Insurance in Switzerland
The 'trusted' team at CMS stands out for its 'excellent skills' and 'is well-connected within the industry'. Recent work includes handling professional liability claims for Liechtenstein Bank and other insurance companies regarding criminal, medical and further miscellaneous legal cases. The team has also assisted multi-line providers with amending product terms and conditions, drafted group internal life insurance treaties and advised on coverage issues and insurer-side rights of recourse. Managing partner and disputes specialist Jodok Wicki regularly conducts proceedings before state courts. Clemens von Zedtwitz joined gbf Attorneys-at-law Ltd in September 2019.
‘CMS is a trusted partner with a worldwide net that delivers.’
‘CMS has excellent skills in the fields relevant for our company, such as insurance, liability and contracts.’
‘Only very few law firms in Switzerland have insurance teams large enough to handle major cases with adequate resources – CMS is one of them. CMS’s insurance team covers German, French and English and is well-connected within the industry.’
- Reviewing amendments to general terms and conditions of health insurance products and negotiating the approval process with the Swiss Financial Market Authority.
- Handling approximately ten Swiss professional liability claims for a client relating to medical malpractice.
- Advising a German-listed industrial company on coverage issues and the insurer’s rights of recourse.
gbf Attorneys-at-law Ltd's 'specialised and highly-motivated insurance lawyers' are 'highly responsive' with a 'very strong practical approach'. Highlights included the setting-up and licensing of Beazley Insurance DAC's new branch, and assisting Wertgarantie with a run-off and its Swiss market exit. Lars Gerspacher, Dominik Skrobala and Nando Stauffer von May lead the 'extremely business-driven' team, which further benefits from 'strong client orientation' and 'profound knowledge' of all insurance services. The firm also provided advice on corporate and regulatory merger aspects, the introduction of international private medical insurance into Switzerland, and acted for a Swiss insurer in a large multinational dispute against two banks for the mis-selling of structured financial products. Private law expert Clemens von Zedtwitz joined from CMS in September 2019.
Lars Gerspacher, Dominik Skrobala, Nando Stauffer von May
‘A small team of specialised and highly motivated insurance lawyers who are pragmatic and great to work with. Highly responsive and cost efficient, they have a good team spirit and seem to get along well with each other.’
‘gbf has a dedicated team for insurance matters, representing insurance and reinsurance companies. The team understands the corporate issues and risk transfer techniques of insurance companies and also has intimate knowledge of supervisory practice.’
‘Very strong practical approach.’
‘Leading insurance practice for Switzerland.’
‘I know the members of the team that have been specialising in insurance for a long time now. They have an extremely business-driven approach and have both the theoretical knowledge as well as experience in various insurance law sectors.’
‘The team at gbf are able to cover a variety of industries from an insurance perspective in a sleek and efficient organisation that is exceptional.’
‘The firm is our number one contact in Switzerland. We involve them if we need legal support there. They have experts in various legal fields. We are used to working with them especially in the field of insurance law. Our impression is a very good one. The firm has excellent people and an excellent standard.’
‘gbf is the only firm that we have worked with in Switzerland that has a clear understanding of (re)insurance regulatory issues and insurance law.’
‘Good mix and exchange between juniors/seniors. Substitutions functions flawlessly.’
‘The firm enjoys an excellent reputation in Switzerland and abroad. It provides clients with personal, individual and efficient legal advice to the highest professional standards. Its strong client orientation and access to lawyers are extraordinary.’
‘An excellent approach to business cases with capabilities to present, pro-actively, pragmatic solutions, with potential options to consider to always match our company’s best interests. Completely transparent in the approach to the cases with a superb level of reliability. Very deep knowledge of the Swiss insurance law and regulatory aspects with international experience, which is highly valuable for the type of business we cover.’
‘They are highly responsive, very pragmatic and solution-oriented. One of the most easy-to-work-with law firms I ever experienced.’
