Tax in Argentina
Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi’s ‘personalised service’ strikes the right note with clients, who highlight the team’s efforts to ‘solve your problems as quickly as possible’. The firm houses an effective standalone tax practice that shines in both tax planning and tax disputes. On the non-contentious side, the group keeps busy on corporate support matters, often teaming up with its market-leading financial services practice to offer premier firepower in complex finance structuring. On the contentious front, the firm has an impressive record in administrative and judicial claims. Tax head Matías Olivero Vila is noted for his reputation in transactional matters, including capital markets, project finance and M&A-related structuring. Recently appointed firm managing partner, Liban Kusa specialises in tax and customs law and is widely recognised as a leader in contentious cases. Ezequiel Lipovetzky is another senior name for tax work. The group also benefits from a talented band of younger specialists, including up-and-coming partner Daniela Rey, who has strong domestic and international tax experience; and tax litigation specialist Nicolas Nogueira Castellini who was made partner in August 2019.
‘The added value of the firm is without a doubt the personalised service of the team members and their professional capability.’
‘They provide a personalised service, they are very capable and give clients the sense that they are there to solve your problems as quickly as possible.’
Asociación de Bancos de la Argentina
- Represented HSBC Bank in a high-profile case related to alleged tax evasion.
- Acted for Asociación de Bancos de la Argentina in challenging the constitutionality of a turnover tax withholding regime created by the province of Córdoba.
- Represented American Express Argentina in a complex claim, which involved challenging the constitutionality of the tax rate applicable by the National Tax Authority as regards recovery actions
- Defended Cargill before the provincial tax authorities and the Provincial Justice on its challenge to various local tax claims.
- Advised Despegar on day-to-day tax matters.
The ‘exceptional’ tax team at Marval O’Farrell Mairal finds favour for its ‘multidisciplinary knowledge’, ‘good business sense’ and ‘great technical understanding’. The deep and broad practice provides comprehensive coverage of tax law, with its first-class corporate offering a key driver of its work on the transactional side — it also has specialist experience in financial services and energy-related deals. On the contentious front, the firm is routinely engaged to advise on complex litigation, including representing companies before the National Tax Authority. Additionally, the group’s multinational client list stands as testament to its strength in cross-border tax matters, with Phillip Morris, General Motors and Trafigura all on the department’s books. María Inés Brandt is commended by many as ‘the best tax lawyer in the country’ and handles a mix of high-level transactional and contentious work. Tax and customs specialist Horacio García Prieto is highlighted as a ‘leading lawyer for constitutional and customs matters’. Other senior names include Gabriel Gotlib, who is recognised for his record in international tax, Walter Keiniger, who focuses on corporate transactions and wealth planning, and Fernando Vaquero.
‘The tax team is exceptional. Their responses to our queries are rapid and thorough.’
‘They have a great technical understanding of tax matters in Argentina and provide us with constant support.’
‘They are practical and flexible, with a strong understanding of the current and historical tax situations that will influence decision making.’
‘The firm has lawyers who are highly specialised in different areas of law. There are various law firms with teams that provide a high-quality service, but Marval is a market leader in many areas.’
‘The team is very good at putting together and structuring deals and is very creative. An innovative team with multidisciplinary knowledge and lawyers with good business sense.’
‘María Inés Brandt is my go-to tax lawyer. She is a leader in the market and heads a very well-rounded and professional team that always takes care to respond to clients on time and in full.’
‘María Inés Brandt is a creative lawyer, which is essential in a tax adviser, but her advice is always substantial and reliable, with an accurate assessment of the risks and benefits. In my opinion, she is without a doubt the best tax lawyer in the country.’
‘For constitutional and customs matters, partner Horacio García Prieto is, without a doubt, a leading lawyer. His experience, solid knowledge, and very clear and precise explanations are evident in his work.’
‘Gabriel Gotlib and associate Constanza Eva Ferreyra Fernandez show excellent availability and responsiveness. They have an in-depth knowledge of the tax code and a good understanding of the commercial side of our business.’
‘Walter Keiniger is always extremely available and agreeable, and always seeks out solutions to our legal issues.’
‘Fernando Vaquero is an extraordinary lawyer and person. He is always available, attentive and well informed.’
Norwegian Air Shuttle
Tata Consultancy Services
- Represented AMX Argentina in disputes against municipalities and provincial tax authorities regarding the assessment of local taxes.
