H. Joseph Acosta

H. Joseph Acosta



Joseph has a broad base of bankruptcy, corporate restructuring and commercial litigation experience, having worked at national and international law firms for most of his career. During his 24+ years as a lawyer, he has been involved in some of the largest and most complex restructurings and litigation projects in the United States. He has taken lead roles in successfully representing debtors, banks, financing companies, distressed companies, committees, trustees, individuals, landlords, asset purchasers, retailers, and commercial creditors in all types of proceedings, including bankruptcy proceedings, federal and state lawsuits, arbitrations, and appeals.

Education & Admissions

University of Houston Law Center (J.D., 1998),

  • Dean’s Scholar
  • Order of the Barristers
  • National Moot Court & Mock Trial Teams
  • Winner, F. Lee Bailey Moot Court Competition

Emory University (B.A., 1994),

  • Barkley Forum Scholar
  • National Debate Team


  • Texas
  • U.S. District and Bankruptcy Courts, Northern, Southern, Eastern and Western Districts of Texas
  • Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals


  • Spanish


Representative Experience

  • Represented largest unsecured creditor and chairman of the official committee of unsecured creditors in successfully dismissing the chapter 11 case of the National Rifle Association of America in Dallas, TX.
  • Represented a Canadian buyer in purchasing substantially all the assets of the debtor in the Automotive Parts Distribution International bankruptcy in Fort Worth, TX.
  • Represented Montana utility company in lifting the automatic stay to pursue pre-bankruptcy litigation in the Talen Energy Supply bankruptcy in Houston, TX.
  • Defended through trial several individuals in a $20 million fraudulent transfer case involving the sale of O&G assets in Denver, Colorado.
  • Represented special servicer in obtaining 100% recovery in a single asset real estate case in Denver, Colorado.
  • Represented national bank in obtaining 100% recovery in the Washington Prime Group (REIT) bankruptcy in Houston, TX.
  • Represented senior secured lender in the chapter 11 liquidation of Wellflex Energy Partners Fort Worth, LLC.
  • Represented Minneapolis mall owner in the chapter 11 reorganization of J.C. Penny Company, Inc.
  • Represented Government of Honduras in the chapter 15 case of Banco Continental, S.A.
  • Represented largest liquidators in the chapter 11 liquidation of BJ Services, LLC.
  • Represents Yuma Energy, Inc., a publicly-traded E&P Company, and affiliates in their chapter 11 bankruptcies.
  • Represents Lizama Carriers, LLC, a freight trucking company, in its chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Represented Cascata Capital, LLC, an independent sponsor, in purchasing the assets of Consolidated Infrastructure Group, Inc. in its Delaware bankruptcy.
  • Represented MORE Residential, L.P., as borrower, in obtaining $45 million acquisition loan for purchase of multifamily residential property in Dallas, Texas.
  • Represented Tell My People, Inc., a non-profit organization, in its chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Represented Napa Property Acquisitions, LLC in obtaining $25 million acquisition loan for purchase of multifamily residential property in Sarasota, Florida.
  • Defendant PFVS Architecture Planning Interiors, a national architectural firm, in arbitration brought by former owner’s estate over mandatory buyout of interests.
  • Represented Bo Ex Ventures, LLC, an IT management company, in its chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Represented Examiner in the chapter 11 bankruptcy of ProFlo Industries, LLC, an Ohio-based international manufacturer of aircraft fueling equipment.
  • Represented Mint Leasing, Inc., a Houston-based automobile leasing company, in its involuntary bankruptcy.
  • Represented Living Benefits Financial Group, LLC and Living Benefits Asset Management, LLC, Minneapolis-based life-settlement consulting companies, in their chapter 11 liquidations.
  • Represented national supplier of casing from Wyoming in several bankruptcy and nonbankruptcy matters involving the enforcement of materialsmen liens against oil and gas companies.
  • Represented former owner in avoidance action by the chapter 7 trustee in the bankruptcy of Metadigm Holdings, Inc., a Georgia-based national utility company.
  • Served as outside general counsel to $250 million consumer finance company that provided tax loans to consumers.
  • Represented Diabetes America, Inc., a national chain of healthcare clinics, in its chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Represented Turnkey E&P Company, a Canadian oil and gas company, in its chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Represented national ethanol broker in successful defense of $30 million preference action in the VeraSun Energy Corporation bankruptcy.
  • Represented member of official committee of unsecured creditors in chapter 11 bankruptcy of Estes, Inc., a national pesticide distributor.
  • Represented institutional investor and equity committee member in chapter 11 bankruptcy of GSI Group, Inc., a leading manufacturer of laser and photon-based solutions in medical field.
  • Represented the parent (The Southern Company) in $2 billion fraudulent transfer action brought in the Mirant Corporation bankruptcy.
  • Represented North America’s third largest aluminum producer (Kaiser Aluminum, Inc.) in its chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Represented $200 million telecommunications company (Cogent Communications) in its dismissal of an involuntary bankruptcy brought by bondholders.
  • Represented North America’s largest producer of stainless steal and specialty carbon (Slater Steel, Inc.) in its chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Represented officers and directors in $500 million fraudulent conveyance suit brought in the Owens Corning bankruptcy from pre-bankruptcy sale of subsidiary.
  • Represented leading building supply manufacturer (USG) in chapter 11 bankruptcy involving significant asbestos liabilities.
  • Represented one of the largest North American manufacturers of home textile products (Pillowtex, Inc.) in its chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Represented nation’s second largest operator of funeral homes and cemeteries (Loewen Group International, Inc.) in its chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Represented leading provider of telecommunication services in the Northeastern United States (CTC Communications, Inc.) in its chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Represented official committee of unsecured creditors in chapter 11 bankruptcy of a vertically integrated seed company (AgriBiotech, Inc.) out of Arizona.
  • Represented retail company (Solo Serve) in its chapter 11 liquidation.
  • Represented official committee of unsecured creditors in chapter 11 bankruptcy of agricultural marketing association comprised of rice growers (American Rice, Inc.).

