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Latin America: International firms

Latin America: International firms > Local practitioners of note (by country) > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings


Leading local practitioners

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    • Gilberto Giusti - Pinheiro Neto Advogados
    • Andrés Jana - Bofill, Mir & Álvarez Jana
    • Guido Tawil - M & M Bomchil
    • Claus von Wobeser - Von Wobeser y Sierra, SC
    • Eduardo Zuleta - Zuleta Abogados Asociados S.A.S

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M & M Bomchil’s experienced head of arbitration Guido Tawil has an impressive network of contacts and strong technical knowledge. He regularly represents multinationals in disputes with the state, recently handling cases heard under ICC and UNCITRAL arbitration rules. Spanish utility company Endesa is a key client. Rivera & Asociados’ key contact Julio César Rivera has been particularly active in energy-related disputes. Abeledo Gottheil Abogados represents investors in investment treaty arbitrations, and also acts for international as well as domestic parties in commercial disputes, including those heard in the ICC. Luis Alberto Erize and Hernán Martín Oriolo are recommended. Recent highlights for José Martínez de Hoz (Jr.), head of arbitration and international litigation at Pérez Alati, Grondona, Benites, Arntsen & Martínez De Hoz, Jr, include representing Exxon Mobil affiliates in defending an ICSID arbitration award which the government of Argentina is seeking to annul, and acting for YPF in a $1.6bn ICC case relating to a natural gas export contract. Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi has been active in several ICC cases, including representing Pan American Energy in a breach of contract dispute with Transportadora de Gas del Sur, with Carlos Rotman, Leandro Caputo and Ignacio Minorini Lima acting. At Marval, O'Farrell & Mairal, Ricardo Ostrower is ‘a seasoned litigator with deep knowledge of arbitration procedures’. He is acting for Total Austral in its high-profile dispute with Metrogas (Chile) arising from the alleged breach of an international natural gas supply agreement. Independent arbitrator Raúl Emilio Vinuesa adjudicates on commercial and investment treaty arbitrations.


Criales & Urcullo’s founding partner José Criales has experience in international arbitration, including representing Bolivia in its disputes. The ‘excellent’ Ramiro Guevara and Rodrigo Rivera are the key contacts at Guevara & Gutiérrez S.C. They continue to act for GCC of America in a dispute arising from its sale of shares in Bolivian company Soboce. Bufete Aguirre Soc. Civ.’s head of dispute resolution Fernando Aguirre is active in commercial and investment treaty arbitrations, having been an ICSID panel approved arbitrator prior to Bolivia denouncing the Washington Convention. The ‘very sharp lawyers’ at Moreno Baldivieso Estudio De Abogados include Andrés Moreno, who has recently handled disputes heard under UNCITRAL and ICC rules. At Wayar & Von Borries Abogados S.C., Bernardo Wayar is ‘a safe bet for a Bolivia-related dispute’, according to a peer in an international law firm.


