Sacha Calmon e Misabel Derzi Consultores e Advogados > Belo Horizonte, Brazil > Firm Profile

Sacha Calmon e Misabel Derzi Consultores e Advogados
BELVEDERE, 30320-540

City focus - Belo Horizonte > Tax Tier 1

A standout name in the Belo Horizonte tax scene and a relevant player in the national market, Sacha Calmon e Misabel Derzi Consultores e Advogados handles the full array of tax mandates and is often engaged by multinational companies in their strategic cases. With noteworthy capabilities in tax planning, indirect taxation and contentious matters, the team has recently registered an uptick in tax litigation before the superior courts in Brazil, particularly for companies operating in the services and food and beverage sectors. Valter Lobato has an impressive track record in administrative and judicial proceedings, and often acts for technology, transport and automobile clients. He jointly leads the department with André Mendes Moreira, who is a go-to lawyer for the telecoms, energy and mining sectors. Founding partner Misabel Abreu Machado Derzi and Tiago Conde focus on tax litigation, while Fernando Moura is knowledgeable of international tax and restructuring.

Practice head(s):

André Mendes Moreira; Valter Lobato


‘The firm is exceptional, has an extremely qualified and dedicated team, knowledgeable about its clients’ business. Regardless of who is conducting the case, they always do it with zeal and technical quality not easily found.’

‘Attention to detail. Innovation. Deep knowledge.’

‘Valter Lobato is a high-ranking expert with a deep knowledge.’

‘The team has a genuine attitude of understanding the client’s needs, their organisational culture, and offering an excellent service that is customised to its client’s internal needs.’

‘Technical capacity and availability. Valter Lobato stands out for his technical capacity and strategic vision. Tiago Conde is experienced in acting in higher courts.’

‘In my view, the team has a high level of knowledge. It is a national reference in the legal and academic world. It handles matters of extremely high complexity.’

‘Valter Lobato is extremely careful and has a holistic vision that supports decision-making.’

Tax > Tax litigation Tier 1

Tax > Tax advisory Tier 2

'Admired for its academic and ethical reputation', Sacha Calmon e Misabel Derzi Consultores e Advogados is highly respected by clients and peers alike, and is especially noted for its strong litigation credentials. The firm's international and domestic clients operate across a diverse range of sectors. Led out of Belo Horizonte by highly rated partners Valter Lobato and André Mendes Moreira, the team also has a broad national footprint, with well-staffed offices in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Brasília. The on-the-ground support applies to municipal, state and federal tax issues, including tax planning and indirect tax matters. Other key partners include Misabel Abreu Machado Derzi, who regularly represents clients at the highest level, and Sacha Calmon Navarro Coêlho. Litigator Rafael Caldeira is also singled out for praise.

Practice head(s):

André Mendes Moreira; Valter Lobato


‘A firm of excellent technical quality and visibility before courts and audit.’

Firm admired for its academic and ethical reputation, before clients, other lawyers, authorities and academia. It imprints a personality, with deep knowledge of the company’s business, in the tireless search to find the best solution for the client, always going beyond what was expected.’

‘The main aspect is the excellent technical quality linked to objectivity in offering the exact resolution we seek, both for the yes and for the no.’

‘Strong performance in issues of extremely high complexity. The issues are quite dense, involve a deep risk analysis: involving accounting, litigation, availability of assets and tax planning; creations of sets for decision making and obtaining decision-making decisions of very difficult enforceability.’

‘André Mendes Moreira has a capacity for work and kindness that go beyond the exceptional.’

I would highlight Valter Lobato, for his renown, both due to his technical and ethical depth, before clients, other lawyers, authorities and academia. He acts as a true partner of the customer, with a feeling of ownership and enormous sympathy.’

‘ Rafael Caldeira is  brilliant lawyer who knows how to conduct tax litigation masterfully.’

‘Valter Lobato actively participates in discussions, points out exactly the alternatives we have, is dedicated to finding different solutions to our considerations as a client.’

Founded in 1994, Sacha Calmon – Misabel Derzi Consultores e Advogados (SCMD) is widely regarded as an authority in Brazil in tax law. The firm is a tax boutique with offices in Belo Horizonte (MG), Rio de Janeiro (RJ), São Paulo (SP) and Brasília (DF), offering national coverage through a qualified network of correspondents over the whole Brazilian territory. When a case requires a multidisciplinary approach, SCMD works in partnership with other highly recommended firms who are specialised in other fields of law. The firm also works in partnership with top law firms outside Brazil.

