Thomas J. Curtin 

Special Counsel – New York
T.+1 212 504 6063
200 Liberty Street
New York, NY 10281 V-CARD

Tom Curtin, a special counsel in Cadwalader's New York office, focuses his practice in financial restructuring and bankruptcy, including bankruptcy litigation and distressed municipal finance. He has represented creditors, investors and interested parties in chapter 9 and 11 cases, as well as in litigation arising from intercreditor and subordination agreements. Tom is representing a monoline insurer in cases pending under Title III of PROMESA for the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and certain of its instrumentalities, including the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA), the Puerto Rico Sales Tax Financing Corporation (COFINA) and the Puerto Rico Highway and Transportation Authority (HTA). Tom has also represented creditors and other parties in interest in restructuring proceedings for Avianca Holdings S.A.; Celsius Network; Energy Future Holdings Corp.; Caesars Entertainment Operating Company; NPC International; Glacial Energy Holdings; City of Detroit, Michigan; Jefferson County, Alabama; and Edison Mission Energy, among others. 

Tom was recognized in the 2024 edition of Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America for Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law. From 2015-2023, Tom has also been recognized as a "Rising Star" in the New York edition of Super Lawyers, and he has also been recognized as a key individual in the municipal bankruptcy field in the U.S. edition of Legal500.

Tom has authored articles on a variety of restructuring topics and his work has been published in the New York Law JournalReuters, Law 360the Journal of Law & Policy, the Harvard Law School Bankruptcy Roundtable and Pratt's Journal of Bankruptcy Law. Tom received his B.A., cum laude, from Fordham University and his J.D., cum laude, from Brooklyn Law School, where he was a Notes and Comments Editor on the Journal of Law and Policy. During law school, he interned for Justice Bernard Fried in the New York Supreme Court, Commercial Division. 

Tom is admitted to practice in the State of New York and before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First and Third Circuits and U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York.

Restructuring Engagements

  • Represent monoline insurer in the restructuring of billions of dollars of bonds issued by the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and instrumentalities, including the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority.
  • Represented DIP lenders and prepetition secured creditors in the chapter 11 proceedings for Avianca Holdings S.A. and its debtor affiliates, including in the negotiation and execution of a $2 billion multi-tranche DIP facility.
  • Represented creditors and other interested parties in chapter 11 cases for Energy Future Holdings Corp., Celsius Network, Caesars Entertainment Operating Company, NPC International, Glacial Energy Holdings, R.G. Steel, Edison Mission Energy, and Inner City Media Corporation.
  • Represented secured creditors in the chapter 9 cases for the City of Detroit and Jefferson County.

Bankruptcy Litigation

  • Obtained dismissal of an adversary complaint in its entirety, which sought a declaration that over $2 billion of loan claims were not subordinate to other debt obligations. In dismissing the complaint, the Court held that plaintiffs’ loan claims were payment subordinated to the defendants’ claims.  AmeriNational Community Services LLC v. Ambac Assurance Corp.,  635 B.R. 216 (D.P.R. 2021). 
  • Represented a secured creditor in intercreditor litigation arising from the chapter 11 cases of Energy Future Holdings and its debtor affiliates. During the course of that representation, Tom obtained dismissal of the adversary complaint in its entirety, which sought a declaration that plan distributions and adequate protection payments were required to be distributed pursuant to an intercreditor agreement’s waterfall provision. In dismissing the complaint, the Court held that distributions of stock in a reorganized entity and adequate protection payments were not proceeds of prepetition collateral, and thus were not subject to the waterfall provision. Delaware Trust Co. v. Wilmington Trust, N.A., 546 B.R. 566 (Bankr. D. Del. 2016).  The Third Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed this decision.  See In re Energy Future Holdings Corp., 773 Fed. Appx. 89 (3d Cir. 2019).
  • Obtained reversal of decision concerning a Title III court’s power to lift the automatic stay. In re Financial Oversight & Mgmt Bd for Puerto Rico, 899 F.3d 13 (1st Cir. 2018).
  • Obtained dismissal of an adversary complaint filed against prepetition secured creditors in the Inner City Media Corporation chapter 11 case. 


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Thomas J. Curtin 


  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 1st Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 3rd Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • New York


  • Brooklyn Law School
    J.D., 2011, with honors
  • Fordham University
    B.A., 2008, with honors