Dispute resolution in Belarus

SBH Law Office

Timour Sysouev’s team at SBH Law Office has particular expertise in representing Belarus-based clients – successfully in most cases – in energy, construction, and banking disputes. Additionally, it also acts for an impressive number of high-profile, internationally-recognised clients in the automotive, IT, and banking sectors, continuing a trend of client diversification. In recent work, it represented a client before the Belarusian Supreme Court, and has also been active in international arbitration. Automotive and consumer disputes expert Anastasiya Malakhova is a name to note and is part of a team that provides ‘a genuinely tailored approach when providing services, as well as high standards of project management’.

Practice head(s):

Timour Sysouev

Testimonials

‘The firm provided: detailed questioning before the task; a clear understanding of the client’s needs; and a genuinely tailored approach when providing services, as well as high standards of project management.’ 

Key clients

Gazprom Transgaz Belarus

Gazpromneft-Belnefteprodukt

Volvo Financial Services International

Falcon Investment Company

TRIPLE

BPS-Sberbank

Football club Shakhter

Axoftbel LLC

Gurmina

Work highlights

  • Acted in an arbitration according to the rules of the the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce.
  • Representing a client in the International Arbitration Court of the BelCSI concerning debt collection from one of the Latvian counterparties
  • Represented a client’s interests at first instance and on appeal against a former lessee that was involved in a bankruptcy procedure.

Sorainen

The ‘outstanding’ and ‘very informedAlexey Anischenko  leads the practice at Sorainen, which advises clients in diverse sectors but has recently carved a niche in acting for software developers and start-up technology firms in IP-related disputes. Other key clients include multinationals and local businesses in the life sciences, pharmaceutical, and banking sectors. There is significant overlap between the firm’s litigation practice and its commercial and regulatory work. It also has extensive experience representing clients before the Supreme Court, constitutional courts, international courts, and international arbitration institutions. Noted practitioners include Mikhail Sergeenya, who is ‘a master of white-collar investigations and communications with law enforcement authorities’, and senior associate Maria Rodich, ‘an excellent litigator with sufficient knowledge of domestic and international law’ who ‘doesn't offer trivial solutions’.

Practice head(s):

Alexey Anischenko

Testimonials

‘Sorainen’s dispute resolution team is the strongest Belarusian team in terms of professional capabilities and client service. They are always available, provide strategic advice and are eager to walk the extra mile to help us achieve our purposes. The team is indeed a team, rather then competent individuals.’ 

‘We mostly work with senior associate Maria Rodich, who is an excellent litigator with sufficient knowledge of domestic and international law. She doesn’t offer trivial solutions and manages project work well to bring us close to solving problems with our counteragents.’ 

‘Mikhail Sergeenya is a master of white-collar investigations and communications with law enforcement authorities.’ 

‘Alexey Anischenko is definitely the outstanding individual that leads the team. He is very prompt and present in the case, views the entire case from a comprehensive perspective, but is also very informed of the details of the arguments and factual issues.’ 

Key clients

Zavod Gazetnoy Bumagi RUE

Elema

Belorusskie oboi

Rietumu Banka

Telko FLLC

CrossFit Inc.

Glassworks Neman

Glera Market

Intercity

Spartak

Nokian Tyres

Trasko-Inwest

Work highlights

  • Representing Elema in proceedings before two international arbitration forums.
  • Acting for Rietumu Banka in a debt recovery case.
  • Defended Belorusskie oboi in VIAC arbitration concerning a UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods -based claim by a Czech supplier of industrial equipment.

Verkhovodko & Partners LLC

Verkhovodko & Partners LLC is regularly involved in significant, headline disputes in Belarus. Instructed for the most part by mid-sized and large domestic clients in the manufacturing, aviation, and real estate and construction sectors, it is also increasingly active in multi-jurisdictional disputes. The firm is representing Minsk Meat Processing Factory State Enterprise in its €45.5m cross-border dispute against an Italian company, relating to the improper performance of the construction contract. Experienced arbitrator Igor Verkhovodko and Igor Petukhov  head the practice. Advocate Ksenia Zhukovskaya and Aleksander Orekhov are other key names.

