Tiruchelvam Associates > Colombo, Sri Lanka > Firm Profile

Tiruchelvam Associates
Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka > Corporate and M&A Tier 1

Tiruchelvam Associates provides specialist knowledge to both regional and international clients, supporting on an array of corporate structuring, foreign direct investment and M&A mandates; the team assists in several sectors such as energy, healthcare and infrastructure development and is led by Asanka Abeysekera, a lawyer well-versed in real estate alongside corporate mandates who is particularly reputed for her knowledge in cross-border transactions and investments in immovable property. Alongside Abeysekera, Laila Nasry co-leads the group, overseeing a wealth of corporate transactions. At the more junior level, senior associate Nirosha Peiris offers the team extensive knowledge in corporate governance matters alongside expertise in regulatory matters, most notably foreign exchange law.

Practice head(s):

Asanka Abeysekera; Laila Nasry

Other key lawyers:


‘It was very easy to discuss matters and business.’

‘Nirosha Peiris was very open and direct about everything and at the same time, very calm and polite.’

‘Great to work with, an in depth understanding of the reality of working in Sri Lanka and is able to offer timely, sensible, and real world advice.’

‘In our organisation’s experience, Tiruchelvam Associates comes with a remarkable depth of knowledge and experience not just in the legal field, but also it its understanding of various aspects of administration, banking and governance in Sri Lanka. This makes them an ideal firm to engage with.’

‘The team has a wide network cast across the country and globally which enhances the quality of their work.’

‘The team has expertise and experience to provide advice that is credible and we depend on this service.’

‘The personalised service is much appreciated’.

Key clients

Galadari Hotels (Lanka) PLC

Galadari Brothers LLC

Takeda Group of Companies

HCL Technologies

Sarvodaya Group

Global Payments Asia-Pacific Limited/ Global Payments Inc.

Novo Nordisk A/S

Heineken Lanka Limited

Cisco Systems Management B.V.


Applexus Technologies Inc.

Dahnay Logistics Private Limited

Fujiwara Co. Ltd

Fujisun (Pvt) Ltd

Kalbe International

Pidilite Industries Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised a Chinese SOE on its proposed acquisition of a majority stake in Sri Lanka’s first local automobile manufacturing/assembling company.
  • Advised freight forwarder Dhanay Logistics in the share restructure of the Sri Lankan entity and amendments to the joint venture agreement.
  • Represented a Client at the Department of Foreign Exchange to regularise its (approx) USD 1 million foreign equity investment in the Company.

Sri Lanka > Labour and employment Tier 1

Ramani Muttettuwegama leads the labour and employment division at Tiruchelvam Associates, which possesses the ‘required expertise, experience and knowledge’ to assist both local and multinational clients in the manufacturing, technology and energy industries, and more recently the education sector. The team leverages its knowledge of strict labour laws to advise on data protection and educational matters, and is also adept at handling the employment aspects of global deals with regard to employment share option schemes and restructuring. Clients further benefit from the division’s niche experience in the sphere of business immigration, providing corporate expertise in relation to recruitment, workforce planning and global mobility in the technology sector.

Practice head(s):

Ramani Muttettuwegama


‘A team with required expertise, experience and knowledge to attend to matters in a timely and efficient manner.’

‘Personalised service and their ability to understand and gather information on our field of work to ensure compliance requirements being met.’

Key clients


Hoist Support S L (Private) Ltd

Mitsui & Co Ltd

Eutech Cybernetic Lanka (Pvt) Ltd

Himal South Asian

Women’s Fund Asia

Microchannel (Private) Ltd

PWC Sri Lanka

Deloitte Sri Lanka



Fragomen Worldwide

Global Payments Asia Pacific (Pvt) Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advised ING N.V on implementing an LTI scheme in Sri Lanka, by proposing creative and alternative solutions to ensure that the severe shortage of foreign currency did not impact the participation of employees of its Sri Lankan subsidiary.
  • Advised Hoist Support S L (Private) Limited on structuring the pegging of LKR salaries to foreign currency to manage the inflation and reduce its impact on clients’ employees.
  • Advising a foreign government on engaging Sri Lankan educators to provide services via an online learning platform.

Sri Lanka > Private client, wills and probate Tier 1

Work highlights

Sri Lanka > Projects and energy Tier 1

Tiruchelvam Associates is recommened for its work within the energy sector, specifically in relation to renewable energy projects. Practice head Laila Nasry is a key name to note within this area, advising clients on an array of issues including rooftop solar projects. Senior associate Nirosha Peiris bolsters the strength in depth of the practice, focusing on power projects.

