Employment in Switzerland

Bär & Karrer Ltd.

Bär & Karrer Ltd. advises clients on all types of matters relating to employment law and handles employment disputes for national and international clients. The team has an enviable track record of advising on the employment aspects of large-scale transactions, including social security and pension due diligence as well as management participation schemes. Practice heads Laura Widmer and Thomas Stoltz are well versed in issues relating to individual and mass dismissals, reorganisations, compensation plans, social security and migration. Andrea Gamba is a further key contact. Marie-Christine Balzan is now with Troillet Meier Raetzo.

Practice head(s):

Thomas Stoltz; Laura Widmer

Other key lawyers:

Andrea Gamba

Testimonials

‘Very fast response, knowledgeable team who understands our needs.’

‘Competent, fast response, easy to communicate to.’

 

Key clients

Far Point

Blackstone

Hg

EQT

Deutsche Börse Group

CSS Versicherung AG

Rocket Software, Inc.

MSCI Inc.

Nouryon

Coty Incl.

Lupa Systems

Work highlights

  • Advised Coty Inc. on its sale of a 60% interest in its professional and retail hair business to KKR.
  • Advised Blackstone on the EUR 1.64bn acquisition of the European distribution business of CRH plc.
  • Advised Deutsche Börse Group regarding the agreement on long-term partnership in funds environment between Clearstream and UBS.

Baker McKenzie

The employment practice at Baker McKenzie advises on the full range of matters relating to human resources, including employment litigation, assistance with pension fund issues and employment benefits. Due to its ‘excellent international coverage’, the team regularly acts for both domestic and foreign clients on the employment issues of international matters, including transactions and restructurings. Zurich-based Peter Reinert is experienced in advising on the employment aspects of relocations of businesses as well as transactions. Serge Pannatier, who is based in Geneva, has a strong track record representing corporate clients in complex discrimination and employment termination cases.

Practice head(s):

Peter Reinert; Serge Pannatier

Testimonials

‘International coverage is excellent. Able to carry out an international survey of employment law at very short notice.’

‘Peter Reinert of the Zurich office is very helpful, responsive and knowledgeable.’

Key clients

Dow

Oracle

FedEx

CSL

World Meteorological Organization (WMO)

Keurig Green Mountain

BD Switzerland Sàrl

Hitachi

Work highlights

  • Advised UBS on all employment and pensions aspects of the sale of a majority stake in UBS Fondcenter to Clearstream.
  • Acted for Becton Dickinson in a complex discrimination case concerning a female employee, who claims damages on the basis that she did not receive a promotion.
  • Advised CSL on its negotiations with Thermo Fisher Scientific relating to an agreement providing for a cooperation concerning the operation of a new state-of-the-art biologics manufacturing facility in Lengnau, Switzerland, when construction is completed in mid-2021.

Homburger

The employment law and executive compensation practice at Homburger consists of interdisciplinary employment law specialists who are also experienced in complementary areas and who advise on issues related to employment as well as representing clients in transactions and disputes. The ‘exceptional’ team has specialisations in bonus schemes, executive remuneration and tax matters related to employment. Practice heads Balz Gross and Andreas Müller advise corporate clients on matters relating to senior executives, compensation and incentive plans, as does Claude Lambert. Gregor Bühler specialises on the intersection between employment and IP/IT law.

Practice head(s):

Balz Gross; Andreas Müller

Other key lawyers:

Gregor Bühler; Claude Lambert

Testimonials

‘This firm, because of Andreas Müller and his team, is exceptional. They are subject matter experts and provide a solid balance of knowledge of the business and as business partners while bringing a deep and wide experience and wisdom of legal advice and counsel. They are responsive and assist not only strategically on the complexities of building a company globally but also operationally to assist us in getting things done well.’

‘They are available, open and speak in a way that everyone can understand. They work hard to understand the whole context and take time to listen.’

‘Our contact person was always up to date, knew exactly what was going on. I was amazed by how well he knew the case and how he had anticipated a lot of things.’

‘They roll up their sleeves, get you through the strategy and decisions and then also help you implement if you need them too. The best partners you can count on as a lean, fast growing global organization.’

‘The team is highly competent, working well together and with clients, engaged and committed to delivering a high quality service and advice. This is at a higher level then in some other companies that I worked with.’

‘Really responsive, pragmatic advice. Great quality English which makes it easy to share their advice direct with local clients.’

‘Gabrielle Nater is really good. She is very easy to work with and very practical in her approach.’

‘I have been using Homburger a lot for Swiss employment matters and always found them practical and helpful especially for foreign multinationals.’

