Patricia O. Vella

Partner

(302) 351-9349 T
(302) 425-4667 F

Patricia has been rated in Chambers USA for Corporate M&A in Delaware.

Patricia is a partner with the firm’s Delaware Corporate Counseling Group.  She regularly provides advice on corporate governance matters and a variety of corporate transactions for publicly traded and privately held corporations.  Patricia is often called upon to advise on mergers and acquisitions, financings, asset sales and other significant transactions.  Her work includes structuring complex transactions and often involves counseling boards of directors and board committees on their fiduciary duties and the technical aspects of Delaware corporate law.  She also provides formal legal opinions on issues involving Delaware corporate law.

Patricia is actively involved with the American Bar Association’s Mergers & Acquisitions Committee and Corporate Laws Committee, and is Vice-Chair of the Subcommittee on Acquisitions of Public Companies and Co-Chair of the Joint Task Force on Governance Issues in Business Combinations.

Patricia is a member of the Council of the Corporation Law Section of the Delaware State Bar Association and, in that capacity, participates in the annual review of, and preparation of amendments to, the Delaware General Corporation Law.  She was appointed in 2012 by the Delaware Supreme Court to serve as a member of the court’s Board on Professional Responsibility.  Patricia also frequently speaks on Delaware corporate law issues at corporate law seminars and symposia around the country, including the University of Texas Mergers & Acquisitions Institute, the Ray Garrett Jr. Corporate and Securities Law Institute, the Northwestern Law Securities Regulation Institute and The Harvard School of Law. 

She has been named by Chambers USA as a leading Delaware Corporate/M&A practitioner since 2014 and as one of the leading M&A lawyers by The International Who’s Who of Merger & Acquisition Lawyers 2014 and Who’s Who Legal: M&A and Governance 2015 and 2016. She also was selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America and Best Lawyers Business Edition’s Women in the Law for Corporate Governance Law in 2016.

Professional Activities

  • American Bar Association (Business Law Section: Corporate Laws Committee; Mergers and Acquisitions Committee; Vice-Chair, Subcommittee on Acquisitions of Public Companies; Co-Chair, Joint Task Force on Governance Issues in Business Combinations; Subcommittee on M&A Jurisprudence; Annual Survey Working Group)
  • Board on Professional Responsibility, Delaware Supreme Court
  • Delaware State Bar Association (Council of the Corporation Law Section)

News

Chambers USA 2017 Ranks Morris Nichols Band 1 in Four Delaware Practice Areas; 23 Morris Nichols Attorneys Recognized Among the Best in Delaware

Wilmington, DE (May 26, 2017) – The 2017 edition of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business again ranked Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell LLP as a Band 1 law firm in the Delaware categories for Bankruptcy/Restructuring, Chancery, Corporate M&A & Alternative Entities, and Intellectual Property. Twenty-three... Continue Reading

31 Morris Nichols Attorneys Listed in The Best Lawyers in America® 2017

Wilmington, DE (August 15, 2016) – Thirty attorneys from Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell LLP were selected for inclusion in the 2017 edition of The Best Lawyers in America®.  The results are based on peer-review evaluations from more than 79,000 eligible attorneys. Six firm attorneys earned “Lawyer of the Year” designations (noted... Continue Reading

Chambers USA 2016 Ranks Morris Nichols Band 1 in Four Delaware Practice Areas; 25 Morris Nichols Attorneys Recognized Among the Best in Delaware

Wilmington, DE (May 27, 2016) – The 2016 edition of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business again ranked Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell LLP as a Band 1 law firm in the Delaware categories for Bankruptcy/Restructuring, Chancery, Corporate M&A & Alternative Entities, and Intellectual Property. Twenty-five Morris... Continue Reading

Six Morris Nichols Partners Listed Among Best Lawyers 2016 Women in the Law

Wilmington, DE (May 3, 2016) – Six partners from Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell LLP have been included in Best Lawyers Business Edition’s list of 2016 Women in the Law. Featuring peer-nominated attorneys in 140 practice areas, the list is part of the inaugural Best Lawyers Business Edition publication, produced in collaboration with the... Continue Reading

