Illinois Bank Attorneys

attorney tom howard

Commerical Banking Litigator Tom Howard

Secured lenders in central Illinois need sophisticated bank attorneys to maximize their recovery while limiting the cost it takes to liquidate the collateral.  Our financial services attorneys have years of experience in assisting secured lenders in numerous such transactions successfully.

Complex Commercial Workouts

Secured lenders often require commercial workouts for their substandard loans to prepare for litigation that may arise in the enforcement of the loan documents.  Our commercial banking lawyers have the experience in such transactions to reduce the cost of litigation before it even arises.

Take action and protect your rights in your financial institution’s collateral. Contact us at 309-699-4691 or toll free at 877-699-4691.

Commercial Mortgage Foreclosure

The most valuable collateral on most commercial loans is the real estate that the business pledges to secure its loans.  Our bank attorneys have successfully prosecuted hundreds of commercial mortgage foreclosures at all levels of complexity from standard note and mortgage foreclosures, to complicated land trust foreclosures with competing priorities between creditors, and even mechanic’s liens.


Often debtors do not give the bank its collateral back without a fight, which our bank attorneys have routinely won.  Replevin actions quickly enable creditors to obtain possession of their collateral before the debtor can dissipate it.  Occasionally, notice is not required to obtain an order of replevin if the right facts are present.

Creditor’s Rights in Bankruptcy

Our bank attorneys have represented many creditors in commercial and consumer bankruptcies, including agricultural filings.  We have obtained stay relief in contested matters, defended against preference actions brought by Bankruptcy Trustees, and brought adversary actions pursuant to the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act against debtors that converted the lender’s collateral.

Guaranty Actions

Our bank attorneys have represented financial institutions in contested guaranty actions to make a complete recovery on all available collateral securing the payment of the commercial loan.  Further, our attorneys are experienced in all facets of litigation to obtain judgment as quickly and cost efficiently as possible.

Uniform Commercial Code

Banks must comply with the Uniform Commercial Code in perfecting its security interest in collateral and its subsequent liquidation.  Our Bank attorneys have years of experience in security agreements, issues related to perfection and creation of security interests and the enforcement of such security interests against competing creditors.

Enforcement of Judgments

Our bank attorneys not only get judgments, but they get them paid.  A judgment is only one step in obtaining a complete recovery on a commercial loan, that judgment must then be enforced through supplemental procedures.  Our bank attorneys have performed many enforcement procedures from citations to discover assets to wage garnishments, and even foreclosure of judgments.

Peoria Bank Attorneys

At Hall, Rustom & Fritz LLC, we represent banks in complex commercial loans that require workouts and litigation for recovery.  Our bank attorneys have years of experience, routinely publish articles and books in the space, and sit on the Illinois State Bar Association’s section council on Commercial Banking, Collections and Bankruptcy.

Contact Us

For more information or to schedule an appointment with an experienced lawyer, please contact us at 309-699-4691 or toll free at 877-699-4691.

bank attorney tom howard

Thomas E. Howard

Thomas Howard has represented numerous financial institutions in litigation to enforce their security interests.  Over the past decade, he has assisted community banks in complex commercial workouts involving some of the most sophisticated financial products in the banking industry.  He has also litigated in contested contract cases on various legal theories.

Thomas Howard – Illinois Bank Lawyer

After being licensed to practice for ten years, Mr. Howard joined Hall Rustom and Fritz in June of 2018 to expand his legal offerings to business clients to include a higher level of service through his knowledge of technology.  To assist downstate community banks with flat fees for uncontested litigation, he has designed and built the Collateral Base website, where he publishes regularly on security interests and offers his flat fee menu of services.  He also built automation systems into his bank litigation practice to facilitate his flat fee offerings.

He brings to Hall Rustom and Fritz a practice specializing in creditor’s’ rights, loan documents and related contracts,

Peoria Attorney - Thomas HowardUniform Commerical Code issues, replevins, guaranty actions, and bankruptcy. He has successfully resolved numerous multi-million dollar non-performing loans for many community banks throughout Illinois.  As a result of his efforts, Mr. Howard earned Rising Stars by Super Lawyers, and as an Emerging Lawyer by Leading Lawyers from 2015 to 2018. Only two percent of attorneys ever receive such distinction.

Mr. Howard represents financial institutions and business creditors in commercial litigation and bankruptcy matters.  He has a broad experience in real estate mortgage foreclosures, replevins of personal property and  suits on notes and guaranties.  He also represents creditors in loan workouts and in bankruptcy matters to enforce their rights.

Thomas Howard also develops websites and various software applications for his legal Tom Howard American Immigration Lawyers Association ALIAcareer.  WorkVisas.Solutions  expands his offerings to businesses that have corporate immigration needs to keep the world’s best talent working in the United States.  Mr. Howard is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) and sits on the Illinois State Bar Association’s (ISBA) section council on Immigration Law.

Illinois Tech and Web App Lawyer

Mr.Howard owns a tech company named Stumari, which he uses to expand his service offerings into the issues faced by tech companies in their privacy policies, terms of service, contracts with developers, business formation and fundraising issues.  Additionally, he builds websites for lawyers seeking to take their practice into the future with SEO and digital marketing.

Thomas Howard – Cannabis Attorney in Illinois

Mr. Howard also advises businesses and financial institutions in the the incipient marijuana industry. He frequently publishes articles on the same and has even published a book on the history of the marijuana laws.  He often posts YouTubes regarding issues faced by the cannabis industry, and advocates for allowing cannabis businesses to access banking services by dropping cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act, which requires an act of Congress.  To further develop his cannabis practice and help the state of Illinois transition from medical to full adult use of cannabis, Mr. Howard designed and built

Thomas Howard is admitted to practice in the States of Illinois and Wisconsin as well as the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, plus the Central, Northern, and Southern Districts of Illinois. He is a member of the ISBA’s Standing Committee on Immigration Law, Judicial Evaluations outside of Cook County, and Commercial Collections, Banking and Bankruptcy.

Mr. Howard concentrates his practice in commercial banking, bankruptcy, and business litigation and loan workouts.  He is admitted to the Illinois bar, the Wisconsin bar, the United States District Court for all Illinois Districts, and the United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit.

Illinois Lawyer with Financial Experience in Stocks & Bonds

He received his B.A. from Illinois Wesleyan University in 2002 and J.D. from Marquette University Law School in 2008. After completing law school he earned his Series 7 & 66 securities licenses and briefly worked as a stockbroker before using his law degree to work through the mortgage foreclosure crisis from the market crash of 2008.