- Advised Pernod Ricard Argentina on the tax aspects of the sale of wine brands Graffigna, Colón and Santa Silvia to Viña San Pedro.
- Acted for several banks on the tax aspects of two loans, totalling $120m, to Aeropuertos Argentina 2000.
- Advised Exceda on its acquisition by Akamai Technologies.
- Acted for Bioceres on the tax aspects of its $456m share exchange agreement with Union Acquisition Corporation.
The Buenos Aires arm of Baker McKenzie’s formidable global tax practice continues to grow its profile in Argentina and recently secured a clutch of new clients, including Halliburton and Airbnb. On the non-contentious side, the firm is a popular choice to advise multinational clients on tax regulations. On the contentious front, the group is well known for its impressive reputation in transfer pricing litigation. Martin Barreiro heads the practice and focuses on tax planning, transfer pricing and M&A-related issues. Up-and-coming partner Juan Pablo Menna handles a range of contentious and non-contentious tax matters.
Archer Daniels Midland
- Advised Marriott on the tax implications of the termination of the management agreement for the Sheraton Tucuman Hotel and its replacement with a franchise agreement.
- Assisted Vestas with tax planning matters in Argentina related to the tax incentives granted for the generation of energy by renewable resources.
- Advised Archer-Daniels-Midland Company on a tax decision issued by the Chamber of Appeals.
- Advised Dart Container on transfer pricing assessments.
‘Very specialised and client-oriented’, Estudio O'Farrell’s tax team is highlighted for its ‘excellent technical ability and experience’. The group is particularly sought after for its contentious firepower and it stands among the market leaders for complex administrative law and transfer pricing cases. Department head Miguel Tesón handles an array of contentious and non-contentious matters, including transfer-pricing cases. Guillermo Lalanne has a focus on constitutional tax law and litigation, with clients praising his ‘strong grasp of provincial taxes’. Other recommended names include Valeria Estathio, who specialises in federal and international tax issues, and María Celina Valls, who has a strong record in transfer pricing.
‘The team is very specialised and client-oriented, with a high level of procedural knowledge and the ability to propose strategies that are appropriate to the specific case and the costs and risks involved.’
‘They stand out for their dedication, common sense, responsible attitude and prompt responses. They have an in-depth knowledge of provincial taxes.’
‘Estudio O’Farrell has excellent technical ability and experience in all the areas we require. Obviously their professional excellence and experience are crucial but, additionally, they also provide total support in different areas of law.’
‘They work as a team and act as a constant source of support; they are there for the client for every step of the process. Guillermo Lalanne is excellent.’
‘They have a comprehensive view of tax, commercial and labour matters. Guillermo Lalanne has a strong grasp of provincial taxes. Valeria Estathio provides excellent advice on income tax.’
Droguería del Sud
Importadora y Exportadora de la Patagonia
Grupo Telefónica Argentina
Swiss Medical Group
- Successfully represented Avex and Quickfood in a case challenging the constitutional validity of the minimum presumed income tax.
- Acted for Telefónica Móviles in a leading case concerning the stamp tax on agreements for telecommunication services.
- Represented Transener in a case concerning the turnover tax on public utility services.
- Advised Neutrona on the potential tax incentives provided by the ‘knowledge economy promotional regime’.
Pérez Alati, Grondona, Benites & Arntsen’s ‘proactive, energetic, serious and detail-oriented’ group is praised for its specialist oil-and-gas offering, which sees major energy companies such as Shell CAPSA, Total Austral and Chevron turn to the firm for tax advice. That said, it also advises a diverse stable of local and foreign companies on the full spectrum of tax planning, transactional tax and litigation. Founding partner Manuel Benites heads the department and advises on tax planning and litigation, with a focus on transactional tax matters. Luis Marcelo Nuñez is recommended for his emphasis on contentious work. Matías Corte is an active senior associate.
‘The lawyers are up to date with the latest developments in tax law, and they are always available, provide updates proactively and constantly follow up on cases, which hasn’t always been the case in my experience with other big firms in Buenos Aires.’
‘The team at Pérez Alati has significant experience in our sector and we have a lot of trust in their advice. Their experience and competence set them apart from the teams at other firms.’
‘They are proactive, energetic, serious and detail-oriented, and get straight to the point.’
‘Manuel Benites and his team are regarded within the oil industry as leaders in this area of law. They have good connections with the main players in the industry (oil companies, investors, other firms, the government and so on), which gives them a clear picture of the matters they advise on.’
