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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In Europe, Middle East and Africa, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for seven consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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Austria > Private client > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings


Index of tables

  1. Private client
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next Generation Partners

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1
    • Martin Melzer - MĂŒller Partner RechtsanwĂ€lte

Who Represents Who

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CMS acts for company owners, senior management, high-net-worth individuals, family companies and private foundations. Known for its wide-ranging services in the private client field, the firm advises on corporate and tax, property, family, and succession law issues. Team head Johannes Reich-Rohrwig assists clients with the establishment as well as the revision of private foundations and sits on the board of a several private foundations.

Acting for domestic and international high-net-worth individuals and their families, Wolf Theiss Rechtsanwalte GmbH & CoKG's private client team covers a wide array of estate planning, investments, tax and relocation matters, including dispute resolution. Moreover, the firm assists with the establishment and maintenance of private foundations, representing founders. Niklas Schmidt and Karl Binder jointly head the department.

ARNOLD Rechtsanwaelte GmbH is best known for its expertise in the field of private foundation law and succession planning, advising Austrian high-net-worth individuals and family-owned businesses alike. Clients benefit from the firm’s integrated tax practice, especially when it comes to the creation of novel corporate structures. Nikolaus Arnold and Florian Arnold are the key partners.

Binder Grösswang’s ‘exceptionally professional’, ‘determined’ and ‘very flexible and co-operative’ private client team provides ‘comprehensive expertise’ on matters relating to succession planning and foundations, including their establishment, structuring and dissolution, investments, real estate and change of residence. Recognised for ‘his exceptional skill’, the ‘very calm and collected’ Andreas Hable jointly heads the team with Bernd Schneiderbauer, who is ‘able to think beyond borders and to take a holistic view of the entire case.’ Hable and Schneiderbauer have recently been advising a well-known Polish entrepreneurial family on the establishment of an Austrian private foundation with respect to international succession and wealth planning.

Acting for high-net-worth clients at the interface of wealth management and restructuring, Graf & Pitkowitz’s ‘well-functioning’ and ‘extremely competent’ team provides comprehensive contentious as well as non-contentious advice in relation to trusts and private foundations, succession and inheritance law, as well as real estate and tax law, in Austrian and cross-border matters. In addition to heading the team with a ‘very high degree of professionality’ and an ‘outstanding personality’, Armenak Utudjian is a ‘renowned and respected authority’ when it comes to questions of Austrian private foundation law.

The ‘highly experienced’ private client team at MĂŒller Partner RechtsanwĂ€lte advises high-net-worth individuals in matters relating to the establishment and adaption of private foundations, including the restructuring and formation of sub-foundations, as well as succession planning and inheritance law. The team acts for both founders and beneficiaries, as well as board members. One of the practice’s specialist areas concerns the provision of advice in relation to establishment of charitable organisations. In addition, the team can draw on the firm’s corporate and real estate departments for support. Katharina MĂŒller and Martin Melzer, who are considered ‘leading experts in the field of estate planning, foundation and succession law', co-head the private client team.

Siemer-Siegl-FĂŒreder & Partner, RechtsanwĂ€lte advise clients in relation to wealth and general property management matters where there is a generation change, with an emphasis on corporate structuring of private wealth management. Hannes FĂŒreder heads the team and represents family owners of private foundations and wealthy individuals, among other clients; for example, he acted for a former high-profile CEO with respect to the reinvestment of his proceedings by advising on the formation of a customised private trust. FĂŒreder also serves as an executive board member of several private trusts and as chairman of another trust.

bpv HĂŒgel’s private client practice group focuses on advising high-net-worth individuals on tax matters and corporate succession in the context of private foundations and trusts. Another area of expertise is inheritance law, including the drawing up of wills. Florian Plattner is the main point of contact.

Cerha Hempel’s activities in the private client field include wealth management, especially asset structuring in relation to succession planning, as well as corporate law. The firm also assists family-owned businesses, trusts and private foundations, for example as board members, with disputes and restructuring issues. Name partner Benedikt Spiegelfeld, Albert Birkner, Johannes Aehrenthal and Benjamin Twardosz manage the team together. The team is advising long-standing client Franz Pichler Privatstiftung and the family on corporate and investment matters.

