Firms To Watch: Tax

Founding partner Ángel Escalante heads the practices at boutique firm Escalante & Asociados; he specialises in federal income tax and international tax, international trade and AML, and is experienced in the finance, telecom, real estate, pharmaceutical, consumer goods, and retail sectors.
Martín, Isla & Pickering, S.C. boasts solid expertise in litigation, advisory and consultancy regarding tax and foreign trade, as well as national and international tax advisory and consultancy; Ricardo Martín González is the key contact.

Tax in Mexico

Basham, Ringe y Correa, S.C.

The reputed tax practice at full-service firm Basham, Ringe y Correa, S.C. garners praise for its ‘supreme knowledge of the tax environment in the country and perfect understanding of the needs of the clients’. Best-known for its tax litigation capabilities, the group offers a solid balance between controversy work, non-controversy, planning and preventative matters. The sizable team, which earns additional plaudit for its ‘knowledge of the different industries, professionalism and commitment’, has a powerful partner-level bench which includes key practitioners: Gerardo Nieto, who boasts a good track record acting before the Taxpayers attorney general’s office (Prodecon), and has a focus on tax audits, transfer pricing, tax litigation and planning; Gil Zenteno, who has ‘many years of experience’ handling tax mandates; Alejandro Barrera, who is particularly well-versed in corporate and individual taxation and transfer pricing; Victor Barajas (tax planning, advisory and tax strategy; estate planning); and Sergio Barajas, who specialises in international trade and customs matters. Younger partner Francisco Matus, who offers ‘personalised attention’, as well as ‘outstanding results’; and senior associate and promising litigator Norberto Ruiz are other key names in the practice.

Practice head(s):

Gerardo Nieto; Gil Zenteno; Alejandro Barrera; Víctor Barajas; Sergio Barajas; Francisco Matus

Testimonials

‘True experts in the field who continually look for ways to help companies achieve their goals. There are several lawyers with the capacity and experience required to provide comprehensive advice. Their advice has always been of very high-quality, and clearly state the existing risks in order to decide what strategies to implement.’

‘Gil Zenteno has many years of experience.’

‘Basham’s tax area has specialized knowledge of the industry over other firms, in addition to providing better response times, quality deliverables and flexible billing.’

‘Francisco Matus, Alejandro Barrera, and Norberto Ruiz, offer personalised attention, always showing interest in the quality of the work, customer service and billing, in addition to delivering outstanding results.’

‘Supreme knowledge of the tax environment in the country and perfect understanding of the needs of the clients.’

‘Victor Barajas Barrera is outstanding.’

‘Knowledge of the different industries, professionalism and commitment to the client.’

‘Gil Zenteno and Francisco Matus have been allies and a team with our industry over the years, always providing the best opinions and bases for our decision making.’

Chevez Ruiz Zamarripa

One of the undisputed market-heavyweights in Mexico's tax sector, Chevez Ruiz Zamarripa houses a sizable practice comprised of both lawyers and accountants, and which covers a range of tax and legal services including tax advisory work on international taxation (including transfer pricing and double taxation), and advice on tax structures for corporate transactions. The ‘excellent team’, which earns praise for always bringing ‘new and innovative ideas’ to the table, boasts strong national and cross-border experience; clients can also benefit from the firm's Madrid desk. Manuel Sáinz, a skilled tax litigator with a solid track record representing companies and individuals against the actions of the tax authorities, heads the practice. Other key practitioners (all operate from Mexico City unless otherwise stated) include Ricardo Cervantes, who specialises in consulting, dispute resolution and tax strategies both nationally and internationally; Pablo Corvera, who offers a broad array of advisory services, including international taxation, tax audits, tax compliance, tax planning and strategy, direct and indirect taxes, and transfer pricing; Monterrey-based Ramón Orendain, who focuses on legal defence strategies in high-profile tax and administrative matters; César Fares, who is particularly adept at handling audits for clients from the mining industry; and Yoshio Uehara, who focuses on tax and transfer pricing advisory and consulting. Tax and administrative litigator, César de la Parra, who leads the firm’s anti-money laundering practice; Eugenio Franzoni  (tax and administrative litigation) in Queretaro; and Rodrigo Ferias, who specialises in tax consulting and litigation related to local taxes, are other names to note.

Practice head(s):

Manuel Sainz

Testimonials

‘The people of the team move as a single entity, perfect coordination, timely support, with excessive patience and understanding of the problem.’

‘Their technical knowledge is outstanding, but especially the security they convey is highly appreciated.’

An excellent team. In tax matters they are experts in technical, practical and litigation matters, they always bring new and innovative ideas that give confidence, certainty and security to our company.’

I would highlight Pablo Corvera and his team.’

Key clients

Primero Empresa Minera

Kellogg Company Mexico

Sika Mexicana

Work highlights

  • Represented Primero Empresa Minera in a series of complex tax matters.
  • Advised in the corporate reorganisation of the eight entities under which Kellogg Mexico operates, as well as the reassignment of job functions for nearly 3,000 employees.
  • Advised Sika Mexicana regarding the acquisition of 100% of the shares issued by Bexel Internaciona, in relation to the due diligence on income tax, value added tax and social security contributions of Bexel and two subsidiaries.

Creel, García-Cuéllar, Aiza y Enríquez, S.C.

Firmly established among the ‘top-tier of Mexican tax advisors’, Creel, García-Cuéllar, Aiza y Enríquez, S.C.‘s talented practice is also praised for its ‘very good relationship with the authority’, and for offering ‘clear and practical advice on matters’. The department, which boasts solid expertise regarding M&A, financial services, private equity, projects and debt and equity capital markets, is led by Alejandro Santoyo, who regularly acts for large multinationals, banks and global private equity investors and sponsors on acquisitions and investments in Mexico across multiple industries. Recent work highlights include advising Apollo Global Management as lender on a DIP facility to Grupo Aeromexico in connection with its chapter 11 procedures in the US. Santoyo is closely supported by tax advisory specialist Omar Zúñiga, who is well-versed in international tax matters and advises foreign companies doing business in Mexico as well as domestic players operating abroad; Jorge Correa, whose practice encompasses capital markets and financial products, cross-border structuring, M&A and energy; and Luis Vázquez, who handles tax controversy and tax litigation mandates, representing clients before the tax authority on tax inspections and refund applications. Eduardo Brandt, who was promoted to partner in January 2022, and associate Eduardo Espinosa are other key contacts of the team.

