Firm Profile > FBT Attorneys-at-Law > Geneva, Switzerland

FBT Attorneys-at-Law
1211 GENEVA 6

Banking and finance: Geneva Tier 2

The banking and finance practice at FBT Attorneys-at-Law is regularly instructed by a variety of financial institutions, including securities dealers, fund management companies, asset managers, and family offices as well as international banks and investment funds. The scope of the practice includes advising on regulatory matters, financing and collective investment schemes, which are also the areas of expertise of department head Frédérique Bensahel. Associates Jean-Marie Kiener and Véronique Chatelain Gomez are also noted. Since publication, Pierre-Olivier Etique has left the firm.

Practice head(s):


The FBT banking and finance team is composed of very professional, excellent and dedicated individuals. Its approach is very professional and coherent, the opinions are very clear, understandable and clever.’

Frédérique Bensahel provides tailor-made advice and is a skilled banking specialist.’

Leading firms: French-speaking Switzerland Tier 3

The lawyers at FBT Attorneys-at-Law are experienced in matters of a cross-border nature, and work closely with the Paris office. The firm focuses its practice particularly in the areas of banking and finance, corporate, commercial, labour and dispute resolution. Tax matters are covered by a team led by Jean-Luc Bochatay and Michel Abt, and family estate law is another core business area. Frédérique Bensahel  and Jean-Louis Tsimaratos are regularly instructed by banks and financial institutions. Serge Fasel  and Marco Villa are also noted. Since publication, Pierre-Olivier Etique and Michaël Biot have left the firm.


FBT is great for transnational legal and tax issues relating to French-Swiss issues.

Jean-Luc Bochatay and Frédérique Bensahel both have a practical approach and excellent analytical skills.

Private client Tier 3

The team at FBT Attorneys-at-Law covers the full spectrum of matters in the private client area, including the structuring of trusts and entities, the acquisition and sale of assets, as well as inheritance and asset management disputes. It is regularly engaged by national and international banks, high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs), family offices and fund management companies. Frédérique Bensahel is also a specialist in banking and finance matters, while Jean-Luc Bochatay and Michel Abt focus on tax mandates. Alain Moreau heads the practice from the Paris office.

Practice head(s):


The team is reactive, problem solving and devoted to its clients.

Jean-Luc Bochatay and Michel Abt are exellent private client tax specialists.’

Dispute resolution: litigation Tier 4

FBT Attorneys-at-Law covers a wider range of disputes, which includes representing clients in commercial, banking and finance, white-collar criminal law and insurance litigation proceedings. The team has experience in acting appearing before civil, criminal and administrative courts as well as in cross-border matters. The practice is headed by Serge Fasel, who is an expert in banking, insolvency and employment disputes; Fasel is also are instructed in contentious employment matters. Since publication, Michaël Biot has left the firm.

Practice head(s):


The team consists of very good litigators, who are available on short notice.’

Tax Tier 4

FBT Attorneys-at-Law is routinely sought out by banks, investment managers, trust companies, high-net-worth individuals and family offices to handle tax matters. The core team comprises of Michel Abt, who is also knowledgeable in banking and finance law, and Jean-Luc Bochatay, who is experienced in cross-border tax planning and tax disputes. The group also advises on tax transparency and tax criminal proceedings. It works closely with the firm's Paris office.

Practice head(s):

Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 5

FBT Attorneys-at-Law's practice covers assistance with the drafting and negotiation of contracts, the setting up of schemes and advice on corporate protection measures, among others. The head of the team is Marco Villa, who is based in Geneva; he specialises in contractual and commercial law.

The firm: FBT Attorneys-at-Law (FBT) is a multidisciplinary law firm, based in Geneva and Paris, which operates in the financial and commercial sectors as well as in niche activities, with a predominantly cross-border dimension.  FBT was founded in 1993 in Geneva by Serge Fasel, Jean-Luc Bochatay and Jean-Louis Tsimaratos. Nowadays, FBT counts ten partners out of a total of 33 lawyers. From a generalist Swiss law firm, FBT opted back in the 90s to specialise in four, now six, specific legal domains.

FBT also decided from the very beginning to provide its clients with specialised advice on cross-border transactions with France. From this perspective, it chose to work closely with another law firm in Paris. A few years later, FBT decided to open its own offices in France with the French lawyers that had accompanied the Swiss firm successfully from the beginning of its special focus on Swiss-French cross-border issues. Besides this special  focus on Swiss-French cross-border issues, FBT has developped a network of lawyers around the world, enabling it to mobilize and coordinate specialized teams in many countries.