Concentrating on succession planning for future generations, in particular asset protection and structuring, DLA Piper Weiss-Tessbach’s private client team assists domestic and international entrepreneurial families and high-net-worth individuals. Key areas of expertise are corporate, tax, family, inheritance and private foundation law. Christoph Mager heads the department and regularly acts as executor of wills, in addition to being a board member of various private foundations and representing these clients in court proceedings.

Dorda Rechtsanwalte GmbH’s private client team’s particular focus lies on corporate succession, securing personal assets and providing for future generations; it regularly advises on the setting up of Austrian trusts and foundations involving tax and estate structuring issues. Paul Doralt, who is able ‘to come up with great solutions’, is advising a Middle Eastern investor in relation to a large-scale real estate matter in Austria. He also jointly leads the department with Elmar Drabek.

DSC Doralt Seist Csoklich RechtsanwĂ€lte GmbH’s focus is on dispute resolution, especially in disputes between foundations, founders and beneficiaries, as well as divorce cases. In addition, the team drafts statutes for foundations. Peter Csoklich heads the private client team, and is a board member of several foundations.

While Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer’s private client practice continues to be active for family shareholders and family offices with respect to legal and tax matters, advising on holding structures and succession planning, work in the transactional sphere, including direct investments, co-investments and buy-outs, is on the rise. Konrad Gröller advised the shareholders of the Porsche family on the sale of Ferdinand PiĂ«ch’s €1.2bn shares in Porsche Automobil Holding. Michael Sedlaczek is also a key contact for this practice area. GĂŒnther Horvath is no longer with the firm, as he joined the supervisory board of Porsche SE as member.

Jakobljevich & Grave’s expertise lies in advising clients on trust and foundation law, as well as matters pertaining to inheritance, tax and estate planning, including associated litigation. Name partners Jörg Jakobljevich and Christian Grave are the main points of contact.

PwC Legal Austria-oehner & partner has succession planning, particularly devising transition strategies for future generations in family businesses, asset protection and corporate structuring at its core, and assists clients with tax, succession and corporate law matters. The practice also advises clients on investments, and one of its strengths is that it can draw on the support of the tax team. Daniela Steiner heads the private client practice group as part of the M&A department, which is led by Christian Öhner.

Based in Upper Austria, the private client team at Saxinger, Chalupsky & Partners RechtsanwĂ€lte GmbH (SCWP Schindhelm) is noted for its ‘exceptional know-how’, ‘transparency’ and ‘reliability’. It advises family-owned companies, private foundations and renowned high-net-worth individuals on succession, inheritance and corporate structuring matters, both Austrian and cross-border. In addition, the firm regularly acts on the private client aspects of substantial transactions. Gerald Schmidsberger has ‘exceptional industry knowledge'. Also recommended are Franz Mittendorfer and Birgit Leb.

Serving individuals, families, family-owned businesses and private foundations located in Austria as well as abroad, Schindler Attorneys’ private client team’s principal focus lies on family and private foundation law and succession planning, with a particular focus on the interplay between inheritance and corporate law. In addition, the team can rely on the expertise of other departments in the firm, such as corporate, employment, finance and real estate, including the integrated tax practice. Clemens Schindler leads the team and is the main contact. Martin Picherer and Philipp Hoyos are the other key partners.

Torggler Rechtsanwälte GmbH assists clients with the establishment and management of private foundations, including non-profit foundations, for scientific, cultural and charitable purposes. In addition, the team provides advice on inheritance and estate planning matters. Hellwig Torggler and Reinhard Kautz are the key partners.

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Legal Developments in Austria for Private client

  • Individual Tax Rulings Now Possible in Moldova – And They're Binding!