‘Luis Marcelo Nuñez has acted for us on many high-pressure and urgent matters, and thanks to his advice we have been able to resolve countless disputes with the tax authorities.’
LDC Louis Dreyfus Commodities
Sinopec Argentina Exploration and Production
Pan American Energy
O & G Developments
Falabella / CMR Falabella
CPT Empresas Marítimas
Brown Brothers Harriman
Mercuria Energy Group
- Advised Mercuria Energy Group on the tax aspects of the corporate reorganisation of several of its subsidiaries in Argentina.
- Represented LDC Argentina in significant transfer pricing claims.
- Acted for Petrolera El Trébol (PETSA) in litigation against the Federal Tax Authority, in which the Tax Authority challenged the origin of certain funds received by PETSA from its shareholders and affiliated companies.
- Represented Molinos Río de la Plata in a significant transfer pricing claim against the Federal Tax Authority.
Rosso Alba, Francia & Asociados
Leading tax boutique Rosso Alba, Francia & Asociados is highly regarded for its strength in contentious matters, especially complex transfer pricing litigation, where it is widely considered among the market leaders. Other sweet spots include international tax, general tax litigation, transactional support matters and private client work, including trusts and wealth management. High-profile figure Cristian Rosso Alba is recommended for his senior expertise across the full range of tax issues; he enjoys a particularly prominent reputation for transfer pricing. Juan Marcos Rougès, who heads the tax controversy and customs department, is also a key contact. Senior associate Irina Mizrahi provides capable support.
McCain Foods Limited
Aceitera General Deheza
Pan American Energy – BP/Bridas
COFCO International Argentina
Construçoes e Comércio Camargo Corrêa
- Advised Transportadora de Energía, an Argentine subsidiary of the Enel Group, on a debt-to-equity tax recharacterisation case.
- Advised Glencore subsidiary, Oleaginosa Oeste, on a leading transfer pricing case.
- Represented Alfred C Toepfer International, an Argentine subsidiary of the ADM Group, in transfer pricing litigation.
- Represented Carraro Argentina in a case challenging state taxes.
Teijeiro & Ballone, Abogados
Teijeiro & Ballone, Abogados’ exclusive focus on tax matters ensures it is a first port of call for an impressive raft of local and multinational companies on tax matters, with a strong showing in the agribusiness, technology and food and beverage sectors. The boutique firm covers the waterfront on tax law, but is arguably best known for its strength in tax litigation, including transfer pricing. Guillermo Teijeiro is recognised as a reference for Argentine tax law and his practice spans the full range of transactional, advisory and contentious matters. Mariano Ballone is also recommended and specialises in domestic and international tax planning. In 2020, key partner Gloria Gurbista left to join Mitrani Caballero & Ruiz Moreno Abogados.
Grupo Antolin Irausa
- Advised Facebook Ireland on ascertaining the income tax status of payments from Argentine service recipients.
- Advised Dell on the legitimacy of applying exercise tax credits to compensate VAT obligations.
Allende & Brea climbs a tier on the back of its ‘comprehensive analysis of tax law’ and its ‘skill in anticipating the client’s needs’. The team advises across all key pillars of tax law, with sources highlighting its specialist financial services expertise — it also brings to bear strong experience in agribusiness, technology and energy and natural resources-related issues. Raúl Fratantoni heads the group and is recommended for tax planning and private wealth matters. Up-and-coming partner Nicolas Procopio is an increasingly prominent tax litigator.
‘The tax team at Allende & Brea stands out for its comprehensive analysis of tax law, provided by lawyers and accountants with vast experience in the payment and credit card industry.’
‘What sets them apart from other firms is their ability to analyse the law in depth, their proactive attitude, and their skill in anticipating the client’s needs, designing an appropriate strategy and implementing it successfully. They are also very up to date and have a good understanding of the tax issues affecting fintech.’
‘The team’s command of the English language is invaluable when they are reporting back to and advising our headquarters in the US.’
‘The team at Allende & Brea is extremely good. Their client care is excellent and their responsiveness and availability are unparalleled in the Argentinian market. Their knowledge of international matters makes them unique. There are not many other firms with the same capacity to absorb and understand information.’
‘Raúl Fratantoni is one of the most well-rounded lawyers I have met, and he has a strong ability to make connections. When we present him with a case, he can immediately connect it with similar situations, extract the necessary information and apply this to our specific case, with extraordinary results.’