Practice head(s):

Igor Verkhovodko; Igor Petukhov

Testimonials

‘Igor Verkhovodko is a team leader with great professional knowledge, skills, and work experience.’ 

Key clients

Minsk Meat Processing Factory State Enterprise

Stroytorgservis LLC

Golf Center LLC

Green Bay LLC

EMSAŞ Construction Tourism Trade and Industry Co. Inc.

Zdravushka-Milk

Sontsa

BELAVIA Belarusian Airlines

RevyTar Invest PC

Vall-Impex Trading SLU

Work highlights

  • Represented a client in a €45.5m cross-border dispute against an Italian company that builds plants and systems for pig and cattle farms all over the world.
  • Acted for a client in a dispute valued at $1.5m concerning the recovery of a default interest pertaining to a delay in a facility construction.
  • Represented a client in a dispute with Uslugi Handlowe Izabela Charzynska concerning payment owed under an equipment supply contract.

Arzinger & Partners

Construction and energy disputes underpin the litigation practice at Arzinger & Partners, which has a particular focus on representing foreign investors in disputes arising out of their business activities in Belarus. More recently, the ‘solution-oriented’ firm has acted for clients in high-stakes arbitration work in foreign jurisdictions, where its ‘in-depth knowledge, great responsiveness and creativity’ allow it ‘to provide legal solutions to complex business matters’. Practice head Elena Mashonskaya has a ‘long track record of involvement in high-profile commercial disputes’ and is cited for her ‘exceptional competence as well as her responsiveness and creativity’. Klim Stashevsky is also noted.

Practice head(s):

Elena Mashonskaya

Testimonials

Experience in the courts on various client projects makes this practice unique. In my opinion, the strength of the team is the ability to effectively present the project as a whole and in detail, as well as the ability to offer deep analysis.’ 

‘Elena Moshenskaya has a high level of training and extensive experience.’ 

‘Very responsive and eager to provide support; no needless small-talk but straight to the point; solution-oriented; friendly; very confident in their abilities, one is and feels in good hands; clearly very up to date with new legal developments.’ 

 

‘The organization employs experienced lawyers who provide services in different areas of law, as well as professionals who have an understanding of how to choose a specialist. I would especially like to note Mashonskaya Elena, who not only delves into the problems, but her professional view of the problems and a sensitive understanding of the essence of things.’ 

‘Arzinger & Partners successfully represented us in a disagreement with a contractor whose work was of poor quality. Arzinger & Partners represented our interests in this conflict – and once again proved their professionalism.’ 

‘Arzinger & Partners is a firm with experienced and attentive lawyers, who have a great reputation in the Belarusian legal market.’ 

‘Due to their in-depth knowledge, great responsiveness and creativity, Arzinger team are able to provide legal solutions to complex business matters.’ 

‘Elena Mashonskaya has a long track record of involvement into high-profile commercial disputes. We can note her for exceptional competence as well as responsiveness and creativity while dealing with our case. She possesses all of the necessary skills and knowledge to achieve the best results for the client.’

‘Klim Stashevsky is a highly experienced and competent specialist. He shows his ability to deliver extremely qualitative advice within tight deadlines.’ 

‘I know the team as a strong arbitration and litigation player in Belarus. They are focused on representing foreign investors in disputes arising out of their business activities in Belarus.’ 

‘Key persons in the disputes practice are Elena Mashonskaya and Julia Mironchik. Both lawyers have a strong background of representing heavy industrial producers and construction companies both in Belarus and in international arbitration institutions of Russia, Austria and Sweden. The team adheres to high quality and ethical standards.’ 

