Attorney Profile

Top Rated Bankruptcy Attorney in Waukegan, IL

David P. Leibowitz
420 Clayton Street
Waukegan, IL 60085
Phone Work 847-787-7001
Fax Fax 847-249-9180
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2007 - 2010, 2015 - 2016
Licensed Since: 1974
Education: Loyola University Chicago School of Law
Practice Areas: Bankruptcy: Consumer (80%), Bankruptcy: Business (20%)
Languages Spoken: English, French, Spanish


Selected To Super Lawyers: 2007 - 2010, 2015 - 2016

Selected to Super Lawyers for 6 years bottom-image

Practice Areas

Lawyer Practice Area Pie Chart


David P. Leibowitz represents people and businesses in bankruptcy* and mortgage foreclosure defense. The founder of Lakelaw, a law firm with offices in Illinois and Wisconsin, Mr. Leibowitz handles both business and consumer bankruptcies, including Chapter 7, Chapter 11 and Chapter 13.

Mr. Leibowitz is also a member of Upright Law, a national consumer bankruptcy firm. In that capacity, Mr. Leibowitz represents consumers in bankruptcy related litigation throughout the United States.

Mr. Leibowitz also serves as a chapter 7 trustee in the Northern District of Illinois. He as served in this role for 25 years and administered tens of thousands of chapter 7 bankruptcy cases.

A graduate of Loyola University Chicago School of Law, Mr. Leibowitz practiced law in Chicago for more than 25 years before founding Lakelaw, which has grown into one of the most well-known consumer advocacy firms in the region. Mr. Leibowitz is also known as the first attorney in northern Illinois or southern Wisconsin to be certified as both a consumer bankruptcy and a business bankruptcy attorney by the American Board of Certification.

Mr. Leibowitz is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Bankruptcy Institute, having previously served as the co-chair of both the Consumer Law Committee and the Commercial Fraud Task Force.

His outstanding work on behalf of clients has earned Mr. Leibowitz recognition and a variety of honors throughout his career. He is rated AV Preeminent** by the attorney peer-review service Martindale-Hubbell, its highest rating. He was also the recipient of a pro bono service award from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in 2006. Mr. Leibowitz received a "Liberty Bell Award" from the 19th Judicial Circuit Court of Lake County, Illinois, for his work organizing a mortgage foreclosure help desk.

*Mr. Leibowitz is a debt relief agency. He helps people file for bankruptcy relief under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.

**AV-Preeminent and BV-Distinguished are certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell ratings fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

Certifications and Credentials

About David Leibowitz

Law School: Loyola University Chicago School of Law

Admitted: 1974, Illinois

Professional Webpage:

Honors and Awards:

  • Liberty Bell Award, Circuit Court for Nineteenth Judicial Circuit - Lake County, Illinois, 2010
  • Pro Bono Service Award, Lake County Bar Association Volunteer Legal Program, 2007
  • Excellence in Pro Bono Service, United States District Court Northern District of Illinois and Federal Bar Association, 2006
  • Achieved National Recognition for his work in defending against predatory mortgages
  • Alpha Sigma Nu, Jesuit Honor Society
  • Selected as a member of the Leading Lawyers Network

Special Licenses/Certifications:

  • Admitted to practice in the State of Wisconsin, 2006
  • Admitted to the Bar of the State of Arizona
  • Board Certified by American Board of Certification in Business Bankruptcy and Consumer Bankruptcy

Bar/Professional Activity:

  • Member of Board of Directors of American Bankruptcy Institute, 2015
  • Advisory Committee, American Bankruptcy Institute, Chicago Consumer Bankruptcy Conference, 2012
  • American Bar Association - Working Group on Best Practices for Electronically Stored Information in Bankruptcy Cases, 2011
  • Editor of NABTalk, publication of National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees, 2011
  • Co-Chair of Fraud Committee of American Bankruptcy Institute, 2010
  • Elected to Board of Directors of National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees, 2009
  • Illinois
  • National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
  • Wisconsin Bar
  • National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees
  • Lake County Bar Association
  • Kenosha County Bar Association
  • Illinois State Bar Association
  • Commercial Law League of America
  • Chicago Bar Association
  • Arizona Bar

Pro bono/Community Service:

Scholarly Lectures and Writings:

