Firm Profile > VCA - Valadas Coriel & Associados > Lisbon, Portugal

VCA - Valadas Coriel & Associados
Rua Tierno Galvan, Torre 3, 16th floor
1070-274, Lisbon

Dispute resolution Tier 4

VCA - Valadas Coriel & Associados fields a multi-disciplinary practice advising domestic and multinational corporates on commercial, civil and administrative disputes. Typical instructions include handling contentious matters in the fields of real estate, employment, maritime law, debt collection as well as tax, bankruptcy and insolvency. João Valadas Coriel is actively involved in dispute resolution and has extensive experience in oral pleadings before the Supreme and appellate courts. Another name to note is Hugo Martins BrazVera Chalaça relocated to the Ivory Coast to establish the firm's Portuguese desk there.

Practice head(s):

João Valadas Coriel; Hugo Martins Braz


VCA is very effective in disputes related to civil, commercial, insolvency, tax and criminal law. They work as a team and deliver excellent results, where senior lawyers are always involved with the claims. They report in time, always in a simple, practical and understandable way.

The professionals are skilled beyond the law as they have a clear understanding of clients’ business – these skills are not common elsewhere.

A fantastic team, very reactive and professional. There is always someone available to answer urgent matters.

The team’s main strengths and key capabilities are: an ability to negotiate on behalf of the client and reach the best deal; anticipate changes in national/international laws and regulations and timely advise the client and prepare it for those changes; ability to find innovative solutions.

The team is focused on achieving the best outcome on behalf of clients.

A legal team with a very rounded, diverse and broad skill set. Key capabilities include a clear organisational structure, strong internal communication and cross-client commitment.

We can always rely on receiving a very direct and clear response to our queries, as opposed to receiving a vague and overly cautious assessment.

As a client we feel we can turn to any team member, at any given point in time and receive a competent straight forward support to our most important strategic business decisions, in a manner that is proactive, accessible, responsive, creative and quick.

I consider the VCA team very sharp in outlying a strategy to solve the issues, and even more in applying it. They are true problem solvers.

Hugo Martins Braz and the team have great availability and legal specific acumen.

João Valadas Coriel is always available and ready to give his guidance and share his experience in various business scenarios, including overseas situations.

Hugo is a very dedicated individual towards its client goals and objectives.

João Valadas Coriel is an outstanding lawyer, extremely dynamic with fast and strong intelligent solutions. He makes me feel confident on all matters. He is a fast thinker with a very sharp brain.

João Valadas Coriel is a very trustworthy lawyer, who gives sound advice and who can lead a “task force” in the most efficient way.

Sofia Quental takes extreme care with the minimal details of any process, she is tireless and always reacts to every need or request.

Key clients

EDP – Energias de Portugal, S.A.

TLC – The Lisbon Club, Actividades Hoteleiras, S.A.

Sousa & Diogo, Lda.

Eijrond Beheer BV

Anteprima Brands International, Limited, SL

Hotéis Roma, Marquês de Pombal, São José e Santa Marta

Pires & Cruz – Gestão Imobiliária, Lda

Groupe Urano

STILL – Soc. De Tratamento de Imagem Lusitana

The firm: VCA – Valadas Coriel & Associados was established in 2001. Today it is seen as a lean versatile full-service firm. The firm has a very energetic team of partners and associates who combine experience, expertise and innovation in all sorts of litigation and dispute resolution, labour, real estate, corporate for SME and tax.

VCA also has a very strong practice focused in private clients and the art world. The firm assists countless individuals in investing or relocating to Portugal.

VCA works in litigation matters for the largest Portuguese listed company on a permanent basis, side by side with a practice group focused on SME and private clients. The firm is able to effectively respond to clients across the spectrum of legal issues.

The dynamic, yet informal, work environment of VCA has attracted several skillful lawyers from major law firms and the ‘big four’ audit firms. Alliances and ‘best friends’ agreements, allowed VCA to gather resources and expertise both in Portugal and in many other European, Middle-East, African, North and South American and Asian jurisdictions.

Due to its commitment and activism, VCA was voted Member of the year 2018 by its peers at IR Global, a network of 900 plus firms across 155 jurisdictions.
VCA’s concept remains unaltered: firm lawyers are ‘combat lawyers’. For VCA – now with four partners and 20 lawyers – each case is a project, a battle to be fought and won through shrewdness, strategy, setting specific and measurable targets, performing a cost-benefit analysis bearing in mind time constraints and focusing on client’s interests.

Practice Areas

Tax: VCA offers domestic and international taxation services both for companies and to private clients such as high net worth individuals and family estate structures; tax compliance, tax arbitration and tax litigation are also at the core of the services provided. Paulino Brilhante Santos, of counsel to VCA, is a reputed tax arbitrator.

Corporate: VCA has a full company and corporate law practice – focused on SMEs and family offices – assisting with the incorporation of companies in Portugal as in other jurisdictions. The firm has assisted in the negotiation and drafting of shareholders’ agreements, franchise agreements, rental agreements, SPAs and respective due diligence, financial contracts, service agreements, among others.

