September 10, 2013

Collectively, some of our brightest minds have put together "The Devil's Dictionary," a sardonic look at bankruptcy terms patterned after the Ambrose Bierce lexicon in 1911. Our book is illustrated by cartoonist Charlie Podrebarac.

To hear the story behind the making of The Devil's Dictionary, watch this short video.

Coming soon, The Devil's Dictionary mobile app.

The authors of The Devil’s Dictionary are members of the Bankruptcy & Financial Restructuring and Loan Enforcement Practices of Polsinelli, a national full-service law firm of approximately 700 attorneys (as of September 2013) working from 17 cities across the U.S. The authors represent both lenders and borrowers, as well as debtors and official committees of unsecured creditors, in bankruptcy courts throughout the U.S. and in a multitude of state and federal courts in foreclosure, receivership, and other extraordinary restructuring proceedings. As members of an integrated Financial Services Department whose members have documented and closed more than 2100 commercial mortgage and other commercial loans, $16-plus billion in principal amount, in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, as well as representing debtors and creditors in several high profile Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases, the authors also render extensive advice to their transactional colleagues on enforcement and documentation issues at the loan origination stage as well as assistance to borrowers and creditors in distressed situations on the back-end.

Brett Anders is Chair of Polsinelli’s Creditors Rights, Loan Enforcement and Creditor Bankruptcy Representation practice. Mr. Anders enforces the rights and remedies of both securitized lenders and traditional lending institutions in state, federal and bankruptcy courts across the nation, having appeared in courts in 29 states. Mr. Anders utilizes receivership proceedings to ensure that lenders’ collateral is maintained and operated in a manner that protects its value, and also makes use of receiver sales as an alternative to traditional foreclosure proceedings, having overseen the sale of commercial buildings in Dallas, Texas, nursing homes in St. Louis, Missouri, condominium projects in Orlando, Florida, and strip centers outside of Chicago, Illinois, to name a few. Mr. Anders also represents both securitized lenders and traditional lending institutions in lender liability proceedings, represents lenders in disputes among participants and co-lenders, and specializes in numerous forms of bankruptcy litigation. Mr. Anders has been included in The Best Lawyers in America® annually since 2007 and Super Lawyers since 2008. He can be reached at 816-360.4267 or

Jim Bird is co-chair of Polsinelli’s Bankruptcy and Financial Restructuring Practice. His practice is focused in the areas of bankruptcy, business reorganizations, business loan workouts, debtor/creditor rights, and insurance company insolvencies. His 35 plus years of experience in complex bankruptcy and restructuring matters allow him to provide guidance, strategies, and effective solutions to debtor corporations, secured lenders, unsecured creditor committees, debenture holders, shareholders, trustees, and business acquirers. Jim is listed in The Best Lawyers in America® and Super Lawyers. He can be reached at 816-360-4343 or

David Ferguson focuses his practice on Chapter 11 bankruptcy, creditors' rights, and commercial litigation. David is a frequent speaker on a variety of bankruptcy topics and represents a broad array of constituencies in Chapter 11 cases, including lenders, debtors, creditors’ committees, landlords, and business acquirers. David has appeared in bankruptcy courts and other courts in jurisdictions across the country, including Delaware, New York, Illinois, Texas, Florida, Arizona, Ohio, Nevada, Missouri, Pennsylvania and California. In addition to his Chapter 11 work, David advocates the rights of lenders nationwide in guaranty, loan fraud, lender liability, receivership, loan enforcement and other litigation for CMBS and institutional lenders. He can be reached at 816-360-4311 or

Dan Flanigan is the chair of Polsinelli’s Financial Services and Real Estate Department. His practice encompasses all aspects of finance including loan documentation, servicing, and enforcement. He has represented lenders in more than 30 bankruptcy courts throughout the country. He is listed in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers, The Best Lawyers in America, and Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers for many years. He can be reached at 816-360-4260 or

Chris Ward is co-chair of the Bankruptcy and Financial Restructuring practice group, as well as managing shareholder of Polsinelli's Wilmington, Delaware office. Chris is based in Delaware, one of the preferred jurisdictions for Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases, and in addition to acting as primary counsel to the firm’s clients in matters pending in Delaware, he serves as Delaware local counsel, conflicts counsel, avoidance action/contingency fee counsel, special counsel and claims administration counsel in various matters pending before the Delaware courts. His practice focuses on corporate bankruptcy, financial restructuring, bankruptcy litigation, and out-of-court workouts. He has represented a vast array of clients, including numerous Chapter 11 debtors, creditors’ committees, liquidating and litigation trusts, equity committees and shareholders, assignees in assignments for the benefit of creditors (ABC), asset purchasers, institutional lenders, private equity firms, landlords and individual creditors, as well as both plaintiffs and defendants in adversary proceedings. He is listed in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers and Delaware Super Lawyers. He can be reached at 302-252-022 or