Belgium > Tax
Index of tables
- Field Fisher Waterhouse
- Christian Chéruy – Loyens & Loeff
- Daniel Garabedian – Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick
Axel Haelterman –
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
- Alain Huyghe – Baker & McKenzie
- Jacques Malherbe – Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick
- Simone Nudelholc – Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick
Ivo Onkelinx –
- Bernard Peeters – Tiberghien (in cooperation with Altius)
Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick’s tax practice was significantly strengthened by the recruitment of Laurence Pinte, former head of tax at Dexia, in October 2012. The firm handles both advisory and contentious tax matters. Practice head Daniel Garabedian was a key figure in advising the Belgian government on the takeover of one of the largest Belgian banks by a state-owned entity. Jacques Malherbe is also highly recommended.
Linklaters is ‘excellent’ in terms of ‘business acumen, technical ability and industry knowledge’. The team handles tax advisory work and planning, including tax aspects of corporate transactions, and represents clients in tax litigation. Henk Vanhulle heads the practice globally and has a wealth of experience in corporate tax law. ‘Very competent’ and ‘experienced’ lawyer Guido De Wit specialises in indirect taxation and tax pertaining to real estate transactions.
‘Among the best’, Loyens & Loeff’s tax practice is praised for its ‘strong business orientation, depth of knowledge’ and ‘international taxation expertise’. Xavier Clarebout heads the general tax practice group, which advises on direct and indirect tax matters, and transfer pricing, and also handles tax litigation. The ‘extremely dedicated and committed’ Enrico Schoonvliet has significant expertise in international taxation. VAT expert Thierry Charon is ‘very competent’, Christophe Laurent is notable for his real estate tax expertise and senior associate Ariane Brohez is also a ‘very good’ tax lawyer.
Baker & McKenzie has a good reputation in the market, particularly for corporate taxation. Alain Huyghe, whose practice spans tax planning, transfer pricing and tax litigation, led the firm’s advice to Procter & Gamble on the tax structuring of the protracted divestiture of its Belgian and Swiss Pringles business to Kellogg Co. Philippe Lion and Luc Meeus are also recommended.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer’s reputation in tax is driven by ‘outstanding lawyer’ Axel Haelterman, who has ‘excellent knowledge of Belgian taxation systems’. This ‘efficient’ team provides tax advice and represents clients in contentious matters. It advised the AntwerpWorld Diamond Exchange on the establishment of Diamdax, the first centralised online trading platform for diamonds, which involved customs duties, VAT and income tax issues relating to the global trade and transportation of diamonds.
Tiberghien (in cooperation with Altius) focuses on tax matters and estate planning for companies and high-net-worth individuals. Managing partner Bernard Peeters heads the practice. Anne Van de Vijver is the key lawyer in the firm’s role as appointed tax expert in the Agentschap Ondernemen project, which is partly financed by the European Union, and which aims to advise SMEs on IP management and protection. Danny Stas joined Laga in January 2012.
Afschrift specialises in tax and handles the full spectrum of matters, although it is best known for tax litigation. Name partner Thierry Afschrift is well regarded in the market and heads the seven-partner Brussels team. The firm has four other offices across Europe and is a member of the European Economic Interest Group.
Allen & Overy LLP’s Belgian tax practice, led by Patrick Smet, handles a wealth of tax advisory work within the finance, M&A and real estate sectors, and represents a number of Belgian banks. On the contentious side, the practice recently represented a leading airline company in VAT litigation regarding travel agent services. Counsel Stéphanie Houx is also recommended.
Clifford Chance’s tax team, which is led by the ‘excellent’ Thierry Blockerye, provides ‘a superb level of service’. The firm is particularly recognised for its expertise in real estate taxation, and Blockerye and Alexandre Ooms advised Immo@Vulpia SA on the reorganisation of its real estate portfolio. In other work, the firm is advising Fluxys on a pan-European review of its tax structuring, with a view to potential new acquisitions.
DLA Piper advises multinational and local companies on a wide range of direct and indirect tax matters. Senior associates Marc De Munter and Denis-Emmanuel Philippe are recommended along with new practice head Ortwin Carron, a corporate tax specialist who joined from Monard – D'Hulst in September 2011.
Dumon Sablon & Vanheeswijck enjoys a very good reputation in the market. This boutique fields seven partners specialising in tax law and closely related business and estate law. The team provides comprehensive contentious and non-contentious tax support to clients.
Eubelius’ noteworthy tax practice has been kept particularly busy advising entrepreneurial Flemish families on the impact of the new Flemish Decree on gift and estate duties on family-owned enterprises. Following Philippe Hinnekens’ move to Laurius advocaten, newly promoted partner Wouter Claes will head the tax practice. Kristof Spagnoli is also recommended for tax litigation.
The ‘solution-oriented’ Greenille has a niche in advising private clients on tax planning, and is praised for its ‘very good responsiveness and proactivity’ and ‘clear overview of international tax issues’. Managing partner Alain Nijs is ‘an excellent tax lawyer’. Mathieu Ex is also highly recommended and was promoted to the partnership along with Stéphane Martin in September 2011.
Jones Day’s tax practice is part of the firm’s global corporate department and is best known for its tax planning capabilities. Practice head Howard Liebman and Werner Heyvaert recently successfully represented Farstorp in a tax dispute arising from taxation on the differential amount between an agreed-upon share price and fair market value.
Laga is well regarded for its strength in tax litigation, an area in which Johan Speecke is the key lawyer, and has continued to develop the practice in other areas, notably through the recruitment of VAT specialist Danny Stas from Tiberghien (in cooperation with Altius). Clients of the practice include KBC Bank, Deutsche Bank, Cobepa, and Belgacom.
Monard – D'Hulst provides tax advisory and tax litigation services, including criminal tax proceedings and estate planning. Among recent work, Filip Soetaert represented a Belgian bank in tax litigation, and Reinhold Tournicourt and Hilde Van den Keybus acted for a global industrial group in several tax litigations.
Pascal Faes heads NautaDutilh’s solid tax advisory practice, and is recommended for his expertise in tough negotiations.
Thierry Denayer heads Stibbe’s tax practice, which is recommended for its ‘excellent service and knowledge’. Direct taxation specialist Xavier Gillot was promoted to the partnership in July 2012, as was Wim Panis, who focuses on VAT, real estate and public sector taxation.
Bird & Bird’s ‘superb’ team is best known for its clear expertise in IP and aviation tax matters. Although it does handle a broader range of work, the practice has ‘real in-depth knowledge’ of IP tax rules in Europe, particularly through the ‘precise and clear’ Brent Springael. Clients include Callatay & Wouters, Balterio, Adidas, and Milestone Aviation Group.
CMS’ ‘very good’ team is led by Didier Grégoire, who specialises in real estate tax matters and is praised for his ‘ability to adapt to the needs of a customer’. The ‘reliable and available’ Olivier Querinjean focuses on tax aspects of M&A, restructurings, structured financings, transfer pricing, and international tax agreements.
Field Fisher Waterhouse is praised for its ‘competence and flexibility’, and is developing particular expertise in IP tax matters. Recent work includes assisting uMedia Group with co-production and film finance schemes using the Belgian tax shelter mechanism. The ‘professional’ Pierre Philippe Hendrickx is the key tax partner.
Mayer Brown’s tax advisory work includes tax structuring and transfer pricing, and the firm’s European transfer pricing centre is based in the Brussels office. Practice head Astrid Pieron recently assisted LBO France with the tax structuring of several interests by setting up ad hoc acquisition vehicles and appropriate legal instruments. Charles-Albert Helleputte was promoted to counsel.