In his spare time, Mr. Stockdale enjoys fishing, table-top gaming and finding and restoring antiques and automobiles.

John J. Stockdale, Jr.


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John J. Stockdale, Jr. practices in the areas of bankruptcy, debtor/creditor, real estate, business transactions and related litigation. Mr. Stockdale has represented clients in personal and business bankruptcies, business and commercial transactions and workouts; real estate transactions and foreclosures; and debt collection and defense. Mr. Stockdale has represented clients in a variety of industries including, without limitation, building trades, food service and retail.


Mr. Stockdale focuses his practice on small and mid-size businesses. He understands and has special insight into the issues affecting those businesses because, for the twelve years prior to joining Schafer and Weiner, he owned and operated a publishing company providing business valuation and lost profits case law reports to attorneys and accountants. Mr. Stockdale is member of the American Bankruptcy Institute and a member of Michigan State Bar, Business Law Section.


Mr. Stockdale has represented clients with cases in the following jurisdictions:


Chapter 11 Bankruptcies

  • In re Bing Construction Company, (Bankr. E.D. Mich. 2011) (general counsel for debtor). Mr. Stockdale assisted an Oakland County residential builder wind down its operations through a liquidating Chapter 11 after its principal’s death. Mr. Stockdale assisted the debtor with shedding its unprofitable building contracts and worked with the building trades and property owners to complete other construction projects. Mr. Stockdale worked with the debtor, its financial adviser and the unsecured creditors committee to propose and confirm a liquidating plan over the objections of materialmen and subcontractors, which included allegations of fraud and breach of the Michigan Builders Trust Fund Act.
  • In re Small Plates Detroit, LLC (Bankr. E.D. Mich. 2011) (general counsel for debtor).  Mr. Stockdale represented a local restaurant throughout its bankruptcy process.  In addition to working with its creditors, Mr. Stockdale successfully prepared and argued sale procedures and sale motions, which resulted in the sale of the restaurant business to an unrelated company free and clear of liens, claims and encumbrances. This case was resolved through a structured dismissal that resulted in payments to certain prepetition secured creditors after a surcharge for payment of certain Chapter 11 expenses.
  • In re Metals in Time, Inc., (Bankr. E.D. Mich. 2010), (general counsel for debtor).  Mr. Stockdale represented a high-end retail jeweler throughout its bankruptcy process from drafting first day motions to successfully implementing Chapter 11 liquidating plan, which sold the debtor’s business to a related party for the assumption of heavily discounted bank debt. This representation also involved appearing in the Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California in connection with efforts to remove a California state court lawsuit to the Michigan bankruptcy court.
  • In re BCDG, LP (Bankr. S.D. Iowa 2016) (Counsel for Unsecured Creditors Committee), John represented the unsecured creditors committee in this chapter 11 case involving the quick sale of six McDonalds franchises in Des Moines, Iowa. John successfully negotiated a $170,000 contribution to the unsecured creditors from the purchaser of the franchises. Absent the committee’s efforts, the unsecured creditors would not have received any distribution on account of the debtor’s quick sale of the franchises.
  • In re St. James Nursing & Physical Rehab. Ctr., Inc. (Bankr. E.D. Mich. 2016) (Counsel for Debtor)  John successfully represented the Debtor throughout the chapter 11 reorganization case of this nursing home through a contested confirmation hearing involving nine objections to confirmation.
  • In re Associated Community Services, Inc. (Bankr. E.D. Mich. 2014) (counsel for Debtor) John represented a telephone call center having more than 800 employees throughout the chapter 11 process from preparing first day motions through confirmation of a plan of reorganization.  This case involved significant corporate restructuring including relocating the business operations during the bankruptcy case.  Additionally, the case involved millions of alleged unpaid withholding tax liabilities which were successfully negotiated to permit secured and priority tax payments to exceed the five-year maximum set by the bankruptcy code.  Moreover, John successfully opposed a class action claim reducing the unsecured creditors pool by $10,000,000.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcies

  • In re Residential Builder, (Bankr. E.D. Mich. 2012) (counsel for debtor).  Mr. Stockdale represented a residential builder in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case. The case involved consideration of the builder’s divorce as well as negotiation with building subcontractors and materialmen over alleged violations of the Michigan Builders Trust Fund Act. As a result of extensive planning and negotiation with certain contractors and the Chapter 7 trustee, the debtor received his Chapter 7 discharge, allowing this builder the breathing room to restart his business.
  • In re Oil Change Business Owner, (Bankr. E.D. Mich. 2011) (counsel for debtor).  Mr. Stockdale represented a debtor-business owner in an adversary proceeding brought by an equipment creditor to deny the debtor a Chapter 7 discharge on the basis that the debtor undervalued several business interests in his bankruptcy petition. Mr. Stockdale vigorously challenged the creditor, including filing a motion to dismiss the complaint, and, as a result, the creditor agreed to voluntarily dismiss its nondischargeability lawsuit against the debtor. Mr. Stockdale then acted as replacement general counsel for the debtor, negotiating a resolution of a revocation of discharge claim based on the same undervaluation as well as an alleged failure to disclose an expensive sports car.
  • In re Small Business Owner, (Bankr. E.D. Mich. 2011), (counsel for debtor).  Mr. Stockdale obtained a Chapter 7 discharge for a small business owner in this complex bankruptcy case involving allegations of bank fraud. Mr. Stockdale negotiated a resolution of the business lender’s nondischargeability claim against the debtor, allowing the debtor to receive a discharge and avoid a FRBP 2004 examination. Mr. Stockdale also negotiated the debtor’s exemptions with the Chapter 7 trustee, which allowed the debtor to retain many of his non-exempt assets, including an extensive sports memorabilia collection and fishing boat.
  • In re Real Estate Partner, (Bankr. E.D. Mich. 2010), (counsel for debtor).  A 50% member in a limited liability company filed a motion to lift the automatic stay to continue a state court lawsuit and separately filed a nondischargeability lawsuit against the debtor, the other 50% member. Mr. Stockdale defeated the motion to lift the automatic stay, prohibiting continuation of the state court litigation. The bankruptcy court also granted Mr. Stockdale’s motion for summary judgment, dismissing the nondischargeability lawsuit against the debtor. As a result of these victories, the bankruptcy court entered an order discharging the debtor of more than $1 Million in pre-petition liabilities, including those owed to the 50% member.