Home / People / Michelle Barclay
Portrait ofMichelle Barclay

Michelle Barclay

Partner
Lawyer

Contact
CMS Grau
Av. Santa María 130
Miraflores, L18
Lima
Peru
Languages Spanish, English
Corporate Restructuring & Insolvencies

Michelle Barclay is a partner at CMS Grau and co-leads the Insolvency and Restructuring practice area. She specialises in both local and international restructurings and insolvencies, including in-court and out-of-court restructurings, insolvency and corporate liquidations, distressed asset and company acquisitions, international projects, and arbitrations. 

Her local and international experience enables her to advise clients on complex insolvency and corporate restructuring matters. 

Michelle holds a Master's in Corporate Law from New York University and has previously worked as an associate in the corporate restructuring practice at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in New York. She is admitted to practice in both New York and Peru. 

Since January 2013, Michelle has been a partner at CMS Grau, and she is a member of the Management Committee and co-leads the Marketing and Communication Committee of the firm. 

She is a frequent speaker at events and conferences on topics related to her specialisation. Currently, she is a columnist for El Comercio (Peru's highest-circulation newspaper), with monthly publications in the Economics section. 

more less

Clients commend her for "Her experience at the international level," as well as for "her notable and important leaderships skills." An interviewee further appreciates that "she has a willingness to think beyond the legal precedents and comes up with creative solutions." Observers further point to her activity leading important and highly complex cases in the area.

Chambers & Partners Latin America 2023 - Band 1

Clients commend her for “her experience at the international level”, as well as for “her notable and important leadership skills.” An interviewee further appreciates that “she has a willingness to think beyond the legal precedents and comes up with creative solutions.” Observers further point to her activity leading important and highly complex cases in the area.

Chambers & Partners 2022 - Band 1

CMS Grau -and particularly Michelle Barclay- has expert knowledge of bankruptcy procedures and analyses all the related points and defines clear strategies in a timely manner.

The Legal 500 Latin America 2022 | Bankruptcy and Restructuring

Michelle Barclay Thorne is highlighted as "a very experienced lawyer" by satisfied clients. Other market commentators single out her "ability to take Peruvian law and help US lawyers to understand it. She goes beyond when you ask specific questions because she sees the bigger picture in terms on how it is going to affect deals."

Chambers Latin America 2020

Michelle Barclay Thorne is highly valued by clients, who appreciate that "she not only has an excellent command of Peruvian law, but also has a lot of knowledge and experience in international insolvencies. This clearly adds value to our matters." Another client enthuses that "she is very clear and practical when explaining matters and gets straight to the point."

Chambers Latin America 2018

CMS Grau has a diverse practice with expertise in bankruptcy, insolvency and liquidation matters. Michelle Barclay heads the team, and is routinely involved in debtor and creditor work for both private companies and public entities work. Recent highlights for Barclay include representing Depositos Quimicos Mineros in Doe Run Perú’s bankruptcy process – senior associate Francisco Barrón and associate Daniela Camacho assist her on the case. The team also has expertise in distressed M&A, debt refinancing and reorganisation proceedings.

Legal 500

Relevant experience

  • Investor Group | Acquisition process of a significant privatized public utilities provider. After the acquisition, advised the new owners on the company's reorganization process and matters related to the government and investors. 
  • Major energy company | Crisis matters arising from the involuntary termination by the Peruvian government of a concession contract and several complex issues among shareholders of the Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) incorporated for the concession project. This matter involves (including but not limited to) bankruptcy, liquidation, corporate matters, litigation, and regulations. 
  • Electro Sur Medio (now Dunas Energía) | Renegotiation of the privatization contract with the Peruvian government following the company's crisis and achievement of a comprehensive solution and restructuring after the earthquake in Peru in 2007. 
  • Ministry of Economy and Finance of Peru | Preparation of two bills to amend the Bankruptcy Law of Peru. This bill was approved, and the new regulations are currently in effect. 
  • Chapter 11 | Advised court-appointed trustee in New York presiding over the Chapter 11 case involving USD 2 billion in debts of one of the world's largest producers of fishmeal and fish oil (based in Singapore), the majority shareholder of two Peruvian companies that hold a significant anchovy fishing quota in Peru. 
more less

Memberships & Roles

  • Member of the New York Bar Exam (New York Bar Exam).
  • Lima Bar Association (CAL).
more less

