Melis Acuner has extensive experience advising clients in high-profile cross-border disputes, criminal and civil investigations and regulatory matters. Melis focuses on international arbitration and litigation, including complex multijurisdictional disputes involving multiple parallel proceedings.
Melis has consistently been named a Future Leader in arbitration by Who’s Who Legal since 2016. In 2021 WWL reported that Melis' "knowledge and understanding of civil law and common law add significant value to international cases and she acts like a bridge between Turkish and non-Turkish clients". WWL has also noted that Melis is identified by peers for her "excellent leadership skills, strategic judgement and ability to manage complex international arbitrations". Sources quoted by the publisher state Melis “gets things done and always delivers” and “is able to withstand very considerable pressure while maintaining composure and good humour, and can tell it like it is while retaining the clients’ trust and confidence”.
Also in 2021, Chambers & Partners, in the 2021 edition of "Chambers Global", recognised Melis as a prominent and notable practitioner because of her expertise in Turkish-based dispute resolution.
In 2020 Melis' practice group was recognised by The Legal 500 for its expertise in international arbitration.
In 2019 Melis featured in The Legal 500’s 2019 “International Arbitration Powerlist UK”.
Melis is a member of the ICC Commission on Arbitration and ADR of the International Chamber of Commerce, and has acted in numerous international commercial arbitrations conducted in English and/or French under the auspices of leading international arbitral institutions.
Melis also has experience defending government inquiries and conducting internal investigations related to anti-corruption, money laundering and fraud. She has conducted reviews of corporate compliance provisions and structures, and advised on the improvement of these structures and related policies and procedures designed to prevent and detect potential violations of law. Melis has acted for corporations, individuals and governments across a range of industry sectors, including oil and gas, energy, telecommunications, consumer goods, media, construction, banking and finance, insurance and pharmaceuticals.
Melis is also a board member of the Turkish British Lawyers Association and regularly speaks and writes on international arbitration and investment treaty law. Prior to joining Cadwalader, she was a European Counsel at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. She is a native speaker of English, French and Turkish and also speaks Spanish fluently.
Melis is a member of the firm’s Corporate Social Responsibility Committee, which focuses on empowering our communities through several key initiatives.