- LL.B (Hons) National University of Singapore (1994)
- Admitted to the Singapore Bar (1995)
Kelvin read law at the National University in Singapore, and joined Drew & Napier following graduation.
Kelvin has an active practice in litigation and international arbitration. He also co-heads the Employment and Hotels and Leisure Practices.
He has litigated complex commercial disputes in a wide range of areas, including insurance, intellectual property, fraud and breach of fiduciary duties, international arbitration, investment and shareholder disputes, and trusts.
He has represented clients in international arbitrations under various institutional rules such as the SIAC, ICC, LCIA, AIAC, and UNCITRAL rules.
These are a few notable matters Kelvin has handled:
- US$120 million smartphone dispute – Represented a listed electronics manufacturer in an SIAC arbitration against a European principal in disputes arising from development and manufacturing agreements for a new smartphone, involving cross-claims relating to the design and manufacture of smartphone handsets and software applications.
- Represented a leading insurer in termination of a bancassurance agreement – Obtained an award for an international insurer against a bank denying a claim in excess of $10 million, which followed the termination of a long-term bancassurance distribution agreement.
- US$80 million joint venture dispute – Successfully represented a leading European business software house in an SIAC arbitration against its South Asian joint venture partner, arising out of a failed joint venture.
- Online game publishing dispute – Represented a North Asian developer of a massively multiplayer online game in an arbitration constituted under the ICC Rules against its publisher in a claim for unlawful termination of a software publishing contract.
- US$60 million OEM contract dispute – Acted for a component manufacturer in an LCIA arbitration against a European principal in respect of disputes over an OEM contract for telecommunications transmission products.
Employment: Domestic - Singapore 2023 – Band 3 for 3 consecutive years
Employment: Domestic - Singapore 2020 – Recognised Practitioner for 3 consecutive years
Dispute Resolution: Litigation - Singapore 2020 – Recognised Practitioner for 4 consecutive years
"Kelvin understands the client's needs and priorities. He is able to break down issues and address risks with a practical and client-friendly approach."
One client praises Kelvin for his "knowledge of employment legislation, referencing case laws around the world and applying it to our matters."
Another client describes Kelvin as "cool, calm and decisive."
Best Lawyers International: Singapore
Arbitration and Mediation 2023 – Endorsed Individual for 4 consecutive years
The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific
Employment 2023 – Recommended Lawyer for 8 consecutive years
Dispute Resolution 2023 – Recommended lawyer
International Arbitration 2022 – Recommended Lawyer
asialaw Leading Lawyers
Labour and Employment 2023 – Distinguished Practitioner for 4 consecutive years
“Kelvin takes responsibility for his lawyers and their work. He is pleasant and effective in court trials as a senior litigation lawyer, and he and his team are not only legally competent, but practical and helpful in meeting our needs in their advice and solutions offered.”
Kelvin is praised for being “client-focused, knowledgeable with practical solutions, accessible and responsive, understands the client's needs and expectations”.
“Kelvin has the qualities that in-house legal teams look for in external counsel: technical proficiency, thoroughness and a keen appreciation of commercial sensitivities. He delivers sound and carefully considered advice, which demonstrates a deft balance of legal technicalities and commercial strategy.”
Benchmark Litigation Asia-Pacific
Labour and Employment 2023 – Litigation Star for 2 consecutive years
Who’s Who Legal
Global Guide: Labour & Employment 2023 – Leading Lawyer for 2 consecutive years
Global Guide: Hospitality 2022 – Leading Lawyer
National Guide: Southeast Asia - Labour, Employment & Benefits 2023 – Leading Lawyer for 2 consecutive years
National Guide: Southeast Asia - Commercial Litigation 2023 – Leading Lawyer
“Kelvin Tan is highly esteemed for his outstanding track-record resolving complex employment disputes in both arbitration and litigation proceedings.”
“Kelvin Tan earns plaudits for his impressive experience advising and representing hospitality clients across the spectrum of domestic and international matters.”
- Assessor, Panel of Assessors for COVID-19 Temporary Relief, Ministry of Law
- Member, Admissions Committee of the Law Society
- Member, Law Society Inquiry Panel
- Member, Law Society of Singapore
- Member, Singapore Academy of Law