Who’s Who Legal: M&A and Governance 2016 Names Nine Morris Nichols Attorneys

Wilmington, DE (February 8, 2016) – Nine Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell LLP partners will be listed in Who’s Who Legal: M&A and Governance 2016. Jon Abramczyk, Frederick Alexander, Melissa DiVincenzo, Andrew Johnston, William Lafferty, Kenneth Nachbar, Gil Sparks, Patricia Vella, and Jeffrey Wolters have all been identified as leaders... Continue Reading

30 Morris Nichols Attorneys Listed in The Best Lawyers in America® 2016

Wilmington, DE (August 17, 2015) – Thirty attorneys from Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell LLP were selected for inclusion in the 2016 edition of The Best Lawyers in America®. The results are based on peer-review evaluations from more than 79,000 eligible attorneys. Jack B. Blumenfeld was named the Best Lawyers® 2016... Continue Reading

Chambers USA 2015 Ranks 23 Morris Nichols Attorneys and 4 Practice Groups Among the Best in Delaware

Wilmington, DE (May 19, 2015) – The 2015 edition of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business ranked Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell LLP as a Band 1 law firm in the Delaware categories for Bankruptcy/Restructuring, Chancery, Corporate M&A & Alternative Entities, and Intellectual Property. Twenty-three... Continue Reading

Who’s Who Legal: M&A and Governance 2015 Recognizes Morris Nichols Attorneys

Wilmington, DE (May 15, 2015) – Seven Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell LLP partners have been recognized in Who’s Who Legal: M&A and Governance 2015. Through client and peer research, the independent guide evaluates hundreds of attorneys worldwide to identify leaders in the field.  The publication highlights the “considerable... Continue Reading

Chambers USA 2014 Names 21 Morris Nichols Attorneys and 4 Practice Groups as Best in Delaware

Wilmington, DE (May 23, 2014) – The 2014 edition of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business today ranked twenty-one Morris Nichols’ attorneys and four practice groups as best in Delaware.  Chambers annually conducts in-depth interviews of commercial users of legal services to assess the strengths and reputations... Continue Reading

Morris Nichols Lawyers Named in Who's Who Legal: Mergers & Acquisitions 2014

Wilmington, DE (April 16, 2014) – Four Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell lawyers, have been named in The Who’s Who Legal: Mergers & Acquisitions 2014. Frederick H. Alexander, Andrew M. Johnston, A. Gilchrist Sparks and Patricia O. Vella were named among the world’s leading mergers and acquisitions attorneys by Who’s... Continue Reading

2014 Chambers USA Directory Ranks 21 Morris Nichols Attorneys as 'Leaders in their Field"

Wilmington, DE (March, 2014) – The Firm congratulates its 21 attorneys who will be included in the 2014 Chambers USA “Leaders in their Field” legal directory by Chambers & Partners. Several practices and lawyers are recognized in more than one area. Delaware A Gilchrist Sparks III, Chancery & Corporate /M&A Derek... Continue Reading

Morris Nichols Elects Patricia Vella, John DiTomo as Partners; Katherine Betterly as Special Counsel

Wilmington, DE (January 7, 2013) – Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell LLP is pleased to announce that Patricia O. Vella and John P. DiTomo have been elected partners, and that Katherine H. Betterly has been promoted to Special Counsel, effective January 1, 2013. Rick Alexander, Chair of the firm’s Executive Committee, made the... Continue Reading

Articles

It Doesn’t Always Come Down to the Highest Dollar: Delaware Court of Chancery Upholds Board’s Decision Not to Engage in Discussions with Topping Bidder in In Re Family Dollar, Inc. Stockholder Litigation

Morris Nichols partner Patricia O. Vella and associate Elizabeth A. Hecker “present a fascinating analysis of the intersection between antitrust, attorney-client privilege, and Delaware corporate law” in this article on In Re Family...

