Melanie J. Vartabedian

Associate

vartabedianm@ballardspahr.com
Tel 801.517.6842
Fax 801.531.3001
Salt Lake City

Melanie J. Vartabedian focuses on complex commercial litigation matters, including commercial contract and real estate disputes, securities litigation, and intellectual property litigation.

Ms. Vartabedian has litigated cases in state and federal courts across the country, and also has experience representing clients in arbitrations and government investigations. She represents real estate developers and private and public companies in business disputes relating to land use decisions, and she defends mortgage lenders and servicers in financial services disputes, including foreclosure-related lawsuits. In addition, she has represented accounting firms and auditors in Securities and Exchange Commission investigations, and has worked on cases involving allegations of trademark infringement, achieving preliminary and permanent injunctive relief, seizure of infringing items, and other remedies.

Pro Bono Experience

Ms. Vartabedian has been recognized by the Utah State Bar and Utah Legal Services for her pro bono work, which includes:

  • Assisting immigrants who are the victims of certain serious crimes and have cooperated with authorities in the prosecution of the perpetrator, to obtain legal status in order to reside and work in the United States (2011) 
  • Representing Guatemalan human trafficking victims (2008-2009) 
  • Acting as lead attorney and negotiating a favorable settlement for a disabled couple who lost their home to a predatory real estate company (2007) 
  • Serving as a Violence Against Women Act volunteer and helping victims of domestic violence obtain naturalization (2006-2007)

Judicial Clerkships

Hon. Judith Billings, Presiding Judge, Utah Court of Appeals

Professional Activities

American Bar Association

Salt Lake County Bar Association

Utah Minority Bar Association, 2004-present

Appointed to serve on the Utah State Bar's Ethics Advisory Opinion Committee, 2013

Utah State Bar Commission, ex officio member, 2011-2012

Aldon J. Anderson America Inn of Court, 2010-present

Women Lawyers of Utah
Past President, 2011-2012
Member (2004-present) and Board Member (2007-present)
Past Chair, Committee for the Initiative on the Advancement and Retention of Women Attorneys, which oversaw a groundbreaking study on why legal employers are failing to advance and retain women attorneys (2007-May 2009)

Ballard Spahr's Diversity and Inclusion Council, 2012-present

Co-Leader, Ballard Women Associates

Young Lawyers Division, Community Service Division, volunteer (2004-2005)

Recognition & Accomplishments

Named by Utah Business Magazine as an "Up and Coming" lawyer among the Utah Legal Elite, in the area of civil litigation, 2011-2013

2010 recipient, Utah State Bar's Dorothy Merrill Brothers Award for the Advancement of Women in the Legal Profession

Publications

Co-author, "The Utah Report: The Initiative on the Advancement and Retention of Women in Law Firms," Women Lawyers of Utah, October 2010   

"Goodwin v. Turner & Gerber v. Hickman: Should Prisoners Have the Right to Procreate?" Journal of Law and Family Studies, 5.2 Edition

Speaking Engagements

"CFPB Enforcement Actions in the Credit Card Industry," Risk Management Association, October 2013

Presenter at in-house seminar for client titled "Ethics for In-House Counsel: Common Problems and How To Handle Them"

"The Final Report on the Initiative on the Advancement and Retention of Women," Utah State Bar 2010 Summer Convention, July 17, 2010

"The Initiative on the Advancement and Retention of Women: Survey Results and Suggestions," Utah State Bar 2009 Summer Convention

"Retaining Good Lawyers: Lifestyle and Generational Issues," Utah State Bar Fall Forum 2009

Community Activities

Salt Lake Symphony, member of cello section, 2006-present

University of Utah, S.J. Quinney College of Law (J.D. 2004)
Note and Comment Editor, Journal of Law and Family Studies; Member, National Moot Court; Legal Writing Teaching Assistant

University of the Pacific (B.M. 2001, summa cum laude)

California

Utah