Key clients

INCAB

Belcable Association

Lindner

DB-Tronic

Eckart

Streamer

Rewatt Electro

Work highlights

  • Represented Incab and six other EAEU factories in the anti-dumping investigation undertaken by the Eurasian economic commission.
  • Represented Belcable Association in a dispute concerning the abuse of a business reputation.
  • Acted for a client in securing the exclusion of another creditor’s $1.6m claim from the preferential turn of creditors in bankruptcy proceedings

Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners

Dennis Turovets leads the team at Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners, which handles a sizeable number of international disputes, many of which involve collaboration with foreign legal advisers. Its clients span sectors including transportation, energy, food and drink, and media. Senior associate Igor Yatskovsky specialises in real estate and construction-related litigation, often representing clients in large-scale projects before state courts and national bodies. The firm is also instructed by firms involved in disputes with Belarusian authorities, which tend to be resolved by mediation.

Practice head(s):

Dennis Turovets

Key clients

Conde Nast JSC and Les Publications Condé Nast S.A.

Vitebskenergo RUE

Alvora UAB and Vinges Terminalas UAB

Alvora UAB

SIA RKF LORI

KAMAKO

Russkie Sladosi

Andrzej Rawłuszewicz

Minor citizens of the Kingdom of Spain

Culligan Italiana Sp

Work highlights

  • Representing Conde Nast JSC and Les Publications Condé Nast S.A. in a dispute concerning unfair competition before the Supreme Court of the Republic of Belarus.
  • Acting for Vitebskenergo RUE in the process of recognition and enforcement in Austria of an arbitration award against Polytechnik Luft-und Feuerungstechnik GmbH.
  • Representing the interests of Alvora UAB and Vinges Terminalas UAB in a dispute concerning the fulfilment of monetary obligations brought by companies of V.Dovnar, their former Belarusian business partner.

Legaltax

Corporate disputes and insolvency procedures are core strengths of the team at Legaltax, which has expertise in acting for international clients in the construction, pharmacy, IT, and energy sectors, with further experience in cross-border arbitration cases. The team is led by Vasili Valazhynets, who is an ‘attentive lawyer’ and ‘very good negotiator’. Senior counsel Siarhei Miadzvedzeu is noted for handling bankruptcy and real estate-related disputes, including some instances in which he represents foreign companies in disputes with local state-owned companies.

Practice head(s):

Vasili Valazhynets

Testimonials

‘I like to work with Vasili Valazynets, because he is attentive lawyer. I feel that he really cares our situations and is a very good negotiator.’ 

‘I want to recommend Roman Shpakovsky as a good negotiator; active, fast and ready for hard work.’ 

Key clients

Fylandox Holding Ltd.

ABLV Bank, AS

Orangesoft, LLC

Vero Visuals, B.V.

TDP Sp. z o.o.

Samfinaco Limited

Work highlights

  • Representing the claimant in a cross-border real estate dispute with the developer worth €2.5m.
  • Representing the Polish producer of electric equipment in a dispute with the Belarusian state-owned holding concerning non-payment.
  • Acting for Orangesoft LLC in a dispute relating to the illegal use of a trade mark.

REVERA

REVERA acts for private and public clients active in a wide range of sectors in litigation and arbitration work that often reaches international courts. Although it handles a broad caseload spanning banking, manufacturing, and pharmaceutical disputes, investment litigation is a notable specialism. Andrey Tolochko, who is a key name for bankruptcy mandates, now heads the team. Anastasia Pavluchenko, litigator Alexander Goretsky and Oksana Kotel are now with Goretsky & Partners.

Practice head(s):

Andrey Talochka

Key clients

Syngenta Agro AG

Cheminova

Bauer Technics A.S

Heineken

Pernod Ricard Minsk Co

Minskenergo

Elem Messer LIT

A1 Investment group

BSB-Bank

Akvadiv

Work highlights

  • Acted for a client in protecting its interests against a competitor’s unfair actions in the Republic of Belarus in the sphere of pharmaceutical marketing.
  • Representing a Russian investor in an investment dispute with the Republic of Belarus.
  • Successful representation of a client’s interests in a legal action seeking damages from the custodian due to loss of goods in custody.

Stepanovski, Papakul and partners

Stepanovski, Papakul and partners focuses its attention on complex corporate disputes, representing both private individuals and larger Belarusian companies. Clients span manufacturing, construction, chemicals, and transportation companies. ‘High-class specialistAlexadner Lobaty heads the practice. Andrei Vashkevich joined Lex Torre.

