Biography

In the Delaware Court of Chancery, where the sheer volume of trials involving major corporations regularly attracts the nation’s most sought-after trial lawyers, Melanie Sharp feels she has learned from the best. Having sat across the table from lawyers she admires — lawyers whose grasp of the facts, mastery of the law, and instinctive feel for judges and juries matches her own — she has earned a reputation as a determined and effective trial lawyer in a wide range of high-stakes pharmaceutical and biotechnology disputes.

Melanie’s long and successful relationship with the Court of Chancery is the natural evolution of a conscious decision — made right out of law school — to serve as clerk to the Chancellor of that court, which she even then considered the premier business court in the nation. She resolved then to experience it from the point of view of the bench, a perspective that has given her deep insights into its inner workings, its procedural uniqueness, and the predilections of its judges. These insights have grown and matured over two decades as a litigator, giving her a rich and nuanced knowledge of this extraordinarily influential court.

Melanie enters every dispute with her eye firmly fixed on the end goal. Even in pre-litigation planning, she insists on a complete understanding of the overall business objectives, before plotting out the path that addresses them. Her clients count on her to make sure the smallest details fit comfortably within the big picture, so as to minimize unintended consequences. In trials marked by deep and daunting complexities — in their legal issues, their technical subject matter, their massive document troves, their global implications — she deftly keeps track of all moving parts, ably communicating their subtleties to the judges of the court she knows so well.

FOCUS:

  • Intellectual property litigation, particularly patent litigation, as well as complex commercial litigation, in both state and federal courts.

Education

  • Temple University Beasley School of Law  (J.D.)
  • University of Delaware  (B.A.)

Bar Admissions

  • Delaware

Court Admissions

  • U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland

Distinctions

  • The Best Lawyers in America®, Commercial Litigation, 2003 - Present
  • Delaware Super Lawyers®, Intellectual Property Litigation and Business Litigation, 2007 - Present

Memberships and Affiliations

  • Delaware State Bar Association, Member
  • American Bar Association, Member 
  • Federal Bar Association, Member
  • Association of Trial Lawyers of America
  • Delaware Trial Lawyers Association
  • Trial Lawyers for Public Justice
  • Million Dollar Advocates Forum
  • Supreme Court Permanent Committee on Professionalism, Member 
  • Delaware Volunteer Legal Services
  • Family and Workplace Connection, Board of Directors, Member
  • Delaware Institute of Dental Education & Research
  • Project for Domestic Violence Reform, Inc.
  • Mock Trial Coach for Delaware State Bar Association
  • Mock Trial Competition Association
  • New Castle County Democratic Party, Secretary

Clerkships

  • Honorable William T. Allen, Chancellor, Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware