Joel CHNG is a Partner in the Restructuring & Insolvency and Special Situations Advisory Practices.

His main areas of practice are litigation and arbitration, involving banking and commercial transactions, corporate and shareholder disputes, restructuring and insolvency. On the restructuring and insolvency front, Joel acts for corporate debtors, turnaround professionals and investors.

Joel was placed on the Supreme Court's Young Amicus Curiae 2013 list, and was appointed amicus curiae in Kee Lek Choan v PP (MA No. 8 of 2014) and Mohammed Ibrahim s/o Hamzah v PP ([2015] 1 SLR 1081) (where a three-Judge coram of the High Court commended him for having provided "invaluable assistance").

Joel is also active in various other programmes and organisations. These include:

  • Being a facilitator for the preparatory course of the Singapore Bar Examinations run by the Singapore Institute of Legal Education, one of the course convenors for the Restructuring and Insolvency module at Singapore Management University (a course co-organised by SMU and the Insolvency Practitioners Association of Singapore (“IPAS”)), and a tutor for the trial advocacy module at National University of Singapore Faculty of Law;
  • Volunteering with the Criminal Legal Aid Scheme. Reported matters in this regard include PP v Haliffie Bin Mamat [2015] SGHC 224 (where the High Court commended the defence for being "well-prepared and thorough in presenting the defence") and Haliffie Bin Mamat v PP [2016] 5 SLR 636;  
  • Contributing to the 2016 edition of Lexis Practical Guidance Singapore - Dispute Resolution, the 2015 edition of the Singapore Precedents of Pleadings, and the 2021 edition of Singapore Civil Procedure; and
  • Being a Fellow of IPAS, a member of the Young Insolvency Practitioners Committee 2021 of IPAS, and a member of the Law Society of Singapore’s Insolvency Practice Committee 2022.  

Joel graduated from the National University of Singapore on the overall Dean's List, and was awarded the Peter English Memorial Prize for being the best student in Criminal Law, and the Law Society Book Prize. Joel is admitted to the Singapore Bar.

Matters of significance in which Joel has been involved in include acting/advising for the following:

  • The judicial managers of Xihe Holdings in the restructuring of the Xihe Holdings group of companies.
  • Far East Mining Pte. Ltd. ("FEM") in its defence against a claim by Axis Megalink Sdn Bhd (“Axis”) for a sum payable under an alleged introducer agreement in respect of a reverse takeover by FEM of a SGX-listed company, China Bearing Limited, and in its counterclaim against Axis and other parties for, among others, fraudulent misrepresentation.
  • EMAS Chiyoda Subsea Limited and its subsidiaries on their cross-border restructuring of debt in excess of S$1 billion.
  • Takashimaya Singapore Ltd in its dispute with Ngee Ann Development Pte Ltd over the proper construction of the parties' agreement for rent review.
  • A bank in an SIAC arbitration against a collateral management company for breach of contract and/or negligence in respect of pledged goods.
  • Court-appointed receivers and managers of Airtrust (Singapore) Pte. Ltd. which is in the business of oil and gas logistics services, oil well maintenance, steel fabrication and construction, in various proceedings involving allegations of breaches of directors' duties, transnational fraud, money laundering and tax evasion in the region of S$100 million.

Related Practices

  • China
  • Restructuring & Insolvency
  • Special Situations Advisory

Joel was recognised as one of the winners for Lawyer of the Year (Client Service Excellence) for Singapore in the asialaw Awards 2021. Joel has also been ranked as a Notable Practitioner in the area of restructuring and insolvency by both IFLR1000 – The Guide to the World's Leading Financial Law Firms and Asialaw Leading Lawyers – The Guide to Asia-Pacific's Leading Lawyers, and an “Up and Coming” lawyer in the area of restructuring and insolvency in Chambers Asia-Pacific – Asia-Pacific's Leading Lawyers for Business.

Joel’s expertise has been recognised by Chambers Asia-Pacific – Asia-Pacific's Leading Lawyers for Business where he has been noted for being "sound in his advice, which is very careful but also commercial." He has also been highlighted for being "extremely user friendly and consistently on point in his legal advice." by The Legal 500: Asia Pacific – The Client's Guide to the Asia Pacific Legal Profession.

In feedback from IFLR1000, Joel has been described as having expertise "on handling regulatory issues and dealing with authorities, sales and purchase agreements, term sheets, and handling creditor groups". He has also been described as a "good lawyer; provides innovative solutions and is client-focused", and "very approachable and an effective communicator. Displays tactical acumen - ability to think and advise over and above just the legal issues. Ability to not only look at the strategic picture but also is comfortable across the day-to-day details."