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  1. Dispute resolution: Arbitration
  2. Dispute resolution: Litigation
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Dispute resolution heavyweight Andrade & Fichtner Advogados has ‘deep legal knowledge coupled with strong business acumen’. It has particular expertise in disputes involving public bodies and environmental matters, but covers a broad range of other areas. Its recent work includes representing electricity transmission concessionaire CTEEP in seeking to obtain a judicial declaration that it is not liable for the payment of R$3bn in debt. Numerous lawyers, including José Antonio Fichtner and the ‘prompt and clearSergio Nelson Mannheimer, also act in arbitration proceedings. After 18 years at the firm, Fernanda Aviz made partner in December 2017, and is recommended along with Marcela Levy and Tomaz Lyra.

Ferro, Castro Neves, Daltro & Gomide Advogados acts in corporate, construction and administrative disputes, and has niche expertise in consumer rights and sports law cases. With arbitration one of its areas of focus, it is representing several major railway transportation logistics companies in a R$1bn arbitration concerning a shareholders’ dispute following a public tender offer. Construtora Norberto Odebrecht, Cosan, Ipiranga and Prumo Logística are also clients. Marcelo Roberto Ferro, José Roberto de Castro Neves and Eduardo Pecoraro are recommended.

Pinheiro Neto Advogadosknows the law inside out’, and handles ‘complex cases in which deep legal knowledge and strategic legal thinking are required’. In a recent cross-border case, it defended Chevron against an action seeking the recognition and enforcement of a $9.5bn judgment obtained through fraud and corruption in Ecuador, with the Superior Court of Justice unanimously rejecting the claim due to lack of jurisdiction. On the arbitration side, standout name Gilberto Giusti is ‘smart and skilled in oral defences’. Renato Stephan Grionhelps take calculated risks’, and has a ‘great level of English and French’. Also recommended are Rodrigo Carneiro de Oliveira and Celso Cintra Mori. Luis Claudio Furtado Faria made partner in January 2018.

Celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2019, dispute resolution boutique Sergio Bermudes Advogados has a longstanding reputation in the Brazilian market. With founding partner Sergio Bermudes still active, the firm can draw on a wealth of experience. Clients include large Brazilian and international institutions such as Bradesco, Citibank, Queiroz Galvão and Vale. The latter, as a shareholder of Samarco along with BHP Billiton, instructed the firm in litigation concerning the Bento Rodrigues dam disaster. Marcelo Fontes and Fabiano Robalinho Cavalcanti are also recommended.

The ‘highly qualified’ lawyers at BMA - Barbosa, Müssnich, Aragão provide ‘first-class services’. The team represented Alstom before the Superior Court of Justice in a claim against Mitsui Sumitomo Seguros to obtain the recognition and enforcement of a foreign ICC arbitral award. Luiz Fernando Fraga and Sergio Fagundes, who is ‘convincing, and excellent at setting up strategies’, lead the team. The ‘highly technical’ André Abbud is ‘extremely smart, with great international expertise’, and founding partner Francisco Müssnich stands out for his arbitration experience. Eduardo Wanderley joined from Veirano Advogados in October 2017.

Demarest Advogadosalways responds in time and with good quality’; ‘value for money is extremely favourable’. It has been active in numerous energy sector disputes, and also represented Unilever in a case against a former logistics partner claiming indemnification, achieving a reversal of the previous decision. Luiz Fernando Henry Sant’Anna heads the team, which includes Celso Xavier, Rafael Gagliardi and Maria Helena Bragaglia. Marcelo Inglez de Souza is ‘greatly committed’, and ‘optimises the in-house counsel’s and executive’s decision-making processes’. Carlo Verona joined from Lefosse Advogados in December 2017, while Leonel Affonso Jr. left the firm.

L.O. Baptista Advogados is ‘a real partner’ to its clients. The São Paulo based firm has a strong arbitration practice which is handling numerous energy and construction sector cases. Maurício Almeida Prado, the ‘combativeAdriana Braghetta and Fernando Marcondes are recommended for arbitration, while André Camerlingo Alves is the name to note for litigation.

