Principal

Michael W. Debre

Michael W. Debre
Practice Areas

Banking

Education

IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, J.D. (2008)

University of Dayton, B.A., Psychology, magna cum laude (2003)

Bar & Court Admissions

Illinois (2008)

United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (2011)

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (2013)

United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois (2014)

United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit (2017)

Prior to nearly 10 years of practice as an attorney, Mike Debre was a senior vice president of a Chicago commercial bank. Mike started his banking career as a loan officer, originating transactions involving the acquisition and refinancing of all types of real estate and notes secured by equipment, vehicles, accounts receivable and securities. Later, Mike managed the bank’s diverse loan portfolio and real estate holdings. As a result, he is particularly attuned to the reporting requirements imposed on banks and also has a strong grasp on the pressures facing lenders in this demanding business and regulatory environment.

Mike represents financial institutions on a nationwide basis in matters involving loan enforcement, insolvency, fraud, breach of contract, replevin, conversion, mortgage foreclosures and appeals. He also represents business owners on a variety litigation matters, including those involving construction liability and other commercial disputes. Accurately assessing risks and costs, while providing thoughtful analysis and advice, are the hallmarks of Mike’s service to his clients.

Despite his legal career encompassing a relatively short period of time, he has attained remarkable successes such as:

  • Securing a victory for a lender in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit on a non-dischargeability claim in a bankruptcy case, reversing the lower courts’ decisions;
  • Obtaining a $1.7 million judgment for a lender on an assigned promissory note despite issues related to negotiability, creditor’s satisfaction of condition precedent, and ambiguity of loan documents, which was affirmed on appeal by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit; 
  • Securing summary judgment for a lender in a complex mortgage foreclosure case involving novel lack-of-consideration and loss mitigation defenses, which was affirmed on appeal by the Illinois Appellate Court; and 
  • Negotiating numerous favorable settlements on behalf of clients when litigation was not the most cost-effective approach.              

Mike’s service extends to the community where he volunteers his time to several organizations, including the Chicago-Kent Alumni Association where he mentors current students and recent graduates. At Marist High School, he is an instructor for the Moot Court Club.

Mike previously served on Chuhak & Tecson's Associate/Law Clerk Oversight Committee and is currently a member of the Marketing Committee.

In addition to his thriving career, Mike’s life centers around his wife, two young kids and dog. He is also an exercise enthusiast, backcountry hiker, avid traveler and roadtripper, and thin crust pizza lover.