David M. Tanabe





Assistant: Jennifer Storberg



David Tanabe is an attorney in the business litigation group with Messerli Kramer, where he focuses on all aspects of bankruptcy law, business restructuring, and insolvency. His clients include financial institutions, lenders, receivers, asset purchasers, trader creditors, and businesses. He also works closely with transactional attorneys on an array of matters, including sales of assets, financing, real-estate purchases and sales, commercial leasing, and workouts.

As a ten-year veteran of the NHL, David understands the importance of teamwork and the power of operating efficiently and cohesively. Whether learning the game from Hall-of-Famers as a 19-year-old first-round draft pick or learning the law from stalwart judges as a post-hockey law clerk, David has been raised to value the tremendous success that arises from collaboration and communication. He strives to bring this same spirit to the representation of his clients, and he works to understand both their goals and their concerns, using that information to navigate the best possible route ahead. 

Representative Experience
  • Provided local counsel to banks and financial institutions on insolvency laws including receiverships, assignments for the benefit of creditors, insolvency proceedings, bankruptcy, collections, and deficiency judgments.
  • Represented equipment lessor in disputes with third parties wrongfully claiming ownership of equipment based on bankruptcy court sale orders and lease rejection orders. The matter ended with a favorable settlement.
  • Represented a court-appointed receiver for multi-million-dollar commercial real estate property. Successfully prosecuted commercial landlord-tenant action that resulted in a forbearance agreement.
  • Represented secured lenders in mortgage foreclosure actions with court-appointed receivers and asset sales of multi-million-dollar commercial real estate properties.
  • Represented creditors in state court proceedings for the collection and enforcement of judgments.
  • Represented bank to consolidate loan facilities and assign collateral.
  • Successfully advised trade creditor on asset purchase from secured lender, successor in-interest liability concerns, and Article 9 asset sale.
  • Represented maritime freight forwarder in chapter 11 bankruptcy case against debtor while cargo was at sea.
Publications & Presentations


  • Co-Editor-in-Chief, Bankruptcy Section, Minnesota State Bar Association
  • Contributing Author, “Global Insolvency Chapter 15 Database,” American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Author, “Conversion and Dismissal of Cases,” Minnesota CLE, November 2022
  • Author, “Enforcing Motion to Dismiss Deadlines in Subchapter V Cases,” American Bankruptcy Institute, July 2022


  • Guest, “Party in Interest” Podcast, American Bankruptcy Institute, February 2024
Professional & Community


  • Minnesota
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Wisconsin


  • Minnesota State Bar Association, Bankruptcy Section, Member
  • Turnaround Management Association
  • Secured Finance Network
  • Minnesota Asian Pacific American Bar Association

Community Involvement

  • Hobey Baker Award Committee, Member
  • Bankruptcy Institute for Minnesota CLE, Faculty and Planning Committee Member
Awards & Recognitions
  • Blackshear American College of Bankruptcy Presidential Fellowship, awarded by the National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges, 2022
  • North Star Lawyer, awarded by the Minnesota State Bar Association, 2022