Practice head(s):

Alejandro Santoyo

Testimonials

‘Very good relationship with the authority. They provide clear and practical advice on matters of Mexican tax law. I would consider them in the top-tier of Mexican tax advisors.’

‘One of the main advantages of working with Creel is that they are also well informed on international tax developments and are adept at collaborating on solutions to complex cross-border matters. We have worked with Alejandro Santoyo for many years and his depth of knowledge and experience is exceptional.’

‘Capacity for analysis and reaction. Eduardo Brandt and Omar Zúñiga.’

‘They always look for a way to provide a solution that is practical and suits the business without neglecting adherence and compliance with legislation. Thanks to the fact that they understand very well the needs and operation of the business, the type of solutions and advice they provide us are quite grounded.’

‘Alejandro Santoyo and Eduardo Espinosa are always one step ahead, and are very knowledgeable about the reforms and their impact.’

‘Alejandro Santoyo: a strong and reliable adviser assisting large international players. Jorge Correa: a tax talent with the ability to analyze and simplify complex matters. He has a diverse international client base. Omar Zuñiga: a reputable tax lawyer advising many multinationals with a strong background due to his in-house tax experience. Luis Vazquez: very active in M&A transactions. Eduardo Brandt: rising star as newly appointed partner.’

‘In my experiences with Creel, particularly with Alejandro Santoyo, I always receive a proactive response to any situation. He has his client’s needs in mind and gives us options on how the matter can be resolved. A very particular characteristic of Santoyo is that he understands finance and accounting, which has led to very rich discussions that cover all aspects of a solution.’

‘They are technical lawyers who manage to propose creative solutions for the client and who manage to explain technical issues in an easy and practical way for the client. Also, there is always consistency in their recommendations. In a particular way, I would highlight the names of Alejandro Santoyo and Eduardo Espinosa.’

Key clients

Mexico Infrastructure Partners

Global Infrastructure Partners

Cemex

Apollo Global Management

Nubank Mexico

Discovery Americas

BlackRock

Fibra Prologis

Vista Oil & Gas

HSBC Mexico

American Express (Mexico)

Iberdrola Mexico

Wal Mart Mexico

Grupo Bolsa Mexicana de Valores (Mexican Stock Exchange)

Citibanamex

JP Morgan Chase

Work highlights

  • Advised Apollo as lender on a $1b DIP (debtor-in-possession) facility to Grupo Aeromexico in connection with AeroMexico’s chapter 11 procedures in the US.
  • Advised Cadillac Fairview in connection to the structuring and formation of FIBRA Soma, (a Mexican REIT equivalent), with Grupo Sordo Madaleno as a co-investor.
  • Advised Live Nation on its $444m acquisition of a 51% controlling interest in OCESA Entretenimiento from Televisa and CIE (40% from Televisa and 11% from CIE).

Baker McKenzie Abogados, S.C.

Baker McKenzie Abogados, S.C.‘s sizable tax team, a powerhouse in terms of numbers with more than 70 practitioners, boasts a solid footprint across the country thanks to its five local offices and can also draw resources from the firm’s international network. The practice group -led from Mexico City by Luis Adrian Jimenez-Robles – has an established track record in tax controversy, planning and consultancy mandates in Mexico, with automotive, manufacturing, financial, and particularly the oil & gas sectors, as the group’s mainstays. Jorge Narváez, who handles tax controversy, consultancy and transfer pricing; and Luis Carbajo-Martínez, who is well-versed in contentious mandates, are also key names in the Mexico City office. Juan Carlos Valles, who operates from Ciudad Juárez, has experience in litigation proceedings involving tax and customs matters, as well as in the structuring of maquiladora operations and their sale and distribution activities; and Monterrey-based Jorge Salazar, who ‘stands out not only for his technical knowledge, but also for his customer service’, are additional key contacts of the practice. Senior associate Elizabeth González Gasca joined White & Case S.C. in May 2022.

Practice head(s):

Luis Adrián Jiménez Robles

Testimonials

‘The team has been working hard on diversity, taking actions above other firms. Likewise, it is a well-formed team, with balance, as well as a clear philosophy.

‘The difference is the service. The offer immediate response to clients and become part of the team with the client.

‘It is a team that has quite solid technical knowledge, they consider themselves part of the team in the search to solve the problems that arise, so they have great empathy and understanding of the client, the response times are fast, the price vs quality ratio of services is balanced.

‘Jorge Salazar Cebrian is highly competent, stands out not only for his technical knowledge, but also for his customer service.

Key clients

Air Liquide Mexico

Becton Dickinson

Conmexco

Contextlogic

Cummins

Helen of Troy Mexico

KBR

Lear Corporation

PKC – Motherson Rolling Stocks

Sempra Energy

Work highlights

  • Assisted Air Liquide Mexico oppose the denial of a refund related to a VAT-Balance-in-favour corresponding to 2012.
  • Assisted Becton Dickinson with the structuring of a new manufacturing facility in San Luis Potosí and Sonora through a “holding” IMMEX program.
  • Assisted Conmexco with its defence against the tax assessment that derived from its 2009 tax audit.

Galicia Abogados S.C.

Galicia Abogados S.C.‘s tax practice has maintained a healthy upward trend since it opened its doors some six years ago and is known for its front-running services across a range of tax-related matters, including consulting, controversy and litigation. Four partners now sit at the helm of the group: Gabriela Pellón, who is adept at handling transactional mandates and tax structuring, and also heads the wealth management practice; Federico Scheffler, who regularly acts in collaboration with the M&A, energy, capital markets, and banking and finance areas on transactional tax matters; Edson Uribe, who focuses on tax controversy and specialises in the design and implementation of strategies to resolve tax disputes; and Denise Lester, who boasts extensive experience in tax litigation. Senior associate Alejandra Paniagua, who has expertise in non-contentious work, including estate planning, corporate restructuring, and regulatory tax audits, provides key support. Since the conclusion of research, the practice has been further strengthened with the July-2022 hire of Eduardo Michán, current president of the International Fiscal Commission (ICMP) and a former vice-president of new product development at Merrill Lynch, as partner.

