2011, Chambers Latin America


THE FIRM: This firm has a well-regarded banking and finance team and is praised for its capital markets expertise. It recently represented Discount Bank in the restructuring and renegotiation of the financing for Casmu, Uruguay´s largest healthcare provider.
Sources say: “Ferrere has managed to become the biggest firm in the country, gaining great experience and respect along the way.”
KEY INDIVIDUALS: Diego Rodríguez heads the department and is an excellent lawyer, according to clients: “He listens carefully to you, always follows up and indicates the best direction to take – you can rely on him completely.” He handles banking and finance and capital markets matters.


THE FIRM: This full-service firm is a high-profile player and handles a large volume of corporate work. It has excellent working relationships with the authorities and stands out for its network of branches in other countries in the region. The team recently assisted CMPC with its bid for ENCE´s forestry and paper pulp operations in Uruguay.
Sources say: “It´s one of the best firms I have worked with – the lawyers are dedicated and committed to getting results, and always provide solutions to problems.”
“The lawyers provide fast and accurate responses – you can rely totally on their advice.”
KEY INDIVIDUALS: Young partner Martín Cerruti heads the corporate practice group. “He´s very good at understanding what the key drivers are from the client´s perspective in acquisitions and commercial contracts,” according to sources. He and his team recently represented Vale in the acquisition of Río Tinto´s operations and assets in Uruguay and Paraguay. Associate Pamela Moreira provides excellent support and is a recognized figure in the market. Sadly, in July 2010, the firm suffered the unexpected and tragic loss of founding partner, Daniel Ferrere.


Ferrere provides a service of international standard, according to clients: “The fierce commitment of the senior lawyers, their proactive approach and continual contact makes it feel like a US firm.” The team recently defended JPMorgan Chase, Credit Suisse, Commerzbank, Dresdner Lateinamerika and a number of private individuals in 50 claims totalling USD1.6 billion, arising from the bankruptcy of two financial institutions in Uruguay during the 2002 banking crisis. Andrés Cerisola is praised by clients: “We are in very safe hands – he knows how to get results.” He is also a first port of call of international clients with issues in Uruguay and other jurisdictions in the region: “He`s really prudent in his advice, especially when it comes to major cases involving political issues in Latin America.” Cerisola is currently balancing his dispute resolution practice with his new role as managing partner. Sandra González heads the department and is especially strong in arbitration. Associate Alejandro Pintos impresses sources with his litigation results.


This full-service firm has a seven-strong IP department that handles the full range of work including patents, trade marks, copyrights and litigation. Clients say: “This is a big firm with lawyers who can be aggressive when required on complex cases.” They also point out that “the team is always available, and if not will call you straight back.” The firm is currently representing Novartis in a case before the Ministry of Health regarding copies of one of its top products. Agustín Mayer leads the practice group and is devoted to IP. He is highly regarded in the market, particularly for his work on patents. He is advising Abbott Laboratories on challenging the Patent & Trade Mark Office, which refused to grant patent protection for a new HIV treatment. Associate Alejandro Alterwain impresses sources with his expertise in copyrights and antitrust matters. He recently acted for news` company Associated Press in a copyright case concerning the work of its reporters, including claims for second-uses rights.


This is “one of the most prestigious law firms in Montevideo, offering a personalized service and excellent specialists in every area of law.” Clients praise the labor team´s commitment to providing results and solutions to business issues. The large department offers the full range of service across the labor area, including day-to-day advice to companies, collective bargaining, prevention of conflicts and litigation. Recent highlights include representing car manufacturer Affinia`s Uruguayan subsidiary Fanacif in collective bargaining and litigation. Verónica Raffo heads the team and is a highly regarded labor specialist: “She manages all the demands extremely well and does an excellent job at negotiating with all the parties, even in highly sensitive matters.” She recently acted for SUAT in a USD 2 million social security taxes case. Nelson Larrañaga impresses sources with his vast experience, particularly in the academic field. He has been involved in many major labor cases over the years and “is always ready to provide advice, even when it goes beyond the call of duty,” according to sources. Lourdes Denis is “always willing to go the extra mile – she is even available at weekends and out of office hours.” She works closely with Larrañaga, and both are representing Pluna in two major labor lawsuits brought by flight attendants and pilots for a total of USD 40 million. Associate Santiago Fontana is recommended for his expert handling of labor matters, particularly issues with unions.


 “Ferrere is one of the most highly regarded firms in Uruguay and is a force both locally and in the Latin American region,” acknowledge sources. The firm has a large tax department, with nine lawyers, 20 accountants and the expertise to handle complex tax cases. The team provides ongoing tax advice to clients, advice on complex transactions, and support in tax investigations and high-profile litigation cases. It successfully defended Tienda Inglesa against the local tax authority in one of the most high-profile tax litigation cases in Uruguay´s history, preventing the closure of the supermarket. Alberto Varela heads the practice group and is a high-profile figure in the tax sector.

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