Immigration: VCA is specialised in immigration by investment, guiding suitable candidates through all the steps from the administrative requirements to the required investment. Also assisting immigrants who seek tax incentives, tech investors and students. VCA also deals with special citizenship programs such as the ones aimed at Sephardic Jews of Portuguese descent and to alien grandsons of Portuguese citizens.

Dispute resolution: VCA focuses in civil, commercial and consumer litigation, credit recovery, maritime litigation – including seizure of ships and injunctions for payment of related debts of ship owners/execution of ship mortgages. VCA manages thousands of lawsuits on behalf of the largest Portuguese listed company.

Real estate: The practice covers all stages of the real estate cycle, from land development, construction, promotion and marketing, covering all aspects of planning, construction and architectural law. The firm has been involved in residential property, urban renovation with tax incentives, tourism and hotel development, tenancy agreements and all related disputes.

Private client: VCA has a very active practice team advising foreign investors. VCA also assist relocation to Portugal of pensioners, investors and skilled professionals through the NHR (non-habitual resident) tax regime.

Labour: The labour law practice group is responsible for advising on labour relations of several companies, including litigation and also assist international companies on issues related to its workers in Portugal.

Department Name Email Telephone
Litigation and Civil Law Ana Santos Fontes
Litigation and Criminal Law António Cayolla
Immigration Cláudia Cardoso
Litigation and Labour Law Hugo Martins Braz
All Departments João Valadas Coriel
Litigation and Civil Law Marta Valadas Coriel
Immigration Patrícia Valadas Coriel
Tax Law and Arbitration Paulino Brilhante Santos
Corporate and Real estate Rita Tigeleiro Afonso
Immigration Sandra Jardim Fernandes
Tax Law and Arbitration Sofia Quental
Litigation and Maritime Law Sónia Antunes Dias
Real Estate and Urban Planning Susana Varela Gaiato
Litigation and Arbitration Vera Chalaça
Photo Name Position Profile
 Sónia Antunes Dias  photo Sónia Antunes Dias
 Paulino Brilhante Santos  photo Paulino Brilhante Santos
 Cláudia Cardoso  photo Cláudia Cardoso
 António Cayolla  photo António Cayolla
 Vera Chalaça  photo Vera Chalaça
 Sandra Jardim Fernandes  photo Sandra Jardim Fernandes
 Hugo Martins Braz  photo Hugo Martins Braz
 Sofia Quental  photo Sofia Quental
 Ana Santos Fontes  photo Ana Santos Fontes
 Rita Tigeleiro Afonso  photo Rita Tigeleiro Afonso
 Marta Valadas Coriel  photo Marta Valadas Coriel
 João Valadas Coriel  photo João Valadas Coriel
 Patrícia Valadas Coriel  photo Patrícia Valadas Coriel
 Susana Varela Gaiato  photo Susana Varela Gaiato
Lawyers : 20
OA Portugal – Portuguese Bar Association
Portuguese Fiscal Association
IBA (International Bar Association)
International Fiscal Association


VCA- Valadas Coriel & Associados, since its foundation 17 years ago, has cultivated diversity in line with the best of Portuguese culture, a country which brought new worlds to Europe since the XIV century. VCA has 5 partners and 20 lawyers and most are women. We are proud to have people from all ages, social perspectives, faith, spiritual and religious beliefs, sexual orientation, social backgrounds, ethnic origins, abilities and cultures, even being a small firm.

VCA-Valadas Coriel & Associados has a professional career plan with objective evaluation with remuneration and incentives based on merit, regardless of the characteristics of its lawyers and workers based on equal pay for equal outcomes.

For VCA, living and working without diversity would be not just unfair and against ethic and the law: it would be like offering to our clients a service using half of our brains. Diversity at VCA is our guarantee of a service of excellence of this specialized business law firm.

VCA-Valadas Coriel & Associados works in or for several countries other than Portugal and its partners integrate and in some cases co-ordinate multinational teams of lawyers and other business experts of several European, African and Latin American countries with diverse cultures, languages and religions. Lisbon, our head office location is a multicultural hub where many people from different origins live together in peace in one of the safest cities in the world. This is so entrenched in the Firm’s DNA that for us diversity is just a way of living and working.

Pro Bono/CRS

VCA-Valadas Coriel & Associados has an organized Pro Bono/CRS department.

One of João Valadas Coriel’s passions, managing partner of VCA, is pro-bono work in criminal cases, something that comes from a desire to help people who have made mistakes.

We assist civil society organizations from children protection charities to social intervention associations and VCA partners work for rehabilitation and social development organizations.

VCA Pro Bono work has also involved the legal representation of destitute clients, some in complex legal issues, including litigation cases. For VCA- Valadas Coriel & Associados, a lawyers’ job is to pursue Justice, that sometimes elusive notion amidst the pressure and the stress of business legal practice.

Pro bono and CRS works remind to all lawyers at VCA-Valadas Coriel & Associados that our communities not only in Portugal but also in other countries where we work have given to us. It is also a constant reminder that destitute people also seek Justice and do have some technically complex legal issues to be sorted out and solved with the same high level of professionalism as paying clients.