Practice head(s):

Gabriela Pellón; Federico Scheffler; Edson Uribe; Denise Lester

Key clients

Sony Pictures Distribution Mexico

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment de México

Evertec México Servicios de Procesamiento

Club España

Operaciones Planigrupo

Disarch

Aranzazu Holding

Namce

Grupo TMM

Vertical CDMX

Liquor Lions

Tata Consultancy Services México

Saavi Energía

Grupo Fevisa

Libertad Servicios Financieros

Waldo’s Dólar Mart de México

KPS Capital Partners

CM del Pacífico

Cofra Holding

Axalta Coating Systems

New Fortress Energy

Grupo Bimbo

Grupo Bimbo

Cemex

HSBC México

BBVA Bancomer

Samsung – SNB Technologies

Walstead Group Limited

Hilco Real Estate

Inter-American Development Bank

CMACGM México

Inmobiliaria Monte Athos

Edrington México

Productores de Vinagre Provisa

Fundación Espacio V

Weifang Kitchinet Corporation

Lomelin Administracion de Proyectos

Papu Media

Grupo Hexa

Servicios Administrativos Aluminicaste

GMI Capital

Grupo Meusnier

Jardín Guadalupano

Grupo Constructor Legacy

Pret Communique

Work highlights

  • Advised Laboratorios Liomont in connection with the recent Mexican labour subcontracting reform in force since April 2021.
  • Advised UDRA in connection with the recent Mexican labour subcontracting reform in force since April 2021.
  • Advised Caltos Corp regarding the value added tax treatment for a relevant real estate project.

Mijares, Angoitia, Cortés y Fuentes S.C.

Mijares, Angoitia, Cortés y Fuentes S.C.’s tax practice remains highly-focused, and maintains a strong reputation in tax controversy matters (especially those related to amparos), and continues to increase its presence in consultancy, not only tax planning but also traditional consultancy, assisting clients in preventing them from falling into practices that can be sanctioned by the authority. Lately the team has also been busy in transactional matters, working closely with the firm’s strong transactional area. Leading the department is a stellar partner-trio comprised of Manuel Tamez, a recognised expert in tax consultancy and tax planning; and accomplished litigators Enrique Ramírez, who some consider to be ‘the most complete and outstanding trial tax attorney in Mexico’, and Nora Morales, who boasts a solid track record in tax disputes, and has a focus on transfer pricing and international transactions. The group's sector expertise takes in energy, infrastructure, TMT, real estate, retail, manufacturing and financial services. Luis Monroy, who was promoted to partner in February 2022 and is constantly involved in M&A transactions, financings, capital markets and corporate reorganisations; and associate Carlos Jiménez, are additional key members of the practice.

Practice head(s):

Manuel Tamez; Nora Morales Rodríguez; Enrique Ramírez Figueroa

Testimonials

‘The partners of the tax practice are lawyers with a lot of experience and with a very good understanding of financial matters.

‘Enrique Ramirez has many years of experience and is able to suggest different alternatives for different issues. Nora Morales has a lot of experience and is able to analyze various aspects of trials.

‘It is a solid team, with many years of experience in tax matters. The team they formed has a clear objective of supporting and providing solutions to the client.

‘The added value of this team is that it not only supports you legally, but also provides you with comprehensive advice considering various aspects, including practical ones. Enrique Ramírez is, without a doubt, the most complete and outstanding trial tax attorney in Mexico. And it has managed to form a solid team at the service of its clients.

Key clients

Sempra Energy

Ford

Aptiv

Beam Suntory

Flextronics

KOF

Cemex

Televisa

Grupo Bimbo

ICA Fluor Daniel

Ritch, Mueller y Nicolau, S.C.

Ritch, Mueller y Nicolau, S.C.'s tax practice, which is praised for being able to understand complex transactions from a business perspective and provide valuable insights to uniquely structure operations’, is jointly led by a trio of ‘outstanding partners’: Oscar Lopez Velarde, whose expertise encompasses a variety of contentious proceedings; Santiago Llano, who is experienced in tax consulting and transfer pricing; and Juan José Paullada, who was promoted in January 2022 and is a key figure in the firm's tax controversy and litigation practice. The department's sector expertise includes energy, real estate, financial services, and manufacturing. Housing both lawyers and accountants -who earn plaudits for their ‘exceptional insight and creativity’- the practice includes other practitioners of note, namely senior associate Eduardo García, who has a special focus on M&A projects, restructuring, debt and equity instrument placements, and fund structuring.

Practice head(s):

Oscar Lopez Velarde; Santiago Llano; Juan José Paullada

Testimonials

‘Definitely, the high involvement and specialization of the partners and the team in general make the difference, as well as their specialization in the industry and knowledge of the business of each client.’

‘The preparation and professionalism of its collaborators as well as the sense of urgency that they maintain in all projects. Outstanding partners and collaborators: Oscar López Velarde, Juan José Paullada, and Eric Palacios Hurtado.’

‘They stay up-to-date on energy industry issues. They provide valuable ideas for business strategy.’

‘Constant monitoring, involvement with the client. Appropriate experience to support the business. Availability for crisis care.’

‘Since its founding, the Ritch Mueller tax team has been able to understand complex transactions from a business perspective and provide valuable insights to uniquely structure operations. Their holistic vision makes them unique in the market, giving them a unique competitive advantage.’

‘Oscar López Velarde, Santiago Llano and Juan Jose Paullada are the kind of partners who are always available for their clients and who really get involved in all matters. They are professionals with exceptional insight and creativity not normally seen in law firms.’

Key clients

EMX Capital

Grupo Mexicano de Desarrollo

Morgan Stanley

Thor Urbana

Mexico Infrastructure Partners (EXI)

Grupo Cementos de Chihuahua

Work highlights

  • Represented EMX Capital in its successful (GP)-led secondary fund restructuring, best known as a “rollover transaction” – the first of its kind in Mexico and among the first in Latin America.
  • Represented GDM in the successful sale of Autopistas de Guerrero, owner of the Acapulco highway concessionaire, to Orion IEP.
  • Represented Morgan Stanley, BBVA Securities, BofA Securities and HSBC Securities (USA), in connection with a $325m offering of senior notes (due 2026) by Grupo Axo.