‘Nicolás Procopio stands out for his deep knowledge of tax law in Argentina and his experience working in the US. He also has broad knowledge in the area of corporate finance, which makes his advice and analysis unique in the market.’
Mastercard Cono Sur
Masisa Forestal Argentina
Google Payment Corp
- Assisted FMC Technologies and FMX with filing a reimbursement claim for capital gains tax on the grounds of it being confiscatory.
- Represented Syngenta Agro before the Argentine Supreme Court in filing a claim against four major provinces’ local tax laws.
- Represented Mastercard on a major turnover tax assessment procedure in the City of Buenos Aires.
Beccar Varela stands out for its combination of ‘excellent client service with a deep understanding of the law’. The group specialises in transactional matters, with broad experience in advising local and multinational clients on the tax planning aspects of M&A, project finance and restructuring deals. Department head Santiago Montezanti is valued for his ‘innovative and creative solutions to any problem’ and is experienced in contentious and non-contentious matters. Senior associate María de los Ángeles Olano is noted for her ‘outstanding technical abilities’.
‘It is a very sophisticated and specialised practice. You can have confidence in the team and be sure of getting a good result. They do not just have a good understanding of the law in Argentina, but are also up to date with international legal developments, so their advice is always thorough.’
‘They know what clients need and can provide long-term solutions.’
‘The practice is very strong on a technical level and has a very sophisticated international focus.’
‘They combine excellent client service with a deep understanding of the law.’
‘Santiago Montezanti is simply one of the best tax lawyers in Argentina. His opinions are very robust, thorough and sound. He has a lot of experience and can come up with innovative and creative solutions to any problem.’
‘María de los Ángeles Olano has outstanding technical abilities and is always available to advise on our matters.’
Prisma Medios de Pago
BNR Infrastructure Co-Investment
Acon Bios Investors and Humus Capital Partners
Juan Pablo Georgalos
PGG Wrightson Seeds South America
Asociación de Tarjetas de Crédito y Compra (ATACyC)
Citigroup Global Markets
- Advised Prisma Medios de Pago, and the sellers, on the tax aspects of Advent International’s acquisition of a 51% stake in Prisma Medios de Pago.
- Advised BNR Infrastructure Co-Investment on the acquisition of 24.9% stake in YPF Energía Eléctrica from EFS Global Energy.
- Acted for WeWork on the acquisition of two real estate development and construction companies.
Bomchil impresses with its ‘broad knowledge of tax matters’ and its ability to provide ‘rapid responses and support in complex situations’. The firm handles a good balance of contentious and non-contentious work, with niche expertise in advising companies from heavily regulated industries. Alejandro Messineo heads the tax department and advises on national and international tax planning and litigation. Ariadna Artopoulos is also recommended for her ‘great knowledge’. Santiago Bergallo, who joined from Tavarone, Rovelli, Salim & Miani in May 2019, is an impressive senior associate.
‘The team at Bomchil has a broad knowledge of tax matters, and provides rapid responses and support in complex situations.’
‘Bomchil’s tax team provides us with everything necessary to carry out our management, with regard to the Argentine tax system and its constant changes.’
‘Ariadna Artopoulus is a positive leader, with great knowledge, experience and quality of work.’
‘Ariadna Artopoulus has broad knowledge and an excellent disposition.’
Aeropuertos Argentina 2000
The Mosaic Company
- Advised Telefe, owned by Viacom, on its day-to-day tax issues.
- Acted for Buenos Aires Arena on all tax aspects related to the construction and development of a next-generation arena.
- Advised PepsiCo Argentina on federal, provincial and municipal tax matters, including litigation.
According to sources, Beretta Godoy’s ‘understanding of its clients’ business is what sets it apart’. The team, which is particularly active in tax planning, is best known for its niche strength in mining-related issues and natural resource taxation more generally. Of counsel Omar Beretta has extensive experience in tax planning, double taxation treaties and mining investment regimes.
‘They have worked with us for a long time and provide customised solutions.’
‘The team’s understanding of its clients’ business is what sets it apart from competitors.’
Minera Sierra Grande
Huawei Tech Investment
Kapsch TrafficCom Argentina
Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt
- Advised Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt on the tax aspects of its acquisition of two lithium companies in Salta,
- Assisted Toyota Boshoku America, and its local affiliates, in structuring and implementing tax efficient earnings-stripping structures.
