Jerry Schiff practices in the areas of mediation and bankruptcy/ debtor-creditor law. He joined Gordon Arata in 2006 after serving over a decade as U.S. Bankruptcy Judge for the Western District of Louisiana. While he principally presided over cases in the Lafayette, Opelousas and Lake Charles Divisions of the Western District, he occasionally sat in the Shreveport and Alexandria Divisions, as well as the Eastern and Middle Districts of Louisiana. It was in the latter District where he presided over the Chapter 11 case of Cajun Electric Co-operative, Inc., which, at the time, was one of the largest reorganization cases ever filed in the United States. During the latter years of his term, and after having completed the mediation course offered by the Federal Judicial Center, Jerry began to assist other Bankruptcy Judges by acting as a Mediator. In addition to mediating cases in the Western District, his mediations included cases pending in Bankruptcy Courts in New Orleans, Houston, and New Jersey.
Prior to his service on the bench, Jerry collected 15 years of extensive knowledge of bankruptcy law from all perspectives—debtor, creditor, trustee, and creditors’ committees — at the law firm of Sandoz, Sandoz & Schiff in Opelousas, Louisiana. It was there that he also gained experience with Chapters 7, 11, 12 and 13 of the Bankruptcy Code. He has spoken on various aspects of bankruptcy law at numerous seminars, and is a regular participant in the Annual Bankruptcy Law Seminar sponsored by the Louisiana State University Center for Continuing Professional Development.
Jerry graduated from LSU Law School in January 1967 and was inducted into the Order of the Coif upon graduation. Jerry also served two years in the U.S. Army.
Published Works and Presentations
- Co-Presenter of the "Louisiana Oil Well Lien Act and the Effect of Bankruptcy Proceedings on a Claimant's Rights" (Association of Corporate Counsel Seminar, May 2016)
- Acadiana Profile Magazine's "Top Lawyers" List - Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law (Since 2014)
- Best Lawyers in America - Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law (Since 2009)
- Best Lawyers in America - Lawyer of the Year in Lafayette for Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law (2013 and 2015)
- Chambers USA - Bankruptcy/Restructuring (Since 2009)