Sánchez Devanny

Sánchez Devanny's sturdy five-partner tax department ‘excels at understanding complex cases and finding interesting alternatives for resolution’; additionally, according to clients, it also offers a ‘good balance between contentious and advisory experience’. Key contacts include Monterrey-based managing partner Ricardo León Santacruz, who is particularly well-versed in tax planning and transfer pricing; Guillermo Villaseñor Tadeo, who focuses on contentious mandates and continues to gain momentum as a tax litigator; and Mariana Eguiarte, who specialises in non-contentious matters and has significant expertise in consumption taxes, focusing on VAT and the special goods and services tax. Luis González, who possesses a broad experience in national and international tax audit as well as tax refund processes, and  Querétaro-based partner Pedro Miranda, who is lauded for his ‘deep technical knowledge in tax matters’, also warrant highlighting, as does senior associate Jorge Lopez, who assists the tax litigation group. Unless stated otherwise, all mentioned lawyers are based in Mexico City.

Practice head(s):

Ricardo León-Santacruz; Guillermo Villaseñor; Abel Mejía-Cosenza; Mariana Eguiarte-Morett; Luis Antonio Gonzalez

Testimonials

‘The firm is up-to-date on controversy tax matters, as well as international matters and has high technical and analytical capacity. They offer interesting and very well detailed news bulletins.’

‘The staff excels at understanding complex cases and finding interesting alternatives for resolution. Mariana Eguiarte has an excellent capacity in international matters and her attention is also personalized and very courteous. Pedro Miranda and Jorge Lopez are excellent professionals, attentive and highly prepared technically.’

‘The Sánchez Devanny team stands out for its remarkable ability to understand very precisely what the specific and global needs of the client are and its agility in terms of execution processes. It is a firm that understands the needs of its clients and that adapts its solutions to give them a quick response.’

‘Mariana Eguiarte Morett and Pedro Jose Miranda are both excellent professionals with deep technical knowledge in tax matters, which they combine with extensive practical experience. The combination of both characteristics is its distinguishing mark.’

‘Good balance between contentious and advisory experience.’

‘Pedro Miranda is an extraordinary lawyer, he has the ability to understand commercial problems in an agile way.’

‘They are always willing to help and give the most assertive and helpful comment for the entity.’

‘They are extremely kind, they listen to you carefully and support you in the solution.’

Key clients

IBM

Unilever

Clariant

Amazon Mexico

Eaton

Nissan Renault Finance

Hewlett Packard

Libbey

Westpak Avocado

Howden Buffalo Forge

EQ Capital Partners

Técnicas Marítimas Avanzadas

Johnson Controls

Eaton Corporation

Heineken

H&M Hennes & Mauritz

AES Corporation

Almadex Minerals

Repsol

Enel

Neaton

Work highlights

  • Restructured the US private equity group IPG and the investment feeders to address the implications of the 2020 Mexican tax reform to mitigate the added tax burden that stemmed therefrom.
  • Engaged by Repsol to provide full legal and regulatory advice with respect to establishing midstream and downstream oil-and-gas operations in Mexico.
  • Advised on the tax impact arising from the activities in Mexico of Twitter as a consequence of the new Law for Transparency, Prevention and Elimination of Inappropriate Practices in Advertisement Contracts.

Turanzas, Bravo & Ambrosi

Housing a top-notch team of over 60 people, including 10 partners, specialist boutique Turanzas, Bravo & Ambrosi is a popular choice for its expertise in both tax advisory and contentious tax matters. Key partners include: Pedro Ramírez (estate planning and corporate tax regarding financial institutions and the securities sector); Mauricio Bravo (tax controversy, estate planning, energy, and international taxation); Angel Turanzas Díaz (corporate tax, taxation on individuals, fringe benefits and non-profit institutions); Mauricio Ambrosi (litigation and consultancy with a focus on transfer pricing); and skilled litigators Jorge Fuentes P and Carl Koller. The firm has strengthen its bench over the past couple of years and also broadened its offering, with the January-2021 hire of accountant Rodrigo Garza del Río (and his team), so as to allow the firm to offer accountancy services, payroll administration and tax compliance. The practice was further reinforced in July 2021 with the arrival of partner Jorge Jiménez Cañizares from Deloitte Impuestos y Servicios Legales, S.C.; he has over 30 years’ experience in tax consulting, controversy and litigation for the Mexican insurance sector. At a more junior level, 2022 saw Montserrat Tapia promoted to associate and Luis Rosas leave the firm to relocate to Europe.

Arias y Meurinne, SC

Boutique firm Arias y Meurinne, SC offers a ‘high specialisation in tax and administrative law’, and continues to excel in the tax arena - particularly on the litigation front, but also advising on transactions and business reorganisations. The practice is well known for its strength in the automotive and TMT sectors, but has of late received an influx of cases from clients drawn from the pharmaceutical, energy and financial industries. Steering the team are Pedro Arias, a widely known figure in the market with an outstanding tax controversy practice; Luis Eduardo Meurinne, who has a focus on tax planning and consultancy; and Pamela Orozco, who handles both advisory and litigious matters. Younger partner Leobardo Brizuela focuses on general tax advisory.

Practice head(s):

Pedro Arias; Luis Meurinne; Pamela Orozco

Testimonials

‘Boutique firm with a high specialisation in tax and administrative law.

‘Pedro Arias heads a great team and is an excellent lawyer.

We are very satisfied with the firm’s services, both in terms of knowledge and service attitude. With the ease of communication and the response time.

Garrigues

Manual Llaca helms the Mexican tax practice at Garrigues, bringing to bear his more than 25 years' experience in tax litigation and consolidated expertise in transfer pricing and federal tax disputes. As an active branch of the full-service Spanish firm, the department is well-versed in cross-border transactions, drawing from the firm's global network of offices. Noted practitioners include principal associates Francisco Barajas and Ricardo Fernández De Arellano, who focus on consultancy and controversy work, and international tax respectively; and senior associate Diego López, who advises foreign companies expanding into Mexico, tax planning for corporate restructurings, and M&A. The practice has recently expanded its services to include adapting corporate and tax structures to the new labour code; moreover, it was further reinforced with the arrival of senior associate Iñigo García from the head office in Madrid in September 2021.

