Chassany Watrelot & Associés (CWA) > Lyon, France > Firm Profile

Chassany Watrelot & Associés (CWA)
79 cours Vitton
69006 LYON

France > Employment Tier 1

Employment law boutique Chassany Watrelot & Associés (CWA) impresses with the size of the team involved; its offices in France (Paris, Lyon and Sophia-Antipolis) as well as in Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia; and its ability to advise on the full range of employment law and social security matters. The practice is frequently retained to assist with the implementation of challenging projects, such as large-scale restructurings, plant closures or the implementation of new collective agreements on a wide scale. The management of labour law issues linked to insolvency proceedings is another area of strength. The practice is also a strong name for large M&A and private equity deals and is well versed in employment and benefits matters. Recently, the team assisted its key client Carrefour with the implementation of Covid-19 sanitary passes for all its employees across its various shopping centers, and acted on a strategic carve-out project in the energy sector. The firm’s prestigious client base includes leading French and international companies, French blue chip companies from the retail and energy sectors among them. Philippe Chassany, Jérôme Watrelot and Elisabeth Graujeman co-head the practice which also includes key members Sébastien Poncet, Hélène Guillot, Virgile Zeimet, who made partner in 2021, and Abdelkader Hamida, who joined in May 21 from Vaughan Avocats. In 2021 the firm was acquired by audit firm Implid and Juliette Pouyet, Julien Boucaud-Maître and of counsel Anne de Gabory left the firm.

Key clients

PAI partners



Shiseido Group EMEA

Worlwide Flight Services (WFS)

Amrest (KFC, Pizza Hut)




Fibre Excellence Tarascon

Groupe Labeyrie


Kaufman & Broad

La Croix Rouge Française


Transdev Group

Work highlights

  • Advised PAI PARTNERS on the acquisition of the Tropicana brand ($3.3bn) from PepsiCo.
  • Advised CARREFOUR GROUP on all its human resources issues related to the implementation of the French health pass (Passe sanitaire) in Carrefour stores.
  • Advised WORLDWIDE FLIGHT SERVICES (WFS) GROUP on its insolvency and restructuring proceedings launched as a consequence of the Covid-19 crisis.

Employment > Social security: compensation and benefits

Chassany Watrelot & Associés (CWA)

The firm: Chassany Watrelot & Associés (CWA) is a law firm exclusively dedicated to employment law and other areas impacting human resources management. Over the past 30 years, the firm has experienced strong growth and is now in Lyon (since 1987), in Paris (since 1999), in Nice-Sophia Antipolis (since 2019) as well as in Casablanca and Tangiers (2011), Algiers and Tunis (2012). CWA brings together over 60 lawyers providing legal advice, accompanying and representing companies during litigations, and developing and conducting professional training.

CWA provides companies with strong support at all stages of the employment relation, be it individual or collective employment relations, either in the daily management of human resources and in the framework of large scale operations (restructurings, mergers and acquisitions, sales, outsourcing).

CWA defends its clients throughout all aspects of litigation, whether individual or collective. Given the increasing criminalisation of business law in general and labour law in particular, CWA has developed a expertise in employment criminal law to handle this type of litigation.

Because all human resources professionals need to constantly update their knowledge of employment law, CWA deploys all its knowledge and experience to provide tailor-made training sessions, bringing functional and innovative solutions.

Areas of practice: Thanks to its wide experience and multilingual skills, CWA provides legal advice to major international groups or SMEs which benefit both from the very personalised follow-up of a specifically dedicated lawyer and from the expertise of the entire firm through its highly technical expertise hubs.

Restructurings/M&A: the firm is involved in restructuring operations, such as business transfers, mergers and acquisitions or outsourcing operations. It addresses all matters: works council consultation, legal due diligence reports, impact of business transfers on employees, or elaboration and implementation of redundancy plans, negotiation of management packages.

Employment collective relations: a partner of companies and/or employer organisations, CWA brings its knowledge of legislation and case law, its responsiveness, and its analysis to help master the management of working relations, including the implementation of staff representative institutions.