‘In working with Claude Lambert and Andreas Müller we feel confident in the advice received and the extensive knowledge in the areas we seek advice on. Alternatives are considered and evaluated based upon our Firm’s needs and circumstances and risk appetite with clear plans and steps provided. Response time has always been exceptional and both Andreas Müller and Claude Lambert make themselves available to us with little to no notice at times.’

‘Expertise, availabilities on very short notice.’

‘Very proactive and knowledgeable lawyers who are very supportive.’

‘I like the combination of competent, high quality and timely advice with a good sense of humour. In particular Andreas Müller and Daniel Daeniker stand out for me.’

Key clients

ABB

UBS

Novartis

Bristol-Meyers Squibb

Zurich Insurance

Kering

WW (Switzerland), formerly Weight Watchers (Switzerland)

VectivBio

ASML Netherlands

Sonova

Givaudan

Google (Switzerland)

Uber

HSBC

LafargeHolcim

Dufry

Lombard Odier

Work highlights

  • Advised Bristol-Myers Squibb on employment related matters of its USD 74 bn acquisition of Celgene.
  • Advised ABB on employment law related aspects of its USD 11bn divestment of the power grids business to Hitachi.
  • Advised Kering on leaving Switzerland and transferring employees to Italy.

Kellerhals Carrard

Among the largest employment practices in Switzerland, Kellerhals Carrard advises on the full spectrum of employment law matters as well as immigration and data protection. The team acts for Swiss and foreign corporations and has specialised industry knowledge of the pharmaceutical, health care, insurance, fashion, sports and construction sectors. Practice heads Christoph Zimmerli and Urs Marti regularly handle company and employment disputes, including dismissals of senior employees and disputes regarding bonus payments. Ivan Paparelli, Jonathan Bernasconi and Daniel Alder are further key contacts. The team in Bern was joined in late 2019 by Michael Daphinoff from Walder Wyss Ltd..

Practice head(s):

Christoph Zimmerli; Urs Marti

Other key lawyers:

Daniel Alder; Jonathan Bernasconi; Ivan Paparelli; Michael Daphinoff

Key clients

CSL Behring AG and CSL Behring Lengnau AG

STS Group/ STS Group Switzerland AG

H&M Hennes & Mauritz AG

VF International Sagl (VANS, The North Face, Timberland, Dickies, Altra, Bulwark FR, Eagle Creek, Eastpak, Icebreaker, Jansport, Kipling and Napapijri)

Zegna Group (Consitex SA, Coti Service, Ermenegildo Zegna, Z Zegna, Agnona)

Moncler Suisse SA (Moncler Group)

K12 Inc.

Staar Surgical Company

International School of Berne AG

Lindenhofgruppe AG

Walo Bertschinger AG

Bern Welcome AG

RUAG Ammotec AG

Work highlights

  • Represented CSL Behring regarding bonus payments to a member of the senior management and set-up complex working time regulations for the company.
  • Advised Staar Surgical Company on deployments of various managers to the US, from the US or to other European Countries and the Middle East.
  • Ongoing legal advice to Zegna Group (Consitex SA, Coti Service, Ermenegildo Zegna, Z Zegna, Agnona).

Lenz & Staehelin

Lenz & Staehelin's employment, pensions and immigration practice advises both employers and senior employees, typically on matters concerning private and public sector employment as well as Swiss work permits for foreign nationals. Rayan Houdrouge regularly handles contentious matters relating to pensions and social security issues and jointly heads the practice from Geneva together with Zurich-based duo Dominique Müller and Matthias Oertle. The team, which is ‘top of the field in terms of service and knowledge’, acts for clients from the banking, pharmaceutical, financial, engineering, IT, retail and not-for-profit sectors, among others.

Practice head(s):

Rayan Houdrouge; Dominique Müller; Matthias Oertle

Other key lawyers:

Sara Rousselle-Ruffieux; Nicole Frey

Testimonials

‘Top of the field in terms of service and knowledge. Great client attitude. ’

‘Rayan Houdrouge: pragmatic, well-informed and savy about the state of his field and the best interests of the client.’

‘The team is strong and very responsive. They operate well in English and have a good understanding of issues facing financial services employers.’

‘Matthias Oertle is a consummate professional. He is technically very astute, but also very commercial. He suggests solutions, rather than just identifying problems.’

‘I have always been very satisfied with the help we have received from the employment practice at Lenz & Staehelin. Quick response, quality and depth of research, appropriate application of legal knowledge to complex situations, willingness to go the extra mile for the client.’

