David Willenzik

David S. Willenzik previously served as the longtime head of the firm’s business law section, and resides in the office. David is nationally known in the following practice areas: banking and bank regulatory law; commercial finance law; asset based lending; equipment leasing; consumer financial services law; Louisiana and UCC security device litigation; defense of lender liability claims; consumer credit litigation and class action defense; bankruptcy, insolvency and creditor rights law.

Admitted to Practice

  • Louisiana
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana
  • United States District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana
  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit

Education

  • Louisiana State University Law Center, J.D., 1971 (Law Review, Moot Court Board)
  • University of Illinois, B.S., Finance, 1968

Commercial Financial Services Practice

Nationally recognized as an outstanding authority and practitioner in the field of commercial financial services law with particular emphasis on asset based lending, structured and project finance, equipment leasing and motor vehicle wholesale credit. Clients include money center, regional and community banks, foreign banks, investment banking firms, commercial finance lenders, auto finance companies, equipment lessors, insurance companies, institutional investors, hedge funds, factors and related lenders. Practice includes negotiation and closing of middle market credit transactions, workouts, restructurings, foreclosures and bankruptcies, new product development, drafting of multistate commercial loan and equipment lease documents, counseling on loan documentation and procedures, lien perfection and priority, avoidance of lender liability and intercreditor disputes, state law compliance (including usury), as well as litigation by and against borrowers and third persons. Frequent lecturer and author on commercial financial services, UCC and bankruptcy related topics. Author of the definitive Louisiana Law Review articles on equipment leasing and multiple indebtedness mortgages. Author of the West Publishing Company, Louisiana Secured Transactions treatise. Author of the First National Bankers Bank UCC Practice Manual for Bankers.

Banking and Financial Services Practice

Nationally recognized as one of the “deans” of the banking and financial services bar with 36 years of experience in that specialty of law. Founder of the firm’s national banking and financial services practice serving a broad spectrum of clients, including money center, regional and community banks, thrift institutions, credit unions, insurance companies, mortgage lenders, investment banking firms, hedge funds, commercial finance, consumer finance and auto finance companies, retailers, credit card companies, equipment lessors and other domestic and foreign concerns. Consumer financial services practice includes counseling clients on compliance with federal and state banking and financial services laws and regulations, new product design, drafting of multistate forms and procedures, perfection and priority of liens, defense of class actions and other litigation and enforcement actions, training of in-house legal staff and loan personnel.

Membership in Banking and Financial Services Related Organizations

Fellow, co-founder and past President of the American of CollegemConsumer Financial Services Lawyers

  • American of Mortgage Attorneys
  • Long time member of and former co-chair of the Consumer Bankers Association Lawyers Committee
  • Long time member of the American Bar Association Commercial Financial Services and UCC Committees
  • Long time member of the American Bar Association Consumer Financial Services and Banking Law Committees
  • Former chair of the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Section, Federal Credit Regulations Committee
  • Former member of the Conference on Personal Finance Law Governing Committee
  • Long time member of the American Law Institute
  • Long time member of the Louisiana State Law Institute and its UCC Committee
  • Former chair of Louisiana State Bar Association Bankruptcy and Consumer Law Section
  • Long time member and former chair of the Louisiana Bankers Association Bank Counsel Section
  • Former chair of the Louisiana Bankers Association Security Device Task Force and UCC Committee
  • Former member of the Louisiana Legislature’s Committee on Implementation of the Uniform Commercial Code
  • Former member of Louisiana Secretary of State’s UCC Committee
  • Member of the American Bankruptcy Institute and INSOL International
  • Member of the International Bar Association Insolvency Committee

Legislative and Regulatory Initiatives

  • Led the effort to enact UCC Article 9 in . Chaired UCC committee and served as primary initiator and drafter of Louisiana UCC Article 9 (1990) and in globo amendments to security device laws to permit implementation of the UCC.
  • Negotiated Louisiana UCC filing system between Louisiana Secretary of State and Clerks of Court Association permitting filings to be made in any of 64 parishes, with central registry in Secretary of State’s office. System later adopted by the State of.
  • Consulted with the Governor, the Louisiana Legislature, Secretary of State’s Office, Office of Motor Vehicles, Department of Agriculture, and Clerks of Court Association on implementation of UCC Article 9.
  • Taught over 4000 bankers and other lenders with respect to implementation of UCC Article 9 in 1990 and of Revised UCC Article 9 in 2001.
  • Primary initiator and drafter of the Louisiana Lease of Movables Act (equipment leasing code), which applies to both consumer and commercial equipment leases.
  • Primary initiator and drafter of the Louisiana Credit Agreement Law, which requires that all agreements and understandings with respect to consumer and commercial extensions of credit be in writing in order to be enforceable.
  • Primary initiator and drafter of legislation defining the responsibilities and potential liability exposure of financial institution outside counsel and accountants.
  • Primary initiator and drafter of statutes exempting business and commercial loans from usury limitations and from the prohibition against interest compounding.
  • Primary initiator and drafter of interest rate parity legislation permitting based lenders to charge interest and fees at higher rates and amounts as permitted to non-Louisiana based lenders making loans into.
  • Primary initiator and drafter of statutes applicable to priority of collateral mortgages.
  • Actively participated in the drafting of the 1980 Truth in Lending Simplification Act, serving as a member of the American Bankers Association/Consumer Bankers Association Task Force on TIL Reform.
  • Consulted with Federal Reserve Board Staff on significant amendments/revisions to Reg. Z, Reg. M and Reg. B.
  • Primary drafter and initiator of significant amendments and restatements of the Louisiana laws that apply to consumer credit transactions, including the Louisiana Consumer Credit Law, Motor Vehicles Sales Finance Act and Residential Mortgage Lending Act.
  • Primary drafter and initiator of the Louisiana Equal Credit Opportunity Act, which for the first time gave married women the right to obtain individual credit (prior to the enactment of the Louisiana Equal Management Community Property Law in 1980).
  • Consulted with the Louisiana Office of Financial Institutions (banking and securities commissioner), Louisiana Motor Vehicle Commission (regulator of motor vehicle dealers and lenders), Louisiana Attorney General’s Office, Louisiana Bankers Association and the Louisiana Consumer Finance Association on banking and consumer financial services related issues and legislative initiatives.

Membership in Other Legal Organizations

  • Fellow of the American Bar Foundation
  • Fellow of the Bar Foundation
  • Member of the Board of Trustees of the State Law

Community and Other Activities

  • Louisiana State University Law Center, Board of Trustees, 2006
  • Rotary International/New Orleans Chapter, Member, 2006