News & Resources


Recent Divergent Views on Third-Party Injunctions in Mass Tort Bankruptcies
SCOTUS Removes a Partial Barrier to Challenging Unstayed Bankruptcy Sales to Good-Faith Purchasers
Option III – Structured Bankruptcy Dismissals are Alive and Well Even After Jevic
Weinstein Case Demonstrates Difficulties in Following Complex Bankruptcy Sales
New Mexico Court Reminds that Prosecuting Prepetition Claims in Bankruptcy May Still Violate the Automatic Stay
Why Avoidance Actions Are Difficult to Dismiss by a Rule 12(b)(6) Motion
Ultra Petroleum Redux: Make-Whole Provisions and Solvent-Debtor Exception Remain Intact in the Southern District of Texas
Alternatives for Managing Financial Distress in the Oil Patch
Fifth Circuit Holds that a Constructive Trust is a Judicial Remedy Under Texas Law that is not Automatically Created by Contract
Tailored Brands, Lord & Taylor take different approaches to bankruptcy
Fifth Circuit Holds that the SBA Cannot Be Enjoined from Denying Bankrupt Entities Access to PPP Funds
District Court Holds Section 105 can be Used to Avoid Default Provisions Under Confirmed Chapter 11 Plan
Author, "Mississippi Court Joins Majority of Courts Finding That Setoff Rights Survive Plan Confirmation," Business Credit at p. 34 (National Association of Credit Management)
Houston Court Questions the Utility of the J. Alix Protocol in Retaining Turnaround Advisors and their Firms
Creditor Denied Derivative Standing to Countersue Plaintiff in Chapter 7 Adversary Proceeding
Private Equity Firm and Owner Face Potential WARN Act Liability in Portfolio Companies’ Chapter 7 Bankruptcies
Author, "Southwest Chapter, Eight Annual Energy Summit," The Secured Lender at p. 72 (Secured Finance Network)
Author, "Distressed Companies in the Oil & Gas Industry," Headnotes (Dallas Bar Association)
Author, "Probate Judgment Precludes Anna Nicole Smith’s Claim," Headnotes (Dallas Bar Association)
Author, "Cramdown of Secured Creditor Under Chapter 11 Requires Market Rate of Interest," ABF Journal, Vol. 4, No. 6., at 52
Author, "Third Circuit Says “No” to Double-Discounting," ABI Journal, Vol. XXV, No. 6, at 26
Author, "Effect of Revised Article 9 on Consumer Transactions," 9 J. Bankr. L. & Prac. 571
Co-Author, "Summaries of Recent Developments in Bankruptcy Law Under Supreme Court, Fifth Circuit, Western District of Texas and Texas Supreme Court," Bench Bar Conference for W.D.T.X.

News & Press Mentions

Dorsey Partner Joe Acosta on Stablecoin Regulation
Dorsey Partner Joe Acosta Comments on 2021 Oil and Gas Industry
Dorsey Partner Joe Acosta Discusses Year-end Bankruptcies
Dorsey Partner Joe Acosta Discusses Business Filings and Consumer Filings For Texas Bankruptcy Attorneys
Dorsey Partner Joe Acosta Discusses Increases in Bankruptcy Filings
Dorsey Partner Joe Acosta Remarks on Tailored Brands Bankruptcy
A Perfect Financial Stress Storm: A Q&A With Dorsey & Whitney's Joseph Acosta
Dorsey Partner Joe Acosta Discusses Restaurants and Bankruptcy Wave
Dorsey Partner Joe Acosta Discusses Advantage's Bankruptcy Filing
Dorsey Partner Joe Acosta Comments on Hertz Bankruptcy
Dorsey Partner Joe Acosta Comments on Bankrupt Retailers Due to COVID-19 Shutdown
Dorsey’s Bankruptcy Practice Adds Key Talent
Dorsey’s Bankruptcy Practice Adds Key Talent in Dallas

Select Presentations

Professional & Civic

Community Involvement

  • Commercial Finance Association, Immediate Past-President (current); President of Board (2016-2018)
  • The Wilkinson Center, President of Board (2015-2017)
  • The Warren Center, Vice President and Board Member (2005-2012)
  • Children’s Chorus of Greater Dallas, Board Member (2005-2010)
  • Greater Irving/Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce – Membership Committee (2014-2017)
  • North Texas Chapter of University of Houston Law Alumni Association – Co-Chair (2009-2013)
  • Dallas Bar Association- Former Member of Publications Committee and Public Forum Committee (2006-2009)


  • Texas Rising Star—Texas Monthly and Law & Politics Magazine
  • Arbitrator, American Arbitration Association, February 2016-Present