‘I have been working with Sara Rousselle-Ruffieux for more than 12 years and have uniformly been extremely satisfied with the technical quality of legal work done. We have used Sara Rousselle-Ruffieux on a large variety of HR issues, from the relatively simple (incentive schemes, employment contracts) to the more complex litigious ones. The legal knowledge and proficiency of Sara Rousselle-Ruffieux has been a truly great help in steering our family business in the right direction, avoiding significant HR blunders and when those occurred, minimizing their damages. I am really glad she was on our side when dealing with the complex and demanding situation and cases we have had to handle.’

‘Global, relevant and fit for purpose services.’

‘Nicole Frey is excellent and a pleasure to work with.

‘The team has very solid knowledge about any legal matters arising in and around employment and HR. We have a slightly special setup in our company that every now and then requires some special advise.’

‘Our primary contacts at the firm are very responsive and seek to anticipate questions before we ask them.’

Key clients

Allfunds Group

Cembra Money Bank

Fahrzeug-Werke Lueg AG (LUEG)

Gyrus and DuPont Sustainable Solutions (DSS)

Hyundai Motor Company

Insight Partners

NovImmune

Pfizer

Salt

SoftwareONE

Sunrise

Uber

Work highlights

  • Advised and represented Uber B.V., Uber Switzerland GmbH and other entities of the Uber group (Uber) in the context of employment-related, social security and other administrative disputes relating to the qualification of drivers using the Uber application and the possible implications thereof in relation to several legal issues.
  • Assisted SoftwareONE with the drafting and implementation of management contracts for their global management team in view of SoftwareONE’s IPO.
  • Advised Cembra Money Bank in connection with the acquisition of cashgate AG on employment matters and pensions, including subsequent integration of businesses.

Niederer Kraft Frey AG

Niederer Kraft Frey AG advises companies and professionals in managerial positions on all matters relating to employment law. In M&A and restructuring scenarios, the team handles issues including incentive programmes and contracts as well as related topics such as tax issues, social insurance and pension law. Catherine Grun Meyer and Valerie Meyer Bahar jointly head the team, with the latter particularly experienced in wrongful employment terminations, compensation matters and employment law disputes. The role of practice heads has swapped from Andreas Casutt and Thomas Sprecher are also noted.

Practice head(s):

Catherine Grun Meyer; Valerie Meyer Bahar

Other key lawyers:

Andreas Casutt; Thomas Sprecher; Livia Keller

Testimonials

‘High level of knowledge and expertise, fast turnaround, to the point solutions, strategic thinking and a pleasure to work with.’

‘Catherine Grun Meyer has been a reliable partner for us throughout the last years. She is easy to work with, straight forward and can think out of the box to find the appropriate solution.’

‘The Niederer Kraft Frey employment team is very customer-oriented and flexible to work in a way that we clients wish. Furthermore the communication with NKF employment is very uncomplicated, fast and to the point. In particular NKF has broad international experience – and is capable of providing advice in a concise way, understandable not only for lawyers but also for an international senior management with limited knowledge of Swiss employment law. ’

‘Catherine Grun Meyer has great communication skills and is a strategic thinker. She is always available and is able to tailor her services to my wishes. Catherine Grun Meyer makes a great team with Livia Keller, who has profound knowledge of Swiss employment law, including jurisprudence of the Swiss Federal Tribunal. ’

‘NKF’s relationship with us is lasting for years and pre dates my start date at the firm. I highly appreciate their know how relating to our company.’

‘Daniel Antognini is a top employment law litigator- focused, fast-thinking and always on top of the case.

Key clients

Capvis Equity Partners AG

Globegarden

Global Blue and Silverlake

Klopman AG

PriceWaterhouseCoopers AG

Work highlights

  • Advised the shareholders regarding the dismissal for cause (immediate termination) of the CEO of a family office of a high net-worth individual due to the CEO breaching his duties, abusing the trust of the family and acting for his own benefit instead of the company’s.
  • Advised a large foreign bank in two employment litigation cases, one in which a former employee held the bank accountable for their burnout, the other concerns a dispute with a former employee who was laid off because they stalked a co-worker.
  • Acted for a client from the Swiss financial industry in litigation against the former top management; litigation against multiple former employees; litigation against a discrimination claim of a former employee.

Walder Wyss Ltd.

The employment team at Walder Wyss Ltd. provides ‘very competent advice’ on employment law and all employment-related areas, including immigration, social security, pensions and collective bargaining negotiations and has a strong track record in mass layoffs and transactional employment issues. The team's litigation capacities were further strengthened by the arrival of Irène Suter-Sieber, who joined from Homburger in 2020; Suter-Sieber is also experienced in executive compensation and employment investigations, Practice heads Ueli Sommer and Philippe Nordmann are experienced in setting up compensation schemes and participation plans.

