Melanie J. Vartabedian

Partner
Salt Lake City
Los Angeles

Melanie J. Vartabedian handles complex commercial litigation matters, focusing on consumer financial services litigation, receivership matters and securities litigation, real estate disputes, and diversity and inclusion counseling.

Melanie has litigated cases in state and federal courts across the country, and also has experience representing clients in arbitrations and government investigations. She is an experienced consumer finance litigator and defends individual and class action lawsuits brought by consumers in the areas of federal and state consumer protection laws and mortgage banking. Her practice includes defending financial institutions against civil claims alleging failure to adhere to AML and BSA regulations, policies, and procedures. She also represents real estate developers and private and public companies in business disputes relating to land use decisions. In addition, she has represented accounting firms and auditors in Securities and Exchange Commission investigations.

Professional Highlights

Pro Bono Experience

Melanie 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
  • Representing Guatemalan human trafficking victims
  • Acting as lead attorney and negotiating a favorable settlement for a disabled couple who lost their home to a predatory real estate company
  • Serving as a Violence Against Women Act volunteer and helping victims of domestic violence obtain naturalization

Judicial Clerkships

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

Professional Activities

American Bar Association

Federal Bar Association

Salt Lake County Bar Association

Recognition & Accomplishments

Selected by the Salt Lake Chamber as a 2019 Pathfinder at the Women & Business Conference

Selected by Utah Business Magazine for the "40 Under 40" list for 2017, as a Legal Elite from 2014-2020, and as an Up and Coming lawyer in the area of civil litigation for 2011-2013

Recognized by Salt Lake Chamber as a community difference-maker for its Women's History Month 2017 highlights

Speaking Engagements

"Ethical Issues in Receiverships," Annual Securities Law Workshop, Utah State Bar, November 2019

"Discovery Issues in Employment Litigation: Tips to Save You Time and Money," Ballard Spahr's Fall Employment Law Seminar, November 7, 2018

"Utah Women and the Wage Gap," Salt Lake Chamber Women and Business Conference, November 15, 2017 

Board Memberships & Community Service

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

Society for Orphaned Armenian Relief (SOAR), Board of Directors, Salt Lake City Chapter

Publications

Contributed to Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce and Women's Leadership Institute's "Best Practices Guide for Closing the Gender Wage Gap," December 2018

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

Credentials 

Education

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., summa cum laude, 2001)

Admissions

California

Utah