Michael F. Thomson



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Mike helps clients navigate complex bankruptcy and receivership proceedings, workouts, and related litigation. Mike has significant experience helping clients protect their interests in bankruptcy cases in Utah, Nevada, and Wyoming. In addition to serving as a Chapter 7 Panel Trustee for the District of Utah, he represents creditors, distressed companies, Chapter 7 and 11 trustees, and receivers in all aspects of the workout, restructuring, and liquidation process, including litigation and appeals.

Mike has been included on the list of The Best Lawyers in America© 2011-2021 in Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law and in Bankruptcy Litigation. He maintains an AV Preeminent rating with Martindale-Hubbell®, which is the highest rating awarded to attorneys for professional competence and ethics. Mike has also been selected for inclusion in Mountain States Super Lawyers (2008-2020) and has been voted by his peers throughout the state as one of Utah’s “Legal Elite,” as published in Utah Business Magazine (2017 -2020).


  • Chapter 11 Trustee in business debtor case involving $100 million of investor claims, and operating and selling eight event centers and a water park in Utah, California, Oregon, Colorado, and Arizona
  • Lead counsel for federal equity receiver in SEC civil enforcement action concerning alleged Ponzi scheme involving over 100,000 investors and claims exceeding $100 million
  • Successfully represented secured lenders in numerous workout and bankruptcy matters involving hundreds of millions of dollars
  • Counsel for senior secured lender in Chapter 11 casino case
  • Counsel for national clothing retailer as debtor in Chapter 11 bankruptcy case
  • Counsel for Chapter 7 trustee in a multi-million dollar Ponzi case and managed all related lawsuits
  • Counsel for 10 different Chapter 7 trustees in numerous bankruptcy cases in Utah and Nevada
  • Administered thousands of bankruptcy cases as a Chapter 7 Trustee


  • In re Kiley, 595 B.R. 595 (Bankr. D. Utah 2018)
  • In re Naartjie Custom Kids, Inc., 534 B.R. 416 (Bankr. D. Utah 2015)
  • In re Reinhart, 267 P.3d 895 (Utah 2011)
  • Gillman v. Ford (In re Ford), 492 F.3d 1148 (10th Cir. 2007)
  • In re Flamingo 55, Inc., 378 B.R. 893 (Bankr. D. Nev. 2007)
  • Miller v. Miller (In re Miller), 302 B.R. 705 (10th Cir. BAP 2003)

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Practice Areas


University of Utah, S. J. Quinney College of Law, J.D., 2000

  • Articles Editor, Utah Law Review
  • William H. Leary Scholar
  • First Place and Best Brief, Intermountain Region, National Moot Court Competition (1999-2000)

Brigham Young University, B.A., English, 1997

Affiliations / Memberships

  • Board Member, Rocky Mountain Chapter, Turnaround Management Association
  • American Bankruptcy Institute
  • National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees
  • Federal Bar Association
  • Utah Bankruptcy Lawyers Forum
  • Former Voting Council Member, Bankruptcy Law Section, State Bar of Nevada

Prior Professional Experience

  • Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Professional and Civic Activity

  • Chapter 7 Panel Trustee, District of Utah
  • Utah State Bar Character & Fitness Committee
  • Utah State Bar Pro Bono Program, Landlord/Tenant Pro Se Calendars

Publications / Presentations

  • “Preference, Earmarking and Fraudulent Transfer Law: Making Progress Together for Future Bankruptcies,” ABI Rocky Mountain Conference, Denver, Colorado (January 2020)
  • “Bankruptcy 101: Property of the Estate, Discharge, and Avoidance Action Issues,” Utah State Bar Spring Convention, St. George, Utah (March 2019)
  • “Acing Courtroom Evidence,” Utah Bankruptcy Lawyers Forum, Salt Lake City, Utah (October 2018)
  • “Bankruptcy Basics: What Every Attorney Should Know About Bankruptcy,” Utah State Bar Spring Convention, St. George, Utah (March 2018)
  • “Healthcare and Nonprofits in Crisis: Is Bankruptcy the Cure?” ABI Rocky Mountain Conference, Denver, Colorado (January 2018)
  • “Consumer Bankruptcy Law Update,” ABI Southwest Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada (September 2016)
  • “Navigating the World of Bankruptcy: Options for Creditors and Debtors,” Utah State Bar Spring Convention, St. George, Utah (March 2016)
  • “Bankruptcy 101,” Utah State Bar Spring Convention, St. George, Utah (March 2015)
  • “The Roles and Responsibilities of Bankruptcy Trustees,” Southern Utah Federal Law Symposium, Utah Chapter of the Federal Bar Association, St. George, Utah (May 2013)
  • “Navigating Bankruptcy in Troubled Times: Options for Creditors and Debtors,” Lorman Seminar, Salt Lake City, Utah (December 2009)
  • “What We Know Now That We Didn’t Know Then: The Bankruptcy Reform Act One Year Later,” Lorman Seminar, Salt Lake City, Utah (September 2006)
  • “What Every Creditor Needs to Know About the Consumer Protection Act of 2005 in Utah,” Lorman Seminar, Salt Lake City, Utah (April 2006)
  • Co-Author, “Piercing the Facade of Utah’s 'Improved' Elective Share Statute,” 1999 Utah Law Review 677

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Admitted to Practice -  

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado
U.S. District Court for the District of New Hampshire