Practice head(s):

Ueli Sommer; Philippe Nordmann

Other key lawyers:

Irène Suter-Sieber

Testimonials

‘Great law firm, always top quality and very responsive’

‘Ueli Sommer has an awesome knowledge in employment law and provides always an extraordinary quality of work’

‘This law firm has understood our requirements and implemented them to the point. Their highly professional and pragmatic way of working convinced us from the very first moment.

‘Irène Suter-Sieber is focused on the essentials, solution-oriented, competent with open communication, assertive and initiative-oriented. She sets high standards for quality, reliability, efficiency and transparency and is very objective. She is direct and sums up the issues without frills.’

‘Advice is pragmatic – I really appreciate the way Philippe Nordmann tells you straight what the likelihood of success/failure might be and doesn’t sit on the proverbial fence. In my view, in line with what I expect from good firms.’

‘Philippe Nordmann is first rate. Direct in a good way, pragmatic and able to translate legal complexity into layman.’

‘Compared to other firms, Walder Wyss is clearly above average regarding content, service level and speed. ’

‘I am really very satisfied by Philippe Nordmann.’

‘Very friendly contact and always very competent advice. Available at any time.’

‘Philipp Nordmann has excellent knowledge of Swiss labour law, very pleasant cooperation, best negotiation tactics.’

Key clients

Canopius Reinsurance

General Electric

Lugano Airport SA

Mediamarkt

Nestlé

Panalpina

University Children’s Hospital of Zurich

Bayer

Sanitas Healthcare

Work highlights

  • Assisted Lugano Airport with the renewal of the collective agreement vis-à-vis trade unions.
  • Advised Panalpina on all employment law issues relating to the takeover by DSV, which included conducting the social plan negotiations with employee representatives and implementation of a social plan.

BianchiSchwald LLC

Covering all language areas of Switzerland but with a particularly strong presence in the French-speaking areas, BianchiSchwald LLC acts on all kinds of employment issues, including pensions and immigration and acts in litigation and arbitration proceedings. The team has knowledge of criminal law issues and investigations related to employment matters, including sexual harassment and data fraud. Practice head Stéphanie Fuld advises on complex participation plans, hiring, secondments, transfers and mass dismissals and is also active in litigation. Clients include national and international companies as well as senior executives.

Practice head(s):

Stéphanie Fuld

Key clients

Dalkia Suisse SA

Le petit-fils de L.U. Chopard & Cie SA

TPG / Transports publics genevois

UEFA / Union of European Football Associations

Sonepar International Services SA

Atlanticomnium SA

Philip Morris Products SA

Alcon Management SA

Roquette

Work highlights

  • Advised the Geneva public transportation company TPG on its employment law matters.
  • Advised Le petit-fils de L.U. Chopard & Cie SA on the framework of employment agreements of particular employees so as to assess their potential modification and the applicable process within Swiss law.
  • Assisted UEFA with the framework of an employment termination and also advised on other employment matters.

burckhardt Ltd

burckhardt Ltd is a boutique law firm comprising of tax experts, commercial lawyers and notaries; the practice specialises in advice for corporate and private clients. The employment team acts predominantly for employers and advises on all employment law-related issues, including data protection, immigration matters, compliance and employment litigation as well as internal investigations, collective bargaining agreements and bonus plans. Regula Hinderling has a strong litigation focus. Gudrun Österreicher is particularly sought out by clients from the services, media and pharmaceutical sectors.

Practice head(s):

Regula Hinderling; Gudrun Österreicher

CMS

Able to draw on its international network, the employment department at CMS has a focus on cross-border matters. The firm acts for its broad range of corporate clients, which include large multinational companies from the fashion, consumer electronics and manufacturing sectors, on dispute resolution and contractual planning, in particular. Practice head Christian Gersbach is specialised in the employment law aspects of M&A transactions. Recently the team has regularly been sought out for advice on international employment issues related to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Practice head(s):

Christian Gersbach

Key clients

Nike Inc.

Accenture AG

Denner AG

Corning Inc.

Diageo

BURSON COHN & WOLFE

Novelis

CTS EVENTIM

DP World

Harald Quandt Industriebeteiligungen GmbH

ABB

GRAPHA-HOLDING AG

Work highlights

  • Assisted Nike with regard to all kinds of Swiss employment matters. In particular, the team advised Nike with regard to specific employment relationships as well as on all employment law aspects of the Covid-19 crisis.
  • Advised Accenture AG with regard to specific employment matters as well as on all employment law aspects of the Covid-19 crisis, including home office questions and the protection of employees at higher risk.
  • Advised CTS EVENTIM on all legal aspects of the acquisition of the majority stakes in Gadget Entertainment and wepromote, two major Swiss live event producers. Advised the buyer on all employment-related aspects of the transaction, including the conclusion of new employment agreements with the members of the top management.

