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Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance
Melissa Coakley

Melissa Coakley


Melissa Coakley

Melissa Coakley advises a broad spectrum of stakeholders on consensual and non-consensual cross border restructurings, work outs, reorganisations and formal insolvencies.

Melissa maintains a focus on the Middle East, having spent five years on secondment to our Dubai office during the Dubai financial crisis.

  • Advising UK retailer Matalan on its 2023 recapitalisation and on its 2020 £50m CLBILS liquidity raise and associated English scheme of arrangement
  • Advising private credit lenders to the EnerMech Group in relation to the restructuring of its financial debt
  • Advising Communisis Group in relation to the Ch11 of its parent company and the subsequent pre-packaged administration sale of its UK and European business
  • Advising a leading UK sponsor in relation to the complex private credit restructuring of a UK aerospace group
  • Advising certain key senior lenders to Vroon, a Dutch shipping group, in relation to the group’s cross border restructuring process, including via a Dutch WHOA and English scheme
  • Advising the Official Receiver and Special Managers in relation to the trading liquidation of a UK power station and associated litigation
  • Advising Chrysoar/Harbour Energy in relation to its reverse takeover and associated restructuring of Premier Oil PLC, utilising a part 26A restructuring plan
  • Advising the Department for Transport on the COVID-19 impact on the airline and airports sector, including in relation to the Virgin Atlantic part 26A restructuring plan, the first such plan implemented in the UK
  • Advising a prominent European hedge fund in relation to the $800m court-based UAE restructuring of JBF RAK, a multinational plastics manufacturer
  • Advising the coordination committee of senior secured lenders in relation to the $2bn Nyrstar restructuring implemented via a mix of consensual arrangements and English schemes of arrangement

News and client work

View all news and client work featuring Melissa Coakley

Contact details

Career and qualifications

  • University of Newcastle Upon Tyne (LLB) 2001
  • Joined Clifford Chance 2003
  • Admitted as a solicitor in England & Wales 2005
  • Partner since 2020

Professional bodies

  • Council Member of the Insolvency Lawyers Association
  • Member of R3 and INSOL

Awards and citations

  • Ranked in Band 6
    Chambers UK 2024: Corporate Restructuring and Insolvency (Tier 1) (3 years ranked)
  • "Melissa Coakley is extraordinary. She is hands-on, user-friendly and authoritative - a super impressive lawyer." "She is exceptional - she is all over the facts and the law in a way that makes you feel safe." "Melissa is a very clear communicator and a very commercial practitioner."
  • "She is creative, works extremely hard and uses her contacts and experience to overcome challenges and get the deal done. "Melissa is bright, effective and robust."
  • Ranked as a Next Generation Partner
    Legal 500 UK 2022, 2023 and 2024: Corporate Restructuring and Insolvency (Tier 1)
  • “Melissa Coakley is very technical and on top of the detail, while also retaining a pragmatic approach.” "Melissa Coakley displays a 'high level of technical knowledge and strategic thinking"
  • Recognised in the Global Restructuring Review “40 under 40”