Financial services: litigation in Germany

Allen & Overy LLP

The financial experts at Allen & Overy LLP are experienced in representing banks, financial services providers, auditing firms, funds and insurers and often cooperate across practices and locations in contentious matters. The group is a sought-after partner for the enforcement and defence against claims and damages claims, as well as for matters relating to financial products and issues touching on tax and criminal law. Key contacts include banking and finance law expert Jan Erik Windthorst, associate Anja Schelling, who focuses on litigation in capital markets-related corporate matters, and practice head Wolf Bussian, who has a wealth of experience in the cum-ex and cum-cum issues.

Practice head(s):

Wolf Bussian

Work highlights

  • Defending a German financial institution against a multi-million-euro claim.
  • Advising and representing an auditing company in several judicial and extrajudicial disputes with a large number of parties involved due to alleged breaches of duty in the context of the preparation of a restructuring report.
  • Advising the investment banking arm of a major international bank on the enforcement of claims against a globally operating German DAX company in connection with the termination of a contract for complex financial services.

Hengeler Mueller

Hengeler Mueller combines expertise in banking, finance and capital markets law with extensive experience in contentious proceedings pertaining to share deals around the dividend closing date as well as KapMuG proceedings; the group is instructed by banks, insurers and financial services providers. Practice head Markus Meier is well versed in capital markets law and has additional IT expertise, while Maximilian Bülau frequently assists with matters relating to securities regulation and commercial and financing agreements; Antonia Hösch oversees bank liability issues and insurance law disputes.

Practice head(s):

Markus Meier


Linklaters is a renowned player in the financial disputes sphere and represents banks and other financial services providers in national and international disputes. The practice demonstrates special expertise in cum-ex and cum-cum issues as well as in KapMug proceedings and cooperates synergistically with the firm's banking and banking regulatory experts. Insolvency law disputes are the focus of team leader Alexandros Chatzinerantzis and associate Martin Bär. Other integral team members are Kirstin Schwedt, who is well versed in D&O liability, as well as Christian Schmitt, whose advice offering includes prospectus liability and capital market disputes.

Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance's combined expertise in banking, tax and commercial criminal law issues results in regular instructions from financial services providers, insurers and asset managers from Germany and abroad, while the team was recently particularly active in banking supervisory law-related matters. The team is led by Michael Kremer and has extensive experience in cum-ex and cum-cum transactions and subsequent disputes where it often cooperates with litigator Burkhard Schneider and tax lawyer Felix Mühlhäuser. Other key figures include criminal lawyer Heiner Hugger and senior associate Sibylle Haas (litigation and arbitration).

Practice head(s):

Michael Kremer

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

Other key lawyers:

Michael Rohls

Gleiss Lutz

Banks, funds, private equity houses and other financial services providers rely on Gleiss Lutz' experience. On one hand, the group has accumulated particularly deep expertise in civil law aspects of cum-ex issues and on the other, in insolvency-related matters, which is underlined by its assistance to the insolvency administrator of Wirecard AG. The team is headed by Stefan Rützel and also includes key contact Eric Wagner, who is experienced in liability law as well as Andrea Leufgen and Florian Wagner, who are both experienced in transaction-related financial disputes.

Practice head(s):

Stefan Rützel

Work highlights

  • Defending an international financial services provider against compensation claims related to cum-ex transactions.
  • Advising the insolvency administrator of Wirecard AG on the internal processing of allegations and enforcement of claims under civil law.


Boutique offering SERNETZ • SCHÄFER foots on three pillars: litigation, banking and capital markets law as well as corporate advice while it combines the first two subject areas to offer German major and state banks, state institutes, private equity funds and capital management companies a specialised range of advice. Frank Schäfer, who jointly heads the practice with Helge Großerichter (active in arbitration proceedings as well as litigation), is experienced in banking and regulatory disputes. Ferdinand Kruis is another contact for litigation, arbitration and mediation matters.

Other key lawyers:

Ferdinand Kruis


‘Support from partners as a model and guarantor for continuously excellent consulting quality and high continuity of knowledge.’