Areas of practice: FBT is organised in six specialised and complementary legal teams which advises its Swiss and foreign clients on domestic and cross-border issues in the following areas:

Banking and finance:

  • Banking and financial regulations, including authorizations  and FINMA enforcement procedures
  • Collective investment schemes and other similar structures
  • Private insurance
  • Asset management
  • Financing
  • Financial litigation


  • Individual taxation, including top executives taxation
  • Corporate taxation
  • Taxation related to financial activities
  • Real estate taxation
  • Tax procedures and litigation, including international assistance in tax matters

Corporate and commercial:

  • Corporate affairs
  • Entrepreneurs’ legal framework
  • Shareholders’ legal framework
  • Contractual law
  • Corporate asset protection
  • Assistance to companies in critical financial situations

Litigation and arbitration:

  • Commercial litigation
  • Banking and financial litigation
  • Arbitration
  • Forced execution
  • Economic crime
  • Mutual assistance in criminal and administrative matters

Labour and social insurance:

  • Individual and collective litigation
  • Collective labour agreement
  • transfers and relocation
  • Work permits

Family estate:

  • Wealth structuring and estate planning
  • Unions (marriage and partnerships)
  • Philanthropic activities
  • Succession
  • Residence transfer (expatriation and impatriation)

Each group is led by a partner highly experienced in the group’s field of activity. A constant exchange among the practice groups allows the sharing of up-to-date information in each field of specialisation. Depending on the case, FBT sets up a ‘multidisciplinary legal team’ capable of devising a pragmatic overall approach to the various aspects of the case, responding rapidly while maintaining a high degree of legal safety and ensuring optimal cost control.

Department Name Email Telephone
Banking and finance Frédérique Bensahel +41 22 849 60 40
Banking and finance Pierre-Olivier Etique
Tax Michel Abt
Tax Jean-Luc Bochatay
Corporate and commercial Marco Villa
Litigation Serge Fasel
Litigation Michaël Biot
Private clients Frédérique Bensahel
Private clients Jean-Luc Bochatay
Photo Name Position Profile
Mr Michel Abt  photo Mr Michel Abt Partner – Michel Abt, Head of the Tax Group (also member of…
 Laura Benhammou  photo Laura Benhammou Laura Benhammou is an associate with FBT and a member of its Banking…
 Frédérique Bensahel photo Frédérique Bensahel Frédérique Bensahel is head of the banking and finance group of FBT…
Mr Michael Biot  photo Mr Michael Biot Partner and member of the Litigation & Arbitration Group. Michael Biot’s fields…
Mr Jean-Luc Bochatay  photo Mr Jean-Luc Bochatay Partner with FBT in the Tax Group; cofonder and chairman of FBT.…
Mrs Véronique Chatelain Gomez  photo Mrs Véronique Chatelain Gomez Associate and member of the Banking and Finance Group. Véronique Chatelain Gomez…
Mrs Olivia De Weck  photo Mrs Olivia De Weck Associate and member of the Litigation and Arbitration Group. Her fields of activities…
Mr Pierre-Olivier Etique  photo Mr Pierre-Olivier Etique Partner and member of the Banking and Finance Group. Pierre-Olivier Etique advises…
Mr Serge Fasel  photo Mr Serge Fasel Founding partner and head of the Litigation and Arbitration Group. Serge Fasel…
Mr Théo Goetschin  photo Mr Théo Goetschin Théo Goetschin is a Lawyer with FBT and a member of its Litigation…
Mrs Anaïs Jacot-Guillarmod  photo Mrs Anaïs Jacot-Guillarmod Anaïs Jacot-Guillarmod is an Associate with FBT and a member of its Litigation…
Mr Jean-Marie Kiener  photo Mr Jean-Marie Kiener Jean-Marie Kiener is an associate with FBT and a member of its Banking…
Mr Julien Le Fort  photo Mr Julien Le Fort Julien Le Fort  is a Lawyer with FBT and a member of…
Mrs Sophie Moreillon  photo Mrs Sophie Moreillon Sophie Moreillon is a lawyer and a member of FBT’s Litigation and…
Mr Jean-Louis Tsimaratos  photo Mr Jean-Louis Tsimaratos Partner and member of the Banking and Finance Group. Jean-Louis Tsimaratos advises…
Mr Marco Villa  photo Mr Marco Villa Partner – Marco Villa is a leading contract and commercial law expert.…
Number of lawyers : 28
at this office : 21
Other offices : Paris