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Funes De Rioja & Asociados is not only a ‘“go-to" employment firm’ but also ‘peerless in the market’, according to many. The dedicated employment and labour boutique fields 12 partners specialised in the area, which translates into a ‘broad team with expertise across the full range of employment matters’. Founding partner Daniel Funes de Rioja is a ‘master in the area’ and is the key name in a group that also includes collective bargaining expert Ignacio Funes de Rioja, Ernesto Argüello Bavio and the ‘very experienced’ Ignacio Capurro. Among its recent work, the group advised a multinational financial institution on a collective bargaining agreement with the banking union. On the contentious side, it represented over 300 clients in 1800 new claims before the labour courts. It has also recently advised a string of major corporations on the employment aspects of sizeable M&A transactions and restructurings.

Regarded by some as a ‘leader in the employment area’, Marval, O'Farrell & Mairal scores highly for its ‘personalised service that emphasises the good treatment of the client’ and for being ‘among the few firms with the resources (logistic and human) to handle any type of labour conflict’. Certainly, the firm has a diverse practice, with strength in general compliance issues, restructuring, collective bargaining, compensation programmes, transactional support matters and litigation. Among the names to note, department head Javier Patrón is a ‘strong negotiator with great common sense’, Enrique Stile is an ‘exceptional lawyer, who consistently impresses’ and younger partner Diego Kelly is a ‘pleasure to work with and provides concise and pragmatic advice’. In a complex piece of litigation, the firm represented Ipsos Argentina in an employment case brought by a former owner and regional CEO. It also advised Verizon on the employment matters arising from its sale of assets to Globant and subsequent employee terminations.

Adrogué Marqués Zabala & Asociados’ exclusive focus on employment and labour relations translates into a ‘highly specialised practice’ with a ‘strong reputation for sophisticated employment services’. Founding partner Javier Adrogué is highly regarded for his strength in corporate counselling, while José Antonio Zabala has a solid track record in restructuring-related labour matters, as well as staff compensation and benefit policies. The firm also houses a very capable employment litigation practice.

The ‘very good team’ at Baker McKenzie provides ‘high-quality responses in a timely manner’ under the direction of ‘very accurate senior professionals’. Experienced specialist Carlos Dodds heads the group and recently advised a telecoms multinational on the closure of its local operations. Daniel Orlansky is valued for his ability to provide ‘quick and practical answers’ and represented a company in a significant employment compensation claim brought by a board member. The team also draws on the expertise of Diego Bongiovanni, Alberto González and Matías Herrero – all of whom maintain broad employment and labour practices. AstraZeneca, DuPont Pioneer and Superior Energy Services are among its key clients.

Beccar Varela commands respect for its ‘great balance between straight communication and its outstanding understanding of the litigation specifics’. In addition to being a ‘top choice for strategic employment litigation’, the team also handles policy issues, strategy development, corporate support matters and collective bargaining negotiations. The ‘very knowledgeable’ Alvaro Galli leads the practice and recently advised Carraro Argentina on a high-profile restructuring involving the dismissal of 130 unionised workers, as well as on its subsequent negotiations with mechanical union, SMATA. Seasoned specialist and advisory partner Gaspar Aguirre is also recommended, along with senior associate María Carolina Muriago.

The ‘very good group’ at Mitrani, Caballero & Ruiz Moreno receives high ratings for its ‘strong knowledge and excellent professionals’. In particular, group head Julio Caballero is highlighted for his ‘technical strength’, while Jorge Pico is ‘highly strategic’. The team has notable expertise in collective bargaining, policy issues, the hiring and termination of employees, litigation, and the expatriation and relocation of employees – it also regularly advises on multi-jurisdictional matters. Recent work includes advising Siderca on the negotiation of collective-bargaining agreements with the Argentine Metallurgical Workers’ Union and the Argentine Metal-Mechanical Supervisors’ Association, involving about 4000 employees.

Employment and labour specialists Rodríguez, Mancini, Arias & Asociados enjoys a prominent reputation in the area due to the strong profile of name partner Jorge Rodríguez Mancini, who is widely lauded as a ‘leading light’. Fellow co-founder Juan Manuel Arias is also an eminent name in the market. The firm regularly acts for both employers and employees in complex labour litigation, but it also packs a punch in collective bargaining negotiations and transactional support matters.

Aquino Baez Abogadospunches well above its weight in the employment area’, according to sources who highlight the compact firm as a ‘knowledgeable and experienced outfit’. Marcelo Aquino is a ‘strong authority on labour law’ and handles a wide spread of employment and employee benefit matters, including collective bargaining agreements, union negotiations and employment litigation. Profertil, Volkswagen and Zurich are all on the firm’s books.

Employment boutique Balado Bevilacqua Abogados provides ‘remarkably business-oriented advice’, say admiring clients who also praise its ‘personalised attention and problem-solving approach’. Although only established in 2012, the firm benefits from the top-level employment experience of ‘outstanding’ firm founder Mercedes Balado Bevilacqua, who is highlighted as ‘agile, professional and dedicated’. The arrival of ‘very talented and business-oriented’ Analía Durán, who joined in 2017 from Allende & Brea, adds further firepower. The firm provides ongoing labour advice to Michael Page International Argentina. Other representative clients include Facebook, Fortuna Silver Mines and Universal Music Argentina.