Awards & Rankings

  • Band 1 by Chambers Latin America 2023 - Bankruptcy/ Restructuring 
  • Leading Individual by The Legal 500 2023 - Restructuring and Bankruptcy 
  • ‘Leading’ by Leaders League 2023 - Bankruptcy/ Restructuring 
  • Recognised by "Best Lawyers" - Bankruptcy/Restructuring. 
  • Women Lawyer of the Year Peru 2018 by Chambers & Partners - Diversity. 
more less

Education

  • 2002 - Graduated in New York (Bar Exam).
  • 2001 - Master of Laws in Corporate Law (LL.M. - Corporate), New York University (NYU).
  • 2001 - Course in Finance, Stern School of Business (New York University).
  • 1997 - Graduated from the University of Lima. 
more less
Arbitration

Michelle Barclay is a partner in the areas of Arbitration and Corporate Restructuring at the firm. She has extensive experience leading various projects and resolving disputes, including domestic and international arbitrations, as well as negotiations and dispute resolution with the Peruvian government and private parties. She has advised various local and international companies on infrastructure projects, including public works and Public-Private Partnerships (PPP). Michelle has led and managed a variety of cases related to commercial crises at both local and international levels. 

In 2018, she participated in the first Executive Education Course in International Investment Law and Arbitration organised by The Lauterpacht Center for International Law in collaboration with Cambridge Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge. 

Michelle holds a Master's in Corporate Law from New York University and has previously worked as a permanent associate at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in New York. She is qualified to practice in both New York and Peru. 

Since January 2013, Michelle has been a partner at CMS Grau, and she is a member of the Management Committee and co-leads the Marketing and Communication Committee of the firm. 

She is a frequent speaker at events and conferences on topics related to her specialisation. Currently, she is a columnist for El Comercio (Peru's highest-circulation newspaper), with monthly publications in the Economics section. 

more less

Relevant experience

  • Hydro Quebec (Canada) | Negotiation with the Peruvian State for the modification of its BOOT contract regarding the main power transmission line, in the context of an international dispute.
  • Ministry of Economy and Finance of Peru | Preparation of two bills to amend the Peruvian Bankruptcy Law. This bill was approved and the new regulations are currently in force.
more less

Memberships & Roles

  • New York Bar Association (New York Bar Exam).
  • Lima Bar Association (Colegio de Abogados de Lima – CAL).
more less

Awards & Rankings

  • ‘Highly Recommended’ by Leaders League 2023, 2022, 2021, 2020 – Arbitration  
  • Women Lawyer of the Year Peru 2018 by Chambers & Partners - Diversity. 
more less

Education

  • 2018 - Executive Education Course in International Investment Law and Arbitration organised, The Lauterpacht Center for International Law, Cambridge. 
  • 2002 - Graduated in New York (Bar Exam).
  • 2001 - Master of Laws in Corporate Law (LL.M. - Corporate), New York University (NYU). 
  • 2001 - Course in Finance, Stern School of Business (New York University).  
  • 1997 - Graduated from the University of Lima. 
more less
Infrastructure & Projects

Michelle Barclay specialises in investment projects, Public-Private Partnerships (PPP), infrastructure, international investment arbitration, distressed asset and company acquisitions, corporate restructuring, and international insolvency. 

She has advised local clients and international groups on various infrastructure projects, including the development of PPPs, investment projects related to public assets, and negotiations between the State and investors in various sectors. Michelle has been involved in numerous local and international transactions, providing advice primarily on matters related to the termination by the Peruvian State of the largest concession awarded in Peru. 

She previously worked as a permanent associate at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in New York. Michelle is qualified to practice in both New York and Peru. 

Since January 2013, Michelle has been a partner at CMS Grau, and she is a member of the Management Committee and co-leads the Marketing and Communication Committee of the firm. 

She is a frequent speaker at events and conferences on topics related to her specialisation. Currently, she is a columnist for El Comercio (Peru's highest-circulation newspaper), with monthly publications in the Economics section. 

more less

Clients maintain that she has established a "very good relationship" with them. She is well equipped to handle project financing mandates and public tender processes.

Chambers Latin America 2021

Michelle Barclay Thorne boasts in-depth knowledge of PPPs and concession bids for domestic and international clients. She has impressed market sources, who appreciate that she provides "great attention" to her clients and go on to single out her "expertise" in this sector.