Eversheds Sutherland AG

Acting predominantly for employers, Eversheds Sutherland AG advises on the full range of employment law issues, both contentious and non-contentious, with a focus on complex human resources projects. The team has considerable experience handling employment issues concerning restructurings, internal investigations, mass dismissals and short- and long-term incentive plans. Peter Haas, who heads the firm's dispute resolution practice, has a focus on social insurance matters and fellow co-head Olivier Dunant is experienced in business immigration.

Practice head(s):

Olivier Dunant; Peter Haas

Testimonials

‘A team that handles matters professionally. Verification of the work before it goes to the client. Singular contact person. Very rapid responses and immediate practical advice. Business-minded approach and the aim to find solutions within the legal framework. Great wealth of experience.’

‘Competent know-how and quick to grasp the situation. Flexible, can react to changes of the situation immediately. Rapid responses, substantiated advice, strength in advice. Grasp complex requirements and put them into action in a pragmatic fashion for the client.’

Key clients

Raizen Trading LLP, London, Geneva Branch

MARTIFER – CONSTRUCOES METALOMECANICAS S.A., Oliveira de Frades (P), succursale de Genève

Fédération des Entreprises Romandes Genève

Alia – The Royal Jordanian Airline Plc (Royal Jordanian)

Work highlights

  • Handled an employment law dispute for Raizen Trading LLP, London, Geneva branch, regarding traders.
  • Assisting Martifer-Construcoes Metalomecanicas, Oliveira de Frades (P), succursale de Genève, in all day-to-day employment law matters, from immigration global mobility to the negotiation of collective labour agreements.
  • Advising members of Fédération des Entreprises Romandes Genève on employment law and global mobility training.

Meyerlustenberger Lachenal Ltd

Meyerlustenberger Lachenal Ltd advises on all employment law issues, including social security and immigration, with a focus on advice concerning corporate developments, such as acquisitions, restructurings and outsourcing. The team negotiates with unions, local administrations and relevant authorities and advises on contracts, bonus packages and complex redundancies. Practice heads Thomas Kälin and Nadine von Büren-Maier lead the Zurich and Geneva offices respectively and are experienced in social security law matters. Guy-Philippe Rubeli is particularly experienced in litigious matters and Martin Ammann advises domestic and international clients.

Practice head(s):

Thomas Kälin; Nadine von Büren-Maier

Other key lawyers:

Guy-Philippe Rubeli; Martin Ammann

Testimonials

‘Very pragmatic approach to issues.’

‘Martin Ammann has a vast experience and this plays in his favour.’

Key clients

Willis Tower Watson

PADI EMEA Ltd

HolidayCheck

railCare AG

Jabil Switzerland Manufacturing GmbH

Semtech (Switzerland) GmbH

Swisspro group of companies

Unicef

Zurich Insurance Company

Coca-Cola

Calida group of companies

Swiss Retail Federation

Work highlights

  • Advised Jabil Manufacturing Switzerland GmbH on its market entry in Switzerland with the acquisition of seven sites in Switzerland and the transfer of roughly 2,500 employees. Continued advice to Jabil Switzerland on all employment related matters, including litigation.
  • Supported the Swiss Retail Federation in setting up a personnel-leasing scheme, which allowed member companies to lease personnel to other member companies during the Covid-19 pandemic in order to compensate the uneven workload of the member companies. Continued advice to the Federation and several of its member companies in employment related matters, including litigation.
  • Supported longstanding client HolidayCheck with their restructuring, including mass dismissal proceedings and social plan negotiations.

MME Legal | Tax | Compliance

MME Legal | Tax | Compliance represents employees and employers in court and arbitration proceedings, with lawyers acting as counsel or arbitrator. The team is ‘very able in international employment matters and those relating to innovative niches such as crypto currency’ and advises clients on international job postings, immigration, the employment aspects of M&A transactions and operational restructurings, as well as incentive, bonus and compensation schemes, among other areas. Practice head Michèle Stutz works exclusively on employment matters and is supported by Martina AepliAlexandra GeigerRaphael Brunner and Raffael Blattman.

Practice head(s):

Michèle Stutz

Other key lawyers:

Martina Aepli; Raffael Blattmann; Raphael Brunner; Alexandra Geiger

Testimonials

‘Fast, reliant, pragmatic.’