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Events

MCLE: Governance of Corporations & LLCs in Massachusetts & Delaware: The Ins & Outs of Fiduciary Duties

5.25.2017 in Boston, MA - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Inc. hosts a program on “Governance of Corporations & LLCs in Massachusetts & Delaware: The Ins & Outs of Fiduciary Duties” on May 25, 2017 in Boston, Mass.  Morris Nichols partner Patricia Vella serves has faculty and will join fellow panelists to discuss governance requirements, including... Continue Reading

PLI’s Mergers & Acquisitions 2017: Advanced Trends and Developments

1.12.2017 through 1.13.2017 in New York, NY - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

From January 12-13, 2017, the Practising Law Institute hosts a two-day conference focusing on M&A trends and developments in New York City. On day one, Morris Nichols partner Patricia Vella participates in the panel, “Negotiating the Public Company Merger Agreement.” Moderated by Steven M. Haas (Hunton & Williams LLP), Tricia and... Continue Reading

PLI’s 48th Annual Institute on Securities Regulation

11.2.2016 through 11.4.2016 in New York, NY - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

The Practising Law Institute hosts the 48th Annual Institute on Securities Regulation from November 2-4, 2016 in New York City. This annual program brings together leading securities and corporate legal practitioners to discuss practical information, insights and real-world strategies. On day two of the conference, Morris Nichols partner Patricia... Continue Reading

UT Law’s 12th Annual Mergers and Acquisitions Institute

10.20.2016 through 10.21.2016 in Dallas, TX - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

The University of Texas School of Law hosts its 12th Annual Mergers and Acquisitions Institute from October 20-21, 2016 in Dallas, Texas. The program examines the latest deal trends, structures, pitfalls and opportunities in M&A. On Thursday, October 20, Morris Nichols partner Patricia Vella speaks in the session, “Kicking and Screaming:... Continue Reading

Delaware Law Developments 2016: What All Business Lawyers Need to Know

On August 12, 2016, the Practising Law Institute hosts its annual CLE program, “Delaware Law Developments 2016: What All Business Lawyers Need to Know.” This day-long CLE program focuses on significant Delaware corporate law developments in the past year and practical impacts on corporate or legal practice. Morris Nichols partners Lou Hering,... Continue Reading

36th Annual Ray Garett Jr. Corporate and Securities Law Institute

4.28.2016 through 4.29.2016 in Chicago, IL - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

The Northwestern Pritzker School of Law hosts the 36th Annual Ray Garrett Jr. Corporate and Securities Law Institute from April 28 to 29, 2016 in Chicago. Established in memory of Ray Garrett Jr., chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the conference draws senior officials from the SEC, private practitioners and corporate counsel... Continue Reading

PLI’s Mergers & Acquisitions 2016: Trends and Developments

1.14.2016 through 1.15.2016 in New York, NY - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

The Practising Law Institute hosts a two-day conference on M&A trends and developments from January 14-15, 2016 in New York City. Panels of top industry professionals will discuss developments and highlight specific issues through a mock board meeting and mock negotiation of select provisions in a merger agreement. On January 15, Morris... Continue Reading

PLI’s 13th Annual Directors’ Institute on Corporate Governance

11.23.2015 in New York, NY - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

On November 23, 2015, the Practising Law Institute brings together leading corporate governance directors, government officials, corporate counsel and academics for the annual Directors’ Institute on Corporate Governance in New York City. The day-long event will feature perspectives on the regulatory environment and new expectations facing boards... Continue Reading

Supreme Court Review 2014: A Discussion of Decisions at the Highest State and Federal Judicial Levels

9.30.2014 in Wilmington, DE - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

On Sept. 30, Morris Nichols partner Patricia O. Vella speaks on “Delaware Supreme Court Corporate Decisions” as part of a half-day Delaware State Bar Association CLE program. The seminar will be held in Wilmington, Del. with webcast in Georgetown, Del. Ms. Vella will discuss the most significant corporate cases decided by the Delaware... Continue Reading