‘An insurance lawyer is only as good as his expertise on the underlying insureds’ businesses. gbf is a leading firm in transportation and insurance contract law, two separate areas of law where issues consistently have to be looked at simultaneously. Furthermore, gbf has extensive experience in advising on insurance regulations in Switzerland and abroad.’
‘Profound knowledge in the field of financial lines insurance products – valuable and useful support in handling of claims of major financial losses, namely in the banking and commercial/industrial sector.’
‘Always reachable and very solution-oriented.’
Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty
AXA Corporate Solutions
AXA Assurances SA
Helvetia Insurance Co.
Zurich Insurance Co
- Advising on the set-up and licensing of the new Swiss insurance branch of Beazley Insurance DAC regarding its entry into the Swiss insurance market.
- Advising on the run-off and market exit of Wertgarantie from Switzerland.
- Acted for a Swiss insurer in a large multinational dispute against two banks for the mis-selling of structured financial products.
The insurance team at Schellenberg Wittmer Ltd handles a mixed caseload of litigation, corporate consultancy and licensing issues and provides the full range of services in the space. Recent work includes advising on regulation, the establishment of Swiss insurers and obtaining relevant Finma authorisation, the preparation of internal guidelines and procedures, fraud defence, as well as co-insurance and reinsurance scheme issues. Alexander von Ziegler heads the team and is supported by Olivier Favre in Zurich and Tarek Houdrouge in Geneva. Recent work includes advising an insurer and major transport company on the regulatory aspects of domestic and cross-border products.
Alexander von Ziegler
The 'extremely responsive' team at Bär & Karrer Ltd. is 'ready to go the extra mile' with its 'client-centric attitude' across all advisory work. Recent highlights include assisting Allianz Suisse Versicherungs-Gesellschaft on its acquisition of DAS Switzerland; advising Insurtech B3i on a new equity funding round; and acting for Credit Suisse on the ECA financing and collateral structure for the Ankara-Nidge Turkish highway project. Peter Hsu, who regularly advises Swiss and foreign insurers or re-insurers, intermediaries, securities dealers and fintech businesses, is the key contact.
‘Extremely responsive, quick, ready to go the extra mile.’
‘Extremely responsive. An extremely bright and knowledgeable team. Always trying to be helpful to move things forward with great business acumen.’
‘Client-centric attitude – the team strives to understand the interests of the client, formulates responses incorporating the client’s perspective and the team delivers along the agreed expectation path. High quality work!‘
‘Work very professionally, available and fast.’
‘The firm combines technical skill with the ability to be commercial and efficient in the delivery and turnaround of advice.’
AON Schweiz AG
B3i Services AG
- Advising Allianz Suisse on the acquisition of DAS Switzerland.
- Acting for Insurtech B3i on a new equity funding round.
- Advising Credit Suisse on the ECA financing and collateral structure for the Ankara-Nidge Highway Project in Turkey.
At Kellerhals Carrard, the team handles disputes and liability cases, as well as providing regulatory advice. Basel-based Pascal Grolimund led on separate multimillion-dollar proceedings for a luxury goods company and a care sector industry association – both against major insurers – regarding property damage and erroneous compensation recovery, respectively. Zurich-based office Christoph Frey represented one insurance company in a $50m arbitration matter, and another in social recourse litigation. The team has also provided assistance with Swiss D&O contracts and with international product recall damages claims. Thomas Eichenberger, Nicolas Gillard and Ivan Paparelli are other key contacts.
Christoph Frey, Pascal Grolimund, Thomas Eichenberger, Nicolas Gillard, Ivan Paparelli
KPT Versicherungen AG
Visana Services AG
- Representing a leading luxury goods company in a multimillion-dollar coverage dispute against an insurer.
- Advising on Swiss D&O insurance contracts relating to coverage and underlying liability claims.
- Representing a major insurance company in a $50m arbitration proceeding.
