Heyl Royster


Banking and Financial Institutions

Banking and Financial Institutions

Heyl Royster has a long history of providing services to banks and other financial industry institutions. We have provided counseling and advice in matters involving commercial and residential loan documentation; bond and other financing transactions; mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures, and other business combinations; taxation; governance; and bankruptcy, workouts, and Article 9 matters.

Our litigation experience includes defense of financial institutions, and/or their officers and directors, against various claims of breach of fiduciary duties and other actions such as:

  • Lender liability claims
  • Consumer fraud litigation
  • FINRA and investment fraud claims
  • Fraud litigation involving financing of insurance premiums
  • Breach of contract; including cases involving protection of security interests and priorities, replevin, forbearance agreements, guaranties, leases, and asset sales
  • Probate/surcharge cases
  • Prosecution and defense of security interest/UCC cases

We have also prosecuted commercial and residential foreclosure and lien cases on behalf of banks and lienholders and have defended subordinate mortgage and lien holders in foreclosure cases.

We have represented banks, other institutional lenders, and both secured and unsecured creditors in bankruptcy court in matters relating to dischargeability litigation, fraudulent transfers, preferential transfers, and claim objections. We have prosecuted consumer and commercial debt collection cases through judgment and post-judgment enforcement and have participated in resulting sales of assets and assignments for benefit of creditors and workouts.

We also offer financial institutions the full complement of business services that we provide across many industries, such as employment and labor representation, premises liability, real estate transactions, trusts and estates, environmental law, workers’ compensation, and creditor representation and collections.   

Representative examples of our experience include:

  • Representation of bank in seeking relief from a trial judgment in excess of $16 million. In the underlying action the plaintiffs’ legal theory was based on alleged conversion of a Letter of Credit and a claimed breach of fiduciary duty in applying the proceeds of that Letter of Credit.
  • Assisted bank as Purchaser’s Counsel in the purchase of bonds from a municipality that were used to finance a new assisted living/nursing home facility. The bond purchase closings were completed in two tranches - $9.4 million and $4.6 million respectively.
  • Representation of a bank where a depositor’s employee fraudulently wrote payroll checks to ex-employees, then endorsed them and placed them in the evening deposits, taking out cash in the amount of the check.  
  • Defended a Third-Party Claim against individual members of a bank’s Board of Directors.  The bank’s complaint sought damages from a financial institution for recommending and selling the Bank $3 million in high-risk investments that resulted in significant losses and the bank being classified as a “troubled” by the FDIC. In the Third-Party Claim, the financial institution alleged that the bank’s board was negligent in fulfilling their fiduciary duties and that they failed to oversee the Bank’s financial investments. We successfully obtained dismissal of the board members from the claim.  
  • Represented the mortgage-issuing bank in litigation regarding the default of a commercial mortgage for real property. The firm obtained summary judgment on behalf of the mortgage-issuing bank. The firm’s Appellate Practice successfully defended the judgment before the Illinois Third District Appellate Court. During the debtors’ ensuing bankruptcies, the firm also asserted the creditor bank’s rights in ongoing litigation before the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of Illinois.
  • Defended bank in action where the plaintiffs alleged the bank improperly sold assets of debtor-company in violation of the UCC and other laws. We succeeded in getting the client dismissed on summary judgment.  
  • Defended and protected the financial interests of an investment company named in the foreclosure of a chain of private, for-profit nursing homes. We succeeded in getting the case dismissed.
  • Represented a bank in a suit involving flood hazard determinations by the lender and alleged irregularities at a residential loan closing.
  • Represented a bank that was sued for not providing sufficient security when one of its customers was robbed outside the bank as she was getting into her car. The case went to trial and resulted in a verdict for the defendant bank.
  • Represented bank officials who allegedly negligently invested bank reserves in financial futures.