Compensation and profit sharing: CWA assists its clients in remuneration strategies, including incentive plans (bonus, stock-option plans, profit-sharing, savings plans), taking into account the legal environment for social and tax optimisation, and the specific clients constraints and needs. (notably in cases of mergers or any other restructuring operations.)

Pensions and welfare protection: CWA also assists companies during the implementation or modification of retirement plans, supplementary healthcare schemes or death-incapacity-disability schemes. It has also developed a wide expertise in end-of-career plans (preretirement, proactive planning on employment and careers, etc).

Social security: CWA offers its expertise and understanding of the impact of social security regulations on the application of social security rules and the inspections of companies. It supports companies in the implementation of these rules and in the decision making process.

Health and safety at work: the firm adapts to legal developments during the development and follow-up of the occupational hazards prevention policy and in the conduct of relations with the health and safety committee. Its experience allows CWA to accompany its clients at the pre-litigation and litigation stages.

International mobility: CWA has developed expertise and assists clients in their international development with constant focus on the safety of the solutions recommended. CWA’s transversal team, dedicated to international mobility, works in connection with a network of foreign lawyers able assist clients in managing their employee mobility.

Individual and collective employment relationships Bruno (0)4 37 51 16 16
Employment collective relations, Social security law Sébastien (0)1 44 34 84 84
Restructuring, employment collective relations, Litigation Philippe (0)4 37 51 16 16
Restructuring, Health and safety at work (working conditions/accidents at work and occupational diseases) Laurence (0)4 37 51 16 16
Labour and employment litigation Benoît (0)1 44 34 84 84
Head of the Pensions and welfare protection hub | Restructurings, Compensation and profit sharing, Pensions and welfare protection Elisabeth (0)1 44 34 84 84
Restructuring, Health and safety at work (working conditions/accidents at work and occupational diseases) Hélène (0)1 44 34 84 84
Employment collective and individual relations, Restructurings Abdelkader (0)1 44 34 84 84
Employment collective relations, Health and safety at work (working conditions/accidents at work and occupational diseases) Franck (0)4 37 51 16 16
Employment collective relations, Vocational training, Relations with staff representatives Xavier de (0)1 44 34 84 84
Employment collective relations, Litigation Yves (0)4 37 51 16 16
Head of CWA in Maghreb | International mobility, Corporate law and finance, Business law / Contract law, Public law, Tax law Mohamed (0)1 44 34 84 84
Employment collective relations, Health and safety at work (working conditions/accidents at work and occupational diseases) Julia (0)4 37 51 16 16
Restructuring, Mergers and acquisitions, Employment collective relations Sébastien (0)4 37 51 16 16
Restructurings, Mergers and acquisitions, Employment collective relations Jérôme (0)1 44 34 84 84
Restructurings, Mergers and Acquisitions Virgile (0)1 44 34 84 84
Sébastien Cellier photo Sébastien CellierPartner | Attorney registered with the Lyon Bar Association
Philippe Chassany photo Philippe ChassanyManaging partner | Attorney registered with the Lyon Bar Association
Laurence Cohen photo Laurence CohenPartner | Attorney registered with the Lyon Bar Association
Franck Janin photo Franck JaninPartner | Attorney registered with the Lyon Bar Association
Yves Merle photo Yves MerlePartner | Attorney registered with the Lyon Bar Association
Julia Pettex-Sabarot photo Julia Pettex-SabarotPartner | Attorney registered with the Lyon Bar Association
Sébastien Poncet photo Sébastien PoncetPartner | Attorney registered with the Lyon Bar Association
Number of partners (France) : 16
Number of lawyers (France) : 54
Other offices (Algeria) : Algiers
Other offices (Morocco) : Casablanca
Other offices (France) : Lyon
Other offices (France) : Nice Sophia-Antipolis
Other offices (Morocco) : Tangier
Other offices (Tunisia) : Tunis