Practice head(s):

Alexander Lobaty

Testimonials

‘Labaty Aliaksandr works fantastically with the evidence and creates a strong position on it, seemingly out of nothing.’ 

‘Oksana Puchkovskaya helped me through labor disputes. She can work around the clock, is aggressive in her defense, and investigates the case even more thoroughly than the judges themselves.’ 

‘The company has top-level experts who have a thorough knowledge of the law and current practice and recognize risks that many do not know about.’ 

‘Anop Irina is a specialist in corporate disputes and turnover of shares; she has an astonishing knowledge and understanding of her expertise area and she is ready to defend her client day and night.’ 

‘Labaty Aliaksandr is a key specialist with whom we worked the most. He is very precise when choosing a position and his prognoses have been highly accurate.’ 

‘We would like to stress the key feature of the practice: an ability to achieve set goals. Everything was done in due course regarding both timelines and a high quality of a work.’ 

‘Our interests were represented by Labaty Aliaksandr. In our opinion, he is a high-class specialist who really does know how to do his job properly. He has always been in touch with us, even on the weekends. Communication with him gave the confidence that he considers all risks and opportunities and is capable to use it to our advantage.’ 

Key clients

Soligorsk Institute of Resources Saving

Problems with Pilot Production JSC

Veronica Simonova

Brestvneshtrans JLLC

Lesohimik

Weis Consulting Assoc.

A.M. Buhanov

Work highlights

  • Acted for a client in the recovery of damages caused by defective goods.
  • Acted for a client in successfully challenging the charter amendments and enforcing the share value in the amount of €2m.
  • Representing the investor in an investor-state contractual dispute.

VMP Vlasova Mikhel & Partners

Headed by experienced litigator Olga Nikolaeva, the dispute resolution team at VMP Vlasova Mikhel & Partners specialises in handling construction-related litigation, contractual issues, and other corporate disputes. Its client roster of mostly foreign companies are, by and large, situated in the technology, FMCG, and retail sectors. Konstantin Mikhel frequently represents clients in domestic disputes.

Practice head(s):

Olga Nikolaeva

Key clients

Belgokhimprom

Utair

BASF

Hewlett Packard

SNA Europe

Schmitz Cargobull

Iran Khodro (IKSO)

Laurinart

GUZZ Ex

Uralkali

Work highlights

  • Representing the world’s largest potash producer, a shareholder in a Belarusian company, in a bankruptcy case.
  • Represented a European chemical company in a debt collection case.
  • Representing a major manufacturer in a dispute where an employee who left the client’s company required payment of the actual value of his shares in the statutory fund of LLC. The firm argued in Belarus’ Economic Court that the articles of association contain a provision stating that, in cases of withdrawal from the LLC, the former employee is entitled only to a certain part of the actual value of his shares.

bnt | attorneys-at-law

bnt | attorneys-at-law specialises in cross-border disputes, usually involving German-based clients, a direct result of the firm's vast network and referrals from multinational law firms. It represents clients in the energy, pharmaceutical and healthcare, IT, construction and development, automotive, and manufacturing sectors, among others. Alexander Liessem leads the practice. Maryia Ivankova is another name to note.

Practice head(s):

Alexander Liessem

Borovtsov & Salei

The team at Borovtsov & Salei is headed by Maxim Znak. The group specialises in contract disputes, bankruptcy litigation, and IP-related mandates in the dispute resolution sphere. It focuses on representing the corporate interests of both foreign and domestic clients, and Znak has experience litigating before state courts, the Supreme Court of Belarus, and arbitration tribunals. While Znak oversees all of the firm's workload overseas, associate Yuri Kozikov handles a number of the firm’s Belarus-based disputes.

Practice head(s):

Maxim Znak

Key clients

Pilot TV CJSC

Sotsstroyproyekt LLC

Work highlights

  • Represented the interests of the Belarusian TV company “TV Pilot” for the recovery of consequential damages from a Russian company, which unreasonably limited the possibility of broadcasting an international television channel.
  • Representing a client’s interests in a court against a large private investor.