    What previously was impossible and not foreseen by local legislation is now possible. Starting 1 January 2017, the Tax Code of Moldova (the " Tax Code ") was amended by Law 281/2016 to include a separate norm (Art. 136Âč) on individual tax rulings (" ITR ") for the benefit of entrepreneurs. Within the limits of its scope and in respect of a concrete beneficiary, an issued ITR is binding on the State Tax Service (the " STS "). The Government and the Ministry of Finance are expected to approve the secondary legislation to regulate the details of the procedure. read more...
    - Schönherr

Legal Developments in Austria

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

    Good things come to those who wait? Finally, the main implementing regulation for the Austrian Law on Network and Information System Security ( Netz- und Informationssystemsicherheitsgesetz , " NISG ") was published last week. It serves primarily to define which companies are actually affected by the NISG. Now it is getting serious for the operators of " essential services ". What does that mean?
    - Dorda

    Black Friday is unquestionable one of the most profitable and busiest days of the year for retail, particularly online. Worldwide almost all online store do offer sales or special promotions on Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Already after this practice has established online, a trademark for " BLACK FRIDAY " was registered in Germany back in 2013. In 2016 a Chinese company acquired the trademark and then filed in 2017 for its extension to Austria. Based on the registered trademark, it granted exclusive rights to an Austrian company, which licensed usage rights to various partner stores against remuneration. Further, an exclusive " Black Friday-Cooperation Program " was established. Non-partners who used the event name or trademark were prosecuted and requested to either pay a license fee or refrain from running Black Friday promotions. Some followed the request and entered into license agreements. Some, however, did challenge the validity of the trademark. Finally, respective proceedings to check the actual protection of the trademark were initiated. Austrian courts now held that the trademark " BLACK FRIDAY " is not protected in Austria .
    - Dorda

    On 5th December 2018, the Austrian data protection authority ( Datenschutzbehörde , "DSB") issued a decision (DSB-D123.270/0009-DSB/2018) on data subject's right to data deletion according to Art 17 GDPR. In a nutshell, the DSB accepted consistent anonymisation as a valid alternative to physical and technical deletion. Beside the clear statement that anonymous data is not subject to the GDPR, the DSB provided detailed information on (technical) requirements of anonymisation methods:
    - Dorda
  • Consent or pay – a valid scheme under the GDPR?

    Media companies throughout Europe struggle with a difficult economic environment: Shrinking sales figures for print products, the digitalisation and consumer demand force publishers to offer their content also on the internet. However, generating money for online publications is not quite easy as – at least in Austria – online subscription against renumeration has not been well accepted by customers. This partially has its root in the lack of suitable micropayment means in the past and users thus getting acquainted to online information being offered for free. Thus, publishers have instead focused on financing their platforms by online marketing activities such as placement of banners. Nowadays such digital advertisement is usually targeted to the specific user. For this purpose, cookies are stored on the user's computer upon his first visit of the website, which then collect data about his location, technical equipment used and online behaviour. This finally allows to display specific, user targeted advertisements. However, such cookies may cause issues with applicable consent requirements under the telecommunication and data protection regulations:
    - Dorda
  • fwp expands know-how thanks to new junior partner

    Vienna, March 2019. Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner GmbH (fwp) adds valuable competence and expertise to the team by welcoming Pavel Bachleda in its midst as a new attorney-at-law and junior partner.
  • fwp helps find a new mega arena location

    fwp helps find a new mega arena location

    Processing operations subject to the requirement of a data protection impact assessment.
    - Dorda
  • Rien ne va plus!

    - Dorda
  • DORDA advises on the acquisition of Austrian office properties Denk Drei

    Stefan Artner , Partner and Head of the Real Estate Practice Group, and real estate attorney Klaus Pfeiffer of DORDA advised Austrian Real Estate Development GmbH ( ARE , a subsidiary of Bundesimmobilien-Gesellschaft, the Austrian privatization agency) on the acquisition of the Denk Drei office properties from IC Development . The successful closing of the forward purchase transaction took place on April 30, 2018. The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price.
    - Dorda
  • Austrian "White List"

    Exceptions from the OBLIGATION TO CARRY OUT A data protection impact assessment
    - Dorda

Press Releases in Austria

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to
  • fwp extends its expertise by appointing a new junior partner from its own ranks

    Vienna, September 2018. Motivated and energetic - this is how the new junior partner of Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner (fwp) presents himself. One of Austria’s leading law firms acclaims Clemens Gabriel’s new status as attorney-at-law registered since 19 September 2018.
  • fwp strengthens areas of competence by appointing a new junior partner from its own ranks.