In 2019, Cerolini & Ferrari Abogados established a tax practice with the hire of Javier Malamud from Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi; he handles both tax planning and litigation and is commended for his ‘knowledge, experience and defence strategies’. The group has hit the ground running, with its recent experience encompassing transactional, contentious and compliance matters.
‘What makes this practice unique is their knowledge of the current legislation and their application of the law to prevent future claims or litigation.’
‘Javier Malamud stands out for his knowledge, experience and defence strategies, as well as his speed, meticulousness and follow up on all matters.’
Iké Asistencia Argentina
Cremer y Asociados
General Lighting System
- Advised Catapult Sports on an inward and outward investment in Argentina and nearby countries.
- Represented Cremer y Asociados in turnover tax-related litigation.
Deloitte & Co. S.A. houses a capable tax controversy practice, which represents domestic and multinational companies in regulatory and judicial proceedings. It also advises on non-contentious work, including tax planning, tax audits and transactional tax. Newly promoted partner Cynthia Calligaro spearheads the group and focuses on group reorganisations, M&A and contentious matters.
Coca Cola FEMSA
Compañía de Alimentos Fargo
RPB / Juplast
FBA tax & Legal
New entrant to the table, FBA Tax & Legal is a tax boutique founded in 2017 by Ignacio Fernandez Borzese, a former name partner at Luna Requena & Fernandez Borzese. The team acts on a diverse mix of contentious and non-contentious work, with growing strength in criminal tax matters. Luciano Cativa co-heads the department and specialises in the tax structuring of M&A, joint ventures and business reorganisations.
SAS Automotriz Argentina
WEG Equipamientos Eléctricos
Luna Requena Abogados Tributaristas
Luna Requena Abogados Tributaristas’ practice is weighted towards contentious work, with a solid track record in representing local and foreign clients before administrative agencies and local and federal courts. The group also has experience in domestic and international tax planning and transactional tax matters. Founding partner Alvaro Luna Requena is noted for tax litigation.
Mitrani Caballero & Ruiz Moreno Abogados secures praise for its ‘preparation and flexibility’. The group is distinguished by its emphasis on tax planning, particularly in relation to domestic and multi-jurisdictional M&A, reorganisations, finance transactions and joint ventures. The firm also pairs up with its administrative law team to advise on contentious work. Practice head Corina Laudato is recommended for transactional tax. Juan Manuel Iglesias Mamone is an active associate. In a significant development, the firm recently boosted its tax litigation capability with the hire of Gloria Gurbista from highly regarded tax boutique Teijeiro & Ballone, Abogados.
‘The firm has shown in-depth knowledge of the current jurisprudence and the definition of intelligent and teleologically-oriented procedural strategies aimed at the success of the legal actions brought.’
‘They stand out for their preparation and flexibility.’
‘Corina Laudato and associate Guillermo Marconi have demonstrated their deep commitment, availability and ability to adapt to the needs of the company.’
Aluar Aluminio Argentino
Fratelli Branca Destilerías
- Advised Southern Cross Group on the tax aspects of their agreement with Riverstone Holdings, Vista Oil & Gas and other investors to create Aleph Midstream.
- Assisted Geopark with the corporate and tax reorganisation of its Argentine branch into an Argentine subsidiary.
Corporate and tax boutique Salaberren & Lopez Sanson (SyLS) shines on the transactional tax side, where it is particularly sought after by clients in the technology, agribusiness, energy and food and beverage sectors. Group head Sebastián López Sanson is widely recognised as a market leader for tax planning work. The firm also houses a capable tax litigation practice, which is led by Ruben Atim.
The Coca-Cola Company
- Advised Coca-Cola on the structuring and negotiation of a venture capital corporate fund, including tax advice.
- Advised Constructora Excon on a mining construction project in Jujuy and provided corporate and tax advice in relation to a joint venture construction contract.
Zang, Bergel & Viñes Abogados
Zang, Bergel & Viñes Abogados’s burgeoning tax practice is well versed in tax planning, compliance issues and litigation, including criminal cases. Over the past year, the firm handled a steady stream of contentious matters, with notable expertise in representing real estate companies. Department head Diego Embon specialises in tax and finance matters.
Austral Gold Argentina
IRSA Propiedades Comerciales
Sancor Medicina Privada
Radio Victoria Fueguina
- Represented tobacco company, Espert in a challenge to the Federal Tax Department’s decision to exclude it from the tax amnesty regime.
- Advised Emprendimiento Recoleta on two tax claims.