Meagen E. Leary


  • Meagen E. Leary
  • Phone: +1 415 957 3230

    Import to Address Book

  • Duane Morris LLP
    Spear Tower
    One Market Plaza, Suite 2200
    San Francisco, CA 94105-1127

Meagen E. Leary is co-chair of the firm's Business Reorganization and Financial Restructuring Practice Group and serves on the firm's Executive Committee. Ms. Leary maintains a national creditors' rights, commercial real estate finance and bankruptcy practice. Her clients include institutional lenders, CMBS servicers, REITs, debt funds and other diverse businesses. Ms. Leary and her team handle all aspects of commercial loan workouts, bankruptcies, real estate finance and lender liability litigation, and commercial loan and real estate transactions. In addition, she provides national, coordinating counsel and general counsel services to several clients. She is a frequent speaker and writer on legal and practical issues that impact her clients and an active member of the Commercial Real Estate Finance Council, as well as a member of the Council's Women's Network Advisory Board.

Ms. Leary is a 2004 cum laude graduate of Tulane University Law School, where she was a member of the Tulane Maritime Law Journal, and a graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles.

Areas of Practice

  • Bankruptcy
  • Real Estate
  • Construction


  • California
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California
  • U.S. District Court for the Central District of California
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California


  • Tulane Law School, J.D., cum laude, 2004
    - Member, Tulane Maritime Law Journal
  • University of California, Los Angeles, B.A.

Professional Activities

  • State Bar of California
    - Bankruptcy Law Section
    - Real Property Law Section
  • American Bar Association
  • Bar Association of San Francisco
  • Commercial Real Estate Finance Council
    - Co-Chair, CREFC Women's Network Professional Development Committee
    - Member, CREFC Women's Network Advisory Board

  • California Receiver's Forum
    - Past President, San Francisco Chapter
  • CREW - Commercial Real Estate Women
    - Membership Committee, San Francisco Chapter
  • NAIOP - Commercial Real Estate Development Association

Honors and Awards

  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America, 2023 and 2024
  • Named a “Top 100 Lawyer” by the Daily Journal, 2023
  • Recipient of the firm's Margery Reed Professional Excellence Award, 2017
  • Listed in Super Lawyers Northern California Rising Stars

Civic and Charitable Activities

  • San Francisco Food Bank
  • Dress for Success

Representative Matters

  • Successfully represented secured lender in commercial real estate mezzanine loan foreclosure by enforcing lender’s security interest and conducting UCC sale of limited liability company interests valued at over $10 million.

  • Represented secured creditor/loan servicer owed in excess of $30 million in the borrowers’ chapter 11 bankruptcy cases and that creditor and four lender defendants in a contentious litigation.

  • Represented a secured lender with a lien on substantially all assets of the borrowers who operated a cannabis business; over the borrowers’ objection, got the state court in Humboldt County, CA, to appoint a receiver over the borrowers’ business and assets.

  • Represented lender as lead counsel in highly contested foreclosure and receivership proceedings in federal court.
  • Lead counsel for resort which burned down in the Glass fire.

Selected Publications

Media Hits

Selected Speaking Engagements

  • Moderator, “At Your Service: Hot Topics in Servicing,” CRE Finance Council’s 2024 High Yield, Distressed Assets, & Servicing Conference, New York, NY, March 6, 2024
  • Moderator, “Investing and Servicing: A Discussion with Miami’s RE Investment and Asset Management Firms,” Commercial Real Estate Finance Council After Work Seminar, November 2023
  • Speaker, “Investors Prospective for Investing in an Illiquid Environment,” Trigild Lender Conference, Dana Point, California, October 12, 2023
  • Moderator, “Ethics and Professional Responsibility Considerations in Commercial Finance Transactions,” American College of Mortgage Attorneys, September 2023
  • Moderator, “Ethics and Professional Responsibility Considerations in Commercial Finance Transactions,” American College of Mortgage Attorneys, September 2022

  • Speaker, “Avoiding Latest Lender Liability Claims,” Trigild Lender Conference, San Diego, California, November 10, 2022

