Melissa Pallett-Vasquez

Partner, International Group Co-Chair
Je Parle Français
Hablo Español
Area of Focus: Litigation
"One of Melissa’s strengths, in particular, is her ability to effectively and efficiently communicate with the client so that they are aware of their legal exposure and in a manner they can understand."
- Chambers USA
Melissa handles complex commercial litigation matters in both state and federal court as well as domestic and international arbitrations, and appeals. She represents clients in a number of areas including real estate-related contracts, partnership and joint venture agreements, defense of intentional tort claims, and class action defense work with an emphasis on consumer products and the food and beverage industry.

Melissa serves as Co-Chair of the Firm's International initiative. Her significant ties to Canada and her fluency in French are particularly helpful in assisting her international clients with their legal needs in the South Florida business community.
Q & A
With entrepreneurial programs like eMerge and Endeavor Miami taking hold, how will a thriving South Florida technology sector affect your practice?
The last several years have been a lead-up to Miami's emergence as a technology mecca. We've seen many emerging growth companies, particularly from Latin America, open their headquarters here. Tech companies need lawyers who are well-versed with the local government and business communities, to help them navigate the local landscape and establish the necessary ties to thrive in South Florida. 
How do you stay connected to the South Florida Canadian community?
Many clients and Canadian professionals think of me as a go-to knowledge source and relationship builder for Canadians in Florida. I am the co-chair of the Canada Committee of the American Bar Association’s International Law Section, and an active member of the South Florida chapter of the McGill Alumni Association.  On a personal note, I am also proud to hold dual citizenship and have the opportunity to return to Canada often.

Melissa has had six reported cases:
Sewell v. D’Alessandro & Woodyard, Inc., 725 F. Supp. 2d 1344 WL 2872053 (M.D. Fla. 2010). 
Parrot, Inc. v. Nicestuff Distributing International, Inc., 2009 WL 197979 (S.D. Fla. 2009). 
Siegel v. Marcus, 980 So. 2d 1272 (Fla. 4th DCA 2008). 
Jeffrey O. et al. v. City of Boca Raton, 511 F. Supp. 2d 1339 (S.D. Fla. 2007). 
William Leonard Associates, Inc. v. Keshen, 994 So. 2d 1120 (Fla. L. Weekly D1428 2007). 
United Auto. Ins. Co. v. Diagnostics of South Florida, Inc., 921 So.2d 23 (Fla. 3d DCA 2006).

Representation of the United Automobile Insurance Company in a class action where we successfully overturned the class certification and clarified the legal standard for standing in the Third District Court of Appeal.
  • University of Florida, J.D., Levin College of Law, cum laude, 2003
    McGill University, B.A., 2000
  • American Bar Association

    International Law Section, Canada Committee, Vice-Chair, 2013 - 2015; Co-Chair, 2015 - 2018; Division Chair, 2018 - Present
    International Law Section, Cyber, Art, and Technology Division Chair, 2018

    Association for Women Lawyers
    Boys and Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade

    Board of Directors, 2017
    Gala Committee, 2014 - Present

    Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce of Florida
    Cuban American Bar Association
    The Florida Bar
    Judicial Nominating Procedures Committee, 2013 - 2015
    Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce
    Leadership Miami, Class of 2010
    Lawyers for Children America

    Board of Directors, 2018 - Present
    Volunteer Attorney Ad Litem, 2005 - Present

    McGill Alumni Association
    President of the South Florida Chapter, 2007 - Present
    National Association of Women Judges
    Friends Committee, 2011 - 2012
  • Florida
  • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida
    U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida
    U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit
    U.S. District Court, District of Colorado
  • Band 4, Chambers USA, Litigation: General Commercial, 2018- present

    Chambers USA, Litigation: General Commercial, Recognized Practitioner, 2017

    Daily Business Review, Most Effective Lawyers, Corporate Securities, 2014

    Benchmark Litigation, 40 & Under Hot List, 2016 - present

    Benchmark Litigation, Future Star, 2016; Local Litigation Star, 2017-present

    South Florida Business Journal, 40 Under 40 Honoree, 2013

    Daily Business Review, 40 Under 40 Rising Stars, 2013

    Florida Super Lawyers, Florida Rising Stars, 2010 - present

    Florida Trend's Legal Elite, 2007 - 2008, 2012 - present

    Lawyers for Children America Pro Bono Award, 2012

  • French
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