Banks and other financial institutions are challenged on multiple fronts as they compete in a dynamic marketplace and complex regulatory environment. Our multidisciplinary team leverages its comprehensive knowledge across practice areas to identify emerging legal trends and provide solutions to our clients' most pressing strategic and competitive challenges.


Ballard Spahr has a long history of representing banking and financial services industry clients. Our industry-centric team comprises more than 70 attorneys. It includes deal makers, advisers, and litigators who counsel clients on matters ranging from complex mergers and acquisitions, transactional finance, and regulatory compliance to federal investigations and enforcement, privacy and data security, and class action lawsuits. 

Our clients include commercial banks, non-regulated lenders, insurance companies, financial and institutional investment clients, investment banks, loan servicers, broker-dealers, and consumer finance clients, ranging from global national and regional industry leaders to innovative start-ups, and internet-based providers. These same clients ranked Ballard Spahr a “Standout” firm for financial services law in a recent industry survey by BTI Consulting, placing us in the top 15 percent of all law firms.

Commercial banking

Our enduring relationships with community, regional money center, and foreign banks are built on collaboration. We handle a broad range of commercial financing transactions, including commercial and industrial loans, asset-based loans, tax-exempt financing matters, ESOP lending, health care lending, interest rate swaps, and structured finance on both a secured and unsecured basis. We also regularly negotiate and document co-lender and intercreditor arrangements. Even before the latest recession, our loan enforcement and restructuring experience has provided us invaluable insight in representing our clients’ interests at the inception of financing transactions.

Non-Bank Lending (Alternative LEnders)

We represent mortgage banks, REITs, debt funds, specialty lenders, private equity firms, mezzanine lenders, government sponsored enterprises, peer-to-peer lenders, and equipment lessors and lenders—from start-ups to established market leaders. Our attorneys document and advise on the structure of underlying transactions, helping to preserve and improve customer relationships maintained by non-bank lenders and institutional buyers of loans and products, and we assist in documenting account servicing arrangements and advise on consumer regulatory and state licensing matters.

We help clients develop, acquire, and sell financial services products. Our work includes negotiating and drafting agreements with third parties and assessing the regulatory and legislative landscape. We draft consumer agreements and disclosures, communicate with regulatory authorities, and conduct due diligence. Our attorneys also guide lenders in distressed asset situations on both the buy and sell-side of debt and have a long history of advising lender clients through the duration of borrower insolvency events including receiverships, foreclosures, bankruptcies, and asset sales. 

Insurance Financing

Our attorneys offer a range of services to national, regional, and local insurance companies in mergers and acquisitions, transactional matters, and litigation issues. We represent clients involved in commercial real estate investing and lending transactions and advise on structuring, documenting, and managing the deployment of capital into real estate projects—whether as equity or debt—through a variety of investment vehicles. We also advise on distressed matters, including the restructuring and enforcement of troubled deals as well as strategic investing and lending. We represent insurance companies as lenders, investors, developers, and owners, directly or through joint ventures. Our work spans the life of the transaction, from the earliest structuring discussions, through term sheet negotiations and due diligence, to negotiating, documenting, and closing, to servicing and disposition. 

On the litigation side, our attorneys have successfully handled a variety of litigation matters for insurers, including class actions by policy holders, coverage litigation, and ERISA litigation. We also have significant experience in representing carriers in employment matters ranging from terminations and enforcing non-compete agreements to discrimination claims. We have extensive experience representing insurers in regulatory matters before various state insurance regulators. We negotiate, draft, and analyze reinsurance agreements and reinsurance commutation agreements, and petition for their approval. We also draft and analyze documents relating to the formation and management of offshore captives.

Investment Banking and Market Regulation

We represent investment banks, broker-dealers, registered investment advisers and investors, distributors, managers, and issuers of hedge funds. Our lawyers understand how the markets and regulatory landscape affect clients' business operations and we appreciate the challenges of investing in a hypercompetitive market. For many of our clients, these investments represent core assets designed to be held for extended time horizons. We are frequently called upon to conduct regulatory due diligence on potential investments in financial services businesses and assets. We also have experience structuring joint ventures between depository institutions and insurance companies or investment bankers.

Financial Services Networks

We represent payment networks and processors in a wide range of matters, including high-stakes litigation, regulatory enforcement actions, corporate transactions and agreements, antitrust, and intellectual property matters. Our preeminent regulatory counseling practice provides advice in the areas of privacy, data security, e-commerce, and mobile payments, as well as on the full range of federal and state banking and credit laws and regulations. 

Consumer Financial Services

Our Consumer Financial Services Group is one of the largest, most comprehensive, and well regarded practices of its kind in the United States. Nationally recognized for excellence, its lawyers help clients chart a course that will assist them in achieving their business objectives in an increasingly complex and uncertain regulatory environment. We advise on regulatory matters, assist in the design and documentation of credit products, and represent clients in class actions, regulatory enforcement proceedings, and other litigation nationwide. Our clients span the industry, from the largest financial institutions in the world to smaller enterprises and internet-based providers. 

Chambers USA consistently ranks the Group in the highest tier nationally for financial services regulation and litigation. The practice includes eight members of the American College of Consumer Financial Services Lawyers, including the College’s first president.

Contact

Kelly M. Wrenn
Tel 202.661.2204
wrenn@ballardspahr.com