Practice head(s):

Laila Nasry

Other key lawyers:


‘The knowledge they possess about the subject matter is extra ordinary.’

‘Laila Nasry has the best knowledge in regards to power and energy projects.’


Key clients

Blueleaf Energy Asia Pte Ltd

Kazanci Holdings A.S.

Healy Consultants Group PLC representing TSK Electronica Y Electricidad S.A. (investor)

Takeda Group of Companies

Galadari Hotels Lanka PLC

Work highlights

  • Advised Blueleaf Energy Asia Pte Ltd on the design, build, install, operate and transfer of a solar PV system on a local factory rooftop of a multinational brewery.
  • Advised the Kazanci Holdings A.S. on its bid pertaining to the second 300 MW LNG combined cycle power plant at Kerawalapitiya.
  • Advised Galadari Hotels Lanka PLC on contractual and financing matters and corresponding documents in relation to the hotel’s renovation and refurbishment project.

Sri Lanka > Real estate and construction Tier 2

Tiruchelvam Associates has recently supported a wealth of real estate clients on all matters arising from the foreign exchange crisis. The practice also supports multinational clients, when needed, with applications to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka for tax clearance certificates after the sale of their property in Sri Lanka. Asanka Abeysekera oversees the team: her thorough experience within banking and finance makes her a go-to for real estate transaction structuring, and she is likewise well-versed in title reports.

Practice head(s):

Asanka Abeysekera


‘Asanka Abeyesekera has been extremely helpful in explaining the legalities and options available to me so I could make well informed decisions.’

‘Tiruchelvam Associates carried out the registration of my condominium apartment, on my behalf. This was handled in a professional and competent manner within the tight deadline set by the colombo municipality.’

‘Very professional team with extensive knowledge in their own area of work, they are focused on what they do and display maturity and accountability.’

‘The team has been responsive to email, clear in their instructions and able to be flexible.’

‘They have provided excellent service to us, despite us being overseas.’

‘Asanka Abeysekara has given us considered, helpful and timely advice.’

Key clients

Romany Nanayakkara

Ramesh De Silva

Dudley Leelananda

Kumaresan Padmanathan

Dr. Shriyani Maine

Susanne Loos Jayawickreme

Sakuntala Kadirgamar

Sakunthala Devarajan

Premilla Chinnappa Quinn

Deeshani Gooneratne

Work highlights

  • Assisted a client who resides abroad as an attorney on selling her condominium parcel.
  • Represented a client in a resurvey plan enabling them to sell their property in Sri Lanka, advising that a caveat be registered at the relevant land registry as a precautionary measure.
  • Advised a client on registration issues concerning the ownership of a property listed in a family will.

Sri Lanka > Tax Tier 2

Tiruchelvam Associates is recommened for acting on an array of tax-related issues, specifically regarding permanent establishments, transfer pricing and the impact of tax reform proposals. The practice dovetails effectively with the firm’s real estate and corporate departments. Ramani Muttettuwegama is they key name to consider.

Practice head(s):

Ramani Muttettuwegama

Key clients

Yum! Restaurants

Room to Read


Work highlights

  • Advised one of the India’s leading food & beverages groups on transfer pricing rules.
  • Advised Room to Read, a global literacy promotion group, on NGO taxes in Sri Lanka.
  • Advised several investors on Permanent Establishment rules.

Sri Lanka > Banking and finance Tier 3

Tiruchelvam Associates has been busy combatting matters within the banking and finance sector relating to Sri Lanka’s economic crisis. The practice assists multinational as well as smaller clients on regulatory changes such as overcoming restrictions and management of salaries. Thanks to associate Thuwaraka Ganeshan’s IT expertise, clients have also been assisted on a diversity of fintech matters. The group has aided not-for-profit organisations and has consistently advised at reduced or pro bono rates to those concentrated on micro finance. Ramani Muttettuwegama leads the team and is adept in debt restructuring with her advice often coveted by international debt restructuring teams.