Clients ‘really appreciate the services’ provided by Machado Meyer Sendacz e Opice Advogados, whose practice covers arbitration, litigation and conflict prevention. Its current work includes acting for logistics company Rumo in several declaratory actions, civil class actions and proceedings before the federal audit court concerning railway concessions and other contracts entered into with public entities. The group also continued to defend Samarco against claims related to the Fundão dam disaster. Lucas de Moraes Sant’Anna is ‘very responsive, always available and well prepared’, and is recommended along with Renata Martins de Oliveira, Eliane Cristina Carvalho and Gláucia Mara Coelho.

Mattos Filho, Veiga Filho, Marrey Jr. e Quiroga Advogados offers ‘high-quality legal services, come rain or shine’, with the disputes team regularly co-operating with colleagues in other departments. Recent highlights include working with oil and gas specialists in defending Total against an action aiming to annul asset sales to it by Petrobras as part of the latter’s divestment programme: the plaintiff alleges that the sales may cause damages to public property and that the lack of a bid procedure violates constitutional provisions; Flávio Spaccaquerche is leading the advice. He is recommended along with Flávio Pereira Lima, Eduardo Damião Gonçalves and Fabio Teixeira Ozi.

TozziniFreire Advogados handles arbitration cases for clients such as Cadillac Fairview, Kirin Holdings and Renova Energia. On the litigation side, the group filed a writ of mandamus for Sumitomo in order to challenge the Ministry of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade’s calculation methodology concerning the import and resale price of tyres. In another case, the firm is representing Coteminas in seven civil actions relating to farming property which was transferred to the client in payment of a debt. Flávia Cristina de Campos Andrade, Fernando Eduardo Serec and Antonio Marzagão Barbuto Neto are recommended.

A specialist in dispute resolution, Wald, Antunes, Vita, Longo e Blattner Advogados acts for clients such as Camargo Corrêa, Embratel, Oi, Raízen Combustíveis, Votorantim and Whirlpool. The 40-lawyer firm acts on large arbitration and litigation cases arising from M&A and capital markets transactions, and is also active in real estate and construction cases. Founding partner Arnoldo Wald has over 60 years of experience and is highly rated for arbitration. Alexandre de Mendonça Wald and Mariana Tavares Antunes are also recommended.

With great dedication and excellence’, Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados is noted for its ‘high level of accountability, and excellent results’. The team defended Instituto BioChimico Indústria Farmacêutica against a claim filed by ABL – Antibióticos do Brasil following the termination of a medicine supply agreement. ‘Incredible litigator’ Carlos Braga ‘manages all variables when faced with a complex situation, and jumps into the confusion devising new options, hunting for the paths of least resistance’. Gabriel Seijo Leal de Figueiredo has ‘ample legal knowledge’, and Helena Abdo is also recommended.

KLA-Koury Lopes Advogados is ‘very responsive on a consistent basis’, and Tiago Cortez is ‘business oriented, clear and straightforward’. Drawing on his expertise in antitrust matters, Cortez was part of a team acting in an appeal on behalf of Votorantim against a decision in a cartel case filed by antitrust agency CADE, which imposed a fine of R$3.1bn against various cement companies. Maria Cristina Junqueira led the defence of electric energy trading chamber CCEE in a civil claim filed by Centro Norte Energia Sociedade Anônima seeking the refund of the amount paid as a performance guarantee in a public bid for the generation and sale of renewable energy.

At Lilla, Huck, Otranto, Camargo Advogados, clients have ‘easy access to key lawyers’ such as Rogério Carmona Bianco, Hermes Marcelo Huck and Fábio Peixinho Gomes Corrêa. Eduardo de Oliveira Lima is ‘very attentive’, and offers ‘tailored solutions’. The group covers arbitration, construction cases, corporate and shareholder disputes, insurance-related class actions, environmental litigation and patent litigation in the pharmaceutical sector. Its recent work includes acting for Maritima Petroleo e Engenharia in relation to its alleged liability for legal costs of $8m arising from proceedings in London regarding the construction of four oil rigs.