Practice head(s):

Manuel Llaca

Key clients

Sacyr México

Aqualia Desalación Guaymas

Ocesa Entretenimiento

Elecnor México

Bergé

CIE

Optimissa

Rubau México

UniCredit Bank

CIRSA

Veolia

BMW de México

Baxter

Universidad Internacional de la Rioja

Aceros Camesa

Work highlights

  • Assisting FCC Aqualia’s Mexican subsidiary (Aqualia Desalación Guaymas) on obtaining a MX$80m refund of all the VAT paid throughout the preoperative period of a desalination plant that the client is building in the State of Sonora.
  • Assisting Sacyr Mexico adapt its corporate and tax structure as a result of reforms to the labour legislation in force from September 2021.
  • Representing Baxter in a case before the Federal Circuit Court against the limitation of the universal offset (i.e., the paying of taxes with other taxes).

Jáuregui y Del Valle, S.C.

Recognised by clients as among the ‘most experienced tax advisors in Mexico’, Jáuregui y Del Valle, S.C.'s practice earns praise for its ‘very deep and complete’ knowledge of the tax sphere. The group, which is particularly well-versed in the structuring of real estate funds, houses a number of seasoned practitioners, including: managing partner Luis Gerardo Del Valle, whose experience encompasses tax consultancy, including domestic and cross-border transactions, and tax litigation; Eduardo Medina Zapata, who specialises in tax consulting, and the planning and structuring of private and public real estate investment funds, joint ventures and corporate reorganisations; and Luis Carballo, a former Magistrate of the Superior Hall of the Federal Court of Tax and Administrative Justice. Experienced senior associate Josemaria Ferez Gil heads the tax and administrative litigation practice area of the firm.

Practice head(s):

Luis Gerardo Del Valle Torres; Eduardo Medina Zapata; Luis Carballo Balvanera

Testimonials

‘I think they are the most experienced tax advisors in Mexico, their level of knowledge on the subject is very deep and complete, and far exceeds the competition.’

‘The leader of the firm is undoubtedly Luis Gerardo del Valle, who leads the way in customer service supported by the other partners and associates. This ensures that all clients receive a very senior level of service.’

Communication and information-document exchange tools are adequate to make the work process flow.’

In general, all the lawyers who take care of the follow-up work for our company are well prepared and have strong experience in the field, and so far they have guided us in a simple way to work with them on the matters we need to resolve.’

Key clients

Fideicomiso 3536

Amride de México

Corporativo Comercializadora del Bajío

Glenda Estela Hecksher Ramsden

Sistema Educativo Copan

El Santuario Resort & Spa

PGIM Real Estate MVP Administradora IV

Walton Street México CKD Managers III

Finsa Real Estate Management III

Sura Investment Management

FIBRA Terrafina

Comisión Federal de Electricidad

Work highlights

  • Representing maquiladora Amride de México, which focuses on the assembly of railroad parts and components.
  • Representing Glenda Estela Hecksher Ramsden regarding a tax credit determined by the Tax Authority in relation to the country’s property tax.
  • Representing El Santuario Resort & Spa regarding a tax credit for more than MX$50m determined by the tax authorities.

Nader, Hayaux y Goebel, SC

The tax practice at Nader, Hayaux y Goebel, SC garners praise form clients for the ‘simplicity and clarity of the team’s proposals to address complex problems’. The practice group is particularly well known for its skills handling tax advisory mandates related to transactions and projects, including capital markets and M&A transactions. ‘GeniusAdalberto Valadez steers the practice, and brings to bear his experience advising public entities and private companies on federal tax implications relating to their operations in Mexico, focusing primarily on federal income tax and international tax, particularly in connection with cross-border M&A, joint ventures and in-bound investments. Ana Paula Pardo joined the team in July 2021; her expertise includes transactions, tax audits, tax and estate planning, and transfer pricing consulting, while her arrival will notably boost the practice’s capacity. Associate Iliana García handles both transactional matters and representation before relevant authorities.

Practice head(s):

Adalberto Valadez

Testimonials

‘Adalberto Valadez’s leadership stands out among the other practices of the firm.’

‘Adalberto Valadez is a genius.’

The design of our fund is unique and innovative and Adalberto has been a key player in the design and attention to tax issues. We continually look at different options to suit the needs of our clients and consultations with Adalberto on these innovations are prompt and with ingenious responses.’

I would highlight the simplicity and clarity of the team’s proposals to address complex problems.’

Key clients

Artha Capital

Banyan Tree

BlackRock

Desarrollos Delta

Total Play

EMX Capital

General Electric

CKD Infraestructura México

Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec

Grupo Murano

Maritimex

Work highlights

  • Advised Grupo Murano on proposed joint ventures with commercial partners and real estate managers and developers, with respect to the financing, development and management of real estate properties located in Mexico City and Cancun worth over $1bn, that will operate as hotels operated by Wyndham and AMR Resorts.
  • Advised MercadoLibre on Mexican legal matters in connection with its inaugural debt offering in the US of $400m 2.375% notes (due 2026) and $700m 3.125% notes (due 2031).
  • Assisted Total Play Telecomunicaciones in a placement of $600m in the principal amount of 6.375% senior notes due 2028 in the international markets.

SMPS Legal

Jorge San Martín, a skilled lawyer and accountant with notable experience advising national and multinational clients on local and international tax matters regarding cross-border operations, investments, and transactions; Luis Curiel Piña, a renowned tax litigator who handles all kinds of procedures, requests for tax refunds and undue payments, appeals for revocation and audits before Mexican tax authorities; and Francisco Carbajal, who joined the team in October 2021 from Cuatrecasas and specialises in tax consulting matters for a broad range of industries, are the standout names of SMPS Legal‘s tax practice. Senior associate Elsa Sánchez Urtiz, who focuses on the provision of consultancy and tax planning services to local and international corporations and individuals, is another name to note.

