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Commercial, corporate and M&A
Commercial, corporate and M&A - ranked: tier 3


CMS offers ‘advice on short notice’, ‘transparent fees’, an ‘effective global network’ and ‘services that are tailor-made and focused on the clients’ needs based on a deep understanding of their businesses’. The practice is especially recommended for its M&A expertise and telecom sector knowledge, but also engages in private equity, W&I insurance and directors’ liability matters. Recently, the team advised Sunrise on the CHF500m sale of Swiss Towers to a consortium. ABB, Heraeus and Dover Corporation are also active clients. ‘Hands-on lawyerMarquard Christen, ‘dedicated’ team lead Stefan Brunnschweiler, ‘strong negotiatorAlain Raemy, ‘rising star’ Daniel Jenny and ‘reliable’ associate Andrea Ferchl are all recommended.

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Competition - ranked: tier 2


CMS‘ ‘renowned competition practice’ is backed up by ‘a huge international network with many highly qualified experts in every field of law’.delivers ‘top-notch client service’ and has an ‘excellent reputation in investigations’: The group focuses on representing clients in administrative proceedings, merger control cases as well as on the establishment of antitrust compliance programs: recent highlights include assisting Sunrise Communications with merger control issues regarding its sale of Swiss Towers. Apart from team lead Patrick Sommer, the ‘business-mindedMarquard Christen is the main adviser, who offers ‘superb, convincing advice’, ‘profound knowledge of antitrust law’ and has a ‘complex readiness of mind’. Further recommended is the ‘impressive’ Pascal Favre, as well as ‘tough negotiatorAlain Raemy.

Next generation lawyers

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Employment - ranked: tier 2


CMS delivers ‘great service and clear, comprehensive answers’ to employment law and corporate policy issues, including advice on M&A-related employment and contentious matters. The group is advising NIKE on a regular basis regarding employment certicificates, non-compete undertakings and secrecy agreements. Other active clients include Deutsche Lufthansa/Swiss International Airlines, Accenture and Burger King. The ‘responsive, professional and very practicalChristian Gersbach is a ‘pleasure to work with’.

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Healthcare and life sciences
Healthcare and life sciences - ranked: tier 2


CMS offers advice on regulatory and pricing issues, commercial cooperation agreements, product advertising and compliance programs. The team assisted Synlab International with its compliance program roll-out of in Switzerland and continues to represent Bayer in Swiss administrative proceedings concerning a pricing matter. Patrick Sommer and Alain Raemy lead the practice. IP counsel Simone Brauchbar Birkhäuser joined from Rentsch Partner AG in 2017.

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Leading firms: German-speaking Switzerland
Leading firms: German-speaking Switzerland - ranked: tier 3


Outstanding and proactive’ firm CMS has significant expertise in real estate, employment, competition and litigation matters. Stefan Gerster, Marquard Christen, Christian Gersbach, Jodok Wicki and Philipp Dickenmann are the names to note.

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Private client
Private client - ranked: tier 4


CMS is ‘well known in the Zurich area, especially for cross-border estate matters between Switzerland and Germany’, during which the firm ‘impresses with fast, high-quality service and its very good and approachable international network’. A more recent focus was the European Succession Regulation, which also affects Swiss individuals, families and entrepreneurs. The creation of bespoke living wills due to legal incapacity is another source of work additionally to divorce or post-mortem matters and disputes. The ‘smart, committed, reliable and experienced’ inheritance specialist Tobias Somary is recommended, as is senior associate Louise Lutz Sciamanna.

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Real estate and construction
Real estate and construction - ranked: tier 1


CMS is ‘driven by long-standing client relationships, which make for very effective collaboration’. The practice covers real estate transactions, developments, financing and litigation matters and packs a particular punch in assisting with hotel transactions, related management agreements and construction projects. The team advised Sunrise Communications on the sale of more than 2,000 telecommunication towers in Switzerland. Another key client is Swiss Prime Site, whom the group recently assisted with acquiring two campus facilities near Lake Geneva and in the Canton Valais per share deal. Team lead Stefan Gerster is recommended.