The ‘creative and efficient’ team at Siqueira Castro – Advogados covers a range of litigation and arbitration cases, including white-collar crime matters. Its recent work includes representing Shell Brasil Petróleo in litigation filed by lubricant suppliers involving indemnification claims for losses under franchise and distribution agreements; and fighting for the recognition of a foreign arbitral decision before the Superior Court. Carlos Roberto Siqueira Castro, João Daniel Rassi and Fábio Coutinho Kurtz are recommended. Alexandre dos Santos Wider and white-collar crime expert Gauthama Carlos Colagrande Fornaciari de Paula were promoted to partner, while Adriana Conrado Zamponi and Marcos Serra Netto Fioravanti left for Wald, Antunes, Vita, Longo e Blattner Advogados and Vieira, Rezende, Barbosa e Guerreiro Advogados respectively.

Clients of the ‘effective, creative, ethical and hardworking’ team at Trench Rossi Watanabe are ‘very pleased with the value provided for the cost of the service’. Marcio de Souza Polto leads the team, whose recent work includes representing Shell and Petrobras in litigation filed by the municipalities of Niterói and Maricá seeking advance payment of future oil and gas royalties to prevent a shutdown of public services. Ricardo Quass Duarte has ‘strong arguments to counter any problem’; Andrea Brick is ‘great at reporting progress’; and arbitration expert Joaquim Muniz has ‘a broad view of matters, allowing him to advise sharply’.

Lefosse Advogados’ dispute resolution group is led by Pedro Maciel, who regularly acts in international arbitrations and is noted for ‘focusing on the most important matters’. The firm is representing Shell in arbitration initiated by PetroRio in a dispute concerning the termination of the purchase and sale of an interest in certain oil fields. On the litigation side, the group represented Mantiq Investimentos, as manager of investment fund InfraBrasil, in litigation over an issuance of debentures by PST Energia. Raphael Nehin Corrêa is the second partner in the team. Carlo Verona joined Demarest Advogados in December 2017.

Leite, Tosto e Barros Advogados Associados is particularly recommended for disputes in the infrastructure, energy and construction sectors. Its recent litigation work includes representing the Brazilian subsidiary of a global, France-based energy company in litigation brought by a sugar and alcohol company seeking to collect $5m in damages following the execution of a contract for the construction of a thermoelectric plant; Ricardo Tosto, who has ‘strong business acumen’, led the advice and successfully established that no construction defects were attributable to the client. Paulo Guilherme Lopes is also recommended.

Lobo de Rizzo Advogados’ practice head Luis Fernando Guerrero is recommended for arbitration, and associate Patricia Paoliello Lamaneres Binnie has strong litigation expertise. The team is acting for Bombardier Transportation in litigation arising from the termination of a service agreement for the construction of a São Paulo subway line. A long-term client is Dia Brasil, which the group represents in its judicial and administrative civil litigation including contractual disputes with franchisees. It also acts for Itaúsa in contractual disputes, and for Corning in judicial and administrative disputes.

Muriel Medici Franco Advogados is an arbitration boutique with an impressive client portfolio in the agribusiness and energy sectors, acting for names including Acciona Windpower, Cosan and Voith Hydro. With particular strength in construction arbitration, the group represented GICOM, as part of a construction consortium for the Santo Antonio hydropower plant, in arbitration proceedings concerning the settlement of claims related to an EPC agreement. Marcelo Muriel and Fernando Médici Junior are recommended.

Souto Correa Cesa Lummertz & Amaral Advogados is praised for its ‘prompt responses, 360-degree strategy and strong experience in court’. It regularly represents industry associations and companies in class actions, such as representing ABB in a class action seeking damages due to alleged irregularities in a bidding procedure and in contracts for the supply of equipment and the construction of power plants. Guilherme Rizzo Amaral is ‘a seasoned litigator’, and Marcelo Gandelman ‘anticipates the need for strategy discussions’.

