199 Main Street
Burlington, VT 05401
A top litigator in Downs Rachlin Martin’s distinguished bull-pen, Andre Bouffard is adept at identifying the key aspects of a complex legal dispute, devising a strategy to accomplish a client’s objectives efficiently, and then implementing in such a way as to avoid the clutter inherent in most difficult disputes. With deep courtroom experience in both appeals and trial courts, Andre leads the firm’s appellate litigation practice and has argued appeals in the Supreme Court of the United States, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, as well as the Vermont and New Hampshire Supreme Courts. For more than 20 years, Andre has represented clients in all aspects of insolvency matters, including business restructuring, bankruptcy, workouts and acquisition and disposition of distressed assets. Andre heads the bankruptcy and creditor’s rights team and is a certified Creditor’s Rights Law Specialist. He also has extensive experience in probate litigation involving trusts and estates. He works with clients in a wide variety of industry sectors such as financial services, insurance, investment management, technology, transportation and manufacturing.
- Andre’s second successful appeal in the insolvency of Ambassador Insurance overturned a trial court decision to impose an arbitrary bar date proposed by the liquidator.
Represented a foreign bank that had loaned money to the foreign division of a manufacturer that went bankruptcy and shut down, leaving the bank to recover against the probate estate of the deceased principal of the borrower company, who had guaranteed the loans. Andre’s work involved the location and marshalling of assets located in multiple jurisdictions, and pursuit of a strategy for resolution of disputes with multiple competing claimants over the distribution of assets of the decedent’s estate.
Represented a mortgage lender in an appeal to the Vermont Supreme Court after the client had suffered an adverse judgment after trial for compensatory and punitive damages and legal fees, arising from the lender’s response to serious flood damage to a borrower’s home, which was uninsured due to the lender’s failure to pay insurance premiums from the borrowers’ escrow funds. Andre succeeded in getting the punitive damages award reversed on appeal, and also obtained reversal of the legal fees award, enabling the client to resolve the matter on favorable terms.
Andre represented a Canadian bank in a U.S. Bankruptcy case of a borrower that had fraudulently reported its financial condition to the bank, fraudulently transferred assets to associates in Canada and Mexico, and continued its fraudulent activity during the bankruptcy case. The borrower’s assets were eventually liquidated for the benefit of the bank, the client recovered fraudulently transferred assets from Canada and Mexico, and the principals of the borrower were prosecuted criminally.
Represented the executor of the estate of one of the largest real estate investors in Chittenden County, Vermont, where the probate proceedings involved complex inter-family disputes, the division of extensive interrelated real estate assets and liabilities, and complex fiduciary and estate tax issues. The estate was administered successfully and the executor discharged without any tax disputes.
Represented a mortgage lender in an appeal to the Vermont Supreme Court after the lender’s foreclosure action had been dismissed for lack of standing in a manner that could have forfeited the mortgage. Andre obtained a decision on appeal that protected the client’s mortgage rights, resulting in a later full recovery of the loan collateral.
Andre represented a bank that had invested large sums in commercial paper sold by a company that was actually operating a Ponzi scheme. The scheme involved the repeated sale of the same paper and the sale of fictitious paper not backed by a real debt. In the debtor’s bankruptcy proceedings, Andre successfully defended the bank’s rights to credit insurance recoveries from competing claims by a bankruptcy trustee, substantially reducing the bank’s losses on the investment.
Represented a German software manufacturer in an action brought by its U.S. distributor alleging breach of distribution agreement and other business torts, and the client’s counterclaim for non-payment for goods delivered to the distributor. After trial in federal court, the distributors claims were all dismissed and the client recovered a judgment for the full amount it was owed.
Andre represented a bank that had loaned a customer of its investment management division the funds to acquire a large securities position in a technology company through the exercise of stock options. When the customer could not repay the loan when the securities position lost much of its value in the Dotcom stock market crash of 2001, the stock had to be liquidated. The customer sought to avoid the remaining debt because of alleged negligence of the investment management division in not forcing a diversification of the investment portfolio before the crash. The matter was settled on favorable terms following mediation after Andre successfully obtained an injunction against sale of the customer’s U.K. real estate, and obtained a favorable summary judgment decision limiting the scope of the customers claims.
University of Maine School of Law, J.D., cum laude, 1986 Executive Editor, Maine Law Review
St. Lawrence University, B.A., cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, 1981
U.S. District Court, District of Vermont, 1988
U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, 2002
U.S. Supreme Court, 2013
American Bar Association, 1992
- American College of Mortgage Attorneys, Fellow, 2015
- Recognized in Best Lawyers®, Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law, Commercial Litigation, Litigation - Bankruptcy, 2011-2019
- Chambers USA Guide: Financial Services Litigation, 2013
- New England Superlawyers: Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights; Business Litigation; Estate & Trust Litigation
- Chittenden East Wolverines, Youth Football Coach
- Mobius the Mentoring Movement, Former Director
- American Board of Certification: Creditors' Rights Law Specialist
199 Main Street
Burlington, VT 05401ph: 802-863-2375