Practice head(s):

Ramani Muttettuwegama

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Shearman & Sterling

De Heng Law Consultants

Anjjie Law Firm

Work highlights

  • Advised a global leader in business and financial data, news and insight and a company in e-commerce on an expansion of products offered on its platform.
  • Advised several multinationals on payment procedures for Sri Lankans’ participation in proposed employee stock options plans ad obtained special clearances from the Department of Foreign Exchange.
  • Advised a debt restructuring group on legal issues to be managed in capital debt restructuring in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka > Dispute resolution Tier 3

The team at Tiruchelvam Associates have been particularly engaged in handling disputes regarding employment, routinely appearing before the commissioner of labour. The practice aims to broaden the areas in which it operates and has ventured into sectors such as rent and ejectment. The group is headed by Laila Nasry alongside Ayendra Wickremesekera, the former is particularly adept in matters within the power and energy fields; the latter is adept in labour law litigation and is particularly knowledgeable in labour law reform.

Practice head(s):

Laila Nasry; Ayendra Wickremesekera


‘They always research about the subject matter thoroughly and provide you solid information. This sets concrete foundation to a successful journey with them.’

‘Laila Nasry makes sure the client completely understand the situation before we step into the next phase.’

‘The knowledge they possess and the professionalism they bring is outstanding.’

‘You are never confused with them. You hardly have to change the documents they provide you.’

Key clients

Pathuma Fariel Ali

Kapila Ratnayake

FujiSun (Pvt) Ltd

Dhulanie Mendis

Nathalie Lemaire

Srikantha Motors Lanka (Pvt) Ltd

Inoka Silva

Work highlights

  • Represented a client in her late husband’s testamentary action in order to prove the joint last will and to distribute the properties accordingly.
  • Advised and assisted a client taking legal action against his tenant who has defaulted in rent payments and regaining possession of the property.
  • Represented FujiSun (Pvt) Ltd in making a successful application under the Right to Information Act and obtained relevant information from a government corporation.

Sri Lanka > Intellectual property Tier 4

Skilled negotiator Ramani Muttettuwegama and head of the IP practice Michael Paiva lead the team at Tiruchelvam Associates. It is equipped to provide the full array of intellectual property advice and is primarily engaged in the export, biotechnology and healthcare sectors. The team is skilled at trademarks, design and patent filings, as well as prosecutions, enforcements and opposition actions. Due diligence exercises and the negotiation of licensing agreements are also strong points for the firm. The group regularly represents clients at the National Intellectual Property Office (NIPO), most notably in the tea export industry – one of the main sources of foreign revenue generation to Sri Lanka.

Practice head(s):

Ramani Muttettuwegama; Michael Paiva

Other key lawyers:

Thuwaraka Ganeshan; Adheeba Ilyas; Allister Abeywardena


‘The firm has been very responsive since the start and handles our matter promptly and professionally. They provide practical solutions and keep us updated on the progress of the matter.’

‘Allister Abeywardena has been helping us to resolve the issues efficiently and practically. He always uses his best endeavour to find solutions and even during the Covid-19 lockdown period in Sri Lanka, he would use all means to reach out to the governmental authorities in order to get our matter to move forward at the soonest possible.’

‘Responsive and helpful. Despite the difficulties facing their country at the moment, they take care to update clients and keep matters running, as a testament to their resilience and business continuity.’

‘Michael Paiva is knowledgeable and responsive, a steady pair of hands we can count on.’

Key clients

Unitalen Attorneys at Law

Shailendra Thatte & Associates

SCG Legal Counsel Ltd

FarmaPatent IP

Withers Khattarwong LLP

Remfry & Sagar

Guangzhou Zhuanli IP Law Firm

Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP

C. S. Tang & Co. Advocates & solicitors

JK Marcam LLP

Mohamed Idris & Bros

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius

Studio Bonini SRL

APIA Proprietate Industriala

ANUATION Research and Consulting LLP

Anakamus Manufacturing

Barnes & Thornburg LLP

ATMD Bird & Bird LLP

Nanaviti Associates

Maha Chemicals (Asia) Pte Ltd




Sarvodaya SEEDS Limited

CDM International (Private) Ltd

Sarvasaara Agro Research and Technology Center Limited

Emirates Patent & Trade Mark Attorneys & Legal Consultants


Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd

Jin Wang Cheng International Intellectual Property (Beijing) Co Ltd

Mega Trend Lanka

Berenguer & Pomares Abogados

Dhairya Shah & Associates (DSA)

Work highlights

  • Advised one of the world’s largest multinational fast food chains on the restructuring of the IP licensing agreement with Sri Lankan franchisee.
  • Advised a world renowned beverage company on managing its Sri Lankan franchise operations.
  • Advised the client on the managing and transfer of IP in a microbiological research project.