‘Brilliant employment law team, led by Michèle Stutz. Incredibly talented knowledgeable and commercial in their approach. Very able in international employment matters and employment matters relating to innovative niches such as crypto currency.’

‘Michèle Stutz and Martina Aepli are both superb. They are incredibly knowledgeable, responsive and collaborative; they are a delight to work with.’

‘Martina Aepli has been advising us very successfully on immigration matters; she has a deep understanding of our business, is creative, provides high quality work products and is able to move our cases forward towards success with the applicable authorities.’

‘Fast growing employment practice.’

‘Michèle Stutz is definitely standing out. She is very sharp and gives attention to details while always bearing in mind the big picture and the goals defined with her clients. She is very impressive and can be entirely trusted.’

‘Fast, highly skilled, capable of translating the client’s needs into legal action.’

‘Very friendly and reliable.’

‘The firm is one of the pioneers on blockchain issues, if not the most advanced firm on this topic. This is an undisputable asset on the market.’

‘The seamless interaction between the partner Michéle Stutz and the team of associates Martina Aepli and Manuela Fuchs provides comfort that quality, experience and execution is always at the forefront and never compromised, even if the horsepower during handling of the case is provided by the associates.’

‘Martina Aepli’s firm stance and self-confident appearance in conciliation hearings clearly built the foundation for an advantageous negotiation position and subsequent settlement.

‘We have worked with Alexandra Geiger and Michèle Sutz. Both of them were always very well informed about ongoing projects and I had the impression, that they had a very good way of exchanging information.’

‘They are dedicated, fast and super-competent. As a customer, I notice how well they work together.’

‘Michèle Stutz combines a clear look on issues and a good reading of human behaviour.’

‘Highly focused, excellent expertise and quality of work, outstanding knowledge of the market, perfectly sized team for the market.’

‘Michèle Stutz is highly experienced, determined, and with a very professional, sociable and matter-of-fact attitude. Michèle Stutz and her team work very quickly, solution-oriented and cost-conscious. You can always rely on first-class results. Excellent communication too.’

‘The team is extremely reliable, practical and competent. They give quick advice in the employment field, which is my specialisation.’

‘I have been working with Michèle Stutz. She is kind and fair but strong in the matters she deals with and extremely quick but complete when she gives advice.’

‘Urs Isenegger is an exceptional lawyer, highly responsive, efficient, reliable and trustworthy. Alexandra Geiger is highly skilled in all areas related to employment and compliance.’

‘The team is very reactive and covers a wide area of expertise. They provide tailor-made solutions with a business approach while still taking into account the unique human aspects in each matter. They are highly motivated and dedicated.

‘Michèle Stutz is a very qualified practitioner who stands out for her consistency and clarity to strongly represent her client’s position, while being collaborative at the same time. ’

‘MME provides very concise, excellent quality advice and is highly solution oriented. The employment law capabilities cover all our current and potential needs perfectly. The team focuses on the relevant issues and gives clear recommendations with a strong business mindset, not necessarily found in legal advice from other firms.’

‘Alexandra Geiger is a highly skilled employment law specialist. Compared to competitors, she is very solution oriented, giving clear and concise practical advice. Her reactivity is exceptional and communication with her very precise.’

‘Very responsive, friendly, helpful and they think ahead.’

‘Helpful, communicate on eye level, share their knowledge proactively.’

Pestalozzi

Pestalozzi’s employment team is fully integrated into the corporate and M&A department of the firm and, as a result, provides ‘to the point, concise and relevant practical commercial solutions’ on a wide array of employment matters and related issues. Martin Müller specialises in business transfers, pensions and executive employment, especially the structuring of compensation schemes. Christian Roos advises on the employment aspects of restructurings, business transfers and mass dismissals and is experienced in immigration law.

Practice head(s):

Martin Müller; Christian Roos

Other key lawyers:

Andreas Lienhard

Testimonials

‘All members of the Pestalozzi employment team are fast thinkers, always spot on and super responsive. They are problem solvers and they address the issues in a way so that we can implement solutions efficiently.’

‘The Pestalozzi employment team was the first to tell us how the fast evolving Swiss COVID law will impact our business. They gave us clear recommendation on what needs to be done. Other law firms started to send out legal updates later, but Pestalozzi’s advice has always been to the point, concise and relevant – the most efficient advice in these very challenging times.’