Stocche Forbes Advogados has a ‘hands-on attitude’ and covers areas including environmental, real estate and construction disputes. The ‘seasonedRafael Passaro provides ‘timely responses’ and is recommended along with Domingos Fernando Refinetti for litigation and arbitration. Senior associate Clarissa Oliveira now heads the white-collar crime practice. Clients include Andritz, Cargill, Danone and Gerdau.

Veirano Advogados provides ‘a top-level service with a great deal of enthusiasm’, with specialisms including product liability and consumer litigation. In a widely publicised case, the group obtained an injunction against public authorities in Rio de Janeiro on behalf of urban mobility app 99, maintaining and safeguarding the client’s activities. Rosângela Delgado, Luiz Guilherme Migliora, the ‘experiencedJosé Carlos Wahle and the ‘excellentMateus Carreteiro are recommended.

Vella Pugliese Buosi e Guidoni Advogados, which has a strategic alliance with Dentons, regularly acts in class actions filed by the public prosecutor’s office against banks regarding financial and guarantees agreements. Another area of expertise is assisting construction and oil companies in environmental class actions. Antonio Celso Fonseca Pugliese leads the team.

Arruda Alvim & Thereza Alvim Advocacia e Consultoria Jurídica has an excellent reputation and longstanding expertise in collective actions and civil procedures. Araken de Assis is recommended along with the firm’s founding partners.

Azevedo Sette Advogados is particularly renowned for its TMT sector expertise, and regularly handles disputes in that area. Its other recent work includes defending Mercedes-Benz against an action for material and moral damages due to the malfunctioning of an air bag which allegedly led to a death. Ricardo Azevedo Sette and Paulo Ciari de Almeida Filho are the names to note.

Bichara Advogados is valued for its ‘deep knowledge and quick responses’. It defended private investment holding company J&F Investimentos against insider trading allegations. Practice head Adriana Astuto, Diogo Ciuffo and senior associate Pedro Werner are standout practitioners.

Castro, Barros, Sobral, Gomes Advogados has a ‘helpful, very available’ dispute resolution team led by senior partner José Augusto Leal. It recently represented Hortifruti in litigation concerning the termination of a shopping centre’s lease agreement. Alexandre Espínola Catramby is ‘aware of his cases’ every last detail’, and Olympio Carvalho is ‘very knowledgeable’.

Levy & Salomão has ‘some of the finest lawyers in the country’ with specialist expertise in aircraft accident cases. Other work included representing transmission system provider Allison Brasil in litigation filed by the public prosecutor’s office of the state of São Paulo concerning the alleged contamination of subsoil and underground water in the Jurubatuba industrial district. Bolívar Moura Rocha is ‘a fine lawyer who works around the world’, and Angela Di Franco ‘is very talented and has delivered results even in the most difficult of situations’.

Tauil & Chequer Advogados in association with Mayer Brown’s São Paulo team, which includes Luciana Celidonio and Leonardo Morato, devotes most of its time to banking and finance disputes, with recent work including representing a banking syndicate in relation to the recovery of approximately R$400m debt from infrastructure group Grupo Tomé. The Rio de Janeiro office handles oil and gas sector work, such as continuing to defend Chevron Brasil Upstream Frade in litigation brought by fishermen following an oil spill. Brasília-based Luís Adams and the ‘always availableGustavo Fernandes de Andrade in Rio de Janeiro are both ‘business-oriented’.

The dispute resolution group at CMT – Carvalho, Machado e Timm Advogados provides ‘swift responses’. Drawing on its construction sector expertise, it recently defended Yara Brasil Fertilizantes in a dispute over the termination of a technical services agreement entered into with Viobrás Construções. Luciano Benetti Timm is ‘very skilled and business-savvy’.

