Biography Photo of Theodore Sylwestrzak

Theodore B. Sylwestrzak

Member, Banking and Financial Services Practice Group Chair

Ted Sylwestrzak has more than thirty-five years’ experience representing lenders. As a member of both Dickinson Wright’s Banking and Finance Group and Restructuring and Insolvency Group, he advises lenders in all areas of lending and in all aspects of their lending relationships. He is well-known by clients for his proactive approach, practical business judgment, and getting the deal closed with creative solutions.

His representation includes structuring and documenting secured loans (with an emphasis on asset-based lending), representing lenders in complex restructuring, workout, and bankruptcy matters (with an emphasis on automotive matters), syndicated credit facilities, leveraged lending, structured finance, post-petition financing, out-of-court liquidations, real and personal property foreclosures, lender liability issues, and cross-border lending.

Ted is a board member of the Detroit Chapter of the Turnaround Management Association and co-chair of the Programming Committee. He is also a member of the Association for Corporate Growth, the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association Committee on Debtor and Creditor Rights, and the American Bar Association.  He is recognized in Chambers USA (Band 1), Michigan Super Lawyers, DBusiness Magazine, and Best Lawyers. In 2019, Ted was named Detroit "Lawyer of the Year" for Banking and Finance Law by The Best Lawyers in America.

In addition to his practice responsibilities, Ted serves as the Firm's Practice Group Chair for the Banking and Finance Group.


Education & Credentials


Northern Michigan University

B.S., 1984
  • summa cum laude

Wayne State University Law School

J.D., 1987
  • magna cum laude
  • Order of the Coif
  • Associate Survey Editor, Wayne Law Review 1986-1987

Bar Admission

  • Michigan


  • Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business
    • Bankruptcy & Restructuring Law (Band 1)
  • Michigan Super Lawyers®
    • Bankruptcy Law, 2010-2021, 2023
  • Best Lawyers in America®
    • "Lawyer of the Year," Banking and Finance Law, 2019, 2023
    • Banking and Finance Law, Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law, 2024
  • DBusiness Magazine
    • "Top Lawyers," Banking & Financial Services Law, Bankruptcy and Creditor/Debtor Rights Law, 2023

Representative Clients

  • Bank of America, N.A
  • Bank of America Business Capital
  • Chase Business Credit
  • First Financial Bank
  • The Huntington National Bank
  • JPMorgan Chase Bank. N.A.
  • KeyBank National Association
  • Mercantile Bank
  • Mountain Ridge Capital
  • PNC Bank, National Association
  • Wells Fargo Bank, National Association
  • Wells Fargo Business Credit
  • Fifth Third Bank, National Association
  • Pathward, National Association

Prominent Assignments

  • Extensive experience in asset-based lending and other secured lending.
  • Extensive experience in insolvency, restructuring, workouts, and bankruptcy.
  • Extensive experience in automotive lending and automotive workouts and bankruptcies (including extensive experience in negotiating Accommodation Agreements and Access and Security Agreements).
  • Lead counsel to the agent in numerous multibank, syndicated credit facilities and cross-border financings.
  • Lead counsel to the agent in numerous workout and bankruptcy matters.

Professional Involvement

  • State Bar of Michigan
  • American Bar Association
  • Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association, Committee on Debtor/Creditor Rights
  • Turnaround Management Association
  • Association for Corporate Growth


  • Moderator, "Managing the Troubled Automotive Supplier - The OEMs Unique Perspective," Turnaround Management Association Detroit Chapter, April 2022 
  • Moderator, "Automotive Update 2022: Opportunities and Challenges Facing The Tech-Focused Automotive and Mobility Industry," Turnaround Management Association Detroit Chapter, January 2022 
  • Moderator, “Automotive Update 2021: Opportunities and Headwinds Facing the Tech-Focused Automotive and Mobility Industry,” Turnaround Management Association, June 2021
  • Presenter, "Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Accommodation Agreements But Were Afraid to Ask," Turnaround Management Association Webinar, October 2020
  • Presenter, “Restarting the Auto Supply Chain: Risks and Challenges,” Turnaround Management Association Webinar, April 2020
  • Co-Author, "Managing Uncertainty Through Financial Crisis Requires Proactive Guidance," Dickinson Wright Client Alert, March 2020
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