‘Martin Müller advises us in strategically relevant employment issues, like complex reorganizations, mass dismissals, TUPEs and senior executive employment matters. He provides tailor-made service and excellent advice. Martin Müller is very keen to better understand what the future of our businesses looks like. This allows him to come up with very efficient advice: He doesn’t provide lengthy memoranda, but really adds value to our business. Andreas Lienhard, senior associate, is an excellent employment litigator. He thinks ahead and is always prepared for the move of the counterparty.

‘Well functioning team of professionals.’

‘Highly responsive, very knowledgeable, practical commercial solutions.’

‘Martin Müller is responsive, practical and knowledgeable.’

‘Christian Roos is always very accessible and extremely responsive. The solutions provided are very pragmatic and well thought out.’

‘I appreciate the specialized knowledge available and that the department is still in a position to give sound and practical advice without producing extensive memos. Turn-around time has also proven to be very good. ’

‘I have had a few occasions where I worked with Martin Müller. I appreciate his sound knowledge and expertise in the area of employment law, his practical and solution-driven approach to issues we have raised with him and his responsiveness and quick turn-around time. He has also proven to be very quick in grasping the legal issues at hand. ’

‘The team has a very good understanding of what solutions are needed by the clients.’

Key clients

Akorn Pharma

C&A (Fashion Retail)

Coca-Cola HBC AG

Cofra Holding

Glencore

Johnson & Johnson

Kelly Services

Lionbridge

Mandarin Oriental Hoel

Microsoft

PSA (Opel, Citroën, Peugeot, DS)

Saxo Bank

Shire / Baxalta / Takeda

Syneos Health

Synthes

Wing Aviation / Google

Zimmer GmbH

Work highlights

  • Advised Takeda and Shire in connection with its merger and reorganisation of its Swiss operations. Appointed by both entities to structure the collective dismissal process and to negotiate social plans with the then two employee representative bodies.
  • Advised Zimmer GmbH on the relocation project of its EMEA headquarters from Zurich to Zug and a simultaneous reorganisation of its Swiss organisation, collective dismissal and social plan negotiations with unions.
  • Advised Synthes GmbH and Synthes Produktions GmbH on all employment and pension law matters regarding the transfer of seven manufacturing sites in Switzerland with about 2,400 employees to Jabi.

Schellenberg Wittmer Ltd

With one of the largest employment lay teams in Switzerland, Schellenberg Wittmer Ltd advises on the full range of employment and labour law as well as related issues concerning M&A transactions, disputes and more. Heading the employment practice from Geneva, Vincent Carron is an experienced litigator and his advice includes matters such as collective dismissals, international employee transfers, severance payments and restructuring of bonus schemes. Catherine Weniger  has a focus on matters related to data protection. Michael Hess and Christine Beusch-Liggenstorfer are key contacts at the Zurich office and advise on all employment law matters.

Practice head(s):

Vincent Carron; Michael Hess; Christine Beusch-Liggenstorfer

Key clients

Cardinal Health

Ram Active Investments SA

Bouygues Construction

Procter & Gamble

Schroder Bank AG

Panalpina Welttransport (Holding) AG

SIX Group

ams AG

Work highlights

  • Counsel to group companies of ams AG with a view to a divestment of its industry-leading MEMS microphone interface ASIC design business to Knowles Corporation. This involved TUPE equivalent transfers of a well-respected ASIC design team.

VISCHER

VISCHER advises on the full scope of employment law services and related areas, including work permits, social security and pensions. The 'business-oriented' team also assists with restructurings and has been sought out for mass dismissals and internal investigations. Marc Ph. Prinz covers contentious and non-contentious employment law and specialises in executive compensation, staff leasing and recruiting. Gérald Virieux, who joined the team in September 2019 from Bugnion Ballansat Ehrler, and Anela Lucic are both experienced in employment litigation.

Practice head(s):

Marc Ph. Prinz; Anela Lucic; Gérald Virieux

Testimonials

‘Very business oriented and able to find good and practicable solutions.’

‘Business focused mindset, high availability, ad-hoc fast guidance if needed.’

 

Key clients

Covance Inc. / LabCorp

Acino International Ltd

Conduent Inc.

Audatex, a Solera Group Company

Air Canada

B3i Ltd. Yes

Invacare Corp.

Alpha Financial Markets Consulting plc

Nobel Biocare Ltd

Nuance Communications Inc.

SWISS International Air Lines

Mitsubishi Chemical Advanced Materials Composites AG

RobecoSAM AG

Bethesda Spital AG

FARO Inc

ThermoFisher Corp.

Equistone Partners Europe

HAYS plc

Mallinckrodt Inc.

SUSI Partners AG

H. Lundbeck A/S

Polyphor Ltd No

Barnes Group Inc.