‘Perceptive, analytically brilliant and argumentatively accurate.’

‘Team Munich has an excellent banking litigation team.’

‘Helge Großerichter is very experienced.’

‘Ferdinand Kruis is a gifted lawyer; excellent briefs; tactically smart.’

‘Close, trusting and, in particular, collegial cooperation as the basis for mutual success in out-of-court and in-court dispute resolution.’

‘Enormous expertise both in terms of specialization in individual subject/legal areas as well as comprehensively and “helper/adviser” in every matter.’

‘Economic solutions for the client are paramount.’

Key clients

Bayern LB

Hamburg Commercial Bank AG (vormals HSH Nordbank AG)

Hypo Real Estate

Wirecard Bank

Work highlights

  • Representing Hamburg Commercial Bank AG (formerly HSH Nordbank AG) in proceedings brought by 45 predominantly international bondholders before the LG Kiel related to the replenishment of silent participations after an allegedly inadmissible write-down or allegedly inadmissible allocation to the special item for general banking risks.
  • Representing Bayern LB in an action to avoid insolvency.
  • Comprehensive strategic advice to UniCredit Bank AG in connection with the (alleged) EC fee cartel in the German banking industry; Defense against cartel damages claims and advice on fundamental litigation issues.

Kantenwein Zimmermann Spatscheck & Partner

Cum-ex issues and resulting claims for recourse as well as loss sharing form two pillars of Kantenwein Zimmermann Spatscheck & Partner's dispute resolution practice, whereby the team has recently also increasingly acted in insolvency-related matters. The client portfolio includes German and international banks, financial services providers and investors. Practice head and banking and capital markets lawyer Marcus van Bevern has a banking background and therefore also in-house experience. Other key contacts are Carolin Sabel, who is experienced in cum-ex proceedings, and experienced litigator and tax law expert Stefan Hackel.

Practice head(s):

Marcus van Bevern

Other key lawyers:

Stefan Hackel; Carolin Sabel

Work highlights

  • Advising and representing a foreign bank in recourse claims in connection with cum-ex transactions.
  • Advising and representing a capital management company in recourse claims in connection with cum-ex transactions.

Latham & Watkins LLP

Investors, shareholders and payment service providers are among Latham & Watkins LLP's client base and make particular use of the team's expertise in civil and criminal law issues as well as in contentious regulatory and insurance matters. The group is led by securities disputes veteran Christoph Baus and includes counsel Stefan Patzer; he assists with conflict-ridden insurance and insolvency law matters among other issues.

Practice head(s):

Christoph Baus

Other key lawyers:

Stefan Patzer


Noerr's dispute resolution team advises German and international banks on various contentious issues in the banking and finance sphere which includes cross-border client support, especially with regard to the US and UK. The team is led by litigator Christine Volohonsky, who has particular experience in advising on insolvency-related disputes, while Hans Christian Kirchner focuses on banking and securities law issues and frequently represents credit institutions before state courts and arbitration tribunals. Kolja Dörrscheidt (class actions as well as high-volume individual disputes) and the two associated partners Christian Dolff (national and international litigation) and Dieter Hettenbach (focus on investor model proceedings according to KapMuG and model declaratory judgment actions) are other key contacts. In July 2021, criminal lawyer Volker Rosengarten joined from Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP.

Practice head(s):

Christine Volohonsky

White & Case LLP

With a focus on banking litigation and insurance law, White & Case LLP primarily assists German and international banks and regularly acts across practices and locations. The team is headed by Markus Langen, who has in-depth experience in liability issues and in the assertion of damages claims. Other key figures include Christian Wirth and Sonja Hoffmann, who are both well versed in class action lawsuits.

Practice head(s):

Markus Langen

Other key lawyers:

Christian Wirth; Sonja Hoffmann

Key clients

IKB Deutsche Industriebank AG

Hamburg Commercial Bank

Landesbank Baden-Württemberg

Unicredit Bank AG

Credit Suisse (Deutschland) AG


Work highlights

  • Defending Hamburg Commercial Bank AG (HCOB) against claims by several investor before the regional courts in Kiel and Hamburg.