Shipping and transport in Estonia

Ellex

Ellex handles a wide range of transactional, regulatory and contentious work, and is highly recommended for asset financing, and for novel and innovative transport companies. The firm regularly advises both public and private sector clients in the aviation, shipping, railway and road transportation sectors, and is a popular choice for shipowners and for ship, train and aircraft purchasers. The team also represents clients in litigation and arbitration, with experience in public procurement disputes and disputes with regulators. Practice head Toomas Vaher is key to this side of the practice; he is also an expert in ship register legislation.

Practice head(s):

Toomas Vaher

Key clients

Baltic Group International OÜ

Oiltanking Europe B.V

Auto-Bon Oy

Operail AS

Daimler

Magnetic MRO

Amserv

Veho Group

AS Tallink

Work highlights

  • Advising the Government of the Republic of Estonia on matters pertaining to the Rail Baltic project–an international rail connection that will connect Estonia with Central and Western Europe and its neighbours.
  • Advising Tallink and its main shareholder on the development of a new passenger port with a conference centre, concert hall and commercial and shopping area in central Tallinn.
  • Advised Operail on starting business operations in Finland with Finnish-Russian transit.

Sorainen

Sorainen fields a full-service transport practice that particularly stands out for its road and maritime experience and for its EU law expertise. The team has a prominent interdisciplinary technology and data protection component, with a niche in smart and interconnected vehicles. Practice head Kaupo Lepasepp has a background in public and international trade law, and expertise in the rail sector. Senior associate Cathriin Torop is noted for advising innovative transport companies and technology companies working for transport sector clients.

Practice head(s):

Kaupo Lepasepp

Other key lawyers:

Cathriin Torop

Key clients

Bolt (Taxify)

Tallinna Lennujaam

Rail Baltic

Finest Bay Area Development

Auto 100

Toyota Baltic

Eurovia

Novatours

Inchcape Motors

Lux Express

The Estonian Consumer Protection and Technical Regulatory Authority

SEBE

Tallinna Linnatranspordi AS

TGS Baltic

The transport practice at TGS Baltic operates across numerous sectors, namely rail, aviation, road and public passenger transport. Core strengths are in financing, claims for damages and forced arrests of vessels, PPP projects, warehousing and property management services for ports. Senior associate Martti Peetsalu has extensive expertise in litigation and in restructuring and insolvency.

Practice head(s):

Martti Peetsalu

Testimonials

‘Martti is an extremely analytical, pro-active and commercial lawyer, which is a unique combination as you would usually find not more than one of these capabilities in a lawyer. However, Martti is always acting like chess player – thinking several steps ahead, making the right predictions and advising his clients accordingly. ’

Key clients

Credit Suisse

Port of Tallinn

Operail

Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC)

Hellmann Worldwide Logistics

Work highlights

  • Composing a legal analysis for the Estonian Ministry of Finance with recommendations and guidance material for the preparation of DBFM (Design-Build-Finance-Maintain) PPP transaction for the main highway 2+2.
  • Advised Credit Suisse on enforcing the mortgage over the vessel in Estonia and subsequent forced sale of the vessel.
  • Representing SOE Port of Tallinn in a criminal case against its former directors – Mr. Ain Kaljurand and Mr. Allan Kiil.

RASK Attorneys-at-Law

RASK Attorneys-at-Law specialises in shipping and aviation, with expertise in aircraft sales and leasing, dry and wet shipping claims, legislative impact assessments and infrastructure issues. Timo Kullerkupp leads the team, and has experience of advisory work. The practice also handles procurement disputes, passenger claims and issues related to permitting.

Practice head(s):

Timo Kullerkupp

Testimonials

‘Knowledgeable and efficient team with ability to adapt to the dynamic nature of the aviation sector.’

‘The firm’s partner Timo Kullerkupp is knowledgeable, efficient and quick to adapt to the needs of the specific business.’

‘Commitment and professionalism.’

Key clients

Air Baltic Corporation AS

SmartLynx Airlines Estonia OÜ

British Airways PLC

Magnetic MRO AS

Ridango AS

Pärnu Sadam AS

Top Marine Infra OÜ

Estonian Autosport Events MTÜ

Diamond Sky OÜ

Cleveron AS

Kihnu Veeteed AS

WALLESS (former Derling Primus)

The transport and logistics team at WALLESS (former Derling Primus) houses a separate aviation and aircraft financing team with experience in sales, leasing, repossessions and insolvencies. The practice deals with a range of regulatory and transactional work; team lead Toomas Taube is instrumental in handling M&A, restructuring and complex financing arrangements.

FORT

Kuldar-Jaan Torokoff leads the shipping practice at FORT, which draws on the firm’s M&A and disputes teams. Contentious work, corporate restructuring and planning are central areas of work, with the practice regularly acting for public transportation clients.

Practice head(s):

Kuldar-Jaan Torokoff

Other key lawyers:

Merit Lind

Testimonials

‘Very good industry knowledge. Lightning-quick and competent response no matter what the issue is.’

‘In transportation sector Kuldar-Jaan Torokoff is an authoritative figure who has advised us for a long time. He is always up to date with the development in neighbouring regions as well, which has been rather impressive and useful for us. Merit Lind who joined them recently is another experienced lawyer of their team with whom we are impressed with.’

LEXTAL

LEXTAL predominantly focuses on cross-border transport disputes and on public procurement relating to transport infrastructure. Olavi-Jüri Luik and Alar Urm head the team.

Magnusson

Denis Piskunov, who specialises in contentious work, heads the team at Magnusson, which has a good record handling carriage disputes. The practice also advises on aviation financing and on passenger transport.

TARK

M&A and finance specialist Tanel Küün heads the practice at TARK, which provides regulatory and competition advice, particularly in relation to distribution agreements, to clients in the transport and logistics sectors.