Lovee Sarenas

Biography

Lovee concentrates her practice on trustee representations in bankruptcy cases under Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code and representing creditors’ committees and distressed small businesses in Chapter 11  cases. She has assisted and worked with institutional banks, insurance companies, airlines, storage facilities, commercial property owners, small businesses, and turnaround professionals.

Her experience includes counseling international companies in major retail bankruptcy cases; handling bankruptcy-related real estate issues; defending institutional clients in a variety of bankruptcy litigation, avoidance actions and fraudulent transfer claims; and serving as debtor-in-possession counsel to a B2B e-commerce company in an intellectual property sale. She has experience with PACA claims and bankruptcy-related issues in farm business reorganizations. Having a dedicated and broad bankruptcy experience enables her to create practical, cost-efficient, and innovative solutions to a variety of insolvency situations her clients may confront. Throughout her career, Lovee has played a critical role in a number of reorganization, bankruptcy litigation and insolvency matters, including:

  • Representing several Official Committees of Unsecured Creditors in various reorganization cases including the case of Cornerstone Apparel, Inc. which resulted in a $9.5 million settlement distribution to unsecured creditors;
  • Working with defense team for an aviation client in a fraudulent transfer claim that reduced a $5 million claim to a de minimus settlement amount;
  • Successfully representing and defending several institutional clients comprised of banks, mortgage lenders, investment and accounting firms, and a national storage facility owner in bankruptcy reorganization matters, and bankruptcy and avoidance litigation;
  • Serving as counsel to international clients from China, Korea and United Kingdom in the retail industry and commercial landlords across California in national retail bankruptcies;
  • Serving as co-counsel for a farming operation with over 3,000 seasonal agricultural workers in the sale of its farming business in Central California as part of its chapter 11 plan;
  • Serving as debtor-in-possession counsel in the auction sale of the client’s web services patent which sold for $15.5 million from a $1 million opening bid thereby resulting in a 100% distribution to unsecured creditors; and
  • Working with general bankruptcy counsel team that assisted in the reorganization of a winery in Napa, California.

Lovee is the first Filipino-American to serve as a judicial clerk for two bankruptcy judges: the late Richard M. Neiter and Ellen A. Carroll (ret.) of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California. Before she clerked with Judge Neiter, Lovee practiced as a restructuring attorney for a prominent chapter 11 boutique bankruptcy firm in Northern California.

She is also active in the community, having been recognized on account of several leadership roles in bar and community organizations in Los Angeles, including the Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum, the Central District U.S. Bankruptcy Court Small Business Reorganizational Task Force, UPAAGLA Board of Directors, and the California Bankruptcy Forum. She is currently the vice president of the Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum after a successful year chairing its Diversity Equity & Inclusion Committee where she co-founded the Hon. Richard M. Neiter Externship Fellowship that awards stipends to law students from underrepresented backgrounds who are full-time externs with the federal bankruptcy judiciary in the Central District.

She is a member of the USC Gould School of Law adjunct faculty and serves as an adjunct professor of bankruptcy law at Southwestern Law School in Los Angeles.

Education

  • Southwestern University School of Law  (J.D.)
  • University of the Philippines  (B.A.)

Bar Admissions

  • California

Court Admissions

  • U.S. District Court for the Central District of California
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

Affiliations/Memberships

  • Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum Executive Committee
  • Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum Diversity Equity & Inclusion Co-Chair
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court Central District of California Small Business Reorganization Task Force (2020)
  • UP Alumni Association of Greater Los Angeles Board Member and Secretary
  • Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum Board Member
  • Philippine American Bar Association
  • Los Angeles Catholic Lawyers Association
  • American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum past Membership Co-Chair
  • United States Bankruptcy Courts’ Bankruptcy Forms Modernization Project Task Force (2010)
  • Task Force on Chapter 11 Individual Cases, United States Bankruptcy Court-Central District (2010)