SCMD stands out for its high level of specialisation. It is one of the most distinguished firms in Brazil, acting exclusively in tax law at both national and international level. It provides administrative and judicial tax litigation advice as well as consultation services and the preparation of specialised legal opinions. The firm brings together a highly qualified team of professionals, who stand out for their educational background and their continued activities in the most prestigious and traditional universities in Brazil and the world.

The team is led by the renowned professors Sacha Calmon Navarro Coêlho and Misabel Abreu Machado Derzi. Sacha has been recognised by a survey of the Brazilian Capital Market Institute (IBMEC, São Paulo), published in the magazine Exame, as one of the five most quoted tax lawyers in decisions of the Superior Court of Justice (STJ) and the Federal Supreme Court (STF); and Misabel Abreu Machado Derzi, a formerly Attorney-General of the State of Minas Gerais and full professor of financial and tax law of the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG). All other partners hold excellent qualifications and have impressive reputations for their experience in the tax field.

Main areas of practice
Tax litigation 75%
Tax consultancy: 25%

Tax: The guiding light of SCMD is specialisation and it acts in the practice of tax law. The teams are divided by economic sector so that the professionals have a broad knowledge of each clients’ business specifics.

Judicial and administrative tax litigation: With deep bench strength in this arena, the lawyers are able to provide their clients with solid representation in litigious matters across all judicial and administrative spheres in Brazil. The assistance includes careful assessment of the degree of risk and definition of specific strategy; joint approach of merit (juridical theses) with the questions of fact (evidence); interaction with the controller’s office and the accountancy department of the companies to ascertain the facts; high quality of procedural briefs; special attention to reports, with the appropriate layout, and with the content directed in accordance with the specific points of each client; permanent and personal follow-up of the cases; formation of leading cases and personal and direct action in the higher courts – the Superior Court of Justice (STJ) and the Federal Supreme Court (STF).

Tax consultancy and preparation of legal opinions: Legal and juridical opinions; creation and formatting of new products focused on catering to the needs of each client, with the least possible tax impact; tax planning; legal opinions including the identification of possible problems in the litigation process.

Clients: SCMD provides legal services to clients within the most diverse sectors of the economy, singling out especially telecommunications, iron and steel, mining, petroleum and petrochemicals, electrical power, the financial market, wholesale trade, civil construction and private pension plans and transportation.

Main lawyers
André Mendes Moreira holds a PhD in tax law from the University of São Paulo (USP) and is a tax law professor at the Federal University of Minas Gerais, where he graduated and also obtained his master’s degree, both with academic distinction. He is an experienced lawyer, having assisted clients with tax matters in every state of the country and before the superior courts. He has published more than 100 works in the tax field, including 10 books (as author or organiser). André lectures in conferences worldwide and is a director of the Brazilian Association of Tax Law.

Misabel Abreu Machado Derzi holds a degree in law (summa cum laude) and a PhD from the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG), where she is currently a full professor of tax law. She used to be the Minas Gerais State Attorney-General and is currently part of the Commission created by the government of Minas Gerais to improve its tax on goods and services (ICMS). As a tax lawyer, she frequently acts before the high courts in Brasília. She is the Honorary President of the Brazilian Association of Tax Law (ABRADT), having also published over 400 works in the tax field.

Sacha Calmon Navarro Coêlho holds a degree in law and social sciences from PUC-MG and a PhD in law from the UFMG, where he used to be a full professor of tax law. He is a former federal judge. Sacha is currently the coordinator of postgraduate courses in tax law at Faculdades Milton Campos, as well as the Honorary President of the Brazilian Association of Financial Law, that represents the International Fiscal Association in Brazil. He is one of the five most quoted jurists in high court decisions, according to a survey made by the business magazine (Exame) in 2007.

Valter de Souza Lobato holds a law degree (having receivied the prize for best graduating student) as well as a master’s and PhD degrees from UFMG. His career began in corporate law as head of tax consultancy and litigation of a leading steelmaking company. He is currently a senior partner at Sacha Calmon Misabel Derzi; a professor of tax and finance law at UFMG and assistant coordinator of the postgraduate programme at Faculdades Milton Campos; President of the Brazilian Tax Law Association and of the Tax Committee at Fecomércio/MG; coordinator of tax law review ABRADT-FORUM; speaker and author of several articles on tax law.

Tax consultancy Valter
Tax consultancy André Mendes
Tax litigation Valter
Tax litigation André Mendes
Number of partners : 25
Number of other fee-earners : 30
English (fluent)