  • Presented to plenary session of NACBA and subsequent breakout session on problems arising when mortgage lenders fail to complete mortgage foreclosures, Speaker, Zombie Mortgages, National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys, 2015
  • Minnesota Bar – Trustee Duties and Debtor's Responsibilities, 2014
  • Kansas Bar Association – "Mortgage Nuts and Bolts in Bankruptcy", 2012
  • Minnesota Bar – Trustee Ethics, 2011
  • Illinois State Bar – The Corporate Lawyer, "The Business Corporation Act's Remedy for Insolvency", 2011
  • Speaker, Ethical Obligations of Bankruptcy Trustees, Minnesota State Bar Association - Bankruptcy Section, 2011
  • Speaker, Preservation of Electronic Evidence, National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees, 2011
  • Speaker, Messy Mortgage Muddles - Mortgage Claim Issues, American Bankruptcy Institute - Annual Spring Meeting, 2011
  • Speaker, Chapter 7 Trustee Issues for Consumer Bankruptcy, Southeast Bankruptcy Law Institute, 2011
  • Speaker, Responding to Trustee Concerns in Creditors Meetings, National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys, 2011
  • Speaker, Real Estate Mortgage Issues in Bankruptcy, National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees, 2011
  • Speaker, Divorce and Bankruptcy - When Does One Specialist Need Another?, American Bankruptcy Institute - Chicago Consumer Bankruptcy Conference, 2011
  • Speaker, Illinois Mortgage Foreclosure Defense, Lake County Bar Association (Illinois), 2011
  • Speaker, Exemptions, Chicago Bar Association - Bankruptcy Committee, 2011
  • Author - Editor in Chief, American Bankruptcy Institute Fraud Manual, American Bankruptcy Institute, 2010
  • Speaker, Title 11 meets the Bill of Rights, National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees, 2010
  • Author, Filing Chapter 13 - What you need to know, Aspartore, 2010
  • Bankruptcy Court – Eastern District of Wisconsin "Lou Jones Breakfast" "Limitations on Discrimination against Debtors", 2009
  • Chicago Bar Association Bankruptcy Committee – Discharge and Discharge ability, 2008
  • Wisconsin Bar – Predatory Lending, 2008
  • Truth in Lending Act and Other Defenses to Mortgage Foreclosure, Lake County Bar Association, 2008
  • Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago – Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority – "Wisconsin Moves Forward to Address Foreclosures" (Mortgage Foreclosure Response), 2008
  • Commercial Law League of America – Bankruptcy Boot Camp, 2008
  • Author, Residential Mortgage Issues in Consumer Bankruptcy Cases, Norton's Annual Survey of Bankruptcy Law, 2008
  • Kenosha County Bar Association – Bankruptcy for General Practitioner, 2007
  • Bankruptcy Aspects of Probate Administration, Lake County Bar Association, 2007
  • Bankruptcy for General Practitioner in Light of BAPCPA, Lake County Bar Association, 2005
  • American Bankruptcy Institute Real Estate Committee – Real estate issues in chapter 7 trustee cases, 2004
  • Chicago Bar Association – International Bankruptcy, 2002
  • World Bank – International Law Institute – Mongolia Bankruptcy Project (1999-2000)
  • National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees – Thinking outside the Box (2006), Trustee Administration A-Z (2007), Trustee Claims in Predatory Lending (2008)
  • American Bankruptcy Institute Commercial Fraud Task Force – Detecting Fraud in Chapter 7 Cases (2007)
  • ABI/UMKC Midwestern Bankruptcy Institute – "Representing Small Business Clients" (2009), American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Chicago Consumer Bankruptcy Conference – Is it or Isn't It – Property of the Estate" (2010), American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Annual Spring Meeting – "Beyond HAMP and HARP – What's Next" (2012), American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Chicago Consumer Bankruptcy Conference "Ethics of Debt Relief Agencies and Consumer Bankruptcy" (2014), American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Arizona State Bar – Predatory Lending (2008)
  • TILA is your Friend – NABTalk (2006)
  • One Lawyer's Renaissance – ABA Law Practice Management
  • Bankruptcy Aspects of Divorce – ABA Family Advocate
  • Bankruptcy Aspects of Asset Protection, IICLE
  • Bankruptcy Aspects of Divorce, IICLE
  • Bankruptcy Claims and Exemptions, IICLE
  • Withdrawals from Tax-deferred Retirement Accounts: Included in Current Monthly Income – June, 2008 – American Bankruptcy Institute Journal 12
  • Vehicle Ownership Expense Deduction: Fixed Allowance or Cap on Actual Expense? July, August 2008 – American Bankruptcy Institute Journal
  • Secured Debt Alone Cannot Constitute Abuse under §707(b)(3) XXVIII American Bankruptcy Institute Journal 9, 38, 39, 75, November 2009
  • Filing Chapter 13, What you need to know (Aspartore Books, 2011)
  • Illinois Mortgage Foreclosure: What you need to Know (Thompson Reuters, 2010)
  • Can a Fully Unsecured Lien be Stripped in Chapter 13 without Discharge, American Bankruptcy Institute Journal (July-August, 2011)
  • Current Mortgage Issues in Chapter 13 – Norton's Annual Survey of Bankruptcy Law 2011 (David Leibowitz and Mark Rossi)
  • Stern v. Marshall: A Constitutional Conundrum, American Bankruptcy Institute Journal October 2011 (Selected as "Best of the Year Article")
  • How many heads on Beds are in your chapter 13 household? American Bankruptcy Institute Journal (November 2012)
  • Pre-Petition Receiverships Can Impede Real Estate Reorganization, American Bankruptcy Institute Journal (December, 2013)
  • Fiduciary Duties of Chapter 7 Trustees in Surplus Cases, American Bankruptcy Institute Journal (April 2014)

