James S. Rankin Jr.

James S. Rankin Jr.

Partner | Atlanta Office
T: (404) 420-5560
F: (404) 522-8409

Practice Group(s)



  • Emory University School of Law - (J.D., 1993)
  • Duke University - (B.A., 1990)

Admitted to Practice

  • Georgia
  • U.S. District Courts for Northern and Middle Districts of Georgia
  • 11th Circuit Court of Appeals


About Jay

Jay is a partner in the Bankruptcy practice group primarily representing asset-based lenders and lender groups in connection with chapter 11 bankruptcy cases in the Southeast, Delaware and New York, workouts, forbearance arrangements, foreclosures and state and federal receiverships. Jay has served as counsel for chapter 11 trustees and debtors with respect to reorganization and liquidation of businesses and investigation of alleged Ponzi schemes. Jay's practice also includes defending creditors in avoidance actions and other adversary proceedings, including preference, fraudulent conveyance, and equitable subordination actions; representing purchasers of assets in bankruptcy sales; assisting franchisors, landlords and equipment lessors with assumption, rejection, claims allowance and other issues in bankruptcy cases; and prosecuting and defending creditors’ rights and lender liability actions in state and federal courts.

Representative Engagements

  • Represented agent for bank group with respect to $75 million asset-based credit facility to borrowers in the flooring business in connection with chapter 11 bankruptcy cases in Georgia, debtor-in-possession financing, and a section 363 sale of the business, resulting in full payment of the secured claims of the ABL lenders.
  • Represented agent for lender group in restructuring $700 million asset-based credit facility provided to borrowers who sell modular space products and services, pursuant to restructuring support agreement and prepackaged chapter 11 filings in Delaware, with related cross-border filings in Canada, including debtor-in-possession and exit financing under confirmed chapter 11 plans of reorganization.
  • Represented agent for bank group who provided $125 million asset-based lending facility to an international group of companies who sell printing and marketing materials and services in connection with their chapter 11 bankruptcy cases in Delaware, including approval of debtor-in-possession financing, participation in a section 363 sale of substantially all assets of the debtors to a strategic buyer, and successfully defending claims asserted by the official committee of unsecured creditors
  • Represented asset-based lender with $20 million claim against furniture retailer in connection with debtor-in-possession financing and section 363 sale in chapter 11 case in Tampa, Florida, resulting in full payment of principal and interest
  • Represented asset-based lender with $9 million secured claim in chapter 11 bankruptcy case of community hospital in Georgia, including in connection with use of cash collateral, DIP financing and a section 363 sale of the hospital, resulting in full payment of the lender at closing
  • Represented secured creditor with respect to a $10 million loan secured by a Red Roof Inn at the Atlanta airport, including obtaining the appointment of a receiver in federal district court, litigating cash collateral and stay relief issues in the chapter 11 bankruptcy case of the hotel owner, foreclosure and a contested foreclosure confirmation proceeding in state court
  • Represented asset-based lender with $11 million claim against fuel distributor in connection with use of cash collateral and section 363 sales in chapter 11 cases in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, resulting in full payment of principal, interest and legal fees
  • Obtained appointment of a federal receiver by the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida for group of trucking and logistics companies on behalf of their primary secured creditor
  • Represented bicycle retailer as debtor-in-possession in chapter 11 case in Atlanta, Georgia, resulting in confirmed chapter 11 plan of reorganization
  • Represented The McBurney Corporation as debtor-in-possession in its chapter 11 case in Atlanta, Georgia, resulting in a confirmed chapter 11 plan of reorganization addressing approximately $30 million in claims
  • Represented Currahee Club and affiliates, owners of resort and golf course development, as debtors in chapter 11 cases in Atlanta, Georgia, resulting in a confirmed chapter 11 plan of liquidation
  • Represented secured lender with $17 million claim in chapter 11 bankruptcy case of roofing materials supply company, including DIP financing and section 363 sale
  • Represented revolving lender with $30 million line of credit in connection with balance sheet restructuring accomplished through prepackaged chapter 11 case in Delaware
  • Represented agent for lenders with claims exceeding $26 million in obtaining appointment of federal receiver and responding to involuntary bankruptcy filing against building supply company
  • Negotiated and documented $65 million DIP facility and liquidated assets of steel company to fully satisfy claims of lender group
  • Negotiated, documented and litigated issues in connection with $38 million asset-based DIP facility provided to specialty textile business, sale of two operating divisions under section 363 and negotiation of chapter 11 plan with committee
  • Successfully prosecuted and argued appeal to Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in bankruptcy claims allowance dispute (In re Slaughter Co. & Associates, 219 F.3d 1279 (11th Cir. 2000))
  • Conducted jury trial of action to recover deficiency and to establish commercial reasonableness of disposition of collateral under UCC Article 9 (verdict for plaintiff, October 2005)
  • Conducted multiple bench trials of contested foreclosure confirmations relating to commercial real estate loans in Georgia