The firm: Tiruchelvam Associates was established in 1982, by Dr Neelan Tiruchelvam PC and Sithie Tiruchelvam. It developed from the chambers of former senator, minister and solicitor-general of Sri Lanka, M Tiruchelvam KC. Dr Neelan Tiruchelvam was a scholar, an internationally recognised constitutional lawyer, a member of parliament and a visiting professor at Harvard Law. Dr Tiruchelvam’s constitution making skills were renowned, and he assisted in the drafting of several constitutions of Central Asian countries and also post-conflict Ethiopia.

Since 1999, Sithie Tiruchelvam has led the firm as precedent partner. Her expertise includes representing foreign and domestic multinationals in corporate and commercial transactions. She served on the board of John Keels Holdings, one of three blue chip companies in Sri Lanka as a non-executive director and has played a pivotal role in some of Sri Lanka’s most ground-breaking investment ventures. Sithie was renowned for her contributions to the field of human rights and has served on the boards of several non-profit organisations.

The firm is now led by three partners, Asanka Abeyesekera, Ramani Muttettuwegama and Laila Nasry.

Asanka heads the corporate affairs and real estate divisions of the firm. Her expertise in investment law stems from her initial work with Sri Lanka’s first investment regulator (the Greater Colombo Economic Commission, the Board of Investment’s predecessor). Coupled with her experience as vice president – legal for the Vanik group, at that time Sri Lanka’s premier investment banking group.

Ramani is the managing partner of the firm. Specialising in IT and telecom law, she also supervises the employment, immigration and intellectual property divisions of the firm. Her extensive background in human rights makes her a skilled negotiator and she is TA’s key representative with regulators.

Laila leads the litigation and arbitration practice of the firm and also manages much of the mergers and acquisition work of the firm including commercial contracts. She joined the firm after managing a considerable portfolio at the Attorney General’s department of Sri Lanka and is an expert on laws and regulations on energy and natural resources, often requested for expert legal advice by Sri Lanka’s leading energy experts. Laila’s work with the AG’s department has given her much expertise on infrastructure and development related projects and she advises on multi faceted projects. Laila, also advises many of the firm’s clients engaged in the global healthcare and pharmaceutical industry.

Areas of practice: The firm provides a broad spectrum of services which range from corporate and commercial practice encompassing advisory services, intellectual property, real estate and conveyancing, litigation and alternative dispute resolution. The firm’s corporate secretarial arm, Central Corporate and Consultancy Services (Private) Limited, provides services to corporate clients in all stages of their business life, from incorporation to liquidation. The firm frequently counsels multinational investors and corporate clients both local and foreign in a variety of industries and businesses, including but not limited to, the banking and finance sector, power and energy, telecommunications, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, information technology, tourism, immigration, intellectual property, taxation and infrastructure development.

Department Name Email Telephone
Corporate/M&A Ramani Muttettuwegama rmuttettuwegama@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Corporate/M&A Laila Nasry lnasry@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Corporate Finance & Banking Ramani Muttettuwegama rmuttettuwegama@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Corporate Finance & Banking Asanka Abeysekera aabeysekera@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Power & Energy Laila Nasry lnasry@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Telecommunications & ICT Ramani Muttettuwegama rmuttettuwegama@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Corporate Secreterial Asanka Abeysekera aabeysekera@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Corporate Secreterial Nirosha Peiris npeiris@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Corporate Secreterial Heshika Rupasinghe hrupasinghe@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Real Estate & Conveyancing Asanka Abeysekera aabeysekera@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Real Estate & Conveyancing Volya Siriwardana vsiriwardana@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Litigation and ADR Laila Nasry lnasry@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Litigation and ADR Ayendra Wickremesekera awickremesekera@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Litigation and ADR Abirami Nithiananthan anithiananthan@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Intellectual Property Michael Paiva apaiva@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Intellectual Property Thuwaraka Ganeshan tganeshan@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Immigration Ramani Muttettuwegama rmuttettuwegama@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Immigration Michael Paiva apaiva@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Taxation Ramani Muttettuwegama rmuttettuwegama@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Taxation Abirami Nithiananthan anithiananthan@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Employment& Labour Ramani Muttettuwegama rmuttettuwegama@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Employment & Labour Thuwaraka Ganeshan tganeshan@tiruchelvam.com +94-11-2690037, 2698110, 2686019
Photo Name Position Profile
Ramani Muttettuwegama photo Ms Ramani Muttettuwegama Managing Partner
Number of lawyers : 12
TRACE International
American Chamber of Commerce in Sri Lanka
Managing Partner : Ramani Muttettuwegama
Partner : Laila Nasry
Partner : Asanka Abeysekera