A litigation and insolvency lawyer with experience across a variety of areas of law, Melissa’s unique experience provides a valuable offering to clients in providing excellent advice and support.

Melissa is an experienced litigator who has successfully advised clients across a range of disputes including commercial, contractual, corporate and personal taxation, trusts, employment, franchising and defamation proceedings. Regularly called upon to provide advice in property matters, Melissa assists with owners’ corporation disputes, commercial and retail leasing disputes and planning matters with local councils such as permit amendments, property borders and compulsory acquisition issues.

In addition to litigation and disputes expertise, Melissa also regularly acts in insolvency matters advising both liquidators and individuals on all aspects of corporate insolvency and personal bankruptcy. She also advises on wills and estates disputes including Part IV applications and applications to revoke wills.

Melissa has appeared in the Federal Court of Australia, Supreme Court of Victoria, County Court, Fair Work Commission, Administrative Appeals Tribunal, Magistrates Court as well as VCAT and works with Counsel on a regular basis.

A dedicated and approachable lawyer, Melissa ensures she works in conjunction with stakeholders to understand their needs and achieve a positive end result.

Key Matters

  • Acting in public examinations on behalf of liquidators and individuals
  • Acting in high-profile property dispute trials, often under media scrutiny
  • Successfully arguing against the ATO in a case viewed as a landmark decision concerning the gold industry
  • Conducting negotiations on behalf of clients regarding personal guarantees in relation to agreements with companies that are in liquidation and achieving successful settlement arrangements for those clients
  • Acting in complex insolvency, civil fraud, equity and tracing litigation matters
  • Acted for a client in obtaining an interlocutory freezing order on extremely short notice after the defendant attempted to rid itself of assets to avoid paying our client and creditors
  • Managing applications for an exclusion and compensation order under the Proceeds of Crime Act where the Australian Federal Police have obtained restraining orders over property
  • Acted for an employer client being sued by a former employee claiming to have not been paid the benefits required under their award
  • Acted for a client who had a personal safety intervention order (IVO) taken out against them and ultimately had the IVO withdrawn. We are seeing the use of IVOs increasingly being used as a tactic by business owners against their business partners with whom they are in dispute

Areas of Expertise

Key focus areas:

  • Property litigation
  • Insolvency and reconstruction
  • Commercial litigation and dispute resolution
  • Wills and estates
  • Retail and commercial leasing
  • Sale and acquisition of land
  • Australian Consumer Law

Recent Articles by Melissa Passarelli

Warning Tenants: Your rent relief application is probably not compliant. Take our quiz to confirm your compliance.

Our compliance assessment quiz can quickly provide you with an answer as to your compliance with rent relief legislation. Scroll down to take our 30 second quiz. With weeks until the expiry of the Victorian ban on rental evictions, tenants...
12 March, 2021

Frequently Asked Questions: Contesting a Will and Part IV Claims

Q1: What is a Part IV claim? A Part IV claim (also known as a family provision claim) is an application to a Court requesting a share or a larger share of a deceased person’s estate. A person may make...
2 March, 2021

An Introduction to Wills & Estates in Australia & New Zealand

If you require guidance or legal representation in respect of preparing or executing a will, or managing a dispute about an estate, in Australia or New Zealand then these law firms are available to assist in single or multiple jurisdictions.
14 December, 2020