Every bond issue requires several different specialists for the protection of the issuer, borrower, and bondholders.
Role Of Bond Counsel
Bond counsel has the role of an independent expert who provides an objective legal opinion concerning the issuance and sale of bonds. Bond counsel are specialized attorneys who have developed necessary expertise in a broad range of practice areas. Generally, bonds are not marketable without an opinion of nationally recognized bond counsel stating that the bonds are valid and binding obligations, stating the sources of payment and security for the bonds and, if applicable, the bonds are exempt from State and Federal income taxes.
The Authorities may require the bond counsel firm to be listed as a municipal bond attorney in The Bond Buyer's Municipal Marketplace Directory (the "Red Book"). For more information regarding bond counsel or local counsel selection contact the Michigan Bar Association 1-800-968-1442, or the American Bar Association 1-800-285-2221. In addition, the National Association of Bond Lawyers (NABL) has developed the Selection and Evaluation of Bond Counsel to provide guidance to issuers and borrowers.
Role Of Underwriter/Placement Agent
Underwriters or placement agents are responsible for sale or placement of bonds. They usually assist the borrower in preparing a financing plan, determining the least costly method of financing and completing a disclosure and sales document to be sent to potential investors. Sometimes their role is finished when the bond issue is completed; in other cases, the underwriter has an ongoing role with the borrower as an advisor regarding a broad range of finance and capital market related matters.
Role Of Bond Trustee
The bond trustee is responsible for the collection and investment of loan payments and the registration, transfer and payment of bonds. The bond trustee is required to maintain separate accounts, monitor bond document requirements and provide monthly statements. The bond trustee approves amendments to some documents and acts on behalf of the bondholders if the borrower or issuer violates certain bond documents. A bond trustee must have adequate staff and systems to efficiently perform its duties and comply with the various Federal, State and bond issue requirements.
Austin Building, 1st Floor
(Formerly Treasury Building)
430 W. Allegan
Lansing, MI 48901
P.O. Box 15128
Lansing, MI 48901
Phone: (517) 335-0994
Fax: (517) 241-9509