The seeds of Mike Abelow’s success as a trial lawyer were planted early. As a formidable high school debater and strategy game enthusiast, Mike made compelling arguments and anticipated opponents’ moves and countermoves long before he took those same skills into the courtroom. Today, Mike’s determined and strategic advocacy has made him one of Nashville’s premier commercial litigation and commercial bankruptcy attorneys.
Mike represents a diverse clientele in complex commercial disputes and bankruptcy proceedings, including breach of contract claims, business torts, loan restructuring, lender liability, and guaranty disputes. In every matter, Mike strives to understand not only the applicable facts and law but the parties’ underlying psychology and motivation. By getting to the heart of a dispute, by identifying the other side’s pressure points, strengths, and weaknesses, Mike positions his clients for positive outcomes at trial or the negotiating table.
Clients appreciate Mike’s candid counsel when evaluating cases and his ability to develop realistic approaches aligned with their business objectives. While he relishes the opportunity to present crisp, credible, and winning legal arguments in court, Mike also recognizes that the facts of a given matter or a client’s larger interests may make a negotiated resolution a better alternative to trial. The same talents that have led to Mike’s track record of success in the courtroom have also led to countless favorable settlements for his clients.
Mike earned his law degree, summa cum laude, from Washington & Lee University School of Law in 2000, where he was a member of the Law Review. After law school, Mike served as a law clerk for the Honorable E. A. Van Graafeiland of the United States Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit.
Active in several professional organizations, Mike has been recognized for his commitment to pro bono work. He is also committed to his community, including serving on the Nashville Urban Debate League board, a non-profit that brings the proven academic benefits of debate to students who otherwise could not participate in this activity. Appointed by the United States Trustee’s Office, Mike serves as a Subchapter 5 Trustee.
Mike and his wife Cynthia live in Nashville and have four children. When not serving his clients, Mike enjoys indulging in his newfound pickleball obsession.
- J.D., Washington and Lee University, 2000
- B.A., James Madison University, 1996
- District of Columbia
- United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee
- United States Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Tennessee
- United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee
- Nashville Bar Association President, 2021
- Nashville Business Journal Best of The Bar, 2016, 2018, 2021, 2022
- Best Lawyers In America, 2016-Present
- Best Lawyers In America Lawyer of the Year, 2021, 2023, Litigation-Bankruptcy
- Attorney for Justice Tennessee Supreme Court Pro Bono Service Award, 2020, 2021
- Benchmark Litigation, 2013-Present
- Super Lawyers, 2013-Present