Deichmann Shoes

3 Plus Group

Control 4 Corporation

Swiss Medi Kids AG

Spencer Stuart

Work highlights

  • Advised Covance on a contentious restructuring of its Geneva operations, representing it in local courts, social plan negotiations with unions and as regards all aspects of mass dismissal procedures.
  • Conducted an internal investigation of allegations as regards sexual harassment. Also advised Invacare on addressing the allegations.
  • Represented Swiss International Air Lines in a prominent collective labour law dispute against a union in relation to the interpretation of a collective bargaining agreement.

Bratschi Ltd

Bratschi Ltd advises on all areas of employment law and public personnel law, including litigation and arbitration. Angela Hensch heads the practice. Stefan Rieder and Marco Rizzi are other names to note.

Gillioz Dorsaz & Associés

The boutique business law firm Gillioz Dorsaz & Associés acts for employees as well as employers and covers all aspects of both public and private employment law, including data protection, pensions, social insurances or unfair competition and also assists with internal investigations. Practice head Vanessa Maraia-Rossel, who also acts as a litigator in employment matters, drafts employment contracts and company policies for employers and advises on all stages of employment, including hiring, internal secondments and individual or collective dismissals.

Practice head(s):

Vanessa Maraia-Rossel

id est avocats sàrl

id est avocats sàrl’s employment practice has a strong focus on assisting start-ups and companies in their growth phase. The team advises on a broad variety of issues, including employment law investigations and compliance, employee transfers, immigration and terminations and represents clients in employment disputes. Practice head Juliette Ancelle is experienced in social law compliance matters, implementing measures as a result of investigations carried out by labour authorities as well as setting up employee incentive plans.

Practice head(s):

Juliette Ancelle

Lustenberger Rechtsanwälte

Lustenberger Rechtsanwälte is a boutique law firm that focuses on employment law and dispute resolution and acts for international corporations and executives on a broad range of employment law issues, including immigration and data protection. Practice head Monika McQuillen has experience of complex contentious employment disputes both in court and outside of court where she regularly acts as an accredited mediator. Caroline Lutz joined the 'very strong' team at the beginning of 2020 from UBS where she was in-house counsel.

Practice head(s):

Monika McQuillen

Other key lawyers:

Caroline Lutz

Testimonials

‘Monika Mc Quillen is a very good litigator and employment law specialist. She is well known by her peers since she has outstanding skills also in mediating cases. She is very solution oriented and a very reliable partner if you have an employment dispute.’

‘Very strong team, very solution oriented advice. Good quality of advice and always fast delivery of results.’

‘Monika McQuillen was easy to contact, gave update on the status on a regular basis and helped us to find a solid and pragmatic solution. She has a profound expertise of the Swiss law, in specific labour law. It is easy for her to work in an international environment.’

‘The team has a pragmatic and thorough approach which distinguishes it from the more academic, theoretical advice offered by some other firms.’

‘Monika McQuillen is business-minded, good at listening and understanding clients’ problems, and finding solutions which are practical and work from a business perspective.’

‘Caroline Lutz has a very profound knowledge about employment law topics – also combined with social security law topics. She deals great with clients and does provide tailored advice and risk assessment.’

Key clients

Louis Dreyfus Company

Virtusa Polaris

Gate Gourmet Switzerland Ltd and Gategroup Holding Ltd.

Crown Packaging Europe GmbH

Coloplast

IATA

Thouvenin Rechtsanwälte

Thouvenin Rechtsanwälte is a popular choice for executives and, in particular, has a strong track record in hiring and employment termination packages for CEOs and managing directors. General assistance to human resources managers is another key area of the firm’s ‘quick and efficient’ service which includes advice on all areas of Swiss employment law. Practice head Thomas Loher handles compensation schemes and harassment claims. Arlette Pfister and Markus Alder are experienced in immigration matters, company relocations to Switzerland and international litigation respectively.

Practice head(s):

Thomas Loher

Other key lawyers:

Arlette Pfister; Markus Alder

Testimonials

‘Responsiveness via email and phone. The answers are detailed enough but straight to the point. Quick and efficient understanding of our requests.’

Wenger Plattner

Wenger Plattner has a focus on dispute resolution for companies, managers and entrepreneurs, in particular concerning bonus litigation and terminations. The team regularly advises on the employment issues connected to restructurings, insolvency proceedings and M&A transactions which include mass dismissals or social plans. Practice head Roland Bachmann is an experienced litigator focusing on complex bonus disputes as well as termination and separation agreements for managers. Former partner Yves Meili retired.

Practice head(s):

Roland Bachmann