  • Speaker, "Successful Resolution Strategies After the Pandemic," Commercial Real Estate Finance Council After Work Seminar, October 6, 2022
  • Speaker, "SASB and Large Complex Loan Workouts," Trigild Lender Conference, Dallas, Texas, April 7, 2022
  • Presenter, Duane Morris LLP Annual Fall Finance and Restructuring Seminar, Webinar, October 20, 2021 
  • Faculty, "Negotiating 201: Arm Wrestling for Beginners," CRE Finance Council, Webinar, October 1, 2021
  • Speaker, "Hotel Workouts 2021—Isn't EVERYONE Traveling Again?" ACMA 2021 Annual Meeting, St. Louis, September 24, 2021
  • Moderator, "Simulacra and Notarization: The Legal History of RON," American College of Mortgage Attorneys (ACMA) Annual Meeting, Webinar, September 9, 2020
  • Moderator, "Leadership Development: Lessons from the Top," CRE Finance Council, Dallas, Texas, February 6, 2020
  • Speaker, "Multi-State Portfolio Loans," American College of Mortgage Attorneys (AMCA) 45th Annual Meeting, October 13, 2018

  • Speaker, "All Good Things Must Come to An End - Trust Terminations II," Commercial Real Estate Financial Council, September 26, 2018

  • Moderator, "Legal Hot Topics in HYDRA Lending," Commercial Real Estate Financial Council's High Yield and Distressed Realty Assets Summit, March 7, 2018

  • Speaker, "All Good Things Must Come to An End - Trust Terminations" Commercial Real Estate Financial Council, November 2, 2017

  • Moderator, "Unique Issues for Special Servicers," Trigild Fall Lender Conference, October 18-20, 2017

  • Speaker, "Changes in Real Estate Law That Matter," Commercial Real Estate Financial Council's Commercial Real Estate Finance Summit – West, May 10, 2017

  • Speaker, "CREFC Women's Network Effective Communication Seminar," Commercial Real Estate Financial Council, November 9, 2016
  • Moderator, "Receiver's Roundtable: An Interactive Discussion of Current Issues, Complex Problems, and Creative Solutions," California Receivers Forum, November 3, 2016
  • Speaker, "Leases: Collateral That Matters," Client Seminar, October 20, 2016
  • Speaker, "Bankruptcy Refresher," Client Seminar, October 19, 2016
  • Panel Moderator, "Legal Lightening Round," Trigild Lender Conference, October 6, 2016
  • Speaker, "Eminent Domain 101," Client Seminars, Various Dates
  • Moderator, "CMBS 101," Commercial Real Estate Financial Council, June 29, 2016
  • Moderator, "The Language of Servicing: An Evening of Self-Help and Group Therapy," Commercial Real Estate Financial Council After Work Seminar, July 22, 2015
  • Speaker, "Entz White, Future Media & More - 9th Circuit Bankruptcy Fun," Client Seminar, October 23, 2014
  • Moderator, "CREFC and Corkscrews: Hot Topics in the CMBS Market," CREFC After Work Seminar, July 15, 2014
  • Speaker, "Attorney Client Privilege and Smart Communications," Client Seminar, Various Dates
  • Speaker, "Deposition Preparation", Client Seminar, Various Dates
  • Panelist, "TICs: Trouble in Common?" CRE Finance Council West Coast High Yield Real Estate Finance Summit, Santa Monica, May 14, 2014
  • Speaker, "Legal Strategies for Deals, Disputes and Workouts — A Practical Approach," 3rd Annual Trigild Spring Lender Conference, Dallas, April 24, 2014
  • Speaker, "The Market & Industry Impacts on the Valuation of Healthcare Facilities," Appraisal Institute Fall Conference, November 1, 2012
  • Panel Moderator, "REO – How Do You Drive Value," Trigild Lender Conference, October 2013
  • Speaker, "CREFC – West Coast Symposium: Creative Workout Strategies," May 2013
  • Speaker, "Living Receiverships: Cases with Specialized Medical Licensing and Leasing Issues," The Bay Area Chapter of the California Receivers Forum, San Francisco, June 20, 2012
  • Speaker, "Medical Marijuana Leases and the Impact on REO Property," Client Seminar, June 7, 2012
  • Speaker, "What to Consider in Your Receiver Order," California Receivers Forum, May 13, 2010
  • Speaker, "Bankruptcy and Creditors' Rights Issues in Construction Law," DRI Construction Law Seminar, September 10, 2009