Mark J. Wolfson

Partner

Overview

Mark J. Wolfson, a partner and litigation lawyer with Foley & Lardner LLP, has advised business clients in a wide variety of complex business bankruptcy reorganization cases and commercial litigation actions, including foreclosure and lender liability actions, business tort actions; breach of contract claims, Uniform Commercial Code litigation, and commercial landlord-tenant disputes. Mark is a member of the firm's Litigation Department and its Bankruptcy & Business Reorganizations Practice (the senior lawyer in the Florida group). He is also a former chair of the Litigation Department in Tampa. He has been practicing commercial litigation and bankruptcy for more than 38 years.

Mark has extensive experience in out-of-court loan workout and restructuring matters as well as broad experience in all types of insolvency and bankruptcy cases, representing debtors, secured creditors, official creditors committees, buyers of assets in chapter 11, equity holders, bondholders, landlords and franchisors. He has experience in state, federal district, and bankruptcy courts litigating fraudulent transfer and preference actions and has been involved in state assignment for the benefit of creditor proceedings.

Mark's experience also covers insolvency issues that arise in the health care industry (hospitals, SNFs, medical practices), hotels, resorts, marinas, and golf course venues, manufacturing, telecommunication, technology, automotive, and agriculture spaces. Most recently, Mark was the co-lead attorney representing Stein Mart, Inc., a big box retailer, with 280 stores throughout 30 states, in its chapter 11 case filed in Bankruptcy Court in Jacksonville, Florida. Mark also was one the Foley partners that represented PNW Healthcare and its affiliates in the successful confirmation of the bankruptcy plan in December 2020 for their 15 skilled nursing facilities in the Pacific Northwest.

Recognition In The Law

Mark has been peer review rated as AV Preeminent®, the highest performance rating in the Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™ system.  Mark has been recognized by Chambers USA: America's Leading Business Lawyers since 2003. He has also been selected for inclusion in the 2006-2021 Florida Super Lawyers lists.  Mark has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© in the fields of Bankruptcy and Creditor-Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law (2007 - 2022) and Litigation - Bankruptcy (2011 - 2022).

Mark was honored by The Florida Bar Business Law Section as its Outstanding Member of the Year (2001).

Education

Mark received his law degree from the University of Florida in 1982 and served a judicial clerkship to the Florida 2nd District Court of Appeals. He received his bachelor's degree, with high honors, from the University of Tennessee in 1979 and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Omicron Delta Kappa.

Community Engagement

Mark is a consistent advocate and provider of pro bono legal work in his community. He has been the Pro Bono Chair of Foley’s Tampa Office for more than six years. The Hillsborough County Bar legal community awarded him the 2017 "Thirteenth Judicial Circuit Outstanding Pro Bono Service by a Lawyer Award.”  Mark also has received his firm’s national Lynford Lardner Community Service Award. Mark was proud to accept for Foley’s Tampa Office the 2018 Outstanding Law Firm Commendation Award for Pro Bono Service awarded by the Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court on behalf of the entire Florida legal community. In the summer of 2019, at the request of a the presiding federal judge, Mark mentored and supervised three Foley associates/counsel with the pro bono representation of a prisoner that had filed a civil rights lawsuit under §1983 for alleged prison abuse. Mark continues to provide volunteer pro bono legal services to families with developmentally disabled young adults in guardianship and guardianship advocacy cases.

Outside the legal profession, Mark has been involved for more than 20 years in leadership roles with Congregation Schaarai Zedek in Tampa and URJ Camp Coleman, a non-profit overnight summer camp that serves children and teens from throughout the Southeast, including Tampa Bay. After serving as a trustee, officer and Vice President, Mark served as President of the Congregation during 2005-07, which included planning and raising funds the first major expansion of the Amy Gail Buchman Pre-school facilities. He chaired the congregations 125th Anniversary Celebration in October 2019. Mark has served for 20 years as member of Camp Coleman’s Advisory Board, including a three-year term as its Chair. He is a member of the Tampa Jewish Federation’s subcommittee that evaluates and awards need-based scholarships to children in Greater Tampa that wish to attend a non-profit overnight camp. He was the person who sought and obtained the support of the Federation’s Board to initiate this program more than 8 years ago.

Mark was selected to and participated in the Tampa Chamber of Commerce's Leadership 2000 class.

Professional Memberships

Mark was the 2005-06 Chair of the Florida Bar Business Law Section. He is a member of the Section's Executive Council. He has served as the Chair of the Business Law Section's Bankruptcy/UCC Committee. Mark also served as the lead representative of the Business Law Section in connection with the enactment of Revised Article 9 in Florida in 2001 and was the primary drafter of many of the unique Florida provisions and the law that permitted Florida to outsource the UCC filing process. He also was chairperson of the section subcommittee that drafted the 1993 amendments to Florida’s Assignment of Rents statute. Mark continues to play an active role in the work of the Section, including most recently serving on a Task Force proposing updates to Florida’s judgment lien statute and drafting some of the language for proposed amendments to be considered by the Legislature.

Mark is a member of the American Bankruptcy Institute and a member of its Advisory Board for the Alexander L. Paskay Annual Bankruptcy Conference. He is a regular speaker at its programs.

Thought Leadership

He has lectured and written foreclosure, lender liability, fraudulent transfer, and bankruptcy matters. He also is the lead co-author of the chapter titled “The Impact of Bankruptcy” for the Florida Bar practitioner’s manual called Florida Construction Law and Practice, and in 2021 completed editing the chapter for the tenth edition to be published in 2022. He co-authored "An Analysis of the 1993 Mortgage Foreclosure Act," (The Florida Bar Journal, p. 68, October 1993). Mark served two terms on the editorial board of The Florida Bar Journal and Florida Bar News.