Val has extensive experience in appeals, bankruptcy litigation, business litigation, creditor rights, and insolvency.  In addition, Val regularly advises fellow attorneys on complex cases.

Val brings over 21 years of singular legal experience to clients.  He spent nearly 16 years with the federal judiciary as Judicial Staff Attorney, working with federal bankruptcy judges Jane McKeag (ret.), Michael S. McManus (ret.), and Fredrick Clement.  In addition to his trial court experience, Val served as Staff Attorney with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, Bankruptcy Appellate Panel (Sept. 2005-Feb. 2008).

While with the federal judiciary, Val prepared over 25,000 written dispositions, including thousands of dispositions in complex bankruptcy and business disputes.  Prior to that, he worked as an attorney at Wendel Rosen LLP (formerly Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean, LLP).

Val enjoys working with business owners, helping them grow and preserve value in their businesses.

Sample of Cases

  • Fiberglass Representatives, Inc. v. Atkins (In re Atkins). Granting reconsideration of denial of sale of a real property to enforce a judgment, involving an entanglement of law of the case with a prior inconsistent judgment.

  • J. Re-Bar Corp., Inc. v. United States (In re J.J. Re-Bar Corp., Inc.). Holding that the debtor's chapter 11 plan does not trump the Anti-Injunction Act to enjoin the collection of trust fund recovery penalties against the debtor's officers as responsible persons for unpaid employee withholding trust fund taxes; affirmed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals BAP and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and reported at 420 B.R. 496 (B.A.P. 9th Cir. 2009) and 644 F.3d 952 (9th Cir. 2011), correspondingly.

  • In re City of Vallejo. Approval of chapter 9 plan (largest city municipality chapter 9 case at the time).

  • In re City of Vallejo. Permitting the rejection of collective bargaining agreements by a chapter 9 debtor, upon satisfaction of the standard of Supreme Court's Bildisco decision.

  • In re Bauer. Granting in part sanctions for violations of the automatic stay and discharge injunction. Affirmed on appeal by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals BAP and reported at 2010 WL 6452899.

  • In re Saiyo. Sustaining an objection by the debtor to the $38 million proof of claim of a foreign creditor.

  • In re Davis Area Cooperative Housing Association, Inc. Granting a summary judgment motion filed by an involuntary debtor.

  • In re Matterhorn Group, Inc. Denying rejection of three collective bargaining agreements by the consolidated debtors (Matterhorn Group, Inc., Vitafreeze Frozen Confections, Inc., and Deluxe Ice Cream Company).

  • In re Nordlund. Awarding sanctions against a creditor for violation of the discharge injunction.

  • In re Cal State Growth Fund. Appointing a chapter 11 trustee for a debtor involved in a complex mortgage investment scheme.

  • Hopper v. Showalter (In re Showalter). Sustaining chapter 7 trustee's objection to the debtor's homestead exemption. Affirmed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, Bankruptcy Appellate Panel and reported at 2013 WL 1491003.

  • Sihabouth v. The Bank of New York Mellon (In re Sihabouth). Dismissing adversary proceeding due to lack of post chapter 13 plan confirmation subject matter jurisdiction. Affirmed on appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals BAP and reported at 2014 WL 2978550.

  • The Golden 1 Credit Union v. Hopper (In re Ahrens). Sustaining the trustee's objection to Golden 1's deficiency unsecured proof of claim, with a vehicle as collateral, while the debtor was current with ongoing payments on account of the claim. Affirmed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals BAP and reported at 2016 WL 6427279.

  • In re te Velde. Applying judicial estoppel, among other grounds, to deny a $3.66 million administrative expense claim in a dairy chapter 11 case.


J.D., University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, With Distinction (2000)

Order of the Coif; Roger Traynor Honor Society; Honor Roll;

Chief Managing Editor and Writer, California Initiative Review;

Top grades in Criminal Procedure and Federal Courts;

Founder and President, McGeorge Law and Science Society

B.A., Human Biology (major), Chemistry (minor), La Sierra University (1997) (various awards and honors)

Computational chemistry researcher and co-author of multiple papers in science journals