CSC Interview with Vice Chancellor Laster

6.13.2014 in New York, NY - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

Morris Nichols partner Patricia O. Vella interviewed The Honorable J. Travis Laster, Vice Chancellor, Delaware Court of Chancery at a recent breakfast event hosted by the State of Delaware and the Corporation Service Company. The program took place at the University Club of New York on June 13, 2014. Vice Chancellor Laster offered his thoughts on... Continue Reading

DSBA Delaware Corporate Law: Transactional & Litigation Panel

Patricia O. Vella and James D. Honaker, Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Counseling Group partners, will serve on a Delaware State Bar Association panel titled, Recent Development in Delaware Corporate Law: Transactional & Litigation Perspectives at The Chase Center on the Riverfront in Wilmington, DE on May 22, 2014. 4.0 hours of CLE... Continue Reading

UT Law’s 36th Annual Conference on Securities Regulation and Business Law

2.14.2014 in Dallas, TX - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

Patricia O. Vella, Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group partner, will serve as a panelist for the session entitled How Recent Fiduciary Duty Cases Affect Advice to Directors and Officers of Delaware and Texas Corporations, at The University of Texas School of Law’s 36th Annual Conference on Securities Regulation and Business Law... Continue Reading

ABA Webinar: Great Hill Equity Partners and the Attorney-Client Privilege in M&A: You Mean We Sold that Too?

Morris Nichols partners John P. DiTomo and Patricia O. Vella spoke in the ABA webinar, “Great Hill Equity Partners and the Attorney-Client Privilege in M&A: You Mean We Sold that Too?” The program, hosted by the ABA Private Equity/Venture Capital Committee, focused on this significant Delaware Court of Chancery case that held under... Continue Reading

Strafford Webinar: M&A Agreements: Limitations on Contractual and Extra-Contractual Liabilities 2013

Patricia O. Vella, Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group partner, will serve as a speaker for the Strafford Webinar/Teleconference panel entitled, M&A Agreements: Limitations on Contractual and Extra-Contractual Liabilities, to be broadcast on Tuesday, December 10, 2013, 1:00 - 2:30 p.m. EST. This 90-minute CLE program will... Continue Reading

UT Law's 9th Annual Mergers and Acquisitions Institute

10.17.2013 through 10.18.2013 in Dallas, TX - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

Patricia O. Vella, Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group partner, will serve on the panel Navigating Fiduciary Duties in Private Company M&A at The University of Texas School of Law’s 9th Annual Mergers and Acquisitions Institute, October 17-18, 2013, at the Ritz-Carlton in Dallas. The panel will provide an analysis of the... Continue Reading

UT Law's 8th Annual Mergers and Acquisitions Institute

10.18.2012 through 10.19.2012 in Dallas, TX - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

Patricia O. Vella, Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group Special Counsel, will serve on the panel Developments in Seller Liability in M&A at The University of Texas School of Law’s 8th Annual Mergers and Acquisitions Institute, October 18-19, 2012, at the Ritz-Carlton in Dallas. The panel will cover highlights of recent case... Continue Reading

2012 SEC Hot Topics Institute

9.27.2012 in Houston, TX - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

Patricia O. Vella, Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group Special Counsel, will serve on the panel Key Issues in M&A at RR Donnelley’s SEC Hot Topics Institute, September 27, 2012, in Houston, Texas. The panel will cover M&A market trends, what acquirers are looking for, hostile takeover defenses, and recent Delaware... Continue Reading

Strafford Webinar: Key 2011 Delaware Rulings for M&A, Corporate Governance and Alternative Entity Practice

Patricia O. Vella will serve as a speaker for the Strafford webinar/teleconference entitled, “Key 2011 Delaware Rulings for M&A, Corporate Governance and Alternative Entity Practice,” broadcast on May 24, 2012. The 90-minute program will provide guidance to corporate and deal counsel on applying the principles from key 2011 Delaware court... Continue Reading

