Melanie Battaglia

Melanie Battaglia

Partner

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Biography

Melanie is an experienced litigator and a strong and compassionate advocate. She leads the firm’s litigation practice, representing individuals in family, civil, estate and education matters as well as representing the firm’s not-for-profits, charities and social purpose organizations in civil litigation and human rights matters. Prior to joining PooranLaw, Melanie maintained a civil and family litigation practice at prominent Bay Street and family law boutique firms. She has also acted for family, estate and real estate lawyers in professional negligence matters. She has successfully represented clients at various levels of court, including as counsel in trials and in mediation and arbitration and before administrative tribunals.

Melanie’s family law practice encompasses all aspects of family law issues and she advocates for her clients through negotiation, mediation/arbitration, collaborative practice and when necessary, litigation. Melanie gained valuable experience working with some of the most highly respected family law lawyers in the province representing clients with a diverse range of personal and professional backgrounds, including high net-worth families. Combined with her experience at one of the top civil litigation firms in Toronto, she understands corporate law issues in family law matters relating to shareholders’ remedies, tax and complex support, equalization and business valuation issues. She has acted for small business owners, lawyers, wealth advisors, CEOs, engineers, physicians and other healthcare professionals, and artists, among many other individuals in a range of industries. She understands the nuances of her client’s businesses to negotiate the valuation and income calculation issues to successfully resolve their family law matter. Melanie brings a practical and reasonable approach to her practice and is child-focused when negotiating parenting issues for her clients. She has a particular expertise in supporting people living with a disability and she understands first-hand some of the challenges that her clients may face when supporting children with a disability. Melanie achieves a resolution of her client’s family law matter that is tailored to the unique special needs of their children and negotiates for her clients long-term supports and plans of care to the extent possible to ensure the well-being of their children’s future. When necessary, she provides her clients with access to the appropriate supports, accommodations and professional and other legal services they require to successfully resolve their family law disputes.

In addition to her family law practice, Melanie represents individuals and not-for-profits, charities and social purpose organizations in civil and estate litigation matters, overseeing the firm’s civil litigation team. Melanie is also passionate about education advocacy. She represents children and youth with disabilities in education law matters, with a particular focus on accommodations, discipline and safety issues at school. She strives to ensure that the special needs of children and youth are accommodated and supported in our public schools so that they can meaningfully access their legal right to an education. Melanie relies on her extensive volunteer work with the autism community and through the special education advisory committee of her local school board to successfully advocate for the children and youth that she represents.

An avid runner and varsity athlete, including completing the Chicago and Boston marathons, Melanie has received awards for excellence in combining academic and athletic achievement.

Community involvement and advocacy work

  • President, Toronto Chapter of Autism Ontario
  • Member of the Special Education Advisory Committee
  • Pro Bono Ontario’s Education Law Project
  • Mentor to law students through the University of Windsor student mentoring program
  • Former Vice-President, Ontario Autism Coalition

Publications

  • K. Harper et al., “Supporting Child Witnesses Through the Criminal Court Process: Experiences of Children and Their Caregivers” Ontario Victim Services Secretariat, Ministry of the Attorney General, January 2007.
  • S. Pollack, M. Battaglia and A. Allspach, “Women Charged with Domestic Violence in Toronto: The Unintended Consequences of Mandatory Charge Policies” Woman Abuse Council of Toronto, March 2005.

News

Family law partner and [former] Vice-President of the Ontario Autism Coalition (“OAC”), Melanie Battaglia, attended a news conference on Wednesday January 30 to demand that the Ford Government rein in the sweeping power of school principals to exclude a student from school, a collaboration between disability advocates, the OAC and the AODA Alliance with invited speaker, ARCH Disability Law Centre.

Globe and Mail article 

Read the full press release on the AODA Alliance’s website