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David R. Ruby

Vice President and Partner

A trusted partner in major bankruptcy cases and in times of transition

David Ruby maintains a multi-disciplinary practice at ThompsonMcMullan, one focused on bankruptcy and creditors’ rights, business and commercial transactions, and tax disputes. Along with his team, David handles all types of litigation and appeals, including before the bankruptcy and federal district courts and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. For nearly two decades, David has served as a Chapter 7 panel trustee for the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia’s Newport News Division.

Major corporations, businesses, nationally-recognized law firms, and in-house corporate counsel call on David when they face bankruptcy and creditors’ rights problems in Virginia. He has represented creditor and other clients in virtually every large and mega bankruptcy case filed in Richmond, including Heilig-Meyers, Movie Gallery, Circuit City, LandAmerica, Health Diagnostic Laboratory, Alpha Natural Resources, and Toys “R” Us. David regularly receives conflict and local counsel referrals.

Business owners and individuals call on David for restructuring strategies, advice, and implementation and when transactions have gone awry – sometimes many years later.

He points to one word that sums up his restructuring practice.

“Transition,” he says. “I serve businesses and individuals in transition — restructurings outside of bankruptcy, companies in bankruptcy, sales of businesses, companies with tax issues…the list goes on. My goal is to assist and guide clients to understand their problems or issues of concern, develop goals and create and implement a plan of action to achieve those goals.”

Clients look to David as a problem-solver to address a single specific issue or multi-faceted, multi-dimensional problems. He enjoys getting to work with and know his clients and those on both sides of the aisle who are directly impacted by the representation.

“Litigation is not always the answer to resolve a dispute, controversy, or problem.” he says. “In any adversarial situation, my goal is to try to get everyone to a win-win situation.”

Over the years, David has kept the pace with the way the practice of bankruptcy law has changed, largely through technology. “It’s faster, and there is less opportunity to allow matters and thoughts to simmer, so you have to be flexible and respond almost in real-time,” he says. “And we do!”


Bankruptcy, Creditors' Rights, and Restructuring

Business Transactions, Corporate and Real Estate

Civil Litigation

Representative Experience

  • Representation of creditors and other non-debtor interests in business and consumer Chapter 7, 11, and 13 bankruptcy cases and involuntary bankruptcy cases
  • Bankruptcy transactions, litigation and appeals, including asset sale, financing, relief from stay, cash collateral, adequate protection, turnover, abandonment, landlord-tenant, executory contract, disclosure statement, plan, tax, lien priority, claim, reclamation, discharge, exemption and preference and fraudulent transfer matters, actions, contests and controversies
  • Formation of business entities and representation of businesses and business owners in general business, transactional and tax matters.
  • Out-of-court/out-of-bankruptcy business and loan reorganizations, workouts and restructurings
  • Acquisition and financing of troubled businesses inside and outside bankruptcy, including DIP lending
  • Asset recovery, collection, foreclosures, repossessions and liquidations
  • Representation of taxpayers before the Internal Revenue Service and Virginia Department of Taxation
  • Mediation and alternative dispute resolution


  • Chapter 7 Trustee, United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Newport News Division (2001-present)
  • Special Bankruptcy Counsel to Attorney General of the Commonwealth of Virginia (1996-2012)
  • AV Peer Review Rated in Martindale-Hubbell
  • Virginia Lawyers Media Leaders in the Law (2012)
  • Virginia Business Magazine’s “Legal Elite,” Bankruptcy/Creditors’ Rights category (2006-2023)
  • Selected to Super Lawyers Virginia List, Bankruptcy and Business, Creditor/Debtor Rights category (2006-2024); Top 100 (2012-2013, 2015, 2020-2021), Top 50 Lawyers in Richmond (2011-2012, 2015)


  • Marshall-Wythe School of Law, College of William and Mary, LL.M. in Taxation, 1987
  • University of Richmond School of Law, J.D., 1983
  • Brandeis University, cum laude, 1978


  • All Virginia courts including the Supreme Court of Virginia
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern and Western Districts of Virginia
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern and Western Districts of Virginia
  • U.S Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • U.S. Tax Court


  • Virginia State Bar
  • Virginia Bar Association, Chairman, Bankruptcy Law Section (1994-1996)
  • Virginia State Bar, Co-Chairman, Local Rules Project Committee, Bankruptcy Law Section (1991-1992)
  • Representative, Bankruptcy Bar Advisory Panels
  • Temple Beth-El, President, 1997-1999; Member, Board of Governors (1990-present)
  • Virginia State Bar Clients’ Protection Fund Board (2012-2018)
    • Vice-chairman (2017-2018)
    • Chairman Finance Subcommittee (2016-2018)

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