Professional and Civic Involvement

  • Member, Atlanta Bar Association (Bankruptcy Section)
  • Member, American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Member, Turnaround Management Association
  • Member, American Bankruptcy Institute Southeastern Bankruptcy Workshop Advisory Board, 2018-present


  • Selected as a Georgia Super Lawyers Rising Star by Law & Politics Media and Atlanta Magazine
  • Listed in Chambers USA Leading American Business Lawyers in bankruptcy/restructuring

Publications and Presentations

  • Moderator, "Bankruptcy From the Lender's Perspective," Turnaround Management Association Program (Atlanta Chapter) (October 2017)
  • Panelist and co-author, "Basics of Franchisee Bankruptcies," 40th Annual ABA Forum on Franchising, Palm Desert, California (October 2017)
  • Panelist and co-author, "Debtor-in-Possession Financing Orders: Does It Really Need To Be 50 Pages?" ICLE Georgia State Bar Bankruptcy Section Annual Conference, September 2016
  • Author, "Enforceability of Termination Upon Bankruptcy Clauses," The Franchise Lawyer (ABA Forum on Franchising, Fall 2014)
  • Speaker and Author: "Lending to Specialized Industries" (ICLE Secured Lending Program, February 2016)
  • Panelist, ABI Southeast Bankruptcy Workshop, "Welcome to the Chapter 11 Races! Jockeying for Position and Setting the Boundaries for Appropriate First-Day Relief" (July 2014)
  • Speaker and Author:  "When There's No Money for Chapter 11:  An Overview of Enforcement of Security Interests Under Article 9" (ICLE Secured Lending Program, February 2013)

  • Guest Lecturer, Emory University School of Law, Chapter 11 Bankruptcy: Use of Cash Collateral and Debtor-in-Possession Financing, September 2010, September 2012, September 2013 and October 2014
  • Discussed as a panel member the topic "RadLAX:  What Will the Supreme Court Decide and How Will We Cram Down From Here?" (IWIRC & AIRA Program, Atlanta, Georgia, May 2012)

  • Speaker and Author: "Defensive Debtor-in-Possession Financing" (36th Annual Alexander L. Paskay Seminar on Bankruptcy Law and Practice, Tampa, Florida, March 2011)

  • Panelist, The Eighth Annual Emory Bankruptcy Developments Journal Symposium, "Ethics Panel Discussion:  If I Knew Now – Lessons in Ethics and Professional Responsibility for New Bankruptcy and Insolvency Practitioners" (March 2011)

  • Presented the topic "Restructuring Outside of Bankruptcy" at the Business Law Institute in Atlanta (October 2009)
  • Speaker and Author:  "Loan Workouts: Selected Forbearance, Lender Liability and Bankruptcy Planning Issues" (ICLE Secured Lending Program, February 2009)
  • Speaker and author: "Real and Personal Property Foreclosures -- Pitfalls for the Unwary" for the Atlanta Chapter of the Turnaround Management Association, as a part of the chapter's Interdisciplinary Education Program (June 2009)
  • Speaker and Author: "Alternatives to Bankruptcy -- Receiverships and ABC's" Atlanta Chapter of the Turnaround Management Association, as a part of the chapter's Interdisciplinary Education Program (June 2009)
  • Speaker and Author: "Bankruptcy for the Non-Specialist in Georgia" (Lorman Education Services, 2006, 2007 & 2008)
  • Speaker and Author: "Receivership Issues and Strategies - Litigation" (ICLE Real Property Foreclosure Program, April 2007)
  • Speaker and Author: "New Developments in Georgia Lender Liability: Understanding and Protecting Yourself Against Borrower Claims" (National Business Institute, April 2006)
  • Speaker and Author: "Planning and Managing a Chapter 11 Reorganization From Start to Finish" (National Business Institute, December 2005)
  • Speaker and Author: "Revised UCC Article 9 Secured Transactions: What Georgia Practitioners Need to Know" (National Business Institute, September 2004)
  • Co-Author:  "Georgia Evidence" (Thomson Reuters/West, 4th Ed. 2008)
  • Co-Author: "Negotiating and Documenting a 'Defensive' Debtor-in-Possession Financing" (The Review of Banking & Financial Services, October 2003)
  • Author: "Georgia Enforcement of Security Interests in Personal Property Under Revised Article 9 With Forms" (Thomson/West Publishing Co., 3d Ed. 2002) and Annual Pocket Parts
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