Brons & Salas’ labour and employment practice, which is led by sector specialist Javier Verstegen, leverages its full-service capabilities to handle a comprehensive spread of transactional, consultative and contentious labour matters. The firm particularly shines in trade union relations, but it also has strength in M&A-related matters and strategic litigation.

The labour practice at full-service heavyweight Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi has a strong record in high-end employment litigation. It also handles general compliance issues, collective bargaining, corporate support matters and occupational health and safety. The firm advises DirecTV Argentina, Construtora Norberto Odebrecht and Tetrapak on day-to-day matters as well as all administrative and judicial labour claims. Group head Nilo Thomas is recommended.

Carlos Marín’s team at Bulló Abogados attracts praise for its ‘strong dedication and excellent service’. Well known for its expertise in collective bargaining agreements, the team also handles compliance issues, transactional matters and a significant volume of judicial litigation. Among recent matters, it advised Telefónica Argentina, Louis Dreyfus and Asociación Argentina de Compañías de Seguros in the renewal of their collective bargaining agreements. On the contentious side, it represented HSBC Bank Argentina in several judicial claims. Other representative clients include Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard Argentina and YPF.

A ‘top-notch boutiqueDe Diego & Asociados has ‘strong expertise in employment litigation’, according to sources. The firm also has a solid reputation for M&A-related issues, collective bargaining agreements, audits and social security and tax matters. Julián de Diego is an ‘absolute specialist in the area’ and heads a team that acts for major national and multinational companies from a diverse spread of sectors, including the automotive, life sciences, energy and natural resources and food and beverage industries. Highlights included advising General Motors and the Union of Mechanical Workers on an agreement covering crisis procedures, restructuring and productive improvement.

M & M Bomchil’s group is led by recommended labour specialist Federico Basile, with experienced senior associate Edgardo Isola providing capable backup. Among the group’s recent transactional work, it advised Viacom on the labour and social security aspects of its acquisition of Telefónica’s interests in, among other local entities, Telefe – as well as on the drafting of new letters of employment for the top management. On the contentious side, it advised Sodexo on labour issues related to the termination of its service agreement with Enap Sipetrol Argentina. Other representative clients include Air France, Axa Assistance and Havanna.

The team at Pérez Alati, Grondona, Benites, Arntsen & Martínez De Hoz, Jr is active across a broad range of transactional support matters, collective bargaining agreements, compliance issues, immigration and employment litigation. Enrique Betemps is a key contact and handles both litigious and contentious matters; notably, he successfully represented Posnet in a claim brought by the Argentina Federation of Travelling Agents of the Argentine Republic and the Association of Travelling Sellers of the Argentine Republic of Industry, Commerce and Services, which sought payment of contributions equivalent to 2% of employees salaries. Google, Robert Bosch and United Airlines are also key clients.

Alfaro-Abogados advised CPTDC, and other Chinese clients, on the labour aspects of the establishment of their operations in Argentina. The team has also recently handled collective bargaining agreements, ongoing compliance matters and labour law claims. Senior associate María Paola Trigiani is recommended.

At Allende & Brea, Nicolás Grandi is the key contact for employment law and is highlighted as ‘extremely effective’. The practice is well balanced between contentious and non-contentious matters and in an example of the former, it represented a local insurance company in a complex employee compensation-related claim. On the non-contentious side, it advised CSL Behring on its employee retirement plan. In 2017, senior associate Analía Durán left to join Balado Bevilacqua Abogados.

Allende & Ferrante has solid experience in employment matters under the leadership of Gustavo Ferrante, who has a good record in a broad array of employment, social security and immigration matters. Recent work includes advising the Argentina Chamber of Fast Food Establishments for Sandwich and Related Products on the annual negotiation of salaries in the fast-food business.

Beretta Godoy’s recent caseload included assisting Toyota Boshoku with the review of its employment compliance processes; it also advised Allergan Productos Farmacéuticos on the restructuring process arising from its acquisition of Actavis and merger with Teva Pharmaceutical Industries. Joaquín Carrillo heads a department that also counts Huawei, MFC Resources and Sodex as clients.

Estudio O'Farrell provides ‘robust and business savvy advice’ under the leadership of department head José Luis Zapata, who ‘really knows the law’. The group also includes ‘very smart’ senior associate Ignacio Agustín Castiglione, who has ‘strong business sense and great availability’. The team’s expertise spans collective bargaining agreements, M&A-related matters and employment litigation, particularly for clients within the energy and insurance industries. Highlights included advising Petrobras Argentina on the labour aspects of its merger with Pampa Energía, including union negotiations.

At Estudio Ortiz & Asociados, group lead Esteban Carcavallo is recommended for his broad experience encompassing collective bargaining negotiations, employment litigation and M&A-related matters. Recent work includes advising a multinational company on the labour aspects of the closure of its operations in Argentina. The department’s client roster also includes the Argentine Polo Association, IBM Argentina and Lend Lease (Argentina).

Wiener Soto Caparrós acts for an impressive list of national and multinational corporations on employment matters. Most notably, it represents Embotelladora del Atlántico, the Argentine subsidiary of Coca-Cola Andina, on its employment litigation portfolio, which involved the management and supervision of 24 employment disputes in 2016. McCain Argentina, Nomacorc and Regus are also key clients. Gonzalo Soto heads the team.

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