Finally, it’s wine o’clock for customers of bankrupt wine seller

DEC 12, 2023 | PRACTUS LLP

Finally, it’s wine o’clock for customers of bankrupt wine seller

Why wine customers are toasting Bernie Kornberg

Wilmington, DE – Thousands of consumers whose wine collections were entangled in the complicated bankruptcy of a Napa Valley wine reseller, Underground Cellar, are raising their glasses to Practus LLP Insolvency and Commercial Litigation attorney, Bernie Kornberg.   

Kornberg represents 40 out of 25,000 customers who lost access to their stash when Underground filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in the District of Delaware last May. Filings state the company owes more than $25 million, which includes debt and wine that customers never received.

Successful Negotiation Recovers Wine

Underground’s biggest creditor, Triple Point, claimed the 500,000 bottles in storage were collateral not customers’ property and it wanted to assess people a 30% surcharge, based on each bottle’s MSRP, before sending them their wine. Amid thousands of creditors and a sea of lawyers, Kornberg got Triple Point to reduce that charge to 21% of the price paid, not the MSRP, which was significantly higher in many cases. And it happened just in time to pop the corks for Thanksgiving.

Though they’ll still have to pay to get wine they already purchased, the settlement will cost Triple Point millions of dollars – compared to what it would have reaped if Kornberg hadn’t negotiated a better deal.

“In bankruptcy, when everyone is fighting about whatever’s left, no one wins. But in this case we forged a unique solution that allowed customers to recover their wine rather than have a complete wipeout of recovery after years of litigation.”

Read more about the case at Wine Spectator.

For more information on Practus LLP or our attorneys, please contact Valerie Spengler, VP of Marketing.

Practus, LLP provides this information as a service to clients and others for educational purposes only. It should not be construed or relied on as legal advice or to create an attorney-client relationship. Readers should not act upon this information without seeking advice from professional advisers.

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