Practice head(s):

Luis Curiel Piña; Jorge San Martín; Francisco Carbajal

Key clients

Fortem Capital

Cencor (Biva)

Grupo Interprotección

Servicios Telepro

Grupo Axo

Fideicomiso Torre Chapultepec Uno

Work highlights

  • Advising Fortem Capital on the process of requesting value added tax refunds before the Mexican tax authorities totalling approximately $3m.
  • Advising BIVA on tax matters on a day-to-day basis.
  • Providing legal and tax advice to Grupo Interprotección regarding a syndicated loan granted by Banco Santander, as well as on the acquisition of shares in Gliscomex.

Acedo, Santamarina, S.C

Clients praise Acedo, Santamarina, S.C's ability to ‘understand personal conditions and act accordingly, seeking effective responses according to the circumstances’. Rafael Tena, a highly-regarded expert in contentious tax mandates, heads the practice, which has a particular focus on the automotive and auto parts, textile, pharmaceutical, real estate and telecommunications sectors. A large portion of the team's caseload includes consists of attending to all forms of tax controversies, and of late, handling tax audits conducted by both federal and local tax authorities. At associate level, the ‘practical and versatileLuis Shahid Kanchi provides key support.

Practice head(s):

Rafael Tena Castro

Testimonials

They are very friendly and offer excellent customer service. They have the ability to carry a high volume of work and always with a very good attitude.’

‘They stand out for their general knowledge, their business knowledge but mainly for their good attitude. That is often more important than any other element.’

‘The tone, approach and circumstantial management is very appropriate. They understand personal conditions and act accordingly, seeking effective responses according to the circumstances. They keep up to date and their complementary approach to the client generates the necessary trust.’

‘Rafael Tena: Very focused, concise, analytical, practical and with up-to-date knowledge, attends and understands the client with a simple and focused treatment. Luis Shahid, practical and versatile complements the offer, lively and original in the search for solutions. The two have a complementary approach to solution-oriented concepts.’

Key clients

Cinematrográfica Filmex

Garay Componentes Tubulares

Payan Campos Hnos

Ventas Joyma del Sur

PRGX de México

Empacadora Campo Frío

Los Reyes Industrial

Mandarina Azul

Inteligencia en Servicios de Salud

Rendimientos y Productos Inmobiliarios

Work highlights

  • Advise Garay Componentes Tubulares on a full restructuring of its payroll scheme, in accordance with Mexico’s new labour outsourcing reforms.
  • Assisted Farmasmart on compliance with the new outsourcing regulations, subsequent to Mexico’s labour outsourcing reform, as well as with the associated tax implications.
  • Assisted Penske Servicios de Administración with an audit performed by the Finance Authority of Coahuila, regarding the local payroll tax.

Calvo Nicolau y Marquez Cristerna-DFK, S.C.

Founded in 2010, Calvo Nicolau y Marquez Cristerna-DFK, S.C. is a specialised tax boutique comprised of three profoundly experienced partners. Market stalwart Enrique Calvo Nicolau focuses on contentious work and criminal tax litigation. Óscar Márquez, who is a trained accountant as well as a lawyer, handles consultancy, tax efficiency analysis and transfer pricing; while Layda Carcamo‘s consultancy focused practice encompasses tax planning, the tax aspects of M&A, transfer pricing studies and wealth management. Associate Gerardo Arias Gaitán focuses on tax litigation and advisory.

Practice head(s):

Layda Carcamo; Óscar Márquez; Enrique Calvo

Key clients

Vista Gold

Gate Gourmet & Massa

Trinity Industries

Arcosa

Grupo Vasconia/Fomento de Capital

Gran Peninsula

Vanity

Yates Construction

Deloitte Legal Mexico

Deloitte Legal Mexico distinguishes itself with its vast geographic coverage, which ensures a reliable client service across the country. Contentious tax matters are the bread and butter of the practice, which boasts enviable expertise in tax litigation, and acts for a variety of sectors including automotive, construction, energy, and increasingly -over recent years- oil and gas. Key contacts include Eduardo Revilla, who brings more than 3o years' tax controversy experience to the table; Mauricio Martínez, the regional head of the tax controversy practice; Hugo Romero, who heads the practice in Mexico; and Monterrey-based litigator Carlos Alberto Ramirez.

Practice head(s):

Hugo Romero Cervantes; Ricardo González Orta

Hogan Lovells

Hogan Lovells' Mexico tax practice appeals to clients for its solid capabilities throughout the tax sphere, and garners praise for its ‘knowledge of the Mexican legal tax framework’. The team is jointly led by Mexico City´s Arturo Tiburcio, who has in-depth experience of tax consultation, audit procedures related to income tax, value-added tax, and international tax issues (particularly double tax treaties and transfer pricing); and Monterrey-based partner Jaime Espinosa, who relies on his vast knowledge of constitutional and administrative litigation to advise clients on state and federal tax controversies, along with international double taxation, mergers and acquisitions, and project finance. They are closely supported by counsel Francisco Palmero, who focuses on tax consulting regarding federal and local taxes, corporate restructuring, and transactional activity.

Practice head(s):

Arturo Tiburcio; Jaime Espinosa; Francisco Palmero

Testimonials

‘Great technical/theoretical knowledge of the Mexican legal tax framework. Also, transactional familiarity.’

‘Key partner: Jaime Espinosa.’

Key clients

Qliktech México

Hyundai Motor de México

Acciona Energía Servicios México

Sociedad San Rafael Hidráulica

ESPN International Mexico

BIA Foods Investments

Alloy Merchant Partners

San Jose y su Agricultura

Valoreo

Maersk Mexico

Work highlights

  • Advised Acciona Energía concerning an income tax audit performed by the Tax Authorities for the fiscal year 2018; potential contingency: $250m.
  • Advised Hyundai regarding a transfer pricing audit faced by the company with respect to the income tax and value-added tax for the fiscal year 2015.
  • Advised and structured the joint venture executed by and between NatureSweet and San José y su Agricultura.