Recommended lawyers at Pinheiro Neto Advogados include American Arbitration Association (AAA) advisory council member Gilberto Giusti and Renato Stephan Grion; both are highly regarded for their expertise, with the practice having recently handled several ICC disputes. Andrade & Fichtner Advogadoshas great knowledge of infrastructure and energy’, and José Antonio Fichtner is currently handling several international arbitrations related to those two sectors. Souza, Cescon, Barrieu & Flesch Advogados’ department co-heads Carlos Braga and Gabriel Seijo Leal de Figueiredo have recently acted together in ICC arbitrations relating to the retail and agrochemical industries, among others. The practice was further strengthened by the arrival of Ana Carolina Beneti in 2015. The sizeable team at Lilla, Huck, Otranto, Camargo Advogados acts for multinationals such as Portuguese construction company Efacec and US-based manufacturer ITT Group, and domestic companies including agribusiness giant Rezende Barbosa. The very experienced Hermes Marcelo Huck, Fábio Peixinho Gomes Corrêa and Rogério Carmona Bianco are the names to note. Ferro, Castro Neves, Daltro & Gomide Advogados founding partner Marcelo Roberto Ferro is very active in the arbitral community, serving as president of the LCIA’s Latin American and Caribbean users’ council and also chairing the ICC’s Brazil arbitration and mediation committee. At Machado Meyer Sendacz e Opice Advogados, practice co-head Eliane Cristina Carvalho continues to handle several contractual disputes, including representing Michelin in arbitral proceedings arising from the acquisition of an asset tracking and driver monitoring company. At Mattos Filho, Veiga Filho, Marrey Jr. e Quiroga Advogados, ‘excellent lawyer’ Eduardo Damião Gonçalves ‘has deep knowledge and gets to the point quickly’. In one of many highlights, he is acting in a construction dispute heard under ICC rules. TozziniFreire Advogados’ Fernando Eduardo Serec is handling several six-figure ICC cases, representing high-profile international as well as domestic clients. Eleonora Coelho, who founded boutique firm Eleonora Coelho Advogados in 2015, is a member of the ICC’s Latin America committee and also sits on the ICDR’s Latin America advisory council. Key figures at L.O. Baptista Advogados include the ‘strategic’ Mauricio Almeida Prado, who is ‘always extremely well prepared’; the ‘articulate and combative’ Adriana Braghetta; and Fernando Marcodes, who ‘is technical and gets involved’. Stocche Forbes Advogados’ recent clients include Cargill Agrícola, CVS and Odebrecht. Rafael Passaro, who has ‘a very accurate view of the economic aspects of arbitration’, and Luis Guilherme Aidar Bondioli are the names to note. Lobo de Rizzo Advogados’ Luis Fernando Guerrero is increasingly active as an arbitrator. Luiz Olavo Baptista, who founded Atelier Jurídico in 2015, is a widely respected arbitrator.


Based in Chile but a member of London barristers’ chambers 20 Essex Street, Francisco Orrego Vicuña is a highly regarded arbitrator who has handled disputes involving Latin American parties, as well as cases relating to Europe, the Middle East and Africa. He sits on the ICDR’s Energy Arbitrators’ list. Bofill, Mir & Álvarez Jana’s founding litigation and arbitration partner Andrés Jana is closely involved, as a member or delegate, in major arbitral forums including UNCITRAL, the ICC, ICSID and the LCIA. Carey represented the Republic of Chile in an ICSID arbitration over alleged breach of the Spanish-Chilean BIT, with chairman Jorge Carey and Gonzalo Fernández acting alongside Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP. Arturo Yrarrázaval Covarrubias leads on arbitration matters at Yrarrázaval, Ruiz-Tagle, Goldenberg, Lagos & Silva. Other key contacts include Felipe Ossa at Claro & Cia.; Pedro Pablo Gutiérrez at Gutiérrez, Waugh, Jimeno & Asenjo; and Carlos Eugenio Jorquiera, who serves as president of the Centre for Arbitration and Mediation at the Santiago Chamber of Commerce.


With ‘a truly international practice’, Zuleta Abogados Asociados S.A.S is an arbitration and international litigation boutique founded in 2017 by the ‘very knowledgeable’ Eduardo Zuleta, who ‘is at the top of his game: a leading practitioner in international arbitration’. Also at the firm are Rafael Bernal, who was previously director of the arbitration and conciliation centre of the Bogotá chamber of commerce, Antonio Aljure and Gustavo Suárez. Posse Herrera Ruiz founding partner Daniel Posse is ‘very strong in international arbitration’, and sits as a member of the Colombian Arbitration Committee among many other high-profile roles. Suescún Abogados attracts, through its key contacts Jorge Suescún Melo and Felipe Suescun de Roa, regular referrals from international law firms involved in high-profile international arbitration cases relating to Colombia. It also handles disputes as lead counsel, recently representing coal exporter Carbones del Cerrejón in an ICC arbitration with Ferrovial relating to the construction of marine works.


Facio & Cañas’ internationally renowned senior partner Rodrigo Oreamuno is a president of 16 ICSID arbitration tribunals and a member of five ICC arbitration tribunals, and is also active in the AAA and SCC.


Jiménez Cruz Peña has strong international arbitration credentials through Dominican member of the International Court of Arbitration (ICA) Marcos Peña and ‘rising star’ Rosa Díaz. As well as acting as arbitrator and counsel, Medina Garrigó Abogados’ Fabiola Medina regularly provides expert opinions in high-profile international disputes. At Bobadilla Abogados, Andrés Bobadilla is highly regarded by peers, and ‘has experience in important arbitration cases involving high-net-worth individuals and companies’. Pereyra & Asociados’ Luis Miguel Pereyra is ‘highly qualified, trustworthy and dynamic’.


