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John J. Fries

Of Counsel
fax +1 602.257.6919

John J. Fries has practiced for more than 30 years in the areas of public finance and bankruptcy law.

John is active in the firm’s Public Finance practice, which serves clients to bring community and economic development projects to life in Arizona and beyond. Throughout his career, John has represented numerous industrial development authorities, indentured trustees, and special districts in structuring and restructuring various public finance projects including healthcare facilities, public utilities, charter schools, affordable housing developments, pollution control infrastructure, higher learning institutions, and manufacturing facilities.

John represents creditors, Chapter 11 debtors, trustees, and creditors’ committees in large, complex commercial bankruptcy cases in various courts in Arizona, Colorado, and across the country. He is a certified business bankruptcy specialist, recognized in Arizona by the Arizona Board of Legal Specialization. John’s experience includes advising clients of their rights in bankruptcy and workouts, structuring deals to avoid or minimize bankruptcy risks, restructuring the debt when problems arise, implementing “prepackaged” bankruptcies, enforcing loan documents, arranging debtor-in-possession financing, and buying and selling assets under section 363 of the Bankruptcy Code. John is a frequent lecturer on bankruptcy law.


J.D., cum laude, University of Pittsburgh School of Law, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 1979
B.S., with Distinction, Pennsylvania State University, State College, Pennsylvania, 1976


John has earned an AV-Rating by Martindale-Hubbell. Since 2010, he has been recognized by Southwest Super Lawyers’ and named to their Corporate Counsel Edition. He has also been named to Arizona’s Finest Lawyers by Ranking Arizona’s Best of Bankruptcy Attorneys. Recently, John was featured in this Attorney at Law Magazine article, where he shared elements of his 30+ year legal career in bankruptcy and public finance law.

Named among Best Lawyers in America® for Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law (2010-2024), Litigation-Bankruptcy (2011-2024) by Best Lawyers

Named among Southwest Super Lawyers by Thomson Reuters (2010-2024)


Nationally Certified Business Bankruptcy Specialist, American Board of Certification, 1988-2021

Certified Bankruptcy Specialist by the Arizona Board of Legal Specialization, 1992

American Bankruptcy Institute

Arizona State Bar, Bankruptcy Section

National Association of Bond Lawyers

State Bar Licenses



  • “Lender Liability, Issues in Foreclosure, Bankruptcy & Short Sales,” 2009
  • “The Lifecycle of Business Intellectual Property from Birth to Death: Sale, Dissolution and Bankruptcy,” 2007
  • “Consequences of a Defaulted Loan and How to Minimize the Damage,” 2007
  • “Loan Workouts, Mechanics Liens and Bankruptcy,” 2007
  • “Bankruptcy for Environmental Attorneys,” State Bar of Arizona, ENRLS, January 2005
  • “Fundamentals of Bankruptcy Law & Procedure in Arizona,” 1994, 1997, 1999, 2004
  • “Judgment Enforcement,” 2002
  • “Bankruptcy in Arizona: A Creditor’s Perspective,” 2001
  • “Arizona Commercial Real Estate Workouts,” 2001
  • “Basic Bankruptcy Litigation in Arizona,” 2000
  • “Mechanic’s Liens in Bankruptcy,” 1991
  • “Conducting an Adversary Proceeding or Contested Matter Under the New National and Local Bankruptcy Rules,” 1984