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta's tax department is well known for its capabilities when challenging determinations from the tax authorities. The group led by Mariano Calderón (whom clients place among the ‘most experienced tax legal experts in Mexico’), works for a wide range of multinational clients from an array of sectors, with a particular focus on the automotive industry. Counsel Karina Robledo, who handles domestic and foreign corporate reorganisations, contract review, and the design and implementation of tax structures for M&As and project financing transactions; and senior associate Jair Vaca, a promising tax litigator, are other names to note.

Practice head(s):

Mariano Calderón; Karina Robledo; Jair Vaca

Testimonials

‘Santamarina y Steta is one of the most important and prestigious law firms in Mexico. All its practice areas, including tax, hold several decades of experience managing high-profile cases and clients. Despite being a very traditional firm, it is up to date with all the trends in the sector (e.g.: diversity and inclusion, technology, flexible billing schemes, among others).’

‘Santamarina y Steta’s tax leader and partner, Mariano Calderón, is probably one of the most experienced tax legal experts in Mexico. His professional background is tax litigation in relevant cases, which, in my opinion, gives a unique profile to his capacities as tax advisor. An effective lawyer has balance between theory and practice, specially in Mexico.’

Key clients

General Motors

Coty

Tesla

Controladora General Motors

Work highlights

  • Advised General Motors on the reorganisation of its in-vehicle security system and the homologation of OnStar.
  • Representing Coty in a case in which the Mexican tax authorities are challenging certain deductions made to a third party for alleged tax non-compliance.
  • Provided legal advisory to Tesla regarding the reorganisation of its Mexican transactions.

White & Case S.C.

Following the January 2022 departure of former tax head Guillermo Aguayo  to DLA Piper Mexico, White & Case S.C. moved rapidly to hire Elizabeth González Gasca from Baker McKenzie Abogados, S.C. as a partner in May 2022. She now leads a compact practice that regularly handles matters related to M&A, project finance and capital markets transactions (either on a standalone basis or in conjunction with a transactional team), as well as demonstrating experience in negotiations with the authorities to obtain VAT refunds, and ability to manage litigation, transfer pricing, complex audits and financial issues. González is flanked by experienced partners Jorge Kim whose former public sector expertise includes as General Director of Constitutional Disputes at the Federal Tax Prosecutor’s Office of the Ministry of Finance, as Head of the Tax Law Unit in the Ministry of Finance, and as General Counsel of the Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social; and skilled litigator Ismael Reyes Retana Tello. Senior associate Juan Ignacio López left the firm in April 2022. Since publication, the practice group has been further strengthened with the arrival corporate, international and transactional tax specialist, Carlos Martínez, from Creel Abogados, SC - effective as of November 2022.

Practice head(s):

Elizabeth González Gasca

Anaya Abogados

Anaya Abogados fields a small but solid practice led by partners Edgar Anaya, who is particularly well regarded by clients for his knowledge and expertise regarding international tax matters; and Fabiola Díaz, who has a focus on tax advisory work, primarily international planning, and wealth management. Anaya’s extensive experience also reaches into corporate tax and social security matters, as well as high level expertise regarding the energy sector. At associate level, Jesús Antonio López is noted, but Jocelyn Jiménez moved to Sánchez Devanny in May 2022 and Agustín Meixueiro also subsequently left several months later.

Practice head(s):

Edgar M Anaya; Fabiola Díaz Prad

EC Rubio

Operating from the firm’s six offices across the country, EC Rubio‘s tax practice has a solid reputation principally for its expertise in the maquiladora industry, the interpretation and application of tax treaties (including the analysis of permanent establishment), and the taxation of residents and expatriates to avoid double taxation. The 10-strong department, which is also very comfortable handling litigious mandates, is led by partners Arturo Bañuelos (tax and administrative law) in Mexico City, and Felipe Mendoza (in Ciudad Juárez), who has a focus on tax planning, with a high specialisation in the maquiladora industry. Fernando Holguín, also in Mexico City whose practice is centred on taxation, customs and international trade, provides key support to the team.

Practice head(s):

Arturo Bañuelos; Felipe Mendoza

Ernst & Young

With a notable presence in Mexico thanks to the firm’s 12 offices across the country, Ernst & Young assists clients with a broad range of compliance and tax planning matters, and is also known for its expertise handling federal audit investigations, administrative procedures and resulting litigation. Despite recent departures, the group retains contentious-side capabilities, most notably Manuel González López. Based in Mexico City, regional managing partner for ‘LatAm north’, dual-qualified (Mexico/New York) Manuel Solano is the key contact on the tax consultancy side. Tax managing partner for Mexico, Oscar Ortiz is also a key contact, particularly for international taxation. However, former head of contentious matters for major contributors at the SAT, Antonio Gómez Del Campo, left in November 2021 and has subsequently joined Paras Asesores Fiscales SC.

Holland & Knight

Holland & Knight LLP continues to see the benefits of its August 2021 merger with Thomson & Knight, particularly in its tax department, which is gaining momentum thanks to the good work of its two partners Eugenio Grajeda , ‘one of the best problem solvers’, and Mario Barrera, whose mastery of ‘tax matters is outstanding’. Grajeda has a focus on international tax and estate and patrimonial tax planning, while Barrera regularly acts for clients before tax authorities in tax examinations, administrative appeals, settlements, and mutual agreement procedures. Key support comes from associate Catalina Mandujano.

Practice head(s):

Eugenio Grageda; Mario Barrera

Testimonials

‘Mario Barrera’s mastery of tax matters is outstanding. His experience allows him to see issues that others cannot see or anticipate. Other offices do not provide a service like Mario’s, timely and precise.’

‘Mario differs from his competitors due to his experience and management, his explanation of the issues and their consequences is very clear. The alternatives he proposes are always viable.’

‘Compared to other firms, its advantage derives from its ability to create practical solutions and its anticipation of problems.’

‘I have worked with Eugenio Grajeda for the last two years. He is one of the best problem solvers I have ever dealt with. He is a very knowledgeable lawyer of international and financial rules. He has great ability to explain the laws in play.’

‘Highly grateful for his abilities to streamline the operations of a company at an international level. His fiscal analysis of the group’s operation has allowed us to be more competitive.’

‘His ability to understand the business and generate solutions for me. It promotes practicality in transactions with other offices without creating unnecessary problems. Great conciliator. Delivery on time and without errors. I have worked with Eugenio Grajeda.’