The ‘very competent and serious’ team at Cascione, Pulino, Boulos & Santos Advogados provides ‘stellar advice’. It represented railroad operator Ferrovia Norte Sul in litigation filed against construction firm Valec concerning necessary repairs and the payment of damages. Aurélio Marchini Santos is ‘extremely competent, and a pleasure to work with’. As we go to press, the firm has announced the incorporation of litigators Renato Duarte Franco de Moraes, in the São Paulo office, and both former Rio de Janeiro State Attorney General Leonardo Espíndola and Paulo Renato Barroso in the firm's Rio office, where the two will co-lead the team; all three have extensive experience in litigation involving contracts, corporate matters and public law, including in the infrastructure, IT, health, banking and oil-and-gas industries.

Advocacia Fernando Rudge Leite’s ‘solid team of excellent professionals’ acts in construction, mining, agribusiness and real estate disputes. Practice head Luiz Antonio Gomiero Júnior is experienced in civil litigation.

A heavyweight in Minas Gerais arbitration, Grebler Advogados’ ‘highly professional’ team defended the owners of land in litigation concerning the environmental recovery of a historic area in Belo Horizonte. Eduardo Grebler is recommended along with newly appointed partners Eduardo Mohallem and Pedro Silveira Campos Soares.

The ‘superb’ team at Inglez, Werneck, Ramos, Cury e Françolin Advogados (IWRCF) provides ‘dedicated service’ and ‘detail-oriented advice’, ‘presenting complex issues in a clear and convincing way’. The ‘accessible’ Andréa Pitthan Françolin and the ‘very business-savvyRenato José Cury act for clients such as Danone, Goodyear and Volkswagen.

An expert in public sector disputes, Manesco, Ramires, Perez, Azevedo Marques Sociedade de Advogados regularly acts for contractors in construction, energy and infrastructure arbitrations. Ane Elisa Perez and Floriano de Azevedo Marques Neto are the names to note.

Providing ‘high-quality advice’, Almeida Advogados acts for a number of multinational companies, including Boston Medical Group, MSC and Navistar. Andréa Rodrigues Seco is ‘always well prepared’, and is part of a team defending Aeroméxico against indemnification claims made by an airline agency.

Managing partner Gustavo Lorenzi de Castro leads the group at De Vivo, Whitaker e Castro Advogados, which covers a broad range of disputes in the automotive, food and beverage, construction and chemicals sectors. Caio Scheunemann Longhi joined from Uber in October 2017.

Led by founding partner Pedro Paulo Wendel Gasparini, Gasparini, De Cresci e Nogueira de Lima Advogados has been active in insurance, labour and construction disputes. After only a short stint at the firm, Christian Garcia Vieira left to join ASBZ Advogados in July 2017.

A specialist in environmental and infrastructure class actions, LL Advogados regularly represents national and international mining and construction companies. Rodrigo Ponce Bueno leads the dispute resolution group.

Mundie e Advogados has particular expertise in energy sector disputes and recently represented an energy generation company in a dispute with a construction firm concerning the execution of emergency repairs to the structure of a hydroelectric plant. Since publication, João Carlos Zanon has joined from Nery Attorney to head up the litigation practice but arbitral specialist Carlos Forbes has left the firm.

An expert in consumer law litigation, Nogueira, Elias, Laskowski & Matias Advogados has recently handled such cases on behalf of Geratherm Medical do Brasil and Spectrum Brands. Rubens Carmo Elias Filho and Carla Maluf Elias are the two partners in the team.

Rolim, Viotti & Leite Campos Advogados’ ‘proactive, technically excellent’ dispute resolution group acts for clients such as Claro, Gerdau and Samarco Mineração. Helvécio Franco Maia Junior is recommended for labour litigation.

Marcelo Beltrão da Fonseca’s dispute resolution group at Ulhôa Canto, Rezende e Guerra Advogados regularly collaborates with the firm’s energy team in representing energy suppliers. Other recent work includes representing Banco de Investimentos Credit Suisse in the enforcement of a R$110m loan to construction company OAS.

Fully committed to its clients’, Warde Advogados provides ‘speedy, transparent and efficient services’. It represented bookstore chain Saraiva in litigation against minority shareholder GWI Group concerning alleged disruptive business practices. ‘Excellent negotiator’ Walfrido Jorge Warde Júnior is one of three partners in the team.

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