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Melissa Passarelli

Senior Associate


+61 3 8687 7309

Melissa is an experienced litigation and insolvency lawyer who has successfully advised clients across a range of disputes including commercial, contractual, corporate and personal taxation, trusts, employment, franchising and defamation proceedings.


Melissa is regularly called upon to provide advice on property matters, assisting with taxation disputes, commercial and retail leasing disputes and planning matters with local councils such as permit amendments, property borders and compulsory acquisition issues.

She also regularly acts in insolvency matters advising both liquidators and individuals on all aspects of corporate insolvency and personal bankruptcy. She 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.


Melissa’s experience includes:

  • Acting in public examinations on behalf of liquidators and individuals
  • Acting in high-profile 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Acted for a client who had a personal safety intervention order (IVO) taken out against them and ultimately had the IVO withdrawn.



  • Bachelor of Laws, 2017, Australian Catholic University
  • Bachelor of Commerce, 2017, Australian Catholic University
  • Graduate Diploma Legal Practice, Law, 2018, Leo Cussen Centre for Law