2012 SEC Hot Topics Institute

5.17.2012 in Minneapolis, MN - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

Patricia O. Vella, Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group Special Counsel, will serve on the panel M&A Update 2012 at RR Donnelley’s annual SEC Hot Topics Institute, May 17, 2012, at the IDS Center in Minneapolis. The panel will cover M&A market trends, recent Delaware law developments, prevailing deal terms, and... Continue Reading

2012 ABA Business Law Section Spring Meeting

3.22.2012 through 3.24.2012 in Las Vegas, NV - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella, Frederick H. Alexander

Rick Alexander, Morris Nichols corporate law and M&A partner, will serve as program moderator, and Patricia O. Vella, Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group Special Counsel, will serve as a panelist, for the session entitled The Ins and Outs of Topping Bids:  Maneuvering Through Deal Protection Terms,at the ABA Business Law... Continue Reading

ABA Webinar: Negotiating the Termination Provisions in a Public Company Acquisition Agreement

Patricia O. Vella, Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group Special Counsel, will serve as a faculty panelist for the American Bar Association (ABA) Business Law Section CLE Teleconference/Webcast entitled, Negotiating the Termination Provisions in a Public Company Acquisition Agreement, on March 6, 2012, 2:30 PM Eastern... Continue Reading

The University of Texas School of Law's 34th Annual Conference on Securities Regulation and Business Law

2.10.2012 in Dallas, TX - Corporate Counseling
Patricia O. Vella

Patricia O. Vella, Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group Special Counsel, will serve as a panelist for the session entitled How Recent Fiduciary Duty Cases Affect Advice to Directors and Officers of Delaware and Texas Corporations, at The University of Texas School of Law’s 34th Annual Conference on Securities Regulation and... Continue Reading

Strafford Webinar: M&A Agreements: Limitations on Contractual and Extra-Contractual Liabilities 2011

Patricia Vella will serve as a faculty panelist for the Strafford Publications webinar entitled “M&A Agreements: Limitations on Contractual and Extra-Contractual Liabilities—Crafting Exclusive Remedy, Extra-Contractual Representation Waiver, and Other Provisions to Protect Sellers” on Nov. 15, 2011.  The panel will address ways to limit... Continue Reading

2011 ABA Business Law Section Spring Meeting

A. Gilchrist Sparks III,  Rick Alexander, Lou Hering, Patricia Vella, and Eric Wilensky will serve as panel speakers at the American Bar Association (ABA) Business Law Section Spring Meeting in Boston, April 14-16, 2011. Gil will serve as a Session Co-Chair on the program What’s New in the Revised Corporate Director’s Guidebook.... Continue Reading

ALI-ABA Webinar: Contractual Limitations on Seller Liability in M&A and Other Transactions

Patricia Vella will serve as a faculty panelist in an American Law Institute - American Bar Association (ALI-ABA) Seminar national webcast on Jan. 20, 2011. The 90-minute program, “Contractual Limitations on Seller Liability in M&A and Other Transactions,” will include a live Q&A session and covered recent case law and practitioner... Continue Reading

ABA Webinar: Creating Contractual Limitations on Seller Liability that Work Post-Closing: Avoiding Serious Pitfalls in Domestic and International Deals

Morris Nichols Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group Special Counsel Patricia Vella will serve as a panelist in an American Bar Association (ABA) Business Law Section CLE Teleconference/Webcast on June 16, 2010. The 90 minute program, Creating Contractual Limitations on Seller Liability that Work Post-Closing: Avoiding Serious Pitfalls in... Continue Reading

2010 ABA Business Law Section Spring Meeting

A. Gilchrist Sparks III, Morris Nichols Corporate Litigation and Corporate Law Counseling Group Of Counsel and Best Lawyers 2010 Delaware Lawyer of the Year in Mergers & Acquisitions Law, Lou Hering, Commercial Law Counseling Group Partner, and Patricia Vella, Delaware Corporate Law Counseling Group Special Counsel, will serve as panel speakers... Continue Reading