Leading individuals

Stefan Gerster - CMS

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Sports law
Sports law - ranked: tier 2


CMS is best known for advising on contentious matters in the football and hockey sectors. Recent highlights include representing new client Genève Servette Hockey Club in a disciplinary proceeding initiated by the National League against two of its players. Olivier Carrard has extensive experience as an arbitrator for the Court of Arbitration for Sports; Pierre Ducret and Christian Lüscher are other names to note.

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Tax - ranked: tier 4


CMS impresses with ‘very good response times, spot-on and personalised advice, as well as outstanding business acumen and industry knowledge’. The practice is well versed in corporate tax issues relating to business reorganisations and M&A transactions, but also assists private clients with wealth structuring and estate planning. The team advised Merbag on tax implications of its international expansion which included the acquisition of Mercedes-Benz Luxembourg. David Hürlimann ‘solves problems by taking the surrounding topics into account’, while Andrio Orler ‘understands both Swiss law and international tax consequences’ and ‘finds useful, outside-the-box solutions in a strictly compliant manner’.

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Switzerland: Banking and finance

Banking and finance: Zurich - ranked: tier 3


CMS handles financing, corporate lending and regulatory matters, which include licence applications, FINMA rulings, as well as securities, insurance, anti-money laundering and derivatives trading issues. A major highlight for the three-partner team was the $1.8bn loan refinancing advice provided to Novelis. Other refinancing clients are Claire’s Accessories UK and synlab. Team head Jürg Guggisberg, Kaspar Landolt and André Lebrecht are the names to note.

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Switzerland: Dispute resolution

Dispute resolution: litigation - ranked: tier 2


CMS provides ‘quality advice with very high responsiveness’ in banking, insurance, construction, white-collar crime and sports disputes and is also recommended as a ‘solid law firm for dispute resolution in commercial and employment law and enforcement cases’. The team acts for a Norwegian company in an ongoing enforcement proceeding against the owner of an offshore company. The client roster also includes AXA Leben and Atos. ‘Experienced trial lawyerDamiano Brusa has ‘a good feel for strategic questions’, while real estate expert Stefan Gerster is ‘very solution-oriented’. Further recommended are the ‘highly capable, organised and fast’ Jodok Wicki and the ‘professional and convincingPhilipp Dickenmann.

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Further information on CMS

Please choose from this list to view details of what we say about CMS in other jurisdictions.

United Arab Emirates

Offices in Dubai and Dubai


Offices in Tirana



Offices in Vienna


Offices in Brussels, Antwerp, Brussels, Brussels, and Brussels

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Offices in Sarajevo


Offices in Sofia and Sofia


Offices in Beijing, Beijing, and Shanghai


Offices in Zagreb

Czech Republic

Offices in Prague


Offices in Hamburg, Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Berlin, Leipzig, Dusseldorf, Cologne, Munich, and Munich


Offices in Algiers


Offices in Madrid, Malaga, Seville, Madrid, and Barcelona


Offices in Paris, Strasbourg, and Lyon

Hong Kong

Offices in Hong Kong and Hong Kong


Offices in Budapest

Latin America: International firms


Offices in Rome and Milan


Offices in Beirut


Offices in London EC4N and London EC3A


Offices in Luxembourg


Offices in Casablanca


Offices in Podgorica


Offices in Utrecht and Amsterdam

North West

Offices in Manchester


Offices in Muscat


Offices in Warsaw and Poznan


Offices in Lisbon


Offices in Bucharest


Offices in Moscow


Offices in Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Aberdeen

South East

Offices in Reading


Offices in Singapore, Singapore, and Singapore


Offices in Ljubljana

South West

Offices in Bristol


Offices in Zurich and Geneva


Offices in Kiev and Kiev

Yorkshire and the Humber

Offices in Sheffield S2 and Sheffield S2


Offices in Belgrade

Legal Developments by:

  • Access to justice: protective costs orders in planning challenges

    Third parties and competing developers have no rights of appeal to the Secretary of State against planning decisions. Disappointed applicants can appeal to the Secretary of State and can have the merits of the application reconsidered. The only remedy available to a disappointed third party is a challenge by way of judicial review in the High Court on a point of law. The sense of frustration and disempowerment this creates has not been helped by the increasing complexity of the planning process and the use of consultation to legitimise decisions that many perceive may already have been taken.
    - CMS Group

Legal Developments in Switzerland

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to