Cabezas & Wray Abogados’ Ernesto Alban Ricaurte has represented the Republic of Ecuador in several ICSID cases. Ferrere Ecuador’s head of dispute resolution Javier Robalino Orellana has acted as counsel for investors in ICSID, ICC and UNCITRAL proceedings, among others, and also regularly arbitrates disputes. Pérez Bustamante & Ponce’s ‘very impressive’ team includes Rodrigo Jijón and Juan Manuel Marchán-Maldonado, who ‘combine local savvy with international expertise’. At Coronel & Pérez, César Coronel Jones is an ICA arbitrator.


Joaquin Alvarado is the key contact for international arbitration at Carrillo y Asociados. At Skinner-Klée & Asociados – LatamLex, founder Alfredo Skinner-Klée, who has experience in ICSID proceedings, is the name to note following the departure of Alejandro Arenales and Rodolfo Salazar, both also singled out for their international arbitration expertise, to BLP. Recommended at QIL+4 Abogados, S.A. is ICSID designee arbitrator José Quiñones. At Aguilar Castillo Love, Juan Carlos Castillo-Chácon has experience in international investment treaty disputes, as both arbitrator and counsel.


Von Wobeser y Sierra, SC’s managing partner Claus Von Wobeser is ‘one of Mexico’s leading arbitration specialists, very respected worldwide’. He successfully represented Acqua Mineral San Benedetto in an ICC dispute with a joint venture partner. ‘Excellent lawyer’ Marco Tulio Venegas is another key contact for international arbitration at the firm. Solcargo’s dispute resolution practice head Fernando Pérez Correa is an experienced lawyer and a key adviser to the Comisión Federal de Electricidad, recently representing it in several ICC arbitrations. Abascal Segovia & Asociados’ José María Abascal is very experienced in international arbitration, and has been a Mexican delegate to UNCITRAL since 1985. He has acted as counsel, arbitrator and expert in major forums including the ICC, the ICDR and the LCIA. Galicia Abogados SC’s new arbitration and dispute resolution head Rodrigo Zamora is highly regarded for his track record as arbitrator and counsel in ICC as well as ICSID cases. Santamarina y Steta’s very active dispute resolution head Fernando Del Castillo is ‘a truly terrific lawyer’, and recently represented Peñafiel Aguas Minerales, a Mexican mineral water company owned by the Dr Pepper Snapple Group, in an ICC dispute with joint venture partner Acqua Minerale San Benedetto. ‘Talented sole practitioner’ Francisco González de Cossío, who founded González de Cossío Abogados, SC, is recommended for his expertise in alternative dispute resolution. He is a member of the LCIA and president of the Centro de Arbitraje de la Industria de la Construcción.


At Altra Servicios Juridicos, ‘very experienced lawyer’ José Antonio Moreno Rodríguez is an ICC member, and was also recently nominated as member of an ICSID annulment committee established in relation to an investment dispute involving the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.


Miranda & Amado is highly regarded by international peers for its arbitration practice, which covers the oil and gas, construction and transport sectors among others; José Daniel Amado, Luis Miranda and Bruno Amiel are the key contacts. Rodrigo, Elías & Medrano, Abogados fields several prominent practitioners including José Tam and Alejandro Manayalle, who acted in a complex PPP-related arbitration, as well as Luis Bedoya, who has expertise in the mining industry. Other names to note are Adrían Simons, who founded boutique dispute resolution firm Estudio Simons – Solución de controversías in 2011; and Carlos Soto, who is president of the Peruvian Arbitration Institute.


Jiménez de Aréchaga, Viana + Brause’s managing partner Fernando Jiménez de Aréchaga is a Uruguay ICC representative, and also sits on the panel of arbitrators of the Uruguayan Chamber of Commerce.


D’Empaire Reyna Abogados’ José Humberto Frías is particularly experienced in nationalisation-related ICSID and UNCITRAL cases, and also regularly handles commercial arbitrations conducted under ICC rules. Other names to note are Hoet Pelaez Castillo & Duque’s José Gregorio Torrealba; and Carlos Lepervanche Michelena, who heads the dispute resolution practice at Tinoco, Travieso, Planchart & Núñez.

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