Chia Ming Lee

Associate Director
Tel: +65 6309 5410
chiaming.lee@nortonrosefulbright.com

Chia ming lee

Chia Ming is a dispute resolution lawyer based in Singapore. She focuses on litigation and international arbitration matters, specialising in complex cross-border commercial disputes, shareholder and joint venture disputes, and trust and estate disputes. She is also experienced in insolvency and restructuring-related proceedings. She regularly acts for corporate and commercial clients, financial institutions, state-linked entities, and high net worth individuals across a wide range of industries, including energy, mining, and banking.

Chia Ming’s litigation experience spans all levels of the Singapore Courts, where she has acted both as lead counsel and as second chair to senior counsel. She has also been appointed to act as young amicus curiae to the Supreme Court and has been “unreservedly commend[ed]” by the High Court (Chua Hock Soon James v Public Prosecutor and other appeals [2017] 5 SLR 997). Chia Ming also regularly acts in international arbitration matters. Her experience includes an international arbitration secondment to the London office of an international law firm.

On top of her practice, Chia Ming is appointed to the Singapore Management University Yong Pung How School of Law Practice Advisory Panel. She also serves as adjunct teaching faculty with the university. 

Chia Ming is qualified as an advocate and solicitor in Singapore. Prior to joining the firm, she worked in dispute resolution at a top Singapore law firm and a large international firm. She holds a double degree in Law, Summa Cum Laude and Business (Finance Major), Summa Cum Laude from the Singapore Management University, where she was awarded the prestigious Lee Kong Chian scholarship and consistently ranked on the Dean’s List for academic excellence.

Key industries:

  • Financial institutions
  • Energy, infrastructure, and resources

Related services

  • Litigation and dispute resolution
  • International Arbitration
  • Restructuring and Insolvency
  • Trusts, Estates, Wealth Preservation

Admissions

  • Advocate & Solicitor, Singapore, 2014

Memberships and activities

  • Practice Advisory Panel, Singapore Management University, Yong Pung How School of Law (2021-2023)
  • Adjunct faculty, Ethics and Social Responsibility, Singapore Management University (2016-Present)
  • Member, The Law Society of Singapore (2014 – present)
  • Member, Singapore Academy of Law (2014 – present)
  • Committee Member, Law Awareness Committee, Law Society of Singapore (2019-2020)
  • Committee Member, Public and International Law Committee, Law Society of Singapore (2018-2019)

Representative experience

  • Minority shareholder and co-founder: Acted for the claimant in arbitration proceedings involving claims in excess of S$70 million brought by the claimant against the joint venture company and its majority shareholder. The issues in dispute included minority oppression, breach of directors’ duties, and wrongful termination of employment.
  • Keppel Corporation subsidiary: Acted for the joint venture majority shareholder in proceedings to secure a S$300 million commercial deal that was threatened by injunction proceedings and cross-jurisdictional challenges brought by the minority shareholder in the Singapore Courts, in PRC, and in Hong Kong.
    International business software provider: Acted for the company in arbitration proceedings brought against a European business software provider in a joint venture dispute.
  • International power engineering corporation: Acted for a global conglomerate against foreign state-linked entities in arbitration proceedings involving delay, infrastructure, and non-payment disputes arising out of a power plant project. The claims and counter-claims were in the region of US$1 billion.
  • High net worth individual: Represented the claimant before the Singapore International Commercial Court and in appeal proceedings before the Court of Appeal in a multi-party share sale dispute. The issues in dispute included contract formation, agency, and breach of fiduciary duties. (Lew, Solomon v Kaikhushru Shiavax Nargolwala and others [2020] 3 SLR 61; Lew, Solomon v Kaikhushru Shiavax Nargolwala and others and another appeal [2021] SGCA(I) 1).
  • VTB Bank: Represented the major Russian bank in the Court of Appeal before a specially constituted 5-member Coram in respect of a US$250 million debt. The appeal raised novel points of law regarding the interaction between the arbitration and insolvency regimes. Also acted for the bank in the High Court in respect of contested winding up proceedings (AnAn Group (Singapore) Pte Ltd v VTB Bank (Public Joint Stock Co) [2020] 1 SLR 1158; VTB Bank (Public Joint Stock Co) v Anan Group (Singapore) Pte Ltd [2018] SGHC 250).
  • Australian state-owned mining company: Represented the company in adjudication proceedings against a Chinese state-owned enterprise over a multi-million dollar energy and mining dispute.
  • Prominent Indian software company: Represented the company in a suite of SIAC arbitration proceedings involving intellectual property disputes between US and Indian technology firms.
  • Personal representatives: Acted in the High Court for executors in resisting challenges brought against a wealthy testator’s will on alleged grounds of testamentary incapacity and undue influence. (UWF and another v UWH and another [2020] SGHCF 22)
  • Personal representatives: Represented the executors in the High Court and Court of Appeal to recover millions paid out by the testator under undue influence and mental incapacity. (Philip Antony Jeyaretnam and another v Kulandaivelu Malayaperumal and others [2020] 3 SLR 738)
  • Various confidential high net worth clients: Acted in various matters, including representing family businesses in a series of disputes spanning family companies across Asia, acting as legal advisors to safeguard the interests of minor beneficiaries in relation to high value family trusts, and obtaining in the Court of Appeal a stay of proceedings in a novel matter involving the intersection of conflict of laws with public policy concerns regarding minors’ welfare.
  • Various major local and international banks: Acted in various matters, including representing and advising creditor banks in contentious restructuring proceedings, and spearheading internal investigations regarding serious complaints made against senior personnel in a global bank.
     

Insights and presentations

  • Facilitator, SIAC Russia Academy 2021, “Time and Cost Savers at SIAC: Emergency Arbitration, Expedited Procedure and Early Dismissal”
  • Facilitator, SIAC Indochina Academy 2020, “Time and Cost Savers at SIAC: Emergency Arbitration, Expedited Procedure and Early Dismissal”
  • Speaker, Advance Legal Planning (bilingual talk in English and Mandarin), Law Awareness Weeks 2019
  • Co-organiser and Panellist, Dentons-FTI Consulting Seminar, “Cross-Border Injunctions: Strategic and Innovative Ways to Deal with Legal Emergencies”, 2019
  • Rapporteur, “What are the challenges to the growth of arbitration in Singapore in the upcoming decade?”, SIAC Website (Posted 16 Aug 2019)
  • Co-rapporteur, “Multiplicity – Managing Parallel Proceedings Under Multiple Instruments”, SIAC Congress Week 2018 Newsletter
  • Co-author (together with SMU Assistant Professor Kenny Chng), "Lord Denning's Influence On Contract Formation In Singapore—An Overdue Demise?" Oxford University Commonwealth Law Journal (2017) 17(2) Oxford University Commonwealth Law Journal 211