Melissa B. Jacoby

Print This Page (PDF) Graham Kenan Professor of Law

Melissa B. Jacoby is the Graham Kenan Professor of Law at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and, for Spring 2016, the Robert M. Zinman Scholar for the American Bankruptcy Institute. She teaches bankruptcy, lending transactions, and contracts. In 2015, her research on corporate bankruptcy and secured credit won the Grant Gilmore Award from the American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers and the Chadbourn Award from UNC Law. She was the inaugural winner, in 2009, of the Byrd Award for teaching at UNC Law. Having conducted an in-depth study of the Detroit bankruptcy, Jacoby researches a range of issues facing financially distressed governmental units in the U.S., including Atlantic City, San Bernardino, and Puerto Rico. 

Jacoby is an elected member of the American Law Institute, the National Bankruptcy Conference, and the American College of Bankruptcy, for which she also is a member of the Board of Regents. For her professional service and pro bono law reform work, she won UNC Law's Pro Bono Publico Award for Faculty Member of the Year in 2012.  

Jacoby clerked for the Honorable Robert E. Ginsberg of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois and the Honorable Marjorie O. Rendell of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. She worked on a wide spectrum of bankruptcy policy and reform issues, principally as a staff attorney for the National Bankruptcy Review Commission. She graduated with honors from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, as well as from Penn's College of Arts and Sciences, majoring in history. 

Jacoby contributes to Credit Slips and is @melissabjacoby on Twitter.

Curriculum Vitae (PDF)

Selected Publications

Show All Publications

  • Federalism Form and Function in the Detroit Bankruptcy, 33 YALE J. ON REG. (forthcoming 2016). [SSRN]
  • Superdelegation and Gatekeeping in Bankruptcy Courts, 87 TEMP. L. REV. 875 (2015). [Westlaw, Lexis/Nexis, SSRN, Hein]
  • What Should Judges Do in Chapter 11, 2015 U. ILL. L. REV. 571 (2015). [Westlaw, Lexis/Nexis, SSRN, Hein]
  • Ice Cube Bonds: Allocating the Price of Process in Chapter 11 Bankruptcy (with E. J. Janger), 123 YALE L. J. 862 (2014). [Westlaw, Lexis/Nexis, SSRN, Hein]
  • The Detroit Bankruptcy, Pre-Eligibility, 41 FORDHAM URB. L. J. 849 (2014). [Westlaw, Lexis/Nexis, SSRN, Hein]
  • What are the Costs of Detroit's Rise from Bankruptcy?, THE CONVERSATION (Nov. 20, 2014, 5:45 AM EST). [Document Link]
  • H.R. 2533, The Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Venue Reform Act of 2011, Hearing Before the Subcommittee on Courts, Commercial and Administrative Law of the House Committee on the Judiciary (2011) (Congressional Witness Testimony). [SSRN]
  • Managing Medical Bills on the Brink of Bankruptcy (with M. Holman), 10 YALE J. HEALTH POL'Y L. & ETHICS 239 (2010). [Westlaw, Lexis/Nexis, SSRN, Hein, BEPress]
  • Ripple or Revolution? The Indeterminacy of Statutory Bankruptcy Reform, 79 AM. BANKR. L.J. 169 (2005). [Westlaw, Lexis/Nexis, SSRN, Hein, BEPress]
  • Foreclosing on Fame: Exploring the Uncharted Boundaries of the Right of Publicity, 77 N.Y.U. L. REV. 1322 (2002) (with D. Zimmerman) (reprinted in 11 J. BANKR. L. & PRAC. (2002)). [Westlaw, Lexis/Nexis, SSRN, Hein, BEPress]
UNC School of Law | Van Hecke-Wettach Hall | 160 Ridge Road, CB #3380 | Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3380 | 919.962.5106


If you are seeing this, you are either using a non-graphical browser or Netscape 4.x (4.7, 4.8, etc.) and this page appears very plain. If you are using a 4.x version of Netscape, this site is fully functional but lacks styles and optimizations available in other browsers. For full functionality, please upgrade your browser to the latest version of Internet Explorer or Firefox.