    Vienna, September 2018. Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner (fwp) adds valuable competence and expertise to the team by promoting Michael Froner to junior partner.
  • Slovakia: Schoenherr advises AlbĂ©a on the acquisition of Scandolara Slovakia

    Schoenherr Bratislava has advised the Albéa group ("Albéa") on the acquisition of 100 % of the shares in SCANDOLARA TUB-EST, s.r.o. ("Scandolara"), a Slovak subsidiary of the Italian Scandolara Group, which produces laminate tubes. read more...
  • Schoenherr assists Republic of Austria in offer to HETA-creditors

    On Friday, 2 September 2016, the Austrian Finance Minister has given the green light to finance a public offer by KÀrntner Ausgleichszahlungs-Fonds (KAF) to HETA creditors pursuant to § 2a of the Austrian Financial Market Stability Act. The offer will implement the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) concluded in May 2016 between the Austrian Minister of Finance and a significant number of creditors of debt instruments issued by HETA ASSET RESOLUTION AG (HETA) that are subject to a regional law deficiency guarantee. The offer will be published by KAF on Tuesday, 6 September 2016.  read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises banking consortium on issuance of EUR 500 million mortgage covered bond

    Schoenherr advised an international banking consortium comprising Commerzbank Ak-tiengesellschaft (technical lead), Barclays Bank plc, Crédit Agricole CIB and CaixaBank SA as Joint Lead Managers on the successful issuance of a EUR 500 million fixed-rate mortgage covered bond ( Pfandbrief ) by Vienna-based Erste Group Bank AG (closing date: 9 September 2015). The bond was placed with institutional investors and listed on the Second Regulated Market of the Vienna Stock Exchange.  read more...
  • Austria: JUVE confirms Schoenherr's leading role in Austrian legal market and among corporate/M&A pr

    JUVE, the premier German-language legal business publication, ranks Schoenherr as the  leading law firm in Austria  and recognises the firm's Corporate/M&A practice for being at the very  apex of the country's transactional practitioners . In the newly-released 2015 edition of its annual 150-page handbook on corporate law firms in Austria, JUVE identifies Schoenherr as having generated the highest revenues among the country’s 15 largest law firms, thanks not least to Schoenherr's advisory role in a large selection of the headline transactions and restructurings during 2014/15.  read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises Allianz Capital Partners on its first acquisition of wind parks in Austr

    Schoenherr advised Allianz Capital Partners (ACP) on its acquisition of four wind parks in the Austrian state of Lower Austria from ImWind, one of the country’s largest wind farm operators, with a portfolio of 320 MW in operation. read more...
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    Schoenherr has advised UNION Investment Real Estate GmbH, one of Europe's leading property investment management companies, on several prominent real estate acquisitions that the Hamburg-based group has made in Vienna. In addition to space2move, Schoenherr has also advised UNION Investment. read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises Cimpress on its acquisition of Austria's

    Schoenherr advised Cimpress N.V., a world leader in mass customization, on its acquisition of, one of the leading web-to-print businesses in Austria. The transaction, which was announced on 18 March 2015, closed on 17 April 2015 following the successful achievement of various closing conditions including Austrian antitrust clearance. The acquisition supports Cimpress’ strategy of building a software-enabled operational platform that aggregates and optimizes the supply chain and production of mass customized products such as signage, printing, apparel and promotional products. read more...
  • CEE: Schoenherr named Leading Law Firm in South East Europe by Chambers

    Schoenherr has been recognized as " South East Europe Law Firm of the Year " (2015) by the renowned legal publisher Chambers and Partners . Schoenherr lawyers Monica Cojocaru (partner; Bucharest), Miloơ Laković (partner, Moravčević, Vojnović & partneri OAD in cooperation with Schoenherr; Belgrade) and Marko Pruơnik (partner; Ljubljana) accepted the award on behalf of the firm at the Chambers Europe Awards event held this past Friday evening at Amsterdam’s Hotel Okura. read more...