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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In Europe, Middle East and Africa, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for seven consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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Austria > Dispute resolution: commercial litigation > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Dispute resolution: commercial litigation
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next Generation Partners

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

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Praised for its 'great handling of difficult situations', Binder Grösswang's sizeable, 'highly motivated, pragmatic and reliable' team has a fine reputation for representing financial institutions in proceedings against investors; it is defending Erste Bank Group against class actions and mass claims brought by investors pertaining to the insolvency of Alpine Group. Other key areas of expertise include commercial and IT-related disputes alongside private enforcement proceedings, while team head Christian Klausegger has been handling an increasing number of insurance coverage disputes for insured entities and insurers. Stefan Albiez stands out for his 'broad and in-depth knowledge' and 'fantastic problem-solving skills'.

Dorda Rechtsanwalte GmbH's contentious work frequently includes white-collar criminal defence issues and is based on three pillars: Florian Kremslehner heads the commercial and corporate litigation team and the overall dispute resolution department, which consists of 'bright and talented' lawyers; the 'pragmatic' Felix Hörlsberger is the main contact for insurance defence litigation; and Bernhard Rieder is the name to note for class actions. In recent work, Hörlsberger acted for Chubb as D&O insurer for the Austrian manufacturer Facc in D&O litigation and Rieder represented real estate company Atrium in a civil action brought by over 700 former shareholders. Stephan Steinhofer is another key member of the team. Thomas Voppichler joined KNOETZL HAUGENEDER NETAL in 2018.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer acts for an extensive roster of national and international corporate and finance clients, for which it handles various commercial and corporate disputes, including criminal proceedings and follow-on cartel claims. Team head Thomas Kustor is acting for Volkswagen in a dispute pertaining to NOx and CO2-emission issues, and, together with the office in Düsseldorf and colleagues from various other departments, the practice is also representing Airbus Defence and Space in ongoing criminal proceedings conducted by the Austrian prosecution office.

Dispute resolution firm KNOETZL HAUGENEDER NETAL covers the gamut of civil and criminal litigation and places significant focus on liability claims alongside corporate, commercial and investor-state disputes. Its broad offering is matched by an equally sizeable team, which was further strengthened by the arrival of senior counsel and construction litigation expert Valentina Spatz from Schima Mayer Starlinger Rechtsanwälte GmbH and counsel Thomas Voppichler from Dorda Rechtsanwalte GmbH in 2018, as well as counsel Oliver Loksa from Binder Grösswang in September 2017. Other key members of Bettina Knoetzl's team include corporate litigator Katrin Hanschitz, damage claims specialist Judith Schacherreiter and counsel Natascha Tunkel, who is experienced in the enforcement of foreign judgments and internal investigations. Teresa Bogensberger left in December 2017 to work independently.

Cerha Hempel has a strong profile for contentious construction and trust-related matters alongside shareholder and post-M&A disputes. Practice head and 'excellent negotiator' Irene Welser represented Asfinag in three separate but connected proceedings against a construction conglomerate pertaining to insolvency-related and commercial issues. Michaela Siegwart, who was appointed senior counsel alongside Susanne Molitoris in October 2017, acted for Wiener Linien in a dispute with a contractor. Other clients include Immovate, Die Erste Leasing Immobilienverwaltungs- und vermietungsgesellschaft and Spar.

At CMS, co-head Daniela Karollus-Bruner is well equipped to guide clients through insurance-related litigation but the team also handles other commercial and corporate litigation work. Karollus-Bruner assisted Quantum Insurance with proceedings pertaining to a life insurance product and, together with fellow co-head Johannes Reich-Rohrwig, acted for Austrian Airlines in several proceedings including a dispute pertaining to capital increase payments.

Acting for various Austrian and international banks, DLA Piper Weiss-Tessbach stands out for its expertise in financial services sector disputes, including negative interest proceedings and those at the intersection with white-collar criminal defence and also represents clients in investigations. Claudine Vartian and David Christian Bauer are the main contacts.

At Schoenherr (Schönherr Rechtsanwälte), the team is led by Christoph Lindinger and focuses on representing clients in damage claims and general commercial litigation but also acts in product liability claims and insolvency-related matters. In corporation with its corporate practice, Andreas Natterer defended the wind-down company immigon portfolioabbau against four claims brought by various companies of the Vienna Insurance Group seeking security for unsecured bonds. Maximilian Raschhofer and Klara Kiehl were promoted to counsel in February 2018.