Key clients

LNG Limited

Japan Tobacco International

Automotive Company

Energy Company

ENC Energy

Eiffage

Foreign University

JLL

Exeter Property Group

Work highlights

  • Advised an automotive company on setting up a centralised treasury system that will consider issues such as exchange gains or losses and income tax withholdings; deal value: over $1bn.
  • Advised an energy company on the definition and structuring of a joint development agreement with Siemens for the construction of a 1000MW combined cycle project in Mexico City; deal value: over $1bn.
  • Advised Japan Tobacco International on lobbying against an increase in certain excise tax (IEPS) on tobacco for 2020; value $20m.

Jones Day

The ‘top-notch, knowledgeable and pragmatic’ practice at Jones Day earns praise for an offering which ‘covers various jurisdictions in a single invoice and in a highly coordinated manner’, making them an ideal choice for ‘transnational matters’. Rodrigo Gómez sits at the helm of the team, bringing over 20 years' experience advising on various aspects of Mexican federal and international taxation to the table - including on the tax aspects of M&A transactions, restructurings, and debt markets' activity. The group has particular industry expertise on manufacturing, infrastructure, energy, finance, retail, technology and real estate.

Practice head(s):

Rodrigo Gomez

Testimonials

‘What makes the practice unique is the integration they have with their offices around the world to provide a tax service that covers various jurisdictions in a single invoice and in a highly coordinated manner.’

‘They are very good at transnational matters.’

‘Tax is one of those topics, just the title scares me. Dealing with tax matters in a foreign country even more; having a go-to person subject matter expert is the greatest support you can have. Jones Day´s Mexican Tax team is top-notch, knowledgeable and pragmatic.’

‘Rodrigo Gomez is one of the best partners Jones Day Mexico has.’

‘One of the most important points that make this firm different is the technical quality of the lawyers, but the most important thing is the quality with which they treat the client and the knowledge they obtain from them to provide professional services.’

‘What I see in Rodrigo Gómez is the warmth of the treatment he gives to the client and obviously the knowledge that we obtains from him. He is a sensible person in his suggestions, always seeking the well-being of the client, always from a tax legal framework.’

Key clients

Lixil Group / American Standard brands

Toyota Motor Company

Grupo Gigante

Tekni-Plex

The Haskell Company

Renovalia

Work highlights

  • Assisted Grupo Gigante with a multi-phase refinancing of its more than MX$10bn banking debt.

Kavanagh Gorozpe

Partners Paul Kavanagh and Luis Ignacio Martel head the tax practice at boutique firm Kavanagh Gorozpe, which garners praise for always delivering ‘on time and with good quality’. Showing prowess in sectors such as finance, technology, and real estate, the group advises both domestic and international companies. The department is best known for its expertise in consulting and tax planning practices, including estate planning and investment structuring, but also provides tax advice and handles international taxation, authorisations, litigation and representation before authorities. Partner Patricio Gorozpe, who clients consider a ‘clear example of a leader’, is also noted.

Practice head(s):

Paul Kavanagh; Luis Ignacio Martel

Testimonials

They have the capacity and experience to provide support for all the legal, business, corporate, tax and commercial needs that have been presented to us during the implementation of our project, despite how different our business industries are.’

Each member of the KG team is available to us at all times, they understand us and inspire us the greatest of trusts, giving us security in our transactions. We believe that the bond we have built with them has helped us to grow within our industry.’

Paul Kavanagh and Patricio Gorozpe have shown us a clear example of a leader by the way they get involved in the operation and the way they choose their team members depending on each of the transactions we are involved in.’

Their ability to apply their knowledge to negotiate and close transactions is unique.’

Personal attention from the firm’s partners. They always deliver on time and with good quality. Excellent follow-up on outstanding orders and very good value for money.’

Paul Kavanagh has excellent disposition as well as high technical quality. Good follow up on matters.’

From the moment we started operations we have had no need to work with any other firm.’

Ortiz Abogados Tributarios S.C.

Experienced tax boutique Ortiz Abogados Tributarios S.C. retains its role as a notable market player – particularly for its litigation practice. Seasoned partner Gabriel Ortiz, a reference in the tax arena for his tax controversy expertise, heads the department. Experienced partners Carlos Yáñez Alegría and Carlos Monarrez have been working alongside Ortiz for some 20 years; both handle tax litigation and advisory. Pablo Ramirez Morales, who made partner in 2019, handles tax consultancy, controversies and litigation. Paulina Edith Castillo, who has particular expertise regarding constitutional matters, both advisory and litigious, is the key associate. Former senior Ana Karen Aguiñaga moved to Thompson Reuters as a legal consultant in March 2022.

Practice head(s):

Gabriel Ortíz

Von Wobeser y Sierra, SC

The ‘very practical and agile’ tax department at Von Wobeser y Sierra, SC, which garners additional praise for its lawyers ‘deep business understanding’, is headed by Fernando Moreno, a seasoned practitioner with proven experience advising global corporations on their foreign investment activities, business matters and transactions in Mexico. He is particularly sought out for his services regarding treaties to avoid double taxation, and has solid expertise in both international trade and customs as well as M&A. Jorge Díaz, who was appointed counsel in December 2021, is another name to note in a practice that counts the automotive, consumer goods, energy, financial services, and telecommunications sectors as its mainstays.

Practice head(s):

Fernando Moreno

Testimonials

They have a deep business understanding that combined with their technical expertise makes them a great partner.’

They are very practical and agile.’

‘What I like most about Von Wobeser y Sierra is their professionalism and human warmth, which in these times is very difficult to find. The clarity with which the lawyers speak to you, and they always look for how to solve legal problems.’

They are always available and have a good treatment.’

Key clients

Twitter

Procter & Gamble Company

Takata Corporation

Fresenius Medical Care de México

Anheuser Busch Inbev

PrimeiroPay

Marinsa de México

Nu Skin Mexico

Invenesa Servicios Administrativos

Work highlights

  • Advised Twitter regarding the fulfillment of its tax obligations with respect to the retention period of certain documentation that the tax authorities could review to verify compliance with the tax provisions.
  • Advised Anheuser Busch regarding the tax aspects of diverse transactions in which it has been involved.