Chambers Latin America 2018

Michelle Barclay Thorne comes highly recommended by clients, who state: "She is a very professional and committed lawyer, with a good ability to find diverse options to solve any legal issues quickly." She is qualified to practise in both New York and Peru and has worked as an associate at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom in New York.

Chambers Global 2017

Michelle Barclay Thorne comes highly recommended by clients, who state: "She is a very professional and committed lawyer, with a good ability to find diverse options to solve any legal issues quickly.”

Chambers Latin America 2017

Relevant experience

  • GHESA Engineering and Technology | Public tender for the construction and improvement of new sources in Parque de la Reserva and its negotiations and relationship with the Peruvian government.
  • Ministry of Economy and Finance of Peru | Preparation of two bills to amend the Bankruptcy Law of Peru. This bill was approved, and the new regulations are currently in force. 
  • Advisory to various investors | Advice on various bidding processes and private initiatives related to infrastructure projects, including roads, public schools, hospitals, among others. 
more less

Memberships & Roles

  • New York Bar Association (New York Bar Exam).
  • Lima Bar Association (Colegio de Abogados de Lima – CAL).
more less

Awards & Rankings

  • Chambers Latin America 2021 – Projects 
  • Chambers Global 2018 - Projects 
  • Women Lawyer of the Year Peru 2018 by Chambers & Partners - Diversity. 
more less

Education

  • 2002 - Graduated in New York (Bar Exam).
  • 2001 - Master of Laws in Corporate Law (LL.M. - Corporate), New York University (NYU).
  • 2001 - Course in Finance, Stern School of Business (New York University).
  • 1997 - Graduated from the University of Lima. 
more less

Feed

12/07/2024
International arbitration law and rules in Peru
In Peru, arbitration is a dispute resolution mechanism increasingly used by companies, and this confidence in this dispute resolution mechanism is mainly due to the quality of arbitral awards and a legal...
13/06/2024
Insolvency clawback actions from a Peruvian perspective
The proposed EU Directive on harmonisation of insolvency law seeks to set minimum standards for exercising avoidance actions in insolvency proceedings in order to safeguard the insolvency estate from...
29/12/2023
CMS Disputes Talk
Our CMS Disputes Talk podcast series is delving into the hottest trends in dispute resolution. Join us as we navigate the ever-evolving landscape of legal conflicts, offering insightful discussions, expert...
13/10/2023
Towards the incorporation of Pre-Packs in Peruvian legislation
Peruvian legislation does not formally encompass the possibility of entering into pre-pack agreements with creditors. Nevertheless, it does include other mechanisms that allow companies to reach agreements...
26/08/2022
Public procurement regulation in Peru
March 2019 1. Where can one find public procurement notifications for Peru? All public procurement procedure information is accessible online through SEACE, which is the Peruvian electronic procurement...
23/08/2022
Restructuring and insolvency law in Peru
1. What is the primary legislation governing insolvency and restructuring proceedings in your jurisdiction? Peruvian bankruptcy proceedings are governed mainly by Peruvian Bankruptcy Law No. 27809 and...
Comparable
01/01/2022
Banking and Finance Corporate / M&A
CMS Grau has a multi-dis­cip­lin­ary team con­formed by ex­perts from all practice areas and sectors. We have broad experience providing specialized advice in local and international transactions in...
17/02/2021
CMS Disputes Talk
In these uncertain times, global businesses in almost every sector are facing challenges brought about by an unprecedented operational climate. Actions and decisions taken during and immediately after...
17/06/2020
CMS Expert Guide to Insolvency in Latin America - Re­struc­tur­ing, liquidations...
The insolvency systems for companies and other legal entities vary from country to country. The main purpose of insolvency legislation, however, is fundamentally the same worldwide. If there is important...
09/06/2020
Insolvency law and rules in Peru
1. What type of restructuring schemes exist in Peru? In Peru, corporate restructuring is carried out through insolvency proceedings. These proceedings are handled by a national administrative agency (INDECOPI)...
16/03/2020
Coronavirus (Covid 19) and Business Preventive Measures
What to do today to prevent a crisis? Very few companies anticipate a crisis. Even more exceptional, is finding companies which have a prevention plan ready in time. Here are some re­com­mend­a­tions:Identi­fy...
28/08/2019
Crisis management in the midst of Operation Car Wash
Operation Car Wash (known as Lava Jato in Latin America), the largest cross-border anti-corruption investigation in Latin America, started five years ago as a routine money laundering case in the Brazilian...