Michael Weissman’s practice is devoted to financial and business transactions especially the negotiation and documentation of a wide variety of financing transactions. He has also actively prosecuted civil and bankruptcy matters on behalf of financial institutions and defended lender liability lawsuits. He has a wealth of experience in the legal and business aspects of secured and unsecured lending for all types of credit facilities. During his career, he has represented most of the major banks and commercial lenders in the Chicago area. He applies his significant experience so that financing transaction deals are closed at reasonable cost and value is added for both lender and borrower. He formerly served as Executive Vice President and General Counsel of the Bridgeview Bank Group, and was a partner at Foley & Lardner and Holland & Knight.
He has frequently published articles in journals devoted to banking and commercial finance. Among them are, “A Creditor’s Guide to Article 9 Compliance” in April, 2007 Illinois Bar Journal, “Current Issues for Secured Lenders” in March 2007 Banking Law Journal, “The Liability of a Bank for the Misconduct of its Officer” in 2007 Supplement to the Lexis Nexis treatise on Commercial Damages, “Zoning In and Out of the Some of Insolvency” in 2010 Supplement to Lexis Nexis treatise on Commercial Damages, “Commercial Lending Developments in the US” in March 2008 edition of Financier Worldwide magazine, “Lender Can Rely on Prospective Borrower’s Representations in Extending Credit” in 95 Hoosier Banker 20 (2011); “A UCC Foreclosure Sale Is Not Commercially Reasonable if the Secured Creditor Doesn’t Strictly Adhere to Terms Agreed on with the Debtor” in Illinois Banker (May 2012 at p. 9); “Piercing the Corporate Veil to Impose Liability on Corporate Insiders for Corporate Debt” in Illinois Banker (November 2012 at p. 16), “Bank Can Transfer Liability for Fraudulent Payment Orders to Its Customer” in Arizona Banker (Fall 2014 at p. 14); “The Standard of Liability for Directors of Illinois Banks” in Illinois Banker (March-April 2014 at p. 12); “Perfecting and Maintaining a Security Interest” in the RMA Journal (September 2017 at p. 68).
He currently authors a column titled “The Legal Corner” for The RMA Journal and writes “FlashPoints”, a monthly internet column on recent developments of interest to financial services attorneys for the Illinois Institute on Continuing Legal Education with a circulation of 1,250 subscribers. He has written articles for the Commercial Insights publication of the American Bankers Association.
His book titled “Commercial and Industrial Loan Documentation” was published by IICLE Press in January, 2012. He is also the author of the book “Lender Liability: How to Protect Yourself Against Unwarranted Lawsuits”, published by Executive Enterprise Publications Co., Inc. in 1988, and is a contributor to The Banker’s Guide to Multi-Bank Credits and Loan Participations, published by Executive Enterprise Publications Co., Inc. in 1989. He is the author of the chapter, “Commercial Loan Restructuring Agreements”, which appeared in IICLE’s book on Illinois Business Documents in 1993, the author of the chapter, “The Secured Loan Agreement and the Guaranty”, which appeared in IICLE’s book on Illinois Business Documents in 1994, the author of the chapter, “Documenting Commercial Loans” in IICLE’s book on Illinois Business Documents which appeared in 1995 , the author of the chapter, “Guaranties” which appeared in IICLE’s 2001 book on Secured Transactions and the 2009 Supplement. He served as a member of the board of editors of Matthew Bender’s treatise on Commercial Damages, having written Chapters 7 and 8.
He has presented seminars called “Documenting Commercial Loans: Doing It Right!” in the Master Teachers series of the Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education, conducted in-house training programs for major financial institutions throughout the country and served as an Adjunct Professor at The John Marshall Law School teaching Transactional Law. He also teaches commercial loan documentation and asset-based lending seminars in the Mentor program of the Risk Management Association, and conducts training sessions for the National Credit Union Association. He helped create the course on Commercial and Industrial Loan Documentation for the Risk Management Association, and has worked with the Risk Management Association to develop webbased program on Article 9 of the UCC. He has also served as a consultant to UCC Plus Division of Fidelity Financial. He has presented seminars and webinars for the Illinois Banker’s Association and has been a featured speaker at a number of that group’s Annual Bank Counsel Conferences.
He has also served in the American Bar Association’s team teaching program for South Africa’s Black Lawyers’ Association in Capetown, South Africa, and taught How to Negotiate and Draft Contracts for the African Centre for Legal Excellence in Zanzibar, Tanzania, Kampala, Uganda, and Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
He is a member of the Committee on Commercial Financial Services of the ABA’s Section on Business Law; a former director of the Association of Commercial Finance Attorneys; a former vice chairman of the Bank Counsel Committee of the Illinois Bankers Association; a director, member of the Executive Committee and past chairman of the Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education; and a former chairman of the Banking Group at the Union League Club of Chicago.He serves on the Illinois State Bar Association’s Section Council for Commercial Banking having prepared the following for the Section Newsletter: “Credit Agreement Act Bars Evidence of Oral Promises Made by Lender”, Vol. 55, No. 1 at p. 1; “25 Points to Remember When Foreclosing on UCC-type Collateral”, Vol. 56, No. 2 at p. 1; “Lender Liability Is Alive and Well”, Vol. 57, No. 3 at p. 1. He has made numerous presentations at the Chicago Bar Association’s Committee on Commercial Finance and Transactions.
He has served as an expert witness in Commercial Lending and Uniform Commercial Code cases, and is a member of the Forensic Expert Witness Association.
He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Economics from Northwestern University, his M.B.A. from the Wharton Graduate Division of the University of Pennsylvania, and was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Sydney Faculty of Law, Sydney, Australia, and earned his J.D. from the Harvard Law School. He has received Fulbright Senior Specialists Awards to lecture at the School of Business Administration Turiba in Riga, Latvia and at the National University in Vientiane, Laos.
Law Review Articles
Allowable Deductions on the Formation, Reorganization and Liquidation of a Corporation, 53 Northwestern University Law Review-681 (January-February 1959); The Common Law of Business Trusts, 38 Chicago-Kent Law Review 11 (1961); Re Insurance Pools and the Federal Securities Laws, Loyola University of Chicago Law Journal 313 (Winter 1978).
Courts and Bar Admissions
Illinois Supreme Court
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois
United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
United States Supreme Court (where he was co-counsel in American Mutual Reinsurance Co. v. Calvert Fire Insurance Co.)
A Chicago native, Mike has served the legal profession with a thirteen-year tenure on the Board of the Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education, writing articles for local, national and international publications, and by judging American Bar Association law student competitions in Appellate Advocacy and Negotiations.