Verdicts and Settlements:

  • Competed administration of IFC Credit Corporation Chapter 7 bankruptcy case - over $27 million in leases administered, all priority and tax debts paid with dividend to unsecured creditors, 2015
  • Recovered $900,000 settlement from former officers and directors of Goldblatt's Bargain Stores, Inc., 2009
  • In re Delphi Corp – Representation of LG Philips LCD in connection with their multi-million dollar post-petition contract – advised on all aspects of Debtor's reorganization case, now confirmed
  • In re KMart Co. – Representation of 30 counties of the State of Georgia resulting in recovery of millions in ad valorem property taxes
  • In re Process Control Technologies (Chapter 11 plan – manufacturing Debtor – plan confirmed resulting in 60% to unsecured creditors and ultimate sale of company for substantial value to debtors' principals)
  • In re Wax Trax Records (Chapter 11 – independent recording company plan confirmed after negotiation)
  • In re Michael Sparks (Chapter 11 Debtor – real estate development debtor plan confirmed and fully executed after contested confirmation hearing)
  • In re Straight Arrow Products, Inc. (Chapter 11 creditors committee – 100% plan)
  • Kramer v. Exchange National Bank of Chicago, 118 Ill. 2d 277, 515 N.E. 2d 57, 113 Ill. Dec. 248 (1987)
  • Gabellini v. Rega 724 F.2d 579 (7th Cir. 1984)
  • In re UNR Industries, Inc. 736 F.2d 1136 – 7th Circuit. 1984 legal representative appeal)
  • In re Kobus (Bankruptcy – bad faith chapter 13 conversion)
  • Leibowitz v. Tanglis 344 B.R. 563 (Bankr. ND. IL 2006 Bankruptcy – denial of discharge after trial)
  • Leibowitz v. Saleh 1994 Bankr. LEXIS 29 (Bankr. ND IL)
  • Leibowitz v. Parkway Bank & Trust Co. (In re Image Worldwide), 139 F.3d. 574 (7th Cir. 1998)
  • In re Carney (recovery of more than $1 million in major Ponzi scheme)
  • Leibowitz v. Parkway Bank & Trust Co. (In re Image Worldwide), 139 F.3d. 574 (7th Cir. 1998)
  • Leibowitz v. Parkway Bank & Trust Co. (In re Image Worldwide), 139 F.3d. 574 (7th Cir. 1998)
  • In re Clark (Rameker v. Clark), 714 F.3d 559 (7th Cir. 2013) (on brief for amicus NABT – certiorari granted by Supreme Court)
  • IFC Credit Corporation v. First Chicago Bank and Trust, 422 B.R. 659 (Bankr. N.D. IL 2010) (Directors and Officers Insurance Injunction Litigation)
  • IFC Credit Corporation, 633 F.3d 315 (7th Cir. 2011) (bankruptcy court jurisdiction)
  • IFC Credit Corporation (chapter 7 liquidation of leading national leasing corporation)
  • In re McDonough Associates, Inc. (chapter 7 trustee for leading Chicago civil engineering firm and related litigation)

Representative Clients:

  • Trustee In re IFC Credit Corporation Trustee In re Kevin Carney Trustee In re Keystone Mechanical, Inc., 2011

Educational Background:

  • Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, B.A., Economics, 1970
Last Updated: 8/24/2015
Call me at 847-787-7001

To: David P. Leibowitz

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