Olivier Stahler and Lukas Morscher jointly head the 'very responsive' and 'diligent' team at Lenz & Staehelin, which counts AXA, Caterpillar Insurance Company, Liberty Mutual and Unilever Reinsurance AG among its clients. Highlights included advising Baloise on the insurance aspects of its acquisition of majority stakes in both devis.ch and Bubble Box AG; assisting Vaudoise Assurances Holding SA with the acquisition of Pittet Associés; and acting as Swiss counsel on Unilever Reinsurance Group's unification. Corporate, investment and outsourcing, insurer policies and risk transfers are other areas of expertise.
Olivier Stahler, Lukas Morscher
‘The team was very responsive, diligent and worked to the required timelines.’
AXA Stiftung Berufliche Vorsorge
Caterpillar Insurance Company
Schweizerische Mobiliar Versicherungsgesellschaft AG
Unilever Reinsurance AG
Vaudoise Assurances Holding SA
- Advising Baloise on the insurance aspects of its acquisition of majority stakes in both devis.ch and Bubble Box AG.
- Assisting Vaudoise Assurances Holding SA with the acquisition of Pittet Associés.
- Acting as Swiss counsel on Unilever Reinsurance Group’s unification.
VISCHER's client portfolio includes insurance companies, brokers and insured parties. The practice is adept at settling coverage issues and acting in disputes concerning financial line policies, crime, property, and D&O liability. Team head Daniele Favalli represents parties in coverage litigation matters and oversees all insurance-related regulatory and corporate issues. Senior associate Tina Jäger is another name of note in this area.
The team at Baker McKenzie handles corporate transactions for insurance and reinsurance carriers, alongside cross-border and compliance work. Practice head Joachim Frick led on international merger and restructuring transactions; provided regulatory advice to an international insurer domiciled in Switzerland relating to licensing issues; and assisted a separate insurer with its distribution of products across multiple jurisdictions. Associate Markus Winkler is a name of note for insurance licensing, Finma-influenced cases and asset management.
Homburger advises predominantly on tax insurance matters and regulatory issues concerning new insurance products. The team also has experience of representing clients in administrative proceedings before Finma and other Swiss regulators, as well as in asset-tracing and enforcement proceedings. Hansjürg Appenzeller heads the department, which has recently represented Wacker Neuson in a high-value litigation case against the Swiss National Accident Insurance Fund.
- Representing Wacker Neuson in litigation against the Swiss Mandatory Accident Insurance Scheme (SUVA).
Pestalozzi acts for longstanding clients including SwissLife and AIG and is adept at handling insurance M&A transactions, both in the domestic market and with a cross-border element. Practice head Christoph G Lang's expertise in both Swiss and European insurance law allows the firm to take on complex matters. In a particular highlight, the team advised AmTrust on its acquisition of a stake in Canopius Reinsurance. Beat Schwarz is also noted.
The Prudential Insurance Company of America
Hyperion Insurance Group
Credit Suisse Insurance Linked Strategies AG
- Advising AmTrust on the acquisition of a stake in Canopius Reinsurance, following the merger of AmTrust’s Lloyds Business with Canopius.
Thouvenin Rechtsanwälte works closely with various Swiss and global insurance providers on claims, risk, coverage and settlement issues. The practice handles a particularly wide range of liability work across the professional, product, medical negligence, transport and travel domains. Martin Bürkle is 'a real expert' for accident insurance cases, and also sits as an arbitrator in multiple health insurance disputes.
‘We are working together with the lawyer Martin Bürkle, who is a real expert in the field of law for accident insurances. We appreciate the close professional and uncomplicated collaboration.’
Dispute resolution boutique Wartmann & Merker focuses on litigation and arbitration insurance work before Swiss and foreign state courts, as well as national arbitral tribunals. Clients include major banks and insurers, a global pharmaceutical company, and transport and logistics companies. Giovanna Montanaro has extensive domestic and cross-border experience in resolving sensitive matters.