Wolf Theiss Rechtsanwalte GmbH & CoKG's 'highly motivated, diligent and cost-effective' team receives regular instructions from financial institutions and corporates to act in financial disputes, including those at the intersection with white-collar crime and internal investigations, alongside various commercial and corporate disputes. Team head Clemens Trauttenberg represented the National Bank Trust in a claim against an Austrian financial institution arising from various, allegedly fraudulent, transactions. Other key members include Holger Bielesz, Valerie Hohenberg and Eva Spiegel.

Baker McKenzie • Diwok Hermann Petsche Rechtsanwälte LLP & Co KG is experienced in post-M&A disputes and litigation arising from financial distress, restructuring and insolvency proceedings, while also handling various banking disputes. Team head Alexander Petsche and Filip Boras represented MBI & Partners U.K. and the affiliated JJW Hotel & Resorts in 16 proceedings before Austrian courts pertaining to a failed luxury hotel project and the sale of a premium shopping centre in Vienna.

Brandl & Talos Rechtsanwälte GmbH has carved out a strong practice acting for banking and finance sector players in proceedings pertaining to the alleged provision of negligent advice on financial products and closed-end funds, while also handling contentious matters at the intersection of corporate and capital markets law, including those involving white-collar crime allegations. The team, which is led by senior associate Christian Lenz and Ernst Brandl, has deep expertise in proceedings against consumer protection associations.

Fellner Wratzfeld & Partners acts for corporates and banks in disputes over mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, financing and capital market transactions alongside insolvency and employment-related matters and also handles class-action suits and internal investigations. Gregor Schett heads the team, which includes Markus Fellner.

Graf & Pitkowitz acts for clients across various industries, including technology, financial services, construction and the public sector and also represents private clients. In a technology sector highlight, practice head Nikolaus Pitkowitz is leading a team acting for Facebook Ireland in data protection litigation, defending the client against a class action brought by Austrian author Maximilian Schrems.

Saxinger, Chalupsky & Partners (SCWP Schindhelm) has a strong regional presence in Upper Austria and frequently acts for clients in various commercial and corporate disputes, including those at the intersection with white-collar crime and antitrust law alongside IP, employment and construction law. Hanno Liebmann is acting for Tobaccoland Handels and JTI Austria in proceedings against the Republic of Austria pertaining to the Tobacco Monopoly Act. Markus Fellner heads the team, which includes 2018 arrival Fabian Hanz; Hanz previously worked independently.

The 'very responsive' team at Vavrovsky Heine Marth Rechtsanwälte is 'young and dynamic and yet very experienced'. It is 'very market savvy' and delivers 'high-quality work in a timely manner'. 'Remarkable trial lawyer' Dieter Heine 'provides excellent advice with economic consequences in mind' and frequently acts in IP, IT and media law disputes, while the 'reliable and strategic' Philipp Strasser is 'an excellent insurance litigator, who is always on top of the facts and connects the dots quickly'. Nikolaus Vavrovsky, who focuses on real estate, construction and infrastructure-related work, is another key contact.

bpv Hügel handles contractual disputes, takeover defence and private enforcement matters but the team, which is led by Florian Neumayr, is also experienced in product liability, construction and competition-related litigation.

Brauneis Klauser Prändl Rechtsanwälte GmbH's 'reliable and efficient' team is best known for its presence in consumer protection cases, representing individuals and groups, but it also handles IP, insolvency and employment-related disputes, among others. Clients include financial institutions, manufacturers and consultancy firms. The 'highly recommended' Alexander Klauser, Bernhard Girsch and the 'innovative and analytical' Gerald Otto are the main contacts.

At DSC Doralt Seist Csoklich Rechtsanwälte GmbH, the team is jointly led by Peter Csoklich and Raimund Bollenberger and has particular experience in corporate and banking-related litigation.

KWR Karasek Wietrzyk Rechtsanwälte GmbH's construction law prominence translates into a steady flow of sector-specific contentious mandates but the team also acts for clients from other industries. Practice head Thomas Frad recently represented a construction company in two court proceedings against a property developer over the termination of a contract and subsequent payment issues.

Recognised for its 'profound knowledge', PHH Rechtsanwälte represents clients in commercial, corporate and financial litigation and has been increasingly active in shareholder disputes, while also handling proceedings involving white-collar crime such as cybercrime and business espionage allegations. Stefan Prochaska, who jointly heads the team with Mathias Preuschl, has 'a brilliant track record' and acted for the founders of the real estate company Wienwert Group in a payment dispute with its board of directors.

Taylor Wessing Austria focuses on cross-border corporate and commercial litigation alongside contentious IP, unfair competition and trade mark work. In recent work, Martin Prohaska-Marchried represented A1 Telekom Austria in unfair competition proceedings. Wolfgang Kapek jointly heads the team with Dieter Natlacen.

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Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments in Austria

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • THE NATIONAL REGULATION ON THE SECURITY OF "NIS" IN AUSTRIA SHOULD BE OF INTEREST TO YOU

    Good things come to those who wait? Finally, the main implementing regulation for the Austrian Law on Network and Information System Security ( Netz- und Informationssystemsicherheitsgesetz , " NISG ") was published last week. It serves primarily to define which companies are actually affected by the NISG. Now it is getting serious for the operators of " essential services ". What does that mean?
    - Dorda
  • "BLACK FRIDAY" - NOW FREELY USABLE FOR PROMOTIONS IN AUSTRIA

    Black Friday is unquestionable one of the most profitable and busiest days of the year for retail, particularly online. Worldwide almost all online store do offer sales or special promotions on Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Already after this practice has established online, a trademark for " BLACK FRIDAY " was registered in Germany back in 2013. In 2016 a Chinese company acquired the trademark and then filed in 2017 for its extension to Austria. Based on the registered trademark, it granted exclusive rights to an Austrian company, which licensed usage rights to various partner stores against remuneration. Further, an exclusive " Black Friday-Cooperation Program " was established. Non-partners who used the event name or trademark were prosecuted and requested to either pay a license fee or refrain from running Black Friday promotions. Some followed the request and entered into license agreements. Some, however, did challenge the validity of the trademark. Finally, respective proceedings to check the actual protection of the trademark were initiated. Austrian courts now held that the trademark " BLACK FRIDAY " is not protected in Austria .
    - Dorda
  • AUSTRIA: ANONYMISATION ACCEPTED AS VALID DATA DELETION METHOD

    On 5th December 2018, the Austrian data protection authority ( Datenschutzbehörde , "DSB") issued a decision (DSB-D123.270/0009-DSB/2018) on data subject's right to data deletion according to Art 17 GDPR. In a nutshell, the DSB accepted consistent anonymisation as a valid alternative to physical and technical deletion. Beside the clear statement that anonymous data is not subject to the GDPR, the DSB provided detailed information on (technical) requirements of anonymisation methods:
    - Dorda
  • Consent or pay – a valid scheme under the GDPR?

    Media companies throughout Europe struggle with a difficult economic environment: Shrinking sales figures for print products, the digitalisation and consumer demand force publishers to offer their content also on the internet. However, generating money for online publications is not quite easy as – at least in Austria – online subscription against renumeration has not been well accepted by customers. This partially has its root in the lack of suitable micropayment means in the past and users thus getting acquainted to online information being offered for free. Thus, publishers have instead focused on financing their platforms by online marketing activities such as placement of banners. Nowadays such digital advertisement is usually targeted to the specific user. For this purpose, cookies are stored on the user's computer upon his first visit of the website, which then collect data about his location, technical equipment used and online behaviour. This finally allows to display specific, user targeted advertisements. However, such cookies may cause issues with applicable consent requirements under the telecommunication and data protection regulations:
    - Dorda
  • fwp expands know-how thanks to new junior partner

    Vienna, March 2019. Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner GmbH (fwp) adds valuable competence and expertise to the team by welcoming Pavel Bachleda in its midst as a new attorney-at-law and junior partner.
  • fwp helps find a new mega arena location

    fwp helps find a new mega arena location
  • AUSTRIAN DATA PROTECTION AUTHORITY ISSUED THE "BLACK LIST"

    Processing operations subject to the requirement of a data protection impact assessment.
    - Dorda
  • Rien ne va plus!

     
    - Dorda
  • DORDA advises on the acquisition of Austrian office properties Denk Drei

    Stefan Artner , Partner and Head of the Real Estate Practice Group, and real estate attorney Klaus Pfeiffer of DORDA advised Austrian Real Estate Development GmbH ( ARE , a subsidiary of Bundesimmobilien-Gesellschaft, the Austrian privatization agency) on the acquisition of the Denk Drei office properties from IC Development . The successful closing of the forward purchase transaction took place on April 30, 2018. The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price.
    - Dorda
  • Austrian "White List"

    Exceptions from the OBLIGATION TO CARRY OUT A data protection impact assessment
    - Dorda

Press Releases in Austria

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to
  • fwp extends its expertise by appointing a new junior partner from its own ranks

    Vienna, September 2018. Motivated and energetic - this is how the new junior partner of Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner (fwp) presents himself. One of Austria’s leading law firms acclaims Clemens Gabriel’s new status as attorney-at-law registered since 19 September 2018.
  • fwp strengthens areas of competence by appointing a new junior partner from its own ranks.

    Vienna, September 2018. Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner (fwp) adds valuable competence and expertise to the team by promoting Michael Froner to junior partner.
  • Slovakia: Schoenherr advises AlbĂ©a on the acquisition of Scandolara Slovakia

    Schoenherr Bratislava has advised the Albéa group ("Albéa") on the acquisition of 100 % of the shares in SCANDOLARA TUB-EST, s.r.o. ("Scandolara"), a Slovak subsidiary of the Italian Scandolara Group, which produces laminate tubes. read more...
  • Schoenherr assists Republic of Austria in offer to HETA-creditors

    On Friday, 2 September 2016, the Austrian Finance Minister has given the green light to finance a public offer by Kärntner Ausgleichszahlungs-Fonds (KAF) to HETA creditors pursuant to § 2a of the Austrian Financial Market Stability Act. The offer will implement the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) concluded in May 2016 between the Austrian Minister of Finance and a significant number of creditors of debt instruments issued by HETA ASSET RESOLUTION AG (HETA) that are subject to a regional law deficiency guarantee. The offer will be published by KAF on Tuesday, 6 September 2016.  read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises banking consortium on issuance of EUR 500 million mortgage covered bond

    Schoenherr advised an international banking consortium comprising Commerzbank Ak-tiengesellschaft (technical lead), Barclays Bank plc, Crédit Agricole CIB and CaixaBank SA as Joint Lead Managers on the successful issuance of a EUR 500 million fixed-rate mortgage covered bond ( Pfandbrief ) by Vienna-based Erste Group Bank AG (closing date: 9 September 2015). The bond was placed with institutional investors and listed on the Second Regulated Market of the Vienna Stock Exchange.  read more...
  • Austria: JUVE confirms Schoenherr's leading role in Austrian legal market and among corporate/M&A pr

    JUVE, the premier German-language legal business publication, ranks Schoenherr as the  leading law firm in Austria  and recognises the firm's Corporate/M&A practice for being at the very  apex of the country's transactional practitioners . In the newly-released 2015 edition of its annual 150-page handbook on corporate law firms in Austria, JUVE identifies Schoenherr as having generated the highest revenues among the country’s 15 largest law firms, thanks not least to Schoenherr's advisory role in a large selection of the headline transactions and restructurings during 2014/15.  read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises Allianz Capital Partners on its first acquisition of wind parks in Austr

    Schoenherr advised Allianz Capital Partners (ACP) on its acquisition of four wind parks in the Austrian state of Lower Austria from ImWind, one of the country’s largest wind farm operators, with a portfolio of 320 MW in operation. read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises UNION Investment on prominent real estate transactions in Vienna

    Schoenherr has advised UNION Investment Real Estate GmbH, one of Europe's leading property investment management companies, on several prominent real estate acquisitions that the Hamburg-based group has made in Vienna. In addition to space2move, Schoenherr has also advised UNION Investment. read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises Cimpress on its acquisition of Austria's Druck.at

    Schoenherr advised Cimpress N.V., a world leader in mass customization, on its acquisition of Druck.at, one of the leading web-to-print businesses in Austria. The transaction, which was announced on 18 March 2015, closed on 17 April 2015 following the successful achievement of various closing conditions including Austrian antitrust clearance. The acquisition supports Cimpress’ strategy of building a software-enabled operational platform that aggregates and optimizes the supply chain and production of mass customized products such as signage, printing, apparel and promotional products. read more...
  • CEE: Schoenherr named Leading Law Firm in South East Europe by Chambers

    Schoenherr has been recognized as " South East Europe Law Firm of the Year " (2015) by the renowned legal publisher Chambers and Partners . Schoenherr lawyers Monica Cojocaru (partner; Bucharest), Miloš Laković (partner, Moravčević, Vojnović & partneri OAD in cooperation with Schoenherr; Belgrade) and Marko Prušnik (partner; Ljubljana) accepted the award on behalf of the firm at the Chambers Europe Awards event held this past Friday evening at Amsterdam’s Hotel Okura. read more...