Commercial Litigation and Banking Attorney

Melissa A. Peña, Chair of the Bankruptcy and Creditors’ Rights Group, concentrates her practice on commercial litigation and bankruptcy and creditors’ rights. Her clients include financial institutions, private lenders, creditors, and accounting firms. She has successfully represented secured creditors and unsecured creditors in Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases and state court insolvency proceedings. She frequently handles commercial foreclosure actions, actions to enforce promissory notes and guarantees, lien priority disputes, fraudulent conveyance actions, and creditor enforcement matters. Melissa has also defended accounting firms in disputes regarding alleged failure to detect criminal and fraudulent activity in the state and federal courts of New Jersey and New York. Outside the court room, Melissa handles commercial workouts, negotiating forbearance agreements on behalf of lenders. She frequently represents investors seeking to acquire defaulted loans from the due diligence stage to closing on the sale. She also helps lenders to liquidate their collateral through UCC sales, including sales of co-ops. Whether she is inside or outside the court room, Melissa’s goal is to find a practical business solution for her clients. She utilizes litigation as a tool to further her client’s business objectives in a cost-effective manner. Melissa is Co-Chair of the Meritas Financial Services section and a member of the Finance Committee, which reports to the Meritas Board of Directors. She received her Juris Doctorate, cum laude, from American University, Washington College of Law in 2003; and her Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, summa cum laude, from George Washington University in 2000.

Bar Admissions

  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • U.S. District Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals


The American University Washington College of Law, 4300 Nebraska Ave NW, Washington, DC 20016
J.D. - Juris Doctor - 2003
George Washington University, 2121 I St NW, Washington, DC 20052
B.A. - Bachelor of Arts - 2000


Getting Melissa's schedule....
Would you recommend to your friends and family?