.
Mr. McDowell serves on the Board of Directors of Hebrew Free Loan of Metropolitan Detroit, on the University of Detroit Mercy Law School Dean’s Advisory Board, and on the Audit Committee of the Detroit Institute of Arts.
Honors, Awards, and Recognition
- Top 100 Michigan Super Lawyers, 2017
- Michigan Super Lawyers 2006-2017
- Chambers USA 2007-2018, Banking & Finance: Bankruptcy- Michigan
- The Best Lawyers in America 2003-2019, Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law, Bet-the-Company Litigation, and Litigation-Bankruptcy
- The Best Lawyers in America 2019 Detroit "Lawyer of the Year," Bet-the-Company Litigation
- The Best Lawyers in America 2017 Detroit "Lawyer of the Year," Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law
- The Best Lawyers in America 2016 Detroit "Lawyer of the Year," Litigation- Bankruptcy
- DBusiness "Detroit 500" Most Powerful Business Leaders (2018)
- DBusiness Magazine "Top Lawyer" 2009-2018
- Martindale-Hubbell® AV Preeminent® Peer Rated for Highest Level of Professional Excellence; Endorsed for High Ethical Standing
- Detroit Bar Association
- Debtor-Creditor Rights Committee
- State Bar of Michigan
- Debtor-Creditor Rights Subsection, Business Law Section
- Debtor-Creditor Rights Subsection, Real Property Law Section
Civic, Cultural and Community Activities
- Hebrew Free Loan of Metropolitan Detroit, Board of Directors and Executive Committee
- University of Detroit Mercy Law School, Dean's Advisory Board
- Detroit Institute of Arts, Audit Committee
- 08/15/201845 Bodman PLC Attorneys Named to 2019 Best Lawyers in America List
- 06/04/2018Chambers USA 2018 Recognizes Bodman as One of Michigan’s Top Business Law Firms
- 01/19/2018Bodman Volunteers Spend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Serving the Community
- 12/12/2017Bodman Donors and Volunteers Spread the Holiday Spirit at Matrix Human Services Event
- 11/09/201765 Bodman Attorneys Named “Top Lawyers 2018” by DBusiness Magazine
- University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, J.D., magna cum laude
- Kalamazoo